A Guide to Finding the Right Chinese Coins

Whether you are a practiced coin connoisseur or new to the game of coin collecting, you can find several Chinese coins available on eBay. Before making a purchase, you'll want to consider the following factors before deciding on a Chinese coin for your collection.

Differences between circulated and uncirculated Chinese coins

It is important for you to keep in mind whether the preowned Chinese coin you're considering is circulated or uncirculated. If the Chinese coin has been circulated, it means you are looking at a coin that has passed through many fingers and into many wallets, pockets, and purses. It indicates the coin has been used by the public for purchases. Alternatively, if you are looking at an uncirculated coin, it is likely in pristine condition because it has not been used by the public.

How to choose the right Chinese coin

In addition to considering whether you want a circulated or uncirculated Chinese coin, you will want to consider the following special features:

  • Year: The years of some reasonably priced Chinese coins date back to the 1500s until the present.
  • Grade: eBay lists over 20 options for Chinese coin grade. Several of these options include PR70, MS70, XF45, F15, and VG10.
  • Composition: Like with the grade of the coin, eBay lists over 20 options for Chinese coin compositions. Several of these are copper, copper-nickel, cast brass, gold, silver, and tin.
  • Cost: Cost is affected by grade, composition, year, certification type, and many other factors. Do you prefer something with historical value or more material value?
  • Condition: Is the Chinese coin you are looking at freshly produced? If it has been circulated, it will likely be more worn than if it was uncirculated.
Are there multiple categories of coins?

Chinese coins are listed on eBay in a few categories. Empire coins were produced up to 1948, often show signs of wear, and are typically higher in cost because of their historical value. PRC (People's Republic of China) coins were produced in 1949 and often show fewer signs of wear and may be more affordable. The third categorical value is mixed. Chinese coins in the mixed category will contain Empire and PRC coins of various compositions, grades, and years.

Different certification types for Chinese coins

Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS), National Coin Grading Service (NGC), Certified Acceptance Corporation (CAC), American Numismatic Association Certification (ANACS), and Independent Coin Grading Service (ICG) are all the certification types from which to choose. This will be included in either the title or description of the Chinese coin you are considering for your collection.

Content provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute investment advice.