Coin Specifications

Category: Buffalo Five Cents (1913-1938)
Mint: San Francisco
Mintage: 7,754,000
Obverse Designer: James Earle Fraser
Reverse Designer: James Earle Fraser
Composition: Copper-Nickel
Weight: 5.0000g
Diameter: 21.2mm
Edge: Plain
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1929 S 5C MS obverse 1929 S 5C MS reverse
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Description & Analysis

This is the most common San Francisco Mint nickel of the 1920s across all grades, and this is explained only in part by the slightly higher than usual mintage. A bigger factor was the onset of the Great Depression, which slowed economic activity to the point at which thousands of coins remained idle in Treasury or bank vaults for the next several years. The 1929 S nickel was among the many issues that remained available in Mint State when business began to pick up in 1934-35. Dealers always seemed to have Mint State 1929 S nickels in stock during the late 1930s, while other S-Mint nickels of the 1920s were scarce.

Despite a plentiful supply of unworn examples, gems of this issue are still a bit elusive. Most 1929 S nickels have good luster but weak to average strikes. As always, a handful of exceptional pieces survive that combine great luster with sharp strikes, and these will bring premium prices.

This issue was widely hoarded from circulation beginning in the late 1930s, at which time pieces could still be found in grades XF and AU. Such coins remain plentiful today.

Several repunched mintmark varieties are known for 1929 S nickels, but only a couple of them are of interest. A minor doubled-die obverse variety is also found for this issue.

GRADE SUMMARY

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Price Guide

Last Updated: 9/27/2019

Click on a price to see historical prices, comparison charts and trends.

1929 S 5C MS
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ 1.00 1.35 2.50 3.75 18.00 32.00 35.00 40.00 41.00 55.00 62.00 90.00 115 170 415 775 13300 - - -
$ - - - - - - - - - 255 435 2300 18000 -

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Census

 
NGC GRADE SUMMARY

Total Graded: 996
Low Grade: G
Average Grade: 63
High Grade: 67

The chart showing G series, VG series, F series, VF series, 40 series, 45 series, 50 series, 53 series, 55 series, 58 series, 60 series, 61 series, 62 series, 63 series, 64 series, 65 series, 66 series, 67 series.
NGC CENSUS DETAIL Last Updated: 10/8/2019 1929 S 5C MS
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base-1-572228720391961137404211566---996
----------------171---9
---------------4392---18
-----------------------
Total-1-572228720391961137408215729---1023
 -0 %-0 %1 %0 %2 %1 %1 %2 %4 %0 %1 %6 %13 %40 %21 %7 %1 %--- 

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Images
Date
Service
Grade
Auction House
Sale / Lot
Price
2/13/2000 PCGS MS 64   Teletrade Auction 1270, 1270/Lot# 1092 $130.80
5/28/2006 PCGS MS 66   Goldberg May 28-31, 2006 Pre-Long Beach Coin and Currency Auction, 36/Lot# 1661 $1,150.00
5/27/2009 NGC MS 65   Heritage Auctions 2009 May Long Beach, CA Signature US Coin Auction #1125, 1125/Lot# 7372 $299.00
6/1/2011 NGC MS 63   Heritage Auctions 2011 June Long Beach Signature US Coin Auction Session(4), 1156/Lot# 7660 $89.00
1/20/2013 PCGS Genuine UNC   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 01/20/2013, 58/Lot# 88394 $40.00
9/8/2013 PCGS MS 66   David Lawrence Rare Coins Internet Auction # 768, 777/Lot# 7227 $531.00
8/18/2015 PCGS   Stack's Bowers 2015 Chicago ANA, 6104/Lot# 42272 $587.50
2/4/2016 PCGS MS 66   Heritage Auctions 2016 February 4 - 7 Long Beach Expo US Coins Signature Auction - Long Beach Session(4), 1232/Lot# 7212 $540.50
6/27/2018 PCGS MS 64   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(1), 131827/Lot# 21150 $144.00


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