Good health: The NHS coin, representing the letter N, has become the most in-demand of the 26 A-Z 10p coins over the last 3 months
Plenty of items have increased in price and become scarcer since the coronavirus pandemic hit Britain in March.
Dried pasta, hand sanitiser, toilet roll, flour and dog food are all examples of goods that have surged in popularity, and at times, hard to get hold of.
But the latest in-demand item might be a bit more surprising: 10p coins and one in particular.
A coin featuring N for NHS are now the most in-demand of their kind, it has been revealed.
Change Checker’s latest scarcity index revealed the most sought-after 10p coin from the Royal Mint’s 2018 Great British coin hunt, which released 26 10p coins featuring an A-Z of what makes Britain great, and there is a new one at the top of the table.
B for James Bond has been booted off the top spot and replaced with one commemorating the National Health Service, which is both fitting considering the postponement of the cinema release of No Time to Die, and a possible reflection of who Britons feel are saving the day at the moment.
Change Checker’s latest index found the coin, which displays a stethoscope and the letter N, has been the most sought-after over the last three months.
And a check on auction site eBay has found over the last two months, since Britain went into lockdown at the end of March, there has been increased interest in the N coin, and it has sold for more than the other 25 coins.
In fact, some listings show that uncirculated coins struck by the Mint in 2018, when the 26 designs were released, have actually risen in price between the start of March and now, with sellers cashing in on the interest.
N for NHS kicked B for James Bond off the top spot of the latest Change Checker scarcity index
There are around 280,000 of each design in circulation, meaning they could be especially valuable, seeing as one of the rarest coins around, the fabled Kew Gardens 50p minted just 210,000 times, can sell for close to £100.
But it is hard to track those circulated coins down meaning many collectors after an NHS 10p will simply settle for an uncirculated version.
But these are still selling for up to 60 times their face value, with 2018 10p coins selling on eBay for £5.99, more than twice what other A-Z coins have gone for.
N for NHS 10p coins have increased in price over the last few months since Britain went into lockdown. One is listed for as much as £6.35, but has not sold for that much yet
One 2019 coin has been listed for £6.35, 63.5 times the face value of 10p and more than three times the Mint’s sale price, but no one has paid that much for one yet.
Most coins have sold for closer to £4 however. 2019 uncirculated versions, the second batch put on sale by the Mint which can still bought as part of a set of 26 for £52, or £2 for each coin, sold for £2.99 on 23 April but this has jumped to £3.99 from 24 April onwards.
Two coins recently sold for as much as £5.99, nearly 60 times their face value and three times what they can be had for from the Royal Mint
There have been 16 sales of the NHS coin on that one listing, with the £3.99 sale price the joint-highest of any of the 26 coins.
Meanwhile another listing selling uncirculated versions from 2018 reveals sale prices have risen from £4.30 on 11 March to £4.75 on 5 May.
They have also increased in price since the start of March. One listing shows prices have gone up from £4.30 in early March to £4.75 two months later. A small increased, but indicative of increased demand
It remains to be seen if prices will continue to rise or if they will plateau at around £6, but up to 60 times face value and three times more than what they can be bought for from the Mint certainly represents a pretty healthy return on investment for any collector.
The other 10p coins that Change Checker says are hard to find currently from the collection are T for tea, R for robin and W for world wide web.
There are plenty of people out there in lockdown watching robins from their gardens or windows with a cup of tea and working at home on the world wide web, celebrating the NHS – which might explain why these four in particular have become popular.
The A to Z of Great British 10p coins
A – Angel of the North
B – James Bond
C – Cricket
D – Double-decker bus
E – English breakfast
F – Fish and chips
G – Greenwich Mean Time
H – Houses of Parliament
I – Ice cream
J – Jubilee
K – King Arthur
L – Loch Ness
M – Mackintosh
N – NHS
O – Oak tree
P – Postbox
Q – Queuing
R – Robin
S – Stonehenge
T – Tea
U – Union Flag
V – Village
W – World Wide Web
X – X marks the spot
Y – Yeoman
Z – Zebra