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Rare 50 cent coin worth $15 discovered by Aussie: ‘Nice find’

The Aussie initially thought they’d received the wrong amount of change when they got the round coin.

An Aussie has shared their “pleasant surprise” at finding a 50 cent coin worth 30 times that amount in their change.

The coin in question is the 1966 round 50 cent coin, which the Aussie initially confused for a 20 cent piece when they received it as change.

“Found this in my change. I never knew there used to be round 50 cent coins,” they wrote on social media, alongside pictures of the coin.

1966 round 50 cent coin
An Aussie has shared their surprise at receiving a round 50 cent coin. (Source: Reddit)

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The circular coins were first introduced on February 14, 1966 and are made from 80 per cent silver and 20 per cent copper.

However, as the price of silver rose above the face value of the coin, the Royal Australian Mint stopped striking the coin in March 1968.

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“Apart from the uneconomic cost of continuing the issue of the silver fifty cent coins, increasing confusion arose regarding the similarity in sizes between the circular fifty cent and the twenty cent coin,” the Royal Australian Mint explained.

“The decision to reissue a fifty cent coin considered not only a change to materials but also different shapes to help solve the confusion with the twenty cents.”

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There were 36.5 million of the coins minted, but only 14 million were put into circulation. With silver prices increasing, many people melted down the coins to make a profit. It’s unclear how many are still out there today.

The mint introduced the new 50 cent coin shape - which is dodecagonal or 12-sided - in September 1969. It is still used today and is made from 75 per cent copper and 25 per cent nickel.

Round 50 cent coin
The circular coins were first introduced on February 14, 1966. (Source: Royal Australian Mint)

How much is the round 50 cent coin worth?

The round 50 cent coins are now worth $15 due to their silver value, according to coin expert Joel Kandiah, known as @thehistoryofmoney on TikTok. Each coin has 0.3416oz of silver.

Aussies were quick to point out the coin's higher value in the comments too, with one calling the coin a “nice find”.

“Mad luck - like seriously lucky. I wish that happened to me. I had to buy a couple for my collections,” another wrote.

Others shared they had also come across the round 50 cent coins before.

“I have a bag of about 20 of them that my mum got when they first entered circulation. Never seen one still in circulation though,” one person wrote.

“My late father had a couple of dozen of them in a metal tin. I knew they were worth more than 50c but not that much,” another said.

The Aussie who found the coin said its worth was a “pleasant surprise” and noted they’d “be sure to keep it”.

Commentators also recommended people flip the coin in the air to hear the “prolonged ringing” sound the silver makes.

“A normal 50c for instance, has a dull ring that ends almost instantly. Flicking one of those makes you feel you have a piece of pirate gold,” one user said.

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