In our blog recent poll the half dollar was determined to be the most popular coin for coin effects with 72% of the votes over the quarter and dollar coins.
Of the half dollars the most popular would be the Kennedy half which went into circulation in 1964. The size of the coin endorses its popularity. At a diameter of 30.6 mm it is easy to classic palm the half dollar without giving the hand a ‘cramped’ appearance one gets from a quarter. The larger size over the quarter also makes it more visible.
Due to the half’s popularity the copper English penny is equally popular because it is the same size. By the way, if you’re using halves and English pennies a copper silver coin can be an indispensable tool to have. Fortunately there are Chinese brass coin to match the half dollar and English penny.
The only drawback to the half dollar is the availability of the coin. When the Kennedy half was first minted in 1964 it was 90% silver. The 1965-1970 mintages were 40% silver. This lead to collector’s and hoarders stockpiling the coins the silver coins. When the nickel-clad coins began circulating in 1971 the half dollar had fallen out of favor with banks and the public. It’s unlikely that it will ever make a comeback in popularity. But, until then it will up to the coin magician’s to keep the coins in the public eye.