News & Update

Throwback: How To Know If Your Old Malaysian Banknotes And Coins Are Worth A Lot Nowadays

If you have some old coins lying around your house, keep them because they could be rare ones that are worth hundreds or thousands of ringgit!

In recent years, there has been an increase in the number of Malaysian coins and banknotes collectors, as with the demand for the monies.

Dickson Niew, a numismatist who owns a shop that specialises in rare coins and banknotes, noted that there are now many Facebook groups and blogs on Malaysian banknotes and coins.

"I think there was more than a 300% increase in the demand for local banknotes and coins from 2000 to 2015," he was quoted as saying in a cover story published by The Edge Markets in April.

In fact, old monies have become increasingly popular among investors who are looking to reap profits from their collection. Even youngsters are interested in this hobby now as the returns are rather promising. 

Certain banknotes and coins are worth a lot more than the actual face value of the monies

Image via Bank Negara Malaysia | Central Bank of Malaysia (Official)

For instance, the face value of the limited edition commemorative banknotes released by Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) in conjunction with the 60th Anniversary of the Signing of the Federation of Malaya Independence Agreement is RM60. 

Although the single RM60 banknote has a face value of RM60, BNM has announced that these banknotes will be sold at RM120 a piece. 

Some monies are just more valuable from the rest. To differentiate them from the normal ones, there are few factors to consider including:

1. The mintage (the number of copies of coins or banknotes that were issued into circulation). When the quantity issued is small, the value of the monies is usually higher. For example, the 1 sen copper coin made in 1976 is valued in the thousands because it is believed that there are only about 100 pieces of them in the market.

2. The condition. The condition of monies such as whether they are worn or have defects in colour will determine their values. When monies have higher grades (as determined by reputable money grading companies), their value increases as well.

3. The serial number on printed on banknotes. In general, banknotes with solid notes (meaning all digits in the serial number are the same, such as 1111111 for example) are valued higher. Back in 2015, someone went to a Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) auction and paid RM76,000 just for a RM100 bank note bearing the serial number AA8888888.

In the end, these factors point to one single thing: rarity.

That is also why those with misprints or missing numbers could also be valuable due to their scarcity