Fake coins flooding in U.S. market

At the annual meeting of the numismatic world this week attendees have had the opportunity to examine some examples of counterfeit coins from China that are reportedly flooding into the U.S. market. Five key organizations in the field have cooperatively issued a warning to collectors about these fakes.

These coins reportedly appear frequently on online auction sites and at flea markets, pitched primarily to buyers who are not familiar with coin collecting and fraud detection.

One magazine estimates that more than 1 million have been sold in the U.S. already. While the Hobby Protection Act allows manufacturers to create copies of coins, it requires that the word COPY or REPLICA be clearly marked on them. The coins in question carry no such mark.