Skip to content

1964 Kennedy Half Dollar – Values, Photos & Info (2021 Update)


Written by Javier Mercado

The Kennedy Half Dollar 1964 is an important coin to collect. This edition is highly prized by US coin collectors for being its first year of issue.  It is also a very common coin and available in excellent condition. So, if we want it to fetch a top price, we need it to be practically new (uncirculated or rarely handled).

In this article, we show you the importance of valuable 50 cent coins in its 1964 variant. You’ll see the way in which conservation and rarities are translated into real selling prices.


Kennedy Half Dollar value – 2021 Updated Chart

Approximate prices for coins in MS+ state.

  MS60 MS61 MS62 MS63 MS64 MS65 MS66 MS67 MS68 MS69 MS70
1964 $10.05 $10.05 $10.55 $13.9 $24 $40 $120 $950
1964 Proof $10 $12.25 $10.50 $12.50 $18 $22.45 $40 $50 $75 $135 $6100
1964-D $9.65 $9.65 $11.1 $14.9 $23 $42 $135 $915 $23500

However, we must consider that some details, which are difficult to appreciate for people outside the world of collecting, can cause significant variations in the price of our 1964 Kennedy half dollar.

The table’s figures can in no way be interpreted as fixed prices since in numismatics such certainty does not exist. They are approximate estimates of this historic coin of American numismatics.

Here you can find a list with the price auctions of the last months classified according to the graduation of the currency.

Kennedy Half Dollar 1964 “Accented hair“ Auctions Values


Grade Value PCGS Auction House Price Date
PR66 QDR (FS-802) * $300-315 Stack´s Bowers & Ponterio $140 05/2020
PR67 $130-140$ Stack´s Bowers & Ponterio $115 01/2020
PR67 $130-140 Heritage $144 04/2019
PR67 $130-140 Heritage $114 03/ 2019
PR 69 $1.100 Heritage $840 01/2019
PR 65 Cameo $140-160 Heritage $99 02/2019
PR 66 Cameo $200-260 Heritage $180 12/2018
PR68 Cameo (FS-401) $1.150 Stack´s Bowers & Ponterio $1.560 05/2019
PR69 Cameo (FS-401)   Heritage $1.980 09/2019
PR68 DeepCameo (FS-401) $12.500-$18.500 Heritage $9.300 01/2020
PR68 DeepCameo (FS-401) $12.500-18.500 Heritage $9.600 08/2019
PR68 DeepCameo $12.500-18.500 Stack´s Bowers & Ponterio $8.400 08/2019
PR68 DeepCameo (FS-401) $12.500-18.500 Heritage $13.200 01/2019
PR68 DeepCameo (FS-401) $12.500-18.500 Heritage $10.800 01/2019

* Quadruple Die Reverse

Note: we show with bold style the bests investment opportunities based on auctions with final prices below PCGS estimation.

How to correctly identify the price of our valuable Kennedy Half Dollars

If your silver Kennedy half dollar is not certified by a TPG, its price may range between the following values:

  • In Good (G) condition: $6.50
  • In Very Good (VG) status: $6.75
  • In Fine (F) state: $7
  • In Very Fine Condition (VF): $7.25
  • In Extra Fine state (XF): $7.50
  • In Almost Uncirculated (AU) state: $8.85

What is a 1964 Kennedy Half Dollar?

The 50 cents coin with Kennedy’s bust is a modern issue, which began production in 1964 and continues to be minted today.

How to sell your coins (2021 UPDATE)

It’s a common American coin, with a total circulation of well over 400 million units, although not all of them were made for circulation. In total, these 1964 half dollar coins were minted at two different Mints, and one of them, the Philadelphia Mint, also minted PROOF pieces for the collector market.

Types of 50 Cent Mints

The mint can be distinguished by a small letter stamped under the olive branch on the back:

  • If our silver half dollar doesn’t have any letters on it, it was minted in Philadelphia
  • If it has the letter ‘D’ on it, it was minted in Denver
  • The print run for this year 1964 is as follows:
  • Philadelphia Mint, for circulation – 273,304,004 pieces
  • Philadelphia MintProof, for collectors – 3.950.762 pieces
  • Philadelphia Mint (SpecialMint Set) – 1 piece for the National Numismatic Collection
  • Denver Mint, for circulation – 156,205,446 pieces
  • Denver Mint (SpecialMint Set) – 1 piece for the National Numismatic Collection

How to differentiate between a proof version and a circulating one

In order to distinguish a PROOF issue from a circulating issue, we have to look at the surface of the coin. Let’s explain it with an example.


The coin on the left is a regular issue. It looks like most of the coins we use in our daily lives.

The coin on the right is a PROOF issue, which has been carefully minted. Designed for the collector market, we see the glossy background as if it were a mirror and its reliefs in a matt tone, providing a nice contrast.

Kennedy half dollar – Analyzing prices for smart buying and selling

1964 Kennedy half dollars, being modern editions, gain value when encapsulated by a Third Party Grading Service.

A TPG is a widely used company in the collector’s market because:

  • It guarantees the authenticity of the currency.
  • It offers an objective graduation of the state of conservation.
  • It keeps a unique record for each verifiable piece in its database.

We can identify the rarity of our 1964 Kennedy half-dollar by looking at the tables of major TPGs and seeing how many pieces are encapsulated in a Mint State.

See this data from the NGC company:

  MS60 MS61 MS62 MS63 MS64 MS65 MS66 MS67 MS68 MS69
1964 2 52 222 704 4330 6232 1448 71 0 0
1964 Proof 1 4 9 26 229 738 2901 18220 12984 5217
1964-D 5 29 137 540 3069 3182 642 28 0 0


The imbalance we see between the number of coins minted for circulation and proof, which is inversely proportional to their encapsulated quantity, is due to the fact that it is a common coin.

The collector’s market is mainly fed by the best quality coins, and since PROOF coins are easy to obtain, most collectors have chosen this quality to complete their collection.

Similarly, the other largest certifying company, PCGS, presents us with this number of certified half-dollars:

  MS60 MS61 MS62 MS63 MS64 MS65 MS66 MS67 MS68 MS69 MS70
1964 3 20 250 692 3630 4106 1735 92 0 0 0
1964 Proof 1 2 10 72 580 1737 3701 5690 5878 2643 29
1964-D 0 9 161 534 1804 1949 973 88 1 0 0

In the census of coins certified by the PCGS company, we do not find the ‘AccentedHair’ variant, which we will discuss later.

How to sell your coins (2021 UPDATE)

We can approximate the state of conservation of our currency in this link from the American Numismatic Association.


The story behind the JFK half dollar


On November 22, 1963, the great President of reform, John F. Kennedy, was assassinated in Dallas. Americans immediately began to think of a way to honor his memory and set out to mint a coin from his bust.

The model chosen was that 50 cent coin, but there was an impediment – according to the Coinage Act passed a few months earlier, each type of coin had to be in circulation for a minimum of 25 years before it could be replaced. And at that time, the Franklin half-dollar had only been in use for 15 years, since 1948.

Congress quickly passed a new law so they could replace it. On December 30, 1964, only one month after the assassination, an amendment to the previous law was passed, and the minting of the 1964 Kennedy Half Dollar was ordered.


Most valuable 50 cent piece for coin collectors

JFK was a President very much loved by the people. In fact, there was so much demand for the coin, that on the first day of its implementation, 24 March 1964, the first 70,000 coins intended for circulation were sold out. Even with a limit on withdrawals per person imposed – a maximum of 40 pieces.

The end of silver Kennedy half dollars

The shortage was so great that the following year it was decided to withdraw all .900 silver coins from circulation and to mint the circulating money in non-noble metals or with a lower grade .400 silver (Kennedy’s half-dollars from 1965 to 1971).

Only a small number of the 400 million half-dollars from 1964 actually went into circulation. Most of the coins were treasured by the people, so it is easier to find in good than worn out condition.

Ironically, the tribute to the president with the 0.50 dollar coins was what ended this model, since due to the scarcity of the means dollars, the 0.25 dollar coin began to be imposed in daily transactions. It reached a point where they were not even accepted by automatic machines. Today, the Kennedy half dollar is still being minted, but not for circulation. They can be purchased at banks in rolls of 20 units with a small surcharge on their face value.

1964 Half-Dollar Rarities – Accented Hair

As in all modern American numismatics, the 1964 half-dollar variants are highly prized by American collectors. Let’s focus our attention on the most famous one for this currency, the so-called ‘Accented Hair’.

For the first issue of this coin, which was sold out a few days after it was put into circulation, a stamp was used that was a little different from the definitive one. In it, we can see, among other differences, that JFK’s hairline differs slightly from what would be on the final design.

Kennedy half dollar errors?

There is a rumor that the design was changed because Jacqueline Kennedy didn’t like the shape of her husband’s hair, but it seems more accurate to think that it was modified to simplify the production process and save costs.

This coin is very recognizable, as it has some differences that do not leave room for confusion:

How to sell your coins (2021 UPDATE)


Variants of Accented Hair Half-Dollars

This is the key difference – the bust’s hairline is much more marked in the ‘accented hair’ variant.


In the 1964 half-dollar accented hair variant, the G in the signature on the back (next to the paw of the eagle’s right leg) ends in a straight line. However, on the coin without variant it has a termination with a small horizontal serif.


The letter ‘I’ of the word LIBERTY has an irregularity in the lower serif, which makes it concave in shape.

Its print run is estimated at between 1% and 3% of the total PROOF format emissions, so we can assume that there will be between 40,000 and 120,000 units minted in total.

It goes without saying that the Accented Hair variant is a coin much sought after by collectors, which in the version encapsulated by a TPG, is more expensive than the coin without the variant. In the numismatic market, its value can reach the following prices according to its state of conservation:

  MS60 MS61 MS62 MS63 MS64 MS65 MS66 MS67 MS68 MS69
$0.50 AccentHair $19 $20 $22 $30 $55 $74 $115 $190 $465 $1220



  • Find out our list of valuable pennies just here.