$20 Liberty Gold Coins MS 64
MS 64 is the contraction for the denotation "Mint State Grade 64". This grade comes from the Sheldon coin grading scale, which was developed by William Herbert Sheldon in 1949 and is widely used today by the most reputable coin grading services. Gold coins, being softer than silver or copper-nickel coins, are the easiest to damage or mark, and for this reason, among others, old gold coins are seldom graded much higher than MS 64, though occasionally it does happen. 100+ year old $20 Liberty gold coins nearly never achieve a perfect Sheldon score of 70, and any of those that have would be worth several multiples of the spot price of one ounce of gold.
Specifics of the Grade
A $20 Liberty gold coin in MS 64 will be pleasing to the eye, and any marks or scuffs will either be minute or in an inconspicuous area of the Liberty's design. Any defects by the U.S. Mint, or the minting process itself, will probably not be visible to the naked eye, but will require a low magnification and a trained eye to detect. By the time this $20 Liberty has achieved a grade of MS 64, it carries a significant portion of its market value due to it's condition, though of course the overall value will also be determined by the current market value of gold. This is true of the more common dated $20 Liberties. Rare Liberties and "Key Date" Liberties (The rarest and most difficult mintages to come by) can be worth several times the value of one ounce of gold and therefore gather more value for their rarity and condition than for their gold content.