Japanese 2-yen coin sold for US$150,400 in Japanese auction

A Japanese coin worth 2 yen more than a century ago sold for 17 million yen (US$150,400; Ђ124,100) on Monday in a public auction organized by the country's finance ministry, Japanese media reported.

The 3-gram (0.105 ounce) gold coin, minted in 1877, was one of the most sought-after items because just 39 of them were produced, and only one was up for sale at the Finance Ministry's first-ever auction, the ministry said in a statement published on its Web site before the event.

The Web site did not give the price fetched by the coin. Finance Ministry officials could not immediately be reached for comment.

The ministry owns more than 30,000 coins minted between 1871 and 1932. U.S. occupation forces briefly seized the collection following Japan's World War II defeat in August 1945.

The ministry said it plans to auction off the remaining coins by March 2008, the AP reports.

A never-circulated 20-yen gold-and-copper coin, minted in 1932, was purchased at Monday's auction for 10 million yen (US$88,500; Ђ73,000), said public broadcaster NHK.


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