By Laura Sperber – Legend Numismatics ……
QUIET POWER COINS TRADING HANDS
Be aware that what we discuss in the Market Report is written from Legend Numismatics’ point of view. We deal in the top 5% of rarities and the upper end of quality. That would include a coin like a MS66.9+ MS66 Morgan. It is a myth that all our coins are above $10,000. This past year, coins valued from $1,000-$10,000 flew out the door as fast as we posted them. There is so little quality around. If we could offer 100 $2-$5,000 coins, we would! We’re a bit picky!
First, we need to acknowledge our super secret seller called us after he had a very disappointing Illinois State Show on Friday. He said save for a bigger shark or two, dealers generally were not buying. He said the show overall was dead. He does come prepared to work it as a smaller show. We could not see a show like that being any good unless it had a decent amount of fresh material. Even the smaller dealers are trading on fumes of retreads.
However there is a very interesting thing that is now happening in the market. The bigger money is waking up again. As in million-dollar coins. We all know a 70S $1 AU53 Eliasberg just traded hands (in excess of $1 million), and we know of two other BIG ticket coins that sold within the past two weeks or so. Unless a major collection appears and is chocked full of rarities, we hardly ever hear of that many big coins selling behind the scenes in such a short period of time.
Last Sunday we had breakfast in the NYC with a major Wall Street banker (aka the “bank teller”, as we call him). He laid out a very intense and logical reason why bigger money is starting to pop back into coins. He was saying the equity, real estate, and several other major markets are known by the inner pros to be overbought. From his viewpoint he expects the momentum in those areas to stop soon. So with that knowledge, the smart money is now seeking other areas to place its cash.
The money coming into coins is NOT speculative. These are wealthier people who are real collectors.
We see several of them trying to build great Type sets and other are doing really cool projects. A new collector who we 100% represent bought the 1794 $1 PCGS MS64 CAC for his Type set at ANA. We even have a “black cat” who adores patterns like Bob Simpson does! Many of these new wealthy collectors had an interest when they were younger and now have the money to play. Based upon what we have seen, we fully agree with “bank teller” that new people are coming back or into the coin market today. This year so far, Legend has picked up several collectors who we consider to be the “ultimate buyers”. Typically, we would get customers like that only every few years.
We firmly believe this is only the beginning of this cycle. As we mentioned before, there really is so little for them to buy. What is amazing to us is that many have done their homework. They demand PCGS CAC and they know to pay a little more and HOLD for the long term. We always wondered who would replace a Gardner or a Norweb. The numismatic kingdom now has the Utah Billionaire, who already in one year has spent more then the Pogue collection was worth and probably DOUBLE what Gene Gardner’s set was worth (he still is nowhere near what Bob Simpson has spent). Legend has SEVERAL huge new players, as well who have the potential to build $50-$100 million dollar collections in the next few years. Again, our only problem is finding them the coins!
Knowing the big guys want to pour money into coins gives supreme confidence to the lower-priced coin market. The money does trickle down. More dealers will then make more bids. Plus, when no bigger coins are around, collectors buy the smaller stuff to keep them busy. It is a huge positive for everyone!
WORK WITH A DEALER
There is no crime in buying on your own. However, you WILL miss far more coins then you will ever find. Dealers have access to so many things. Plus, a good dealer will protect you, finance you, and pretty much be your collecting buddy while you build your collection.
This past week, we bought and sold one of the rarest coins on the planet–a $2.5 1808 PCGS MS62 CAC. The originality and colors of this coin are beyond mind-boggling. To tell you how extremely rare these are, we have been desperately searching for two PCGS CAC AUs for the past 10 years (if anyone has one for sale, please contact us). CAC has only beaned a grand total of 10 pieces for the entire Type. We even urged a dealer to downgrade a dreck NGC MS61 to an AU58, and PCGS flunked it. For whatever the reason, the majority of this date are cleaned. Talk about finding a needle in a hay stack.
We knew the second we confirmed the coin that we had a great home for it. The collector immediately took it. He had to: in MS only Simpson’s MS63 and Jung’s MS65 are finer. [ Pogue 1808 PCGS MS-65 Pictured at right ] The chances of him ever getting this coin if he was not working with us were ZERO. Having deep, long-time connections is what brought the coin to Legend. The seller had two or three places he could have gone with it where the coin would end up in that deep “black hole” we’ve been talking about.
Plus, we sold it to our friend at a really great price too!
Forget about this being a higher-value coin. It’s about working as a team to build a set. There are far more advantages to working with a dealer than not. You certainly won’t run into yourself if you leave Want Lists all over (the biggest mistake collectors make). Even for auctions, paying a dealer to bid for you WILL save you money. It’s the coins they tell you NOT to buy that you are saved from. Unless you buy and sell lots of coins per day, you are not a qualified expert. Don’t try this game alone. It can be extremely rewarding if done right!
Last week we immediately shipped out about a dozen pieces from our NEWPs by Monday noon. Much to our surprise, the red-hot coin was the $2.5 1842D PCSG AU58+ CAC. Never expected how many people wanted to buy it. Suggestion: if we post a coin on Saturday, then we’re gone from the office at 1 PM. EMAIL US! Also, know that we have a policy of NOT putting any coins on hold unless they are being shipped; it is not fair to us or the collectors who want it to be put on hold.
Yet again this week we have some wonderful NEWPS. The most outstanding piece: the H.10C 1794 PCGS MS65 CAC Eliasberg. We consider this great rarity to be a treasure! The quality of this GEM is incredible. In the original Eliasberg catalog they called it a possible “presentation piece”. It’s as good as ANY 1794 H.10C out there!
Other highlights include:
- 1C 1902 PCGS PR66RB
- 10C 1837 NO STARS PCGS MS65+
- 50C 1830 SMALL O PCGS MS65+
Of course we worked extra hard to find coins to fit all tastes and budgets. One thing Legend will NOT do – we will NOT load our inventory or have offerings of inferior quality just to make sales. Every coin listed from our inventory has to pass through our tough standards to make the list. This round, we actually nuked two coins from posting as it came time to post them (and yes, they are CAC). Last, unless you are a dink who compares a PCGS CAC coin to an NGC no-CAC coin (which a chat room bozo recently did), you will find our prices are very reasonable for the quality we sell.
ALL NEWPS WILL BE POSTED BY NOON SATURDAY
Our October Regency Sale is now LIVE. There are 548 remarkable lots.
Within 24 hours of opening the bidding, we had over 100 bidders placing bids worth OVER $1.5 million WOW (as of 8 AM Sat the total is now $2 million in bids)! For us, that is HUGE–especially when the sale is over a month away! All day Friday we were swamped with emails and calls about the coins in the auction. We think this is a very good sign not only for how our sale will do, but for the state of the market.
Check out this email we got from a good customer:
Are you kidding me with the Regency Auction? It is f’ing amazing. I can’t remember seeing anything like this in a long time.
I probably have 20 have to buys, another 20 would like to buys, and about 30 more I could never afford. I don’t even know where to begin.
At some point I will figure out how to prioritize and talk over my list with you.
In the meantime, is there anything that pops out to you with “my name on it?”
That was one powerful email! We know there is plenty of excitement surrounding this great sale.
NOTE: Only by request will we be bringing a few lots out to Las Vegas. West Coast people will have a chance to lot view all the coins at the PCGS Public Day October 13 in Santa Ana.
We are already discussing several deals for our December Sale. If you have coins you wish to discuss, call or email Julie Abrams (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Greg Cohen (email@example.com). They will work with you from start to finish.
One question we had last week: Why should I consign with you vs the big guys? Easy – we will get you more exposure for your coins (they are not lost with 4,000 others) and we will get you MORE money! Remember, the principals of Legend are major buyers in every major auction. Legend Numismatics has one of the top undisputed customer bases in the world-and that is before the outside world of coin auction buyers! Try us, we work hard for YOUR success!
IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS OR WISH TO ORDER, YOU MAY ALSO EMAIL US AT firstname.lastname@example.org. WE DO NOT CHECK OUR MESSAGES UNTIL MONDAY 9 AM.
For more information, please visit www.legendauctions.com.
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Legend Rare Coin Auctions (LRCA), based in Lincroft, NJ, is a boutique-style rare coin auction firm.
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