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Market Report – 04/25/12

We are back in the office following a successful Central States convention in Schaumburg, Illinois.  Wholesale activity was very strong; in fact we bought so many coins we’re still digging out!  The only negative worth mentioning was a noticeable lack of collector attendance.  It seems to be a growing trend – but the demand for truly high-end rare coins is still as strong as ever.  Technology advances have made online bidding in auctions seamless.  And, most serious collectors have dealers who represent them both in the auction and on the bourse floor so they can focus on their own careers.  It’s just become less necessary for collectors to travel as much.

Matching great coins with clients is one of the most rewarding parts of my job.  We brought home gem proof gold for a type set, some beautiful silver type for a good friend and client, and were able to acquire some amazing Barber Halves from the estate of our longtime client and friend, the late John Hugon.

In terms of both value and demand, there is a widening spread between “stuff” and legitimate high-quality coins.  Prices for dull or ‘stale’ material are lagging far behind prices for choice material; and this is evident across all price ranges, whether a coin is worth $500 or $500,000.  Serious collectors understand that they are going to have to step up in order to acquire coins that have both technical quality and eye appeal.  This can be seen in the prices realized at auction and it is also true on the bourse floor, as it is becoming exceedingly difficult to locate pieces we want to place with our clients.  It seems that many of the best coins are in strong hands for now, as collectors and investors continue to prefer hard assets over many traditional investments.   But we’re always on the lookout and have managed to add some great coins to our inventory!