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Collector Coins in Spotlight
By Debbie Bradley, Numismatic News | May 23, 2013


Move over gold and silver, collector coins want their day in the sun.

With gold prices dropping under $1,400 and silver hovering around $22, bullion coins have lost some luster. Not so for collector coins.

“Collector coins are shining because the demand has remained constant for many years and they are no longer being overshadowed by bullion-related material,” said Harry Miller of Miller’s Mint.

“Also, many people have come to the realization that negative metals do not necessarily affect scarce coins while positive metals do because they provide more liquidity in the market.”

The lower prices for precious metals have a good impact on numismatic coins, said Steven Musil, a dealer in Kearney, Neb.

“While gold and silver prices were going gangbusters, numismatic material suffered some,” Musil said. “Now I think it’s just the opposite.

“It’s time for collector coins to shine.”

Peter Goydos, a buyer for L&C Coins, said scarce coins in a good collectible condition are selling well.

“For us, nice higher grade circulated coins in Very Fine to nice AU and the lower end Mint State grades, there is certainly demand and they are easy to sell,” Goydos said.

“And we are always lucky with Barber dimes, quarters and halves, Mercury dimes and Morgan and Peace dollars.

Miller said demand is constant for semi-key Indian cents from Fine to Mint State and all Barber coins, especially halves in Very Fine to Mint State, plus all key dates in Very Good to Very Fine.

“Premium quality raw or CAC stickered coins bring substantial premiums,” Miller said.

“Many scarce issues simply do not exist in premium quality for the grade.” Musil said a scarce Seated Liberty in Very Good condition, even if damaged, will still sell very easily.

“Nice Mint State grade no-problem coins are always high in demand and hard to get,” he said.

Goydos said L&C is selling more certified coins.

“More and more people want circulated and lower value coins in certified holders,” he said. “You are certain the coin is genuine and you’ve got some security in the grade as well.

“What I hear from customers is if the coin is graded by PCGS as Extra Fine-40, then there is no argument that it’s Very Fine and not Extra Fine. It erases some of that.”

The scarcity of good quality coins means that overall, it’s still a seller’s market, Goydos said.

“I think people would rather live in their car with their coin collection and let the house go than sell their coins,” he said.

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