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geejay50

Scarce Coin Watch

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geejay50
Geejay,

 

If most collectors were to compare these Heritage coins to those in the Bakewell collection and could for one minute actually make an objective comparison, I don't think they would really think that one was really that much better than the other. It depends upon the specific coin but the difference between an MS-63 and MS-65 is really not that significant. Its only collectors in the US and South Africa who believe it.

 

 

Hi Ernesto,

 

I dont think one can have any doubt that an NGC graded MS63 Pop3 1892 Two Shilling as is being offered in the Bakewell Collection now will be of the same quality as a PCGS graded Pop1 MS65 1892 Two Shilling just sold at Heritage. I happen to have in my collection an MS64 1892 Two Shilling that is really deserving of its grade. It REALLY is streets ahead of any MS63 coin I have seen since over the last ten years . It was initially graded in an MS64 PCGS capsule and NGC crossed it over at the same grade (something I know they are reluctant to do). How much better must the MS 65 not be? This is not a subtle higher grade - it is two grades higher than MS63 with none better and no collector should be in any doubt as to the HUGE increase in quality that the MS65 grade represents.

 

We are not just buying plastic capsules as is sometimes disparagingly referred to with an inferior overgraded coin inside - there are usually objective improvements in quality that these numbers represent. Those graders are really professional people with skills that they are trained in. You will usually find contact marks in an MS63 compared to an MS65 that is for sure. The coins might look the same or the MS63 even prettier in the glossy catalogue or computer pic but that is not what a grader sees under loupe surely? Mistakes are sometimes made even in the trained grader at NGC and PCGS - but they will refund and be accountable for this.

 

I recently upgraded from an NGC MS64 Union Shilling to an MS65 (year not important) and really this IS a definable jump in quality of coin that anyone will agree on who holds both coins in their hands with details blinded - I do this with my wife as an outsider sometimes.

 

When it comes to dealing with Heritage I am glad you agree with me - they do not leave the USA and interact with us here in South Africa unlike DNW. They rely on their highly organised internet and postal advertising to bring their undoubtedly huge offering to us. Dealing with them is like any big corporate - there are just names at the other end and we are numbers unfortunately - There was a really great guy working there by the name of Eric Thomas and he was exceptional in my dealings with him but did'nt stay.

 

Geejay

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jwither

Geejay,

 

You aren't telling me anything I do not already know.

 

First off, I never said the MS-65 wasn't better than the MS-63. (Most of the time I think it is but not always. You can refer to my additional comments below.) What I actually said is that the difference between a "typical" MS-63 and MS-65 is not as great as you and practically every other buyer/owner of these coins in both South Africa and the United States claims it to be. I know that you are not going to agree with this for a reason that I will not mention now but that is up to you.

 

Second, my comments are not just directed at coins which are either potentially or actually over graded. If my comments have not been clear up this point, I am specifically directing them to "accurately" graded specimens. it should be obvious even to you that the price difference is frequently disproportional to whatever quality difference exists, whether it is on these 1892 2/- or not.

 

The reason it is obvious is because in the past when the prices and price spreads were so much lower, no one cared enough to pay anything near these premiums. The CURRENT price differences do not exist because today's collectors are more "sophisticated" than those in the past, but only because of financial considerations. I know this because practically all collectors outside of South Africa and the United States, enough of them are knowledgeable about their own coins yet they still do not give a hoot about the differences you are describing where they are willing to pay the absurd premiums you apparently believe are justified.

 

You and others probably don't believe it or at least will admit it, but its also likely one of the reasons why collecting isn't as popular as you want it to be in your country right now. I make this comment because I suspect that many of the long time collectors probably find this pricing as ridiculous as I do at least when it comes to buying any new coins. (I am sure they love it for those they have sold or will eventually sell.) I also believe that many or even most of them do not prefer TPG either. Some who post on this board I believe actually do as well because their posting history by a lopsided proportion indicates that they aren't a buyer of these coins in a TPG holder either. For those who can afford these coins which is some unspecified number, if these coins are such great values and so much better, why aren't they buying them now?

 

This is why I call those who make such a big deal over this issue plastic collectors first and coin collectors second. I have looked at many coins and know the difference well enough between an MS-63, MS-64, MS-65 or whatever grade you care to mention to know what I am talking about. I can't always predict the TPG grade but still know which coin most (not everyone) will consider better regardless of the grade. Sometimes the difference is more noticeable with one coin than others for a variety of factors which are the luster, strike, color and contact marks.

 

For every example you can give, show me enough coins and I can provide another to contradict you, whether from South Africa or otherwise. To give you an example from one of my other series, I probably own more high quality specimens of the Peru pillar 1/2 real than anyone else since few collect them. I have nine graded AU-58 or better. Among these are a 1756 NGC MS-62 and a 1755 NGC MS-65. The 1756 is a lower grade because of contact marks but in actuality, I believe most collectors would traditionally consider the 1756 a better quality coin because the eye appeal is actually better.

 

The 1758 which I have not sent in yet, I expect it to grade MS-64 to MS-66. I consider it better than the others I own yet Calico graded it in their catalogue as "EBC+" which is AU. Why did they do this? Probably because it has a residue spot. If NCS can remove it (which I do not know), then I think it has a shot to grade as high as MS-66 because this is the best coin of the issue I have ever seen.

 

Obviously, I prefer that the coin grade as high as possible so that when someone (whether myself or otherwise) goes to sell it, it will realize more. But my opinion of the coin does not change one iota simply because of the grade NGC will ultimately assign it. If I have wildly overestimated the grade and it comes back AU-58, I won't like it any less and in this instance, would still have bought it for the same price. It is the same coin and just as desirable regardless of what grade it ultimately achieves. On the other hand, I would not do so for any number of coins discussed here because there isn't any reason to pay a huge premium for a specimen which can be bought with little difficulty in only slightly lower quality.

 

Third, your statement of the professionalism of the NGC and PCGS graders does not support your claim. Grading is subjective as you full well know and as has been repeatedly demonstrated by the differences on multiple submissions with the same grading service and between NGC and PCGS. As you full well know, on a repeat submission, the numerical grade is ocassionally either increased or decreased, NGC and PCGS disagree with each other, both grade coins they previously rejected with a "details" grade and both reject coins with a "details" grade which they previously assigned with numerical grades.

 

In summary, I am aware that the difference is important because of financial reasons. That is a given. What I am telling you and everyone else here is that from a collecting standpoint, the differences covered by our posts are frequently minimal or even trivial. It is more important in some instances than others depending upon the specific coin's appearance, the scarcity of the coin generically and the availability of the coin across the quality distribution.

 

In the example of the 1892 2/-, I would say that it is somewhat but hardly very important. There is usually an observable though still minimal difference between an MS-65 and MS-63. By current standards, the price difference is not that large and the risk (by coin standards) isn't that high of losing a substantial portion of the buyer's "investment". In the example of my Peru pillars, not really very important at all because other collectors don't care about it and there are very few quality coins period, even in average circulated grades. In the example of the 1953 Union proofs covered by my prior posts, completely irrelevant because the coins aren't remotely scarce and there actually isn't a dime's worth of difference between that PR-68 6D sold on eBay and the PR-67 I own right now which is probably worth 5% or even less.

Edited by jwither

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jwither
When it comes to dealing with Heritage I am glad you agree with me - they do not leave the USA and interact with us here in South Africa unlike DNW. They rely on their highly organised internet and postal advertising to bring their undoubtedly huge offering to us. Dealing with them is like any big corporate - there are just names at the other end and we are numbers unfortunately - There was a really great guy working there by the name of Eric Thomas and he was exceptional in my dealings with him but did'nt stay.

 

I believe what you are going to see is that DNW is not going to be able to sustain their current efforts either if I understand you correctly. They just landed two of the most prominent collections (Mitchell and Bakewell). I am sure they would like to sell the Mitchell Union collection but them what? Maybe there are a few other valuable collections that may be sold in the near future that I do not know but I don't see that this is going to make it profitable for them to send a representative to SA with any regularity because the revenue opportunity is just not big enough.

 

And I don't see it getting much bigger either unless these coins sell for exorbitant prices later for the reason I gave you before more times than I can even remember. The supply constraints which everyone on this forum except for me ignores are going to drastically limit the scale of collecting in your country as far into the future as I can see. This will almost certainly limit the prices and with it the scale of coins as a business.

 

Going back to Heritage for a minute, one thing I do not like about them is the lack of personal service and this is where a firm like DNW can remain competitive. Recently, I wanted to bid on a 1759 Guatemala 1/2 real which they offerred as a "VF" ungraded. I believe the coin is actually "essentially as struck" or UNC because these coins are notorious for a weak strike. I both called and emailed Heritage and they could not be bothered to provide a reply. So I did not buy the coin. At somewhat less than $900, the loss was probably more on my end because this may be the only opportunity to buy one this good. The reason I did not buy it is because I assumed that if it would grade, they would have submitted it. In the past, I have bought ungraded coins without buying a dog. However, last year I bought one and I know it will not grade but they said nothing about it. If this Guatemala coin is as good as I think it might be, they really short changed their consignor because as an UNC, I think the coin should be worth at least $5,000 and only not more because it was probably not "original" going by the color. But either way, it is a very rare coin.

Edited by jwither

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geejay50

Lets not throw the baby out with the bath water !!!

 

Ernesto, we can easily get too critical of NGC and PCGS but when we see the invariably shocking grading of lesser companies such as NNC especially when it comes to ZAR. I took a loss in 2012 to the tune of R40,000 when I bought on ebay six NNC apparently well graded ZAR coins with grades ranging from MS63 to MS65 where EVERY SINGLE COIN was given cleaned by NGC and rightly so.

 

I was also at a live local auction six months ago where a local grading company had misgraded about 10 to 15 ZAR gold coins where the whole audience of bidders would not place a single bid because of the obviously poor grading with starting prices based on what similarly graded NGC/PCGS coins would start at.

 

We can easily get hung up on the merit or otherwise of different MS grades between NGC and PCGS but this must not mean their the whole grading is to be called into question. We need to keep perspective when faced with the poorer companies who still seem to survive somehow.

 

My thoughts

 

Geejay

Edited by geejay50

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geejay50

What grade would you give this coin?

58f5a750a06d8_1923FlorinObv.jpg.ae114eecdc3ff046bf8e040a1180f2e8.jpg

58f5a750a9e5e_1923FlorinRev.jpg.9d1c34c4d03d03fe6379bd0fdd269a3f.jpg

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I N Collectables
What grade would you give this coin?

 

Hi Geejay

 

Lovely looking coin! Based on pics in my opinion would be a low-mid MS perhaps 63.

 

Just my thoughts

 

Regards

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CapeCurrencyCoin
What grade would you give this coin?

 

Stunning!

I dont know if there are any contact marks not visible in the photos which may lessen the grade,but that coin has a look of a 64-65.

I submitted a 1923 shilling earlier this year that had similar eye-appeal,that coin graded MS65.(sold now:sad:)

 

Yours is equally beautiful.

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CapeCurrencyCoin

Pics of that MS65...such a nice coin I kept some photos !

1923_1.jpg.9c4f8b270f3083d20fba678a02599fc2.jpg

1923_5.jpg.19f422420c719fa804e0c96651b2112f.jpg

1923_4.jpg.41cac90a64505c44438a3c43af83b3f0.jpg

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jwither

I wasn't calling NGC's or PCGS' grading into question. Most of the time, they are "right" in the sense that they follow their own grading standards and those the market expects from them. As you should know by now, I prefer to buy NGC and PCGS coins and when I don't, send mine in to NGC for grading.

 

What I am challenging is the notion that differences between two proximate (MS) grades are as important and noticeable as you implied or claimed. (It was not included in our prior posts but I apply the same reasoning to RD/RB/BN bronze and CAM/DCAM proofs). It is subjective of course but I think it should be obvious that the primary reason this opinion exists is because of money. What other reason explains the wide, and with South African and US coins, disproportionately absurd price differences? It sure isn't collecting because no one can rationally argue that it makes any sense in any other context.

 

The other point I want to clarify is that when I gave the example of the Peru pillars, I was not claiming that the MS-62 or MS-65 were graded inaccurately. I was claiming that irrespective of the grades, the eye appeal of the MS-62 looks better. My guess is that if neither coin were in the holder, most collectors in the US and South Africa would evaluate them based upon TPG standards and select the 1755 MS-65. Elsewhere (such as in Spain), they would ignore TPG standards and go by eye appeal where in this instance, the contact marks of the 1756 are hidden by the toning and luster of the coin. Both coins are toned but the color pattern ofthe 1756 is much better and that is why I consider the eye appeal better. Under magnification, the contact marks on the 1756 are visible but they are not prominent due to the color and size of the coin.

 

Most of the time, I agree the higher graded coin is and looks better. However, you should recognize that only or even primarily using TPG standards to select the better coin is circular reasoning.The grade can be accurate yet a coin with a lower number can still look better than one with a higher one which is why some, many or even most collectors will still prefer it.

There isn’t anything inconsistent in this approach at all. If it does, my reply is that while NGC and PCGS use market grading, the preferences of those who actually collect these coins do not always align with their opinions. Since NGC and PCGS are more familiar with US coins, it presumably aligns a lot more closely than with those from elsewhere. For non-US coins, I doubt they really have much of an idea except maybe for a country like the UK. I assume they are applying a US-centric perspective of market grading which makes sense since I believe US collectors disproportionately buy TPG coins anyway. This just doesn’t happen to be true of South Africa.

 

Which coin is better depends upon what criteria is more important to the collector. It can and does depend upon the design and age of the coin. Is it the strike, color/color pattern, luster or contact marks which matter most? It depends upon how prevelant these atributes are on any particular coin and the preferences of each collector. Equally obviously, the coins which possess multiple (or all) combinations of these attributes are going to look better, possess the higher TPG grades and presumably be preferred by most collectors.

 

The KGV design is usually better struck than KGVI. Most KGVI portraits don’t have defined hair detail and because of the design, contact marks on the portrait are a lot more noticeable. Additionally, my experience is that most lower KGVI MS grades (MS-61 and 62) have poor field surface quality. This is why I do not like most KGVI below MS-63.

 

Another consideration is the consistency of the coin’s appearance with its age. In the pillar series, many coins are “white” or untoned. For anyone who does not know or thought about it, a coin 242+ years almost never ages this way which implies it was almost certainly cleaned in the (relatively) recent past, regardless of whether NGC or PGCS deemed it market acceptable by assigning a numerical grade.

If you read my comments about the Bakewell coins, I used several examples. The 1925 and 1933 2/6 are both MS-66, one NGC and one PCGS. Going by the images only, I consider the 1925 a better quality coin because of the color. On the other hand, those who prefer untoned or “white” coins over “originality” will or may consider the 1933 superior. Today in the US, the more widely held preference is for “original skin” which is why the “look” of the1925 sells for (a lot) more. In the past, most collectors preferred “shiny” coins looking “new” as issued by the mint which is why there are so many dipped and cleaned coins today. Given the age of the KGV series, I consider either perfectly acceptable. A coin with the appearance of original lustre (as the 1923 2/- in your last post) is desirable while the current Heritage 1924 2/6 MS-61 looks dull and lifeless to me.

 

In South Africa, by a lopsided proportion I believe most agree with the sentiments you expressed in your prior post. In the United States, this sentiment also exists but a lot less so on the NGC and PCGS forums which I believe is representative of “serious” collectors here. I have pointed this out before on many ocassions to warn those who pay these ridiculous premiums primarily or even exclusively because of the TPG grade that if preferences change in your country to align with those in the United States today, a lot of you are going to find that the value of your “investment” may decrease substantially. The subsequent silence on each ocassion has been deafening and no doubt, because it contradicts what everyone on this forum wants to hear.

Edited by jwither

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jwither
What grade would you give this coin?

 

At least an MS-63 but its impossible to be more precise absent inspecting the coin in person.

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geejay50
Stunning!

I dont know if there are any contact marks not visible in the photos which may lessen the grade,but that coin has a look of a 64-65.

I submitted a 1923 shilling earlier this year that had similar eye-appeal,that coin graded MS65.(sold now:sad:)

 

Yours is equally beautiful.

 

Hi Cape Currency Coin,

 

Thanks for your positive input based on your own MS65 Shilling.

 

This coin graded MS65 at NGC and there are NO contact marks that would bring it down to an MS63.

 

Stand alone Pop1

 

Geejay

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CapeCurrencyCoin
Hi Cape Currency Coin,

 

Thanks for your positive input based on your own MS65 Shilling.

 

This coin graded MS65 at NGC and there are NO contact marks that would bring it down to an MS63.

 

Stand alone Pop1

 

Geejay

 

Yes,thats why I said 64-65 ,yours is the type of coin that "looks" and "feels" Gem Uncirculated,(a 63 doesnt have this feel- in my opinion).jwither is of course correct in that its not possible to accurately grade a coin without the opportunity to inspect it.

its not always possible to visually tell the difference between a 63 or a 65 without close inspection of the coin.however

rarely does a 63 look like a 65,the opposite is possible where a 65 can look like a 63(until closer inspection reveals otherwise)

your coin is definitely an example of a coin where you can tell visually thats its special.The kind of coin that(hidden issues aside) could never look like a 63..in my opinion.

Well done on acquiring this magnificent specimen!

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jwither

A 63 can look like a 65 if it has appealing luster and color but the contact marks aren't that visible. This is exactly how my 1756 Peru NGC MS-62 1/2 real looks except that is more darly toned than this coin. and it is smaller.

 

I also have a 1936 2/- NGC MS-61. It has a PL obverse and a great strike, but the fields have numerous "cuts" hence the grade. I bought the coin ungraded (from eBay) but the contact market were not that visible in the image because it was not a close up picture. If the contact marks were smaller, it would look a lot more like an MS-65.

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geejay50
Hi GeeJay

my passion has been for ZAR pattern coins which - to my mind - are incredibly beautiful and of extremely limited mintage. To me, they are the peacocks of the ZAR numismatic world.

Mike

 

 

Hi Mike ,

 

Here are some pics to remind the collectors what beauty lies in these Patterns.

 

Geejay

 

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]5211[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]5210[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]5207[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]5208[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]5209[/ATTACH]

58f5a750c066c_1890Pf65GQTPatternLogo1.jpg.4de669df9937cfd7311e072a174e91bf.jpg

58f5a750c4d34_1890Pf65GQTPatternObv2.jpg.af4297fea4e5b17320746d7dc70d385f.jpg

58f5a750c9643_1890Pf65GQTPatternRev1.jpg.ba1606bcea252dd1ff3f76ea37502129.jpg

58f5a750cdd05_1889CGHPatternPennySP64RDEliasbergRev.jpg.93ead291498bf2749e50a933a0d0245f.jpg

58f5a750d2483_1889CGHPatternPennySP64RDEliasbergLogo.jpg.d8f20f2796aa1ec7bc7433fdfc169d35.jpg

Edited by geejay50

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geejay50

DNW Auction Monday 22nd September 2014

 

Its hard to write something about the above auction. What wonderful coins were offered after much work on the part of the auctioneers. Unfortunately the major Proof Sets went all unsold and overall only 102 lots of the 400 lots on offer were actually sold or a little over 25%.

 

What did strike me however that overall the ZAR group fared better than the Union and there 35 out of 62 lots or 56% were sold and fetched prices that were fetched in past Heritage Auctions especially the Gold. I think that the starting prices for the ZAR were somewhat more realistic (easy on retrospect) than many of the Union coins (I may be wrong) but I think in the main , the ZAR market is deeper than the Union despite the differing scarcities where often many Union coins are far scarcer.

 

The Mint State 62 Single Shaft 1892 Pond went unsold at 28,000 GBP or about R640,000 plus VAT and the Double Shaft MS63 fetched a realistic 2100GBP or R48,300 plus VAT. The 1892 Penny MS66BN finest known (shared 4) fetched 5000GBP or R115,000 and an MS65 1892 3d fetched 4600GBP or R105,800 . Those were two strong prices. On the Unsold side there were coins that really were exceptional like the 1893 Halfcrown MS63 with a starting price of 17,000 GBP or R391,000 and an MS64 1893 Florin with a high start of 25,000 GBP or R575,000. The market was just not able to meet these starting prices in my view. I think the market could get near these prices if the seller is prepared to start lower but initial high prices scared many bidders away. The MS64 Veldpond , a gem of a coin went unsold at 26000 GBP or nearly R600,000. One coin that fetched far more than usual was an MS65RD 1898 Penny sold at 950 GBP or about R22,000.

 

On the Union side, as expected the 1923 first year of strike coins (currency and proof) fetched decent bids at 3900 GBP (R89,700 and R82,800 respectively) showing perhaps the support this issue has regardless of economic conditions. An MS65 1924 Sovereign shared Pop1 went unsold at 18,000 GBP or R414,000. An MS66 PCGS 1924 HalfCrown was sold at 2400 GBP or R55,200 a low price in my view for pop 1 shared (2).Then followed a host of unsold coins and I felt for auctioneer and Robert to have to endure this drought in bids in the face of such rare coins. One such coin was an MS64 1925 Florin with a starting price of 12,000 GBP or R276,000 that went unsold. Another equally rare coin was an MS64 1926 Halfcrown pop1 with a start of 13,000 GBP or almost R300,000. One can go down the pop1 s and pop2 s of George V and they were mostly all there but most went unsold unfortunately. One exception was a 1929 6d MS65 pop1 that fetched a lowish 1950 GBP or R44850 in my view.

 

None of the big Proof Sets sold unfortunately - starting prices in bracketts : 1926 (250,000GBP), 1930 (18,000GBP), 1931(37,000 GBP), 1932 (72,000 GBP), 1933 (130,000 GBP), 1934 (37,000GBP), 1935 (27,000GBP), 1936 (9200GBP), 1937 (4600GBP), 1938 (9200GBP),1939 (52,000 GBP), 1943 (26,000GBP), 1946 (18,000GBP), 1947 (1800 GBP) An exception was a 1944 Proof Set that sold for 1300GBP or about R30,000.

 

One exceptional coin that fetched 2200GBP (R50,000) was an MS 64 1938 2/- , one of only two of these coins in MS that exist. I thought that the 1933 Halfpennies fetched low prices in the Red (MS64) with two in graded form only 650 GBP (R15,000) - the buyer got himself a real bargain there and Red Brown in MS64 Pop2 same price - also a bargain..

 

A 1935 6d MS65 fetched 1900 GBP or R44,000 - excellent value in my view for the buyer.

 

The 1946 Coins attracted bids in the 2/6 MS65 Pop1 2000GBPs or R46,000 and the MS62 2/- also pop1 at a low price of 1550GBP or R35,650

 

The 1946 Shilling Pop2 went unsold at 2600GBP (R59,800) as did the Pop1 AU58 1944 Shilling at a low start of only 900GBP (R20,700)

 

On the Republic side, only 19 lots from 71 or 26% were sold. The first lot a 1961 Cent "Full Ground Cover" MS63 went for 2600 or nearly R60,000 and another coin sale that caught my attention was a 1965 50 cents English PF67 Cameo that is seldom seen for sale - it went for 4000GBP or R92,000.. The transitional Patterns and other patterns all went mostly unsold except for the following three coins :

1)1965 10 cents MS66 Hern A31 that fetched 1150GBP or R26,450 2)1962 5 or Two 1/2 cents Hern A22 MS64 fetched 1500 GBP or R34,500. These are high prices far in excess of what I have seen in the past for these coins. 3) MS68 1965 5c Hern A35 fetched 1100 GBP or R25,300

At the end of the auction there were six misstruck coins that fetched prices between 300 and 600 GBPs

 

It will be interesting to see what happens to the unsold coins from this auction. My sympathies to Robert in particular but also to all those involved in trying to make the Auction a success.

 

Geejay

 

.

Edited by geejay50

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jwither

Geejay,

 

If you read my posts on this topic elsewhere, these results should not be as surprising. I presume you consider me a "pessimist" but these results were even worse than I expected which is saying a lot. Here are my reasons for these results:

 

Reason 1: The timing of the sale was poor. In hindsight, the sale should have occurred in 2011 when many but hardly all of these coins would have sold at these estimates. I didn't consider the results of the recent Mitchell ZAR sale particularly strong either and the ZAR in this sale didn't perform any better in the aggregate.

 

Reason 2: A disproportionate percentage of the estimates were hopelessly optimistic or the minimum bids were unreasonable. If you read Anthony's posts in that other topic, Mr Bakewell was shooting for a minimum of 2.2MM GBP and DNW presumably agreed to it to win the consignment. Since about 30% to 40% of this amount was from the 1926-1939 proof sets and a handful of other coins, it should have been apparent that unless someone bought the collection in its entirety by ignoring value considerations altogether, it wasn't going to meet this target.

 

As I explained in great detail, there wasn't any reason to believe that the 1926-1939 proof sets would sell for those estimates. They were either far above any prior public sale, way above what any other comporable set outside of South Africa is worth (excluding the USA) or both. I mean, why would anyone believe that any 1931 proof set will sell for about $100,000 USD with BP when Heritage sold one for "only" $48,000? Based exactly upon what? On the lower end, I specifically mentioned many examples of coins that aren't remotely worth the required minimum bids. Why would anyone pay those prices either?

 

Even for the rare coins where I thought the estimates were reasonable, I qualified this statement with the caveat that meeting these prices would require Union selling for more than ZAR which is something that hasn't happened up to this point except in isolation. For example, the Mitchell 1895 NGC MS-64 2/- sold for about $17,000. It has a count of nine in MS while the 1925 2/- has two. So while I thought it might sell for $50,000, if the 1895 is only worth $17,000, no I don't believe the 1925 is worth 50k. Despite its greater scarcity across the board, given the historical popularity of the two series, the 1925 should be worth at most only slightly more or even less.

 

Of the coins that did sell, it didn't surprise me that the 1931 6D was one of them. Like you, I thought the 1946 2/- and 2/6 sold for low prices and I was equally surprised at the 1938 2/- which is my #2 circulation strike in the KGVI series after the 1944 1/-. The prices of the ZAR pennies which sold surprised me because I don't believe any of them are remotely worth what they realized.

 

Reason 3: It should be apparent that there is essentially no demand by buyers outside of South Africa for more expensive Union or RSA. I don't know who attended the auction or bid online but like I predicted, Commonwealth collectors weren't interested in buying these coins at these prices.

 

Lastly, on your comment on starting the bidding at a lower price, I agree with you. I'm not sure it would have resulted in many if any more sales but I don't see that anything would have been lost by it.

 

As to what will happen to the unsold lots, I do not know. I can tell you right now though that I see no reaosn to believe that holding them indefinitely will later result in prices at the auction estimates, for the most part. As I have explained far more times than I can even remember, it should be apparent that there isn't much depth at all to the Union and RSA series and disproportionately, the buyers of both seem to be more interested in the financial aspects of collecting as "investments" than real collecting.

 

This is evident not just in the weak market since 2011, but in the price spreads between the highest grades and all others. For those who were disappointed by these results, what South African numismatics needs is more actual collectors and this will be evident when the price spreads narrow substantially. Until that happens, you are going to continue to have a shallow market with prices wildly fluctuating from one sale to the next.

 

Since I believe that most potential buyers of these coins place the "investment" aspect over collecting, what I think happened is that they performed a risk-reward analysis and generally concluded that the future return on "invesment" would either be negative or minimal. This is entirely logical because as I also explained in my reply to ZAR Coins elsewhere, Union are already among the most expensive coins in the world, probably among the top 10 when measured as a market. And given their already current and relative elevated price level, there isn't any reason whatsoever to believe that they are going to appreciate significantly except in isolation.

 

For myself as a foreign buyer, I looked at the estimates and compared them to what else I can currently buy in other auctions which contain Spanish colonial pillars and Bolivian Republic decimals. (This in the recent Lissner, Calico and Sedwick sales). I also concluded that my money can be better spent on these other coins which are better both numismatically and as an "investment".

Edited by jwither

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jwither

The Pogue collection of US coinage

 

The link below is to an "article" (actually a marketing promotion) on Coin Week announcing the sale of this collection which will occur in eight installments over three years ending in September 2017.

 

This collection is described as the "best ever" for US coins. It is probably the "best" under the modern criteria of grade and eye appeal but I'm not sure I would agree it is actually better than Eliasberg or Garrett. The coins specifically listed in the "article" are the 1822 half eagle ($5 gold), two "Class I" 1804 dollars (all of these coins are proofs) including the PCGS PR-68 and the 1854-S half eagle.

 

The 1822 half eagle is my #1 coin among US "regular" issues. That is, excluding patterns and other coins that weren't struck by the US Mint such as colonials and territorial gold. It is one of three known and the only one available for private ownership. The other two are in the Smithsonian collection. It last sold for $687,500 in 1982 as part of the Eliasberg sale. PCGS values it at $6MM and it is certainly the most valuable circulated coin (below MS) in the world today, whether it realizes this price or not. The 1804 dollar is the most famous US coin and under current market conditions, I would expect the PR-68 to break the $10MM record currently held by the 1794 PCGS SP-66 dollar.

 

According to another write-up on Legend Numismatics' website, the current estimated value of this collection is $350 million. This may be hyperbole since the merits of US coins are consistently exaggerated more than any others but even if so, still either the most valuable single collection today or second after "Mr Simpson's". I make this comment because while I consider the 1822 half eagle and 1804 dollar a big deal, I don't consider the 1795 "three leaves" PCGS MS-66 to be one, regardless of the grade or what it looks like. It last sold for $1,265,000 in 12/2005. Sure, it's a compelling looking coin but there are more than a few others that are high quality and the coin generically isn't remotely scarce at all.

 

Coin Week also mentions that David Bowers will author three books on the collection, including one just for the 1822 half eagle. (One already exists for the 1804 dollar.) While Bowers is an accomplished author, the obvious purpose of this effort is to promote the collection. That's one of the reasons the sale will occur in eight installments over three years.

 

A second reason is likely that, despite that the US is the largest and most liquid coin market in the world, it's equally unlikely that there is $350 million or anywhere near it at once to maximize prices. A third reason is that, if I were the Pogue family, I would change my tax domicile to avoid state income tax. They aren't going to get out of US federal income taxes but can temporarily move to one of the US states (such as Florida or Texas) without it.

 

Stack

Edited by jwither

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geejay50

PCGS grades a 1900 Pond "Restrike"

 

I noticed at the Bakewell Collection Auction at DNW recently that a 1900 "restrike" Pond SANGS I think MS63 was sold for 320GBP (lot 3060) or about R6400. I thought this was quite a good idea on the part of SANGS to grade a forgery as these have always been very collectible.

 

On ebay at the moment , please see link, there is an MS66 coin graded by PCGS and slabbed as a "Restrike".

1900 Paul Kruger South Africa Gold Restrike Pond EEN Coin PCGS MS66 | eBay

 

I wonder how long its going to be before NGC follows suite. They did not grade Cob coins in the past but now do , certainly under their Shipwreck" section.

 

Geejay

Edited by geejay50

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Pierre_Henri
PCGS grades a 1900 Pond "Restrike"

 

I noticed at the Bakewell Collection Auction at DNW recently that a 1900 "restrike" Pond SANGS I think MS63 was sold for 320GBP (lot 3060) or about R6400. I thought this was quite a good idea on the part of SANGS to grade a forgery as these have always been very collectible.

 

On ebay at the moment , please see link, there is an MS66 coin graded by PCGS and slabbed as a "Restrike".

1900 Paul Kruger South Africa Gold Restrike Pond EEN Coin PCGS MS66 | eBay

 

I wonder how long its going to be before NGC follows suite. They did not grade Cob coins in the past but now do , certainly under their Shipwreck" section.

 

Geejay

 

There were restrikes of the USA's most enigmatic coin - the 1804 Dollar - (in itself a kind of "restrike" although no coins were actually struck in 1804) - that commands a million dollars plus price tag

 

So one must be weary of the restrike tag.

 

As long as the slab states unequivocally and exactly what it is, I have no problem with slabbed restrikes.

 

The problem remains what the difference is between a fake and a restrike, but that I leave for the NGC and other top grading companies to figure out.

 

Pierre

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geejay50

Hi All,

 

I am sure you have seen what the MS66 restrike 1900 Pond fetched- far more than the contemporary genuine MS62 coin from the same seller.

 

I have a few Kruger Forgeries in MS that I want to send to PCGS like a 1900 and 1897 Pond in my collection and am looking for other collectors who would like to send to PCGS as well and share courier costs to make it cheaper for all. If you are keen, please send me a Private Message.

 

I also have some coins where NGC is definitely incorrect in calling them cleaned where PCGS is more objective. I have had instances that support this perception in the past and am sure other collectors are sitting with unresolved issues just waiting for correction and valuable coins that could get a fairer decision. I have also noticed that despite the present bias of South Africa towards NGC, this is not seen with other coins from other countries -for example: if one looks at some Dutch Ducatons (Riders) there is just the reverse numbers graded by NGC compared to PCGS.

 

Geejay

Edited by geejay50

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jwither

Geejay,

 

You have an interesting concept of "objective". Does it have anything to do with the fact that you just disagree with their decision? Your example does not indicate a lack of "objectivity" but either 1) A difference in market acceptability standards between NGC and PCGS. 2) The evaluation of the graders who happened to look at your coins and disagree with your opinion. And in making these comments, I don't have any opinion on whether they should have been "body bagged" since I have not inspected them.

 

As for collector preferences for either NGC or PCGS,. I wouldn't read anything into the census counts for most countries including the one you gave. The counts at either for the lopsided majority of non-US don't really tell us much of anything because they are disproportionately so low.

 

In the aggregate, given that NGC has graded far more "world" coins than PCGS, we can conclude that collectors prefer it. At the same time, I still don't think this says much of anything about preferences outside the United States because collectors outside of the US, South Africa and maybe Canada don't care about TPG as I have stated more times than I can even remember. I believe that NGC is still preferred but don't really have any evidence to back it up except in isolation such as Australia where the PCGS counts are materially a lot higher.

 

I suspect that most of the coins you see in the census were submitted by US collectors, regardless of what coin you are talking about except for the countries I specifically mentioned. With Canada, I also suspect that a much larger percentage are owned by Americans than those from South Africa which are owned by collectors outside your country.

 

For those who do not know it, with US coinage, PCGS is preferred to NGC (in the aggregate) if you go by market value in the same grade. It varies by coin but its evident if you look at the prices realized in Heritage.

 

The final comment I will make is along the same lines I made before when I discussed the overwhelming tendency of collectors in your country to buy the plastic first and the coin in it second. This is yet another example. Regardless of whether you agree with NGC's decision, they apparently saw something you did not (or did not consider as important as they did) which is information you and everyone else need to take into account

 

What is it? Well. apparently there is something they see which makes these coins less desirable than most (not necessarily all) others which are in a numerical holder today. I have told you than in the US, it isn't uncommon for collectors to pay substantially different prices for the same coin even in the same grade if it is expensive. Now I will grant you that because South African coins are disproportionately so much scarcer than it should matter a lot less, but since collectors in your country find trivial differences in quality per two proximate MS grades so significant, I don't see that this should be viewed any differently.

Edited by jwither

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Pierre_Henri

 

Very interesting items indeed!

 

As a matter of interest, about 4 years ago, I sold a ZAR blank Tickey on BoB. It came from a collection that was kept in a Volkskas Bank (now ABSA) vault for many years.

 

When I listed it, I knew that I had an old photocopied article on the blank coins of the ZAR that Natalie Jaffe from City Coins gave me many years ago that was written by Sam Lieberman.

 

But I could not find it until today when I cleared out an old cupboard.

 

It is entitled The History of the 7 piece ZAR 'Blank' coins.

 

If someone wants a photo copy of the article (4 pages) please send me a private message supplying your postal address

 

Regards

 

Pierre

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jwither

The reason I noticed them is because the Kruger patterns I rate as the "ultra elite" coinage with ZAR and with it, the entire South African coinage series. I don't know why they were struck (they aren't actual patterns) but regardless, they are the "poor man's cousin" to the 1898 "Single 9" pond which is undeniably the number one coin in the South African series.

 

Of these "patterns", the only others I have seen are numerous instances of the 1898 Sammy Marks tickey and one occassion, the Baldwin's half crown in copper maybe six or seven years ago. I believe this last coin sold for 25,000 GBP plus buyer's fee.

 

In today's market, I suspect that the copper version will realize in the vicinity of $50,000 (a low price in my opinion) and the gold $150,000 to $200,000.

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Pierre_Henri

ZAR blank 7 coin set

 

I had to scan the article anyway, so here it is - please read the pages as numbered (1-4) and not as posted

Page1.jpg.b92f0accd87f27faa0bbdafc30f7d0e4.jpg

58f5a7515c012_Page2.jpg.3e3e8bc098e1e89e29f1fe4966c3086c.jpg

58f5a7516147f_Page4.jpg.5e80345756a7db64ef8b47289cdc4fef.jpg

58f5a751668da_Page3.jpg.40f3164ceea3422ca2fb7af66e373830.jpg

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