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geejay50

Heritage january 2013 - some interesting coins & prices

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geejay50

Hello All,

 

I found the latest Heritage Auction of interest from a South African point of view.

 

There were some few exceptional coins that really looked for big prices like the MS66 Veldpond (unsold at around R800,000),a PCGS Proof Penny with beautiful blue toning at around R450,000 and the MS66 PL 1923 Sovereign that did sell at $49,937 (R535,125) and then some scarce coins that seldom get offered which seemed to fetch a bit below average prices like the MS62 Veldpond with some extremely interesting definitely authentic documentation indicating a mintage of 530 coins and not 986 as is commonly believed - this coin sold for about R327,374including the VAT of 14% that one has to pay on import to SA. I have been waiting for someone to do a posting on this Veldpond and in particular the unique documentation so had to mention it for the record.

 

ZAR crowns in grades above AU50 were notably absent.

 

Another coin that is not as scarce in Mint State as some would believe is the 1924 Sovereign MS61 NGC which fetched $9400 and this a market related price in line with what CoinguideSA indicates.

 

There was overall a dearth in ZAR Patterns compared to previous years and with the result that the only ZAR Pattern offered , an 1890 SP64RB PCGS 1d sold for $2232 or R23,923 including 14% VAT. Pattern collectors can take heart that eventhough in previous auctions there has been what looked like a mass sell off with a slump in prices, collectors seem now to be holding on to their stocks and they are possibly scarcer and more collectible than some would think. The price of the only Pattern fetched more than double previous prices of similar coins in past auctions.

 

There were some Union coin surprises, probably the biggest for me was a raw ungraded 1950 Proof Set that sold for $3290 including Buyers Premium or R35,255 including 14% VAT. Is this a flash in the pan ? What do you think ? This is your forum.

 

Two bargains in my view were the two Half Crowns from 1923 (MS62+ PCGS) and 1924 (MS63 NGC). They both sold for the same price $1410 with BP (R15,109 including 14% VAT). Each of those coins are worth at least R10,000 more.

 

The 1894 Halfpond MS61 NGC sold for $11,162.50 with BP or R117,067 with 14% VAT. That coin has never been offered for sale before in Mint State and this price will be used as a bench mark for the future.

 

A take home message from Heritage is that this is not a place where you can buy coins and make an easy profit back at home. Generally speaking it is an expensive place to buy and really belongs to serious collectors with deep pockets !

 

Just in case you all think that ZAR prices are forever depressed when you looked at the mass sell off of medium grade coins in the second session , there was an 1892 3d PCGS MS62 that fetched $5875 with BP or R62,956 with 14% SA VAT .

 

Who said PCGS graded coins dont fetch what NGC coins fetch?

 

So hold on to your top coins, ZAR , Union or whatever. The grey cloud does have a silver lining !!

 

Cheers for now

 

Geejay

Edited by geejay50

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Pierre_Henri

Some comments on the Union sales

 

There were some Union coin surprises, probably the biggest for me was a raw ungraded 1950 Proof Set that sold for $3290 including Buyers Premium or R35,255 including 14% VAT. Is this a flash in the pan ? What do you think ? This is your forum.

 

I sold a nice 1950 proofset a year or two ago on BoB for R6 948.00 so either I was robbed or the latest Heritage buyer overpaid by a large margin?

 

Two bargains in my view were the two Half Crowns from 1923 (MS62+ PCGS) and 1924 (MS63 NGC). They both sold for the same price $1410 with BP (R15,109 including 14% VAT). Each of those coins are worth at least R10,000 more.

 

I fully agree, the last MS62 Half Crown (1923) on BoB sold for R25 600.00 and the 1924 must be near or just as scarce in MS.

 

Thanks for the update Georg!

 

I kept your report of the St James and Heritage sale of SA coins last year (or was it 2011?), and for those interested, here it is ...

 

" ... Hello all,

 

I am sure local collectors are quite struck by the prices that have been fetched for particularly high grade ZAR coins in the last two Major overseas auctions.

 

Yesterday at St James' in London the high prices fetched on Heritage last month continued.

 

 

(NB: BP refers to 20% Buyer's Premium charged by the auction house excluding VAT)

 

It seems especially ZAR Proofs in the bigger denomination that fetch the highest prices as well as the Gold of course and are seeming to outperform the Business strikes bucking the trend towards parity recently seen.

To list a few:

 

1892 Pf63 Gold Pond 200 000GBP (R3.12 Million with BP)

1892 Pf62 Gold Halfpond 72000GBP (R1,1232 Million with BP)

1892 Pf63 5 Shilling 15 500 (R241 800 with BP)

1892 Pf62 Halfcrown 5000 GBP (R78 000 with BP)

1892 Pf63 Two Shillings 4800 GBP (R74880 with BP)

Smaller coins fetched less even with higher grade:

1892 Pf64 Sixpence 4000GBP (R62400 with BP)

1892 Pf64 Threepence 4200GBP (R65520 with BP)

 

A PCGS Pf64BN 1892 Penny fetched 22000GBP (R343 200 with BP)

 

On the Business strike front , the real excitement centred around an MS66 1892 Shilling - only finest known graded by NGC a toned stunner. Hard bidding pushed the price to 9800 GBP (R152 880 with BP) This must rate as a record for a ZAR business strike coin and supports the American experience that unshared finest known coins fetch about seven times what an average Mint State Coin fetches (say MS62 - R21000).

 

Other sales of note were:

1892 Single Shaft Crown MS63 2800 GBP (R43680 with BP)

1892 Halfcrown MS61 1600 GBP (R24960 with BP)

 

On the Gold front:

1894 Pond MS63 fetched 8000GBP (R124800 with BP)

1897 Pond MS61 fetched 5200GBP (R81120 with BP)

1892 Single Shaft Pond AU58 fetched 19000GBP (R296000 with BP)

1892 Double Shaft Pond fetched 62000GBP (R96720 with BP)

1892 Double Shaft Halfpond MS63 fetched 3800GBP (R59280 with BP)

1893 Halfpond XF40 fetched 18000GBP (R280800 with BP)

1893 Halfpond VF35 fetched 9000GBP (R140400 with BP)

1902 Veldpond MS64 fetched 30500GBP (R475800 with BP)

1902 Veldpond AU58 fetched 15500GBP (R241800 with BP)

1874 Burgerspond (Finebeard)MS66 fetched 115000GBP (R1.794 Million with BP)

1874 Burgerspond (Finebeard) MS64+ fetched 50000GBP (R780000 with BP)

1874 Burgerspond (Finebeard)XF details ex mount fetched 4200GBP (R65520 with BP)

 

On the Union front , a Pf66 1931 Halfcrown fetched 4000GBP (R62400 with BP). A raw 1923 Short Proof Set fetched 1300GBP (R20280 with BP). A 1938 Pf61 Halfcrown and a 1949 raw Proof set were also offered (I did not see that part of the auction)

 

A number of the above prices were offered but the coin did not get sold and were passed over as the seller wanted more.

 

Someone recently in a posting on this forum was of the opinion that ZAR and Union coins were part of a twilight phase and that the future of SA coins lay in Mandela and Reserve Bank type coinage.

 

I think all collectors can be assured where the so called "Good Stuff" in SA coins is. These prices give an emphatic answer.

 

One can only say that the volatility in Silver and Gold prices recently has served to stimulate and consolidate the truly Rare SA Coin Market. This auction along with the recent Heritage auction will carry weight as a benchmark for future high end SA coin prices. It is seldom that such coins are seen together in one auction.

 

Our country as a whole can be justly proud to have such a well known and respected Heritage Internationally.

 

Geejay

..."

 

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geejay50
Hello All,

 

There were some Union coin surprises, probably the biggest for me was a raw ungraded 1950 Proof Set that sold for $3290 including Buyers Premium or R35,255 including 14% VAT. Is this a flash in the pan ? What do you think ? This is your forum.

 

A take home message from Heritage is that this is not a place where you can buy coins and make an easy profit back at home. Generally speaking it is an expensive place to buy and really belongs to serious collectors with deep pockets !

 

Who said PCGS graded coins dont fetch what NGC coins fetch?

 

Geejay

 

Thanks for your comment Pierre.

 

I have kept this year's Heritage Catalogue of the First Session mainly to have a printed record of that interesting letter written from the ZAR Assayer Mike Cooney to his niece 'little Maggie' in America on the Veldpond - especially interesting is his comment on how the British officers 'absorbed nearly all ' the coins 'immediately after the war as unique souvenirs for from 10GBP to 40GBP each (50 - 200dollars). A mintage of 530 coins makes the graded survival of Veldponde fairly high as a circulated coins go dont you think?

 

A sale I forgot to mention that is of interest to Union Collectors was a PCGS MS63 1939 Two Shilling that fetched $2585 with BP and R27111 including 14% SA VAT.South Africa: George VI 2 Shillings 1939,... South Africa | Lot #22691 | Heritage Auctions

An NGC MS61 coin fetched about R15,000 recently on Bob (in line with Hern's 2012 Catalogue) and the above price looks reasonably in line with that and is faithfully recorded by CoinguideSA.

The PCGS coin is the finest known coin for that Company and this probably provided a boost for the price.

 

Geejay

Edited by geejay50

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jwither

The 1950 proof set at $3200 I consider vastly overpriced. It is not that much less than relatively recent sales I recall of the 1944-1946 sets graded. I have not looked as this 1950 set but even if it is a premium one, it isn't remotely worth that kind of money. And yes, I know that the 1950 includes a crown and the others do not but the primary reason why it probably sells for this premium despite its likely actual availability (I do not consider it particularly difficult to find at all) is that the 2/ and 2/6 are overpriced because of the inflated opinion of the scarcity of the equivalent business strikes. These coins are likely not as scarce as most either believe or believed them to be either. The census numbers for the 2/ and 2/6 business strikes show them as available or more available than many other dates, so there is no reason to pay any premium for the proofs especially since a proof is not a substitute for a business strike anyway.

 

The 1939 2/ in MS-63 was also absurdly overpriced. I specifically mentioned this coin in the thread on KGVI coins and also on the topic I started on the price structure of SA coins. The fact that an MS-61 sold for R15500 makes it "reasonable" versus this one but not versus an AU-58 which is not even that different. Or perhaps someone can explain why a premium of about 20 TIMES to the AU-58 which Geejay recently sold is reasonable? (I intend this as a rhetorical question because there isn't a valid reason at all.) Pointing to the Hern catalogue as a measure of value is also pointless since there is no evidence that the prices of (at least the) scarcer coins come from actual sales at all.

 

The 1923 and 1924 2/6 I consider overpriced versus their AU counterparts, but not versus other MS coins. Both were a much better value than this 1939 2/ because the census counts are comporable and KGV is more popular than KGVI.

 

On the availability of the Veld Pond, what Geejay described is unusual to my knowledge for SA coins but not coins generally. In past posts, I have also listed examples of (relatively) low mintage US coins with high or very high survival rates. If the actual mintage is 530 versus 986, the combined census represents about 20% of the mintage. Considering duplicates (which could be many or few, I do not know), known problem coins and specimens yet to be graded, the actual number is maybe between 50% and 100% more than what is included in the combined census today.

 

For a coin like the Veld Pond which is actually a low mintage one, I do not consider this survival rate high at all. If it were a US coin or one from Western Europe such as Britain from the same time period, probably at least 80% would still exist, most would grade and the likely average grade would be an XF or better by US grading standards.

 

In a recent exchange of posts on the NGC Message Boards, one other collector was explaining to me that apparently (since I do not know his source) that many early federal era US coins (such as from 1793 to 1807) were saved and taken back to England by English collectors. I was not specifically aware of this but it makes sense given the lack of organized collecting in the US during this time. This also better explains how a coin such as the 1795 half dolalr (profiled in prior posts of mine) could have as many MS and other "high grade" specimens as indicated by the census. There is no reason why the same thing would not have happened with the Veld Pond since SA was a British colony given that this coin has a unique design and especially considering the prices Geejay mentioned. GBP 40 or $200 USD was a LOT of money at the turn of the 20th century. Many people (probably most) presumably NEVER saw or had that much money at one time in their entire life. So yes, it provided a big incentive to save this coin.

 

On the 1924 Sovereign, I agree with Geejay's comments generically. The price is about right for the current market (though there are definitely many other SA coins I would rather have for the same money) and I think that many probably consider this coin to be scarcer or a lot scarcer than its actual availability. The last time I checked the NGC census, the count was (I believe) 36 which is about 1% of the recorded mintage of 3184. I suspect the actual survival rate is maybe twice or even three times what is apparent now. I admit this is higher than what most (or even all) probably believe but I base this upon the assumption that many or even most of these coins are owned today by Sovereign collectors and "investors" who do not live in SA, do not collect SA coins and do not prefer graded coins either. It is the same opinion I hold for the 1923 business strike which I also suspect has more or a lot more survivors than the dozen or so in the census out of the original mintage of 406 (per Baldwin's recent auction listing).

 

These examples and the reasoning I am using is what should be expected for many if not most coins, just that the survival rate is lower for most coins but the absolute number of survivors is much higher as I have attempted to explain in prior posts.

Edited by jwither

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jwither

In my last post, I theorized that 1944-1946 proof sets sold recently for the same or even less than this Heritage 1950 set. Well, since a partial proof set (as individual lots) sold on BoB this past week, it isn't theory anymore. I can now confirm that this 1950 set at $3200 was actually vastly overpriced.

 

One such coin was the 1944 2/6 in NGC PR-65 at about R3300 or $375. The other coins sold for even less, though not all grades were the same. The 2/ sold for R2300 while the 3D sold for R2200, prices that also make no sense to me.

 

It is somewhat imprecise to make these statements (whether mine or anyone else's) without actually inspecting the coin in person, but I did not see anything in the Heritage images to indicate that this 1950 set was that superior. And even if it was, however many are left, I am aware of no evidence to indicate that the survivors differ that much proportionately (if at all) from the original mintages.

 

In another post, Geejay mentioned the 1931 proof 2/ and I brought up the 1931 1/, both of which sold on BoB. The shilling selling at R88,000 or more than the 2/ at about R66,000 made no sense. Well, the sale of a 1931 NGC PR-65 at about R16,000 makes even LESS sense, even taking into account that there are more of the 6D in the census and the size of both coins.

 

If this is its "real" value, then the NGC PR-66 that I sold for $2250 in 2010 can also be added to the list of coins that have lost value since I got rid of it. I use "real" in quotes because the sales prices of so many similar or even (supposedly) identical coins from one sale to the next, even when they occur in close proximity, are so unpredictable and fluctuate so wildly that they defy any logic or common sense. And this is apart from the absurd differences existing in the price struture between different grades for the same issue which I have covered many times(probably more than many care to hear).

 

The bottom line from these numbers is the following. Either the buyers of the 1931 6d and 1944 proofs got a bargain and have an immediate unrealized profit. Or, the buyers of the 1950 set and 1931 1/ and 2/ vastly overpaid and have a have likelihood of a current huge proportional unrealized loss. Given the recent price trends profiled here by myself and others, I will leave it to each reader to guess which is more likely. The only exception might be the 1931 2/ since a high grade proof cameo of a scarce issue is an above average coin and deserves a strong price IF its eye appeal is really superior and the price was not paid simply because of the label on the holder.

Edited by jwither

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