W.K.F.'s Journal

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TIPS, Regardless if you're a Collector or an Investor...

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W.K.F.

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One should ALWAYS remember a couple of things...Which are oh so important tips!

Greetings Collectors,

First of all I wanted to say that my greeting in my journal posts should be addressed to collectors, rather than collectors & investors for the simple reason that this is the NGC Collectors Society and not the NGC Investors Society.

I had quite a few emails concerning my last post and while I answered several, I felt it better to address the many questions and comments here rather than write a dozen+ emails. Wow there were some interesting comments which surprisingly, were all positive, interesting & constructive. Regardless whether or not you are a collector or an investor, there are several things all of us should remember. And probably the main one is a feeling that I and many I have talked to say we should remember, And it is one that will not make me popular with NGC and will probably prevent me from ever winning another award. But I'm not a member here to obtain awards. My only goal is to inform others of what little bit I know from being in this hobby for more years than I like to say. Simply because it makes me feel old, and possibly too set in my ways.

The several people here I wrote back to had some very good questions and comments and I have asked a few of them if I could copy and paste some of them and of course give credit to them for that content. But having just responded to their emails/messages, I have not heard back from them yet, so I will save those comments for possibly a later posting.

The few things I feel all of us should remember whether just starting out in the hobby, or the ones having been in this so called Hobby of Kings for many years is the following:

All of the mints of the world are out to make money, rather than be a drain on their respective treasuries.

And all of the third party graders make the vast majority of their money on grading millions and millions of freshly minted modern coins. If it were not for these modern coins, I think there would be at the very minimum, a massive amount of layoffs or even some of the graders going out of business because most company's usually borrow funds based on past years income. A severe drop in revenue from not having modern coins to grade, may lead to actual bankrupcy.

Having said that, there always has been, and there always will be those who love modern coins. Which if that is what one loves and enjoys collecting, then that is a very good thing that I would never want to change. We are all different animals, with different likes and dislikes.

But one day without fail, each will question that which he or she collects. And many will add sets or have sets they no longer enjoy collecting. I know it's been that way for me and that way for many of those I have talked to at shows & at coin clubs & here at the CS.

Tips for the new and old collectors/investors is to ALWAYS do your homework. Don't buy a coin and then read up on it. That is multiple times worse than putting the cart before the horse. Take some funds and purchase reference material before you make that first purchase into that coin series you have chosen to collect. I can't begin to stress how important this one thing is.

Probably the second most important thing to always adhere to is, ALWAYS buy the coin and not the holder. This also is a very important thing to always remember to do.

Grading as most of you know is just one persons opinion. And grading is very subjective. Third Party Graders that say they have two or three people look at each individual coin, before a grade is assigned, and the piece is slabbed, could not be further from the truth. Maybe if it's a coin that only a dozen or less exist in the world, may have more than one or two graders take a look at the piece. But when PCGS or Anacs or NGC get hundreds and hundreds of monster boxes of Silver Eagles weekly among many thousands of other pieces, and they say three people look at each coin before its slabbed, is a bit unbelievable if you ask me. Plus I have talked to graders from companies I will not name, who say that most modern pieces have less than 10-15 seconds of studying each coin. And I have heard that as little as 3-5 seconds is the norm.

If you believe otherwise, then you probably think Santa can stop at every house with children in the entire world in less than one 12-hour evening.

But with all that I have just said, the most important thing to me who does not buy many modern coins. But one who looks for vastly under graded coins with very low mintage figures. And just as importantly, coins that have very very low population figures. I could give you hundreds of examples of coins with a total mintage of hundreds of thousands, but less than 500 coins exist today from all graders, including raw un-graded pieces also.

If you are one who does not buy post 1964 coins, THE MOST IMPORTANT THING TO REMEMBER IS, TO NEVER BUY AN UGLY COIN, REGARDLESS IF IT'S SITTING IN AN MS-65 OR MS-66 SLAB. SPEND THE EXTRA MONEY AND EVEN IF IT'S TWO TO THREE TIMES THE MONEY. IF YOU BUY A GORGEOUS COIN, 20-30 YEARS FROM NOW THAT COIN WILL STILL BE JUST AS GORGEOUS. AND BY THE SAME TOKEN, IF YOU TRY TO SAVE THE MONEY AND BUY A COIN BECAUSE OF THE PRICE AND IT'S AN UGLY PIECE, IT WILL BE JUST AS UGLY 20-30 YEARS FROM NOW, AND MAY NOT BE WORTH WHAT YOU PAID FOR IT IN THE FIRST PLACE. WHAT I JUST SAID IS SOMETHING I CAN NOT STRESS ENOUGH, THE IMPORTANCE OF ALWAYS REMEMBERING.

But if you still like the modern coins, look at how many there are today and know that figure for MS-70 or Proof-70 could very easily, and probably will quadruple over the coming years. At least if not more. And with old coins, or with new modern coins, value is based now, and always has been based, on just how many of those coins are there in the world now, and how many of that grade could there possibly be far out into the future.

With moderns the first year of issue or an example that is a one time example is your best bet. A 1995 Proof-70 Silver Eagle which was the first Silver Eagle from the West Point Mint that then could only be purchased inside a 4-coin Gold set, as a bonus coin, just recently sold for $100,000. And then how about all the reverse proof Silver & Gold modern coins from the past less than a dozen years. Look at those values. They have gone through the roof for the most part compared to other Eagle's which have many times the final mintage figures.

How about the $5 Gold Capital Visitors Center coin in 70? And the latest MUST HAVE for the modern collector is the 2013 Enhanced Finish Silver Eagle in MS 70. It is the only time a coin like this has ever been made and may be the last/only time it will ever be made. I own most of those firsts that I just mentioned and the reason is they were the firsts and quite possibly the last. That MS Enhanced finish Silver Eagle is a must have and mark my word, it will be worth far more than the reverse proof 2013 in 20 years. On this, you can mark my word! There again look at the total mintage figures on these pieces. Many times lower than any of the others. And really it has always been about how many of that piece could possibly be out there. Not just what's out there right now presently.

There are numerous ways to collect, but there are as many mistakes one can make as well if one does not do their homework. When in doubt, ask a trusted veteran collec

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