Official Saint-Gaudens/Gold Coin Price Thread
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113 posts in this topic

I thought a thread focusing on PRICING TRENDS for gold coins -- including popular series like Saints or Liberty's or Indian Heads -- we see and/or purchase would be appropriate. 

Not going to censor off-tangent discussions but the primary focus intended here is pricing trends, premiums for bullion or quasi-bullion coins, etc.  But we'll see where this thread takes us....I suspect not as far nor as in-depth as the thread on RWB's Saints book.xD

Edited by GoldFinger1969
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I'll start off with what I thought was a pretty high all-in price/cost for a pretty non-descript NGC MS65 1928 Saint in that solid-white plastic holder.   It's only a 22% premium based on the winning bid (ex-bp) but with bp and other fees it was $2,447 or 37%.

Premiums for commons/generics are clearly rising.  Wonder if bidding activity data would confirm it at HA, GC, Ebay, etc. 

 

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During the last big dip in gold price, saints held. (PCGS price sheet. I don't know about the others)

I've not seen that before.

My upgrade days are basically over but I'm pretty comfortable with the coins I have.

I'd like a nicer 11-D but at $6250 for a "common" MS66, I'm out.

 

Surprisingly, the 1929 in MS64 has only gone up $2000 in the last 2 years. (I have been watching that one like a hawk :grin:)

Edited by Cat Bath
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On 8/19/2021 at 11:28 AM, GoldFinger1969 said:

I'll start off with what I thought was a pretty high all-in price/cost for a pretty non-descript NGC MS65 1928 Saint in that solid-white plastic holder.   It's only a 22% premium based on the winning bid (ex-bp) but with bp and other fees it was $2,447 or 37%.

Premiums for commons/generics are clearly rising.  Wonder if bidding activity data would confirm it at HA, GC, Ebay, etc. 

 

22% and 27% premiums relative to what? And speaking of “what”, what makes this thread “official”.

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On 8/19/2021 at 1:54 PM, Cat Bath said:

During the last big dip in gold price, saints held. (PCGS price sheet. I don't know about the others) I've not seen that before. My upgrade days are basically over but I'm pretty comfortable with the coins I have. I'd like a nicer 11-D but at $6250 for a "common" MS66, I'm out.

At FUN 2020 they had an MS67+ sell for $55,000 which I believe is the all-time high price for a 1911-D.  Apparently, it's pretty common up to Superb Gem levels.  David Akers said:

"The 1911-D is one of the most plentiful issues in the entire Saint-Gaudens Double Eagle series. Examples are available in quantity in all Mint State grades up to and including MS65. Even MS66 coins can only be considered scarce. Superb Gems, while rare in an absolute sense, are more plentiful than those of any other pre-1920 issue in this series with the exception of the 1908 No Motto."

On 8/19/2021 at 1:54 PM, Cat Bath said:

Surprisingly, the 1929 in MS64 has only gone up $2000 in the last 2 years. (I have been watching that one like a hawk :grin:)

David Akers in 2012 commentaries noted:  "After World War I, double eagles no longer circulated to any extent. For most years from 1920-1933, substantial quantities were minted of every issue but largely remained in government possession as gold reserves for our national currency. They were never really intended for circulation and were subsequently melted in the mid- to late 1930s. That is why so many of the high mintage issues of the 1920s and early 1930s are rare today and typically exist with a very high ratio of uncirculated examples to circulated ones. The 1929 is the first of the justifiably respected five late date rarities of the series although it is multiples more common than the other four when the total population of known specimens is all that is considered. This is no doubt due to the significant number of specimens returned from Europe over the years; many more examples of the 1929 were found there than of the other four later dates. However, back in the 1940s, when dealers were really just starting to get a handle on the relative rarity of the various Saint-Gaudens issues (they knew mintage figures were of no use in that regard), the 1929 was thought to be much less rare than the 1931-D and 1930-S but otherwise comparable to both the 1931 and 1932. Today, estimates vary wildly as to how many 1929 double eagles exist. PCGS estimates the population at over 900 pieces and Dave Bowers states in his double eagle book that 1,250 to 1,750 exist. Those numbers seem awfully high to me and I would place the number more in the 300-400 range. One thing about which there is little difference of opinion, however, is that the 1929 remains rare in gem uncirculated 65 condition and extremely rare above that level. In particular, the 1929 is definitely much more rare in superb MS66 condition than either the 1931 or 1932 although in gem all three are rather similar. "

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On 8/19/2021 at 2:43 PM, MarkFeld said:

22% and 27% premiums relative to what? And speaking of “what”, what makes this thread “official”.

22% and 37% (not 27% !) relative to the price of gold bullion.  Sorry, I thought that was clear when talking about gold coins and premiums.

As for "official"....just a way of jazzing-up the thread, Mark.  On other message boards I belong to.... to concentrate similar posts and back-and-forth on one thread instead of having to jump among 3 or 4 or 5 threads, you'd create an "official" thread...."Official 2020 Election Thread....Official 2020 NFL Playoff Thread.....Official Covid-19 Vaccine Update Thread" etc...etc...etc.

As Jerry Seinfeld said to Izzy Mandelbaum, I don't know how official these rankings really are. xD

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Posted (edited)
On 8/19/2021 at 2:52 PM, Cat Bath said:

The 1928 in MS65 is a pretty good example for trends in saints. Here is the PCGS price chart for that coin.  Right now the PCGS price is $2800

It's funny, I usually see the 1924 or 1927 or even the 1908 NM as being the standard for pricing of generic commons.  Never knew why the 1928 didn't get the same respect.

That chart you show I like for long-term graphing of price moves....but I think that the price for the earlier years was HIGHER and the recent price LOWER...making for less of a rise from 2018/19 to the present.  That chart would show a near 50% rise in price the last 2 years or so....I think it's closer to 25%, especially once gold moved from $2,000 back to $1,800. 

I'd be surprised if a plain MS65 generic Saint from 1924/27/28 sold for near $2,800 right now (unless it had CAC).

Edited by GoldFinger1969
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On 8/20/2021 at 1:03 AM, Cat Bath said:

What is your pick for the biggest future mover? Out of all saints, I'm gonna go for the 10-D

That's a nice underlooked Saint.  Good choice, Cat. (thumbsu

IF -- big IF -- gold moves big, then you probably get a bigger % move from coins that track bullion with less of a numismatic premium.  But 1910-D's could see interest from folks who want commons that track gold and have their fills of 1924's, 1927's, 1928's, and 1908 NM's.

Akers Comments on the 1910-D:  "The 1910-D is a condition rarity, that is, it is an issue that is rare only at or above a certain grade level. This is a very common issue in any grade up to and including gem MS65 condition and even superb MS66 examples can only be classified as scarce and not really rare as more than 100 such specimens exist. However, at the superb MS67 level, the 1910-D is extremely rare with only two or three examples graded so far. From a quality and eye appeal standpoint, this Duckor specimen is spectacular and a strong candidate for finest known."

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On 8/19/2021 at 7:47 PM, GoldFinger1969 said:

22% and 37% (not 27% !) relative to the price of gold bullion.  Sorry, I thought that was clear when talking about gold coins and premiums.

As for "official"....just a way of jazzing-up the thread, Mark.  On other message boards I belong to.... to concentrate similar posts and back-and-forth on one thread instead of having to jump among 3 or 4 or 5 threads, you'd create an "official" thread...."Official 2020 Election Thread....Official 2020 NFL Playoff Thread.....Official Covid-19 Vaccine Update Thread" etc...etc...etc.

As Jerry Seinfeld said to Izzy Mandelbaum, I don't know how official these rankings really are. xD

Thanks, I just wanted to be sure on the use of “premium”. Some people uses the word with respect to melt value or to a published bid price, etc.

Edited by MarkFeld
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On 8/20/2021 at 5:26 AM, MarkFeld said:

Thanks, I just wanted to be sure on the use of “premium”. Some people uses the word with respect to melt value or to a published bid price, etc.

NP, Mark....I kind of use the term bullion value and/or melt value interchangeably.  Right now gold is about $1,800 so to me anything above the normal 3-4% you pay for a regular American Eagle bullion coin represents numismatic premium.

Any thoughts on that 1921 Specimen sold the other day by HA, Mark ?  Since proofs aren't usually considered part of the 53 Saints for registry players, I wonder if a non-Saint trophy hunter just wanted that particular coin and maybe liked the "story" behind it.

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On 8/20/2021 at 10:18 AM, GoldFinger1969 said:

 Since proofs aren't usually considered part of the 53 Saints for registry players, I wonder if a non-Saint trophy hunter just wanted that particular coin and maybe liked the "story" behind it.

That's entirely possible.  Or maybe it went to a Saint collector who isn't a Registry participant who had the funds and decided that particular coin would work to fill the 1921 spot in their non-Registry Saint collection.  I hope it is this latter one......I like when collectors set their own rules to play by and set their own goals for their own reasons.

Edited by Mohawk
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On 8/20/2021 at 7:47 PM, Mohawk said:

That's entirely possible.  Or maybe it went to a Saint collector who isn't a Registry participant who had the funds and decided that particular coin would work to fill the 1921 spot in their non-Registry Saint collection.  I hope it is this latter one......I like when collectors set their own rules to play by and set their own goals for their own reasons.

Alot of Saints selling for 7-figures YTD including 2 UHR's at the #3and #4 all-time high price for Saints...has to be a record.  

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On 8/20/2021 at 8:38 PM, GoldFinger1969 said:

Alot of Saints selling for 7-figures YTD including 2 UHR's at the #3and #4 all-time high price for Saints...has to be a record.  

No doubt about it......Saints are getting some high dollar love lately!  It's gotta be exciting for you Saint guys!

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Posted (edited)
On 8/20/2021 at 9:30 PM, Mohawk said:

No doubt about it......Saints are getting some high dollar love lately!  It's gotta be exciting for you Saint guys!

Actually, I was kind of disappointed that there wasn't MORE publicity regarding the high-price sales in 2021 involving coins, since there has been so much for NFT's and cards.  Especially an iconic coin like the 1933 Saint nearly hitting $19 million. 

I may reach out to some of my contacts at CNBC and bop them on the head. (thumbsu

Edited by GoldFinger1969
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Posted (edited)
On 8/22/2021 at 12:02 AM, Cat Bath said:

I think what you said in the other thread is true about saints. There are probably a lot of folks that don't collect them because it's an impossible set & you're basically a failure before you start. A "complete" set is 64 coins (Basic + Major varieties + Patterns & Proofs) A date set is one of each date from 1907-1933 (minus 1917,18 &19 because they were not made) or  24 coins. Disregard the 1933 and you're down to 23 coins.  Eliminate the "3 sisters" which are very expensive (1930-S, 1931-P or D, & 1932) and you're down to 20 Eliminate the "hole" (1921) and it's 19  Eliminate the "crash coin" or "Leprechaun killer" (1929) and it's 18. AKA...The poverty set. An average person can assemble a "poverty date set" of 18 although it may take quite some time.

Alot of Saint collectors specifically and coin collectors in general are also gold/bullion collectors.  You can kill 2 birds with 1 coin by collecting Saints which trade and track bullion either 1-for-1 or at least a good percentage (i.e., a generic common in MS-65).

Anybody knowledgeable about Saints understands that obtaining all the coins -- or even the bulk of them - even in AU condition would probably require an expenditure of hundreds of thousands of dollars.  I'm happy to get a dozen of the various dates and mintamarks and then maybe double-up on a few with very high-graded versions as even getting some of the scarce or rare coins would be much more expensive than the commons or semi-scarce ones in Gem or Super Gem condition.

Edited by GoldFinger1969
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On 8/22/2021 at 12:02 AM, Cat Bath said:

I think what you said in the other thread is true about saints. There are probably a lot of folks that don't collect them because it's an impossible set & you're basically a failure before you start.

A "complete" set is 64 coins (Basic + Major varieties + Patterns & Proofs)

A date set is one of each date from 1907-1933 (minus 1917,18 &19 because they were not made) or  24 coins. Disregard the 1933 and you're down to 23 coins. 

Eliminate the "3 sisters" which are very expensive (1930-S, 1931-P or D, & 1932) and you're down to 20

Eliminate the "hole" (1921) and it's 19 

Eliminate the "crash coin" or "Leprechaun killer" (1929) and it's 18. AKA...The poverty set. An average person can assemble a "poverty date set" of 18 although it may take quite some time.

I'm very happy to hear a Saint collector confirm what I've suspected about Saints.....those key dates are just a little too "key" for many collectors and for a lot of people, settling for the "poverty set" (LOVE that description by the way!  It's funny to refer to a poverty set in regard to $20 gold coins!) can feel like a failure out of the gate.  That exact kind of feeling stopped me from attempting to assemble a set of one coin for each Roman Empress until the end of the Western Empire in 476 CE......Cornelia Supera will cost at least $12,000 for something recognizably her (and we're talking just recognizing it's her.  That $12,000 will get you the ugliest antoninianus in your whole collection) and Annia Faustina, well, there are 5 denarii of hers known on the entire planet, so she's even worse than Cornelia Supera!!! You could live your whole life and never even have a shot at buying an Annia Faustina denarius!! Thinking about the set without those two (and there are other empresses which are extremely difficult, but those two are the worst), it did feel like something that was doomed to fail right out of the gate because it would never be truly complete.  It was actually this experience that made me think about the Saint conundrum recently as I think there are definitely parallels between taking on Saints as a collection and my Empress set that I abandoned for an ambitious and large project, but one I may have a shot of actually completing.  

Edited by Mohawk
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There are many Saint-Gaudens double eagles from 1921-1933 that are prohibitively expensive for most collectors - that leaves a lot of gaps and no way to fill them 'cause there are very few circulated pieces. Check my double eagles book for the reasons and discussion.

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Posted (edited)
On 8/22/2021 at 8:51 PM, RWB said:

There are many Saint-Gaudens double eagles from 1921-1933 that are prohibitively expensive for most collectors - that leaves a lot of gaps and no way to fill them 'cause there are very few circulated pieces. 

Seriousley....this is an excellent point.  I think for someone like myself, in the absence of winning PowerBall or MegaMillions, simply enjoys following the series:  tracking auctions....seeing nice coins up-close....going to shows and seeing how rare the Saints and other Eagles/Double Eagles are...reading books like yours....reading internet postings....etc.

Right now, I'm limited to an occasional common in Gem Mint grade.  I hope to be able to eventually consider some Super Gems (MS67 or higher) as well as some scarce or rare coins in lower grades.

Edited by GoldFinger1969
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On 8/23/2021 at 10:58 AM, GoldFinger1969 said:

You wrote a book on Saint-Gaudens Double Eagles ?  How come nobody told me ?  xD

You didn't ask. Of course, one must phrase the question in the expected manner, otherwise, just like the lady on your credit card "help desk" the question will remain unanswered.

:)

Anyway, you asked some great questions!

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On 8/23/2021 at 3:24 PM, GoldFinger1969 said:

Now I need to find some good answers as to why the Mets offense stinks all year ! xD

That is because they bought playbooks from the Orioles and Nationals.

Game tip #1: Go cheap on the manager and hope you're lucky; or, go cheap on the owner and give up.

Edited by RWB
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[Funny how it occurred to me, just reading this rapidly unspooling thread, that if you were to substitute Saint Gauden's for those 20-franc gold roosters, the experience would be comparable at a fraction of the cost.]

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On 8/23/2021 at 3:34 PM, Quintus Arrius said:

[Funny how it occurred to me, just reading this rapidly unspooling thread, that if you were to substitute Saint Gauden's for those 20-franc gold roosters, the experience would be comparable at a fraction of the cost.]

well marianne is certainly a lot easier to look at.....the rooster vs the eagle more of a toss up......

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Speaking with anonymity using a User Name because I am not authorized to speak for attribution, I would venture to say, anecdotally, that the number of formal, certified Rooster collectors has virtually exploded in the less than two years I have been a member.

The number of current collectors at NGC, just seven, used to coincide with the seven G.O.A.T. The last time I looked, it ballooned to 37 and now stands at 40!

I do not know to what that may be attributed to.  Maybe it's my big mouth or nose which never found a thread it did not like.  😉

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On 8/23/2021 at 8:50 PM, Quintus Arrius said:

Speaking with anonymity using a User Name because I am not authorized to speak for attribution, I would venture to say, anecdotally, that the number of formal, certified Rooster collectors has virtually exploded in the less than two years I have been a member.

The number of current collectors at NGC, just seven, used to coincide with the seven G.O.A.T. The last time I looked, it ballooned to 37 and now stands at 40!

I do not know to what that may be attributed to.  Maybe it's my big mouth or nose which never found a thread it did not like.  😉

That's an interesting observation Quintus.....I wonder what has caused that uptick.  Roosters are nice coins, no doubt about it.  And gold has been hot for a while.......and though I have only been back home for a short time, you definitely have a presence here :smile: and one that I particularly enjoy.  Who knows?  Maybe you did have an impact.  It's possible, I'd say.  I highly doubt I'll ever have an impact like that with what I collect..........most people probably don't want to sign on for lifelong numismatic insanity.

Edited by Mohawk
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If you were to look at the dates they joined per their profiles, you will see what I mean.  My latest "survey," more out of curiosity was undertaken in April. I will take another look here, and ATS, in September. Funny thing is there are a few 🐓 collectors who dropped out.  No. 3 at NGC is the collector to watch. I have spot-checked registrants various acquisition histories and no other collector in Set Registry history comes close to making a debut with top-shelf coins, in one fell swoop, the way this one has.  HE IS A CONTENDER!

I have been asked about my intentions.  I have climbed Everest once.  I see little point in doing it twice. Barring extraordinary developments, I plan on retiring [from coin collecting] on Consitution Day, September 17, 2021 at which point I will turn 70.  

(Now, as my good friend @GoldFinger1969 would say, Back on Track!)

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