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Another Whack at a Dead Horse

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 Posted 03/08/2012  7:18 pm Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add FlipOfACoin to your friends list Get a Link to this Message

I can't resist beating this dead horse one more time!

Today I was admiring a 2005 U.S. Marines Commemorative I recently purchased. The coin is graded NGC MS70. (The military associated commemorative coins hold a special place in my heart.) I decided to look at the NGC Census data to get an idea of how many of the 600K produced made the top spot. According to NGC, the numbers seemed reasonable.

I then looked at the PCGS numbers... and my blood pressure immediately went up about 10 points.

Quote:
NGC: 6288 in MS70, value 96.25, recent sales $80 to $104
PCGS: 568 in MS70, value 310.00, recent sales $80 to $92

How can PCGS justify their posted value when they themselves report recent sales in the $80-$95 range? A quick eBay check has this coin listed anywhere from $75 to $175, but nowhere near the $310 posted by PCGS.

This is the reason I do not rely on PCGS. From a research standpoint, how confusing it must be for new collectors and how easily they are being misled by such numbers...

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 Posted 03/08/2012  9:26 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add cc99999 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
The one thing about the PCGS pricing is that they do not update all series regularly. I'm not trying to defend them or any other price guide editors, but some lower value series do not get updated for months or years. Also, eBay sales do tend to be harder to track as they are not organized or publicized.

I think to pay more than 2x MS69 for a modern commemorative is a little dicey.
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 Posted 03/09/2012  06:32 am  Show Profile Check westcoin's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add westcoin to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Hey FlipOfACoin, take a look at this article if you haven't already;

http://www.coinweek.com/market-repo...n-gold-sale/

not quite the same coin types but the sentiment is there, some stuff exists in quantities while other stuff is impossible to get even at full catalog pricing. Census data is also only an indicator, my buddy that owned ICG told me a story of one gold coin that had a total pop of around 55 at all the TPG's only a dozen examples are known, he told me every year they would see the same coin come through trying for an upgrade, same hairlines, it was obvious to the graders, every time it sold it was cracked out sent around to all the TPG's hoping for that one point, which of course it never got, he said all the TPG's were aware of it. I doubt this would happen with modern coins as they have pretty high mintage's, but still an interesting tidbit. My boss buys a ton of modern mint products, he has never sent any of them in for grading, I suspect there are many like him, more than those that do submit for grading. So the likely hood of census numbers going way up in the future remains to be seen, I'm trying to get him to send in his 1995W ASE it's a 70 but I doubt PCGS would give it a 70, NGC no problem, the spread in money is just too great.
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 Posted 03/09/2012  10:16 am  Show Profile Check SeatedNut's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add SeatedNut to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Here's how PCGS does it ...

"WHAT DO PCGS PRICES MEAN?

The prices listed in the PCGS Price Guide are average dealer asking prices for PCGS-graded coins. The prices are compiled from various sources including dealer ads in trade papers, dealer fixed price lists and website offerings, significant auctions, and activity at major coin shows. Dealer specialists and expert collectors provide pricing input. Remember that the prices are just a guide, a starting point for asserting value. Some PCGS coins sell for less than the prices listed and some PCGS coins sell for more than the prices listed."

If the average of dealers and trades list this for $310 that's what is shown in the price guide. How many sell for $310? Very few!

So many coins, so little time ...
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 Posted 03/09/2012  11:03 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add cc99999 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
But you also have to realize that what remains in a dealers inventory that doesn't sell at $310 is not likely "A" Grade material.

I sold a high grade coin to a specialist in that series for 3X the "price guide" price at PCGS. In this instance we both agreed that the price was fair, it was negotiated out, and while I was happy to conclude the sale, I realized that the coin I sold was of such quality that I would likely not find another one to replace it.

The guide is something that leaves open tons of room for manipulation. I'm currently working on a book that scrutinizes 50 years of coin pricing- the approach I took is too multi-layered for a discussion board thread- and I also want to SELL the book at some point- so I'll have to hold off from getting into it- but let's just say in every coin series, every year, and every mintage contains real numismatic treasures- and likewise, there are lots of pretenders out there- going up in price due to the romantic ideal of "value". the key in this hobby is to do either do it for fun- whereas price is irrelevant- or know exactly what you are doing and the difference between the "floor" and the "ceiling" when it comes to coin prices.
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 Posted 03/09/2012  12:00 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add DVCollector to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I also find the grade "MS70" a bit of a reach--unless the coin is truly that perfect.
The cynic in me suspects these modern mint products are mass-submitted, and given a 70 to realize higher prices if they meet some base criteria--not fleeting perfection.
There may also be pressure at major auction houses, where a slight uptick in grade means a huge difference in commision.
After all, TPGs make more money on business volume than unbending exactitude to grading standards.

Apologies if my op-ed is off-topic, but I find the subject fascinating--in terms of what TPGs mean to the hobby, and how their holders affect collector's opinions on the encased coins. I do think TPGs offer an invaluable service to authenticate key coins--but will they survive the onslaught of faked slabs?
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 Posted 03/15/2012  05:10 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add biggfredd to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
same hairlines, it was obvious to the graders, every time it sold it was cracked out sent around to all the TPG's hoping for that one point, which of course it never got,

There was one coin that was cracked out something like 14 times before it was sufficiently overgraded.
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 Posted 03/15/2012  05:21 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add biggfredd to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
I also find the grade "MS70" a bit of a reach--unless the coin is truly that perfect.

I remember Linn's Stamp News (sister to CW) published stamp grades. The best went something like this:
Quote:
Perfect: A flawless stamp. Color is original, centering is perfect, perforations are perfect, gum is original and unhinged, with no creases, folds or damage of any kind.

Modification of the Perfect grade in any way is not permitted. "Perfect, but with tire tracks across the face" is not allowed.
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 Posted 03/15/2012  05:29 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add biggfredd to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
At least now a price/the market has been established on some long lost circ gold dates thanks to this sale.


The RedBook had a simple solution for ultra rarities. They'd list a price like (1986 Bigdeal sale, VF $100,000.06)

There's no point in guessing what a coin "might" bring, even if the number cruncher was qualified to make such a decision.
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 Posted 03/15/2012  05:36 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add biggfredd to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply



Letting a stamp dealer sell an unusual collection of rare coins makes as much sense as consigning antiquities to a households auctioneer.

True, the price guides may be worthless, but they aren't the only link to blame for low prices.
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 Posted 03/15/2012  07:37 am  Show Profile Check westcoin's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add westcoin to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
BiggFredd: There was one coin that was cracked out something like 14 times before it was sufficiently overgraded.
You put it better than I did! Exactly what happens.
"Buy the Book Before You Buy the Coin" - Aaron R. Feldman - "And read it" - Me 2013!
ANA Life Member #3288 in good standing since 1982 • EAC Member #6202 • NBS Member • 2¢ variety collector.
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 Posted 03/19/2012  11:02 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add RJP to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks for the extra links and sharing on the subject, this is more info then I would of thought of finding.
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