I don't have the same bleak outlook that many have. Actually, I think KHatt makes excellent points. And it's not that younger generations aren't involved in collecting (for the record, I am 26). They have simply transitioned away from the traditional buying/selling venues (retail shops, coin club meetings, local/regional shows) toward online venues. These include Facebook, Instagram, reddit, and of course eBay. Also, many dealers in the US have *excellent* websites (CRO, Atlas, Legend, Doug Winter, just to name a few). Canadian dealers need to step up and create websites that are easy to use with clear images and rotating, high-end inventory. It is no longer sufficient for major Canadian dealers to travel to the usual shows.
Another great thing about today's market is the access to information that people have. I mean in terms of researching the history of their coins through online resources like the Newman Portal, auction records, population reports (for US TPGs), pedigrees/provenance, etc. All of this enhances the appeal of the material being traded. The more people know, the more comfortable people are engaging in the hobby.
That brings us to third-party grading and slabbing, which has been disparaged by many but has actually been responsible for most of the price increases over the last 30 years. Whereas subjectivity and uncertainty hindered price appreciation and created situations where those with better grading knowledge could take serious advantage of those with less knowledge, the playing field has been evened out significantly. That is not to say things are perfect, but we now have a market where the product can be bought sight-unseen, and where new collectors can feel comfortable buying coins at certain prices for certain grades without fear that they are being completely ripped off.
There's no question that better material (historically significant, conditionally rare, rare in absolute terms, well-known key dates) will perform well and maintain their popularity. Dreck, the term that is now thrown around to describe common, ugly, low-end for the grade coins, will continue to perform poorly. Prices will continue to be cyclical, as they are for most things.
I maintain that one of the keys to enhancing the viability of the Canadian coin market is having a TPG service that can match the US services in terms of information available (website, pop reports) and consistency.
Quote: I maintain that one of the keys to enhancing the viability of the Canadian coin market is having a TPG service that can match the US services in terms of information available (website, pop reports) and consistency.
If you look at what PCGS does in terms of services, member club, trade shows, etc. it would seem there is a great business opportunity to expand into Canada. So why haven't they set up shop in Canada?
Quote: If you look at what PCGS does in terms of services, member club, trade shows, etc. it would seem there is a great business opportunity to expand into Canada. So why haven't they set up shop in Canada?
There is no incentive for PCGS to establish an office in Canada. The market is much to small to make it worthwhile.
I collect paper money and find the notion of predicting the future outlook of this hobby intriguing. I think KHat & NumisCat make some salient points on how emerging technologies (paired with online sales/marketing) impacts the coin/paper market. The affects of eBay (& other online auction houses) has been huge too. I can't possibly afford to buy every note I like in GEM UNC so I have always approached this hobby as a collector first, and as a (modest) investor second. If you're the anxious sort who worries about each coin attained as an investment than "buy eclectically @ the absolute best condition you can afford" (as many of you have suggested here). I started 40 years ago as a "dabbler" who squirrelled away a few notes while working part time at a car wash. Around 2001, with eBay, and a lot more disposable income, I became an "average" collector. Lately, I'd have to confess, I've almost entered the realm of "serious" collector. I truly believe most people go through these 3 phases and it takes time (as well as disposable income/time/interest) to pass through these 3 phases.
IMO: I feel readers of this thread have to keep a couple of points in mind: #1-coins/paper/polymer money is a technology in itself and its highly unlikely that it will be completely scrapped as e-commerce becomes more dominant. So long as the technology stays ahead of the counterfeiters, and people demand a free market, it is likely here to stay. I'm not saying that the threat of all-knowing "big-brother" government isn't non-existent, but at least something (hopefully) in the distant future. Peoples hobbies changes over the years but as long as there's cash- there'll be coin/paper money collectors.
#2-it takes discipline to squirrel away coins/paper money and a certain type of personality. I rarely see women involved in this hobby but this may be changing. When we predict the health of collecting rarer items than you are discussing a niche for serious dedicated collectors who are slightly more intense than your average collector. IMO: for this serious market to grow we really need (younger/female) average collectors to become more hardcore like ourselves (& pass through the 3 phases : - )
#3-keeping #2 in mind, it will take positive population growth, a certain level of wealth and a healthy economy to encourage people to enter the hobby. It is easy to be distracted by the small picture when, in fact, larger forces are probably far more significant. I have heard dealers say that Americans make up a larger portion of Canadian paper money collectors than Canadians. So, if that's the case, a healthy American economy will be a much greater factor influencing the collecting of Canadian paper money. The same principle likely impacts the CDN coin market.
#4-I doubt RCM's main market is the serious CDN coin collector but rather the international market; the grandpas & grandmothers, godfathers, aunts, uncles who don't know what to buy their grand/godsons, nephews, nieces, etc. and some regular CDN coin collector/dabblers who may get attached to a series. These same collectors may even get lured into buying some of the rarer issues but I would suspect that the bulk of the Canada Post silver sells to the relative of the serious to "dabbler." In fact, the opposite may be true ( RCM heat up the market), if a NCLT inspires a dabbler/average collector to become a serious collector! I do happen to believe that the introduction of a commemorative (like the "150" $10) often brings in more average collectors (rather than shrinking # of collectors/or the funds spent on notes).
I can't speak for PCGS but my conversations with NGC on the possibilities of doing something in the Canadian market resulted in looking at current submission statistics that just wouldn't support anything beyond the current setup of self submissions or through the dealer network. We looked at a similar scenario that NGC has setup in the EU with Heritage. The idea was to try to limit the risk and cost of shipping cross border via some sort of a centralized Canadian repository with consolidated shipping. The reality is that what was on the table wouldn't be any different than an NGC (or PCGS) dealer wouldn't be able to do on their own.
Quote: The reality is that what was on the table wouldn't be any different than an NGC (or PCGS) dealer wouldn't be able to do on their own
Which is true and like I mentioned in the other tread which I will repost here what you guys should do is try to get them to come to some of the larger Canadian shows. Even if they don't grade on site see if you can get them to accept submissions type thing.
Of course the whole catch 22 is that they don't want to come if there aren't submissions, and people don't want to submit if they don't come.
Quote: One other point of the pitfall for PCGS or NGC setting up a Canadian office.
Don't forget the uproar that will happen from the Canadian collectors (most of who are very tight to the dollar), when they have to pay sky high prices to NGC and PCGS.
There may be riots in the streets!!
Seems like there is already at least somewhat of an uproar from many collectors already for the primary grading service being one that completely isolates the north American market and whose holder could be reproduced much easier than PCGS and NGC who have gained world wide acceptance.