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I Don't Win Auctions Anymore. How Should I Adjust My Bidding?

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United States
351 Posts
 Posted 12/12/2020  1:40 pm Show Profile   Bookmark this topic Add Sharkman to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
I focus on pre-Morgan 19th Century coins, and I frequently bid at Heritage Auctions. Their site is easy to use and they have a great selection. I just collect. I don't sell or invest. I have no problem paying full retail with a premium if I really like a coin. I am not looking for bargains.

I have recently lost a number of auctions bidding a premium over the higher of CPG or PCGS list price. I do drop out of obvious bidding wars which can get crazy.

I used to be good at looking at auction prices and price guides and formulating a winning bid. I probably won well over 50% of the time. I was happy.Not anymore. I have become sad.

Most recently I pursued a common as hen's teeth without cents MS65 non-CAC 1883 Liberty nickel. It had the best strike I had seen for this issue, and very attractive eye appeal. Clearly a premium coin. I ultimately dropped out of the rising bidding at the MS66 price point. It sold for $50 higher than my bid, just a few $$ below the MS66 CAC price.

Two possible variables suggest themselves to me.

1) I have gotten better at choosing better coins and the coins I want are going to sell well above retail. I just haven't figured out how to price premium coins.
2) Prices are rising faster than the price guides can keep up and the auction data is obsolete.

I suspect it is probably some combination of improved skill and rising market prices, but that is just my guess.
I need a bidding coach to get out of this slump. Anyone have thoughts?
Pillar of the Community
United States
938 Posts
 Posted 12/12/2020  2:06 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add NumisEd to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Like to hear some insights as well.
I personally blame the "bubble" in coin prices on the free COVID money that is doled-out by government, but maybe that is not the real cause.
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United States
565 Posts
 Posted 12/12/2020  2:08 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add JasonKflo to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I have won a few sweet coins on Heritage for great deals , 1887 VAM 1B VF-35 for 196.00 nice example , AU-55 1891 O VAM 3A2 that one was 420.00 but still a good deal for the grade . Earlier this week I grabbed a MS-62 1878 VAM 31 FOR 168.00 not a great deal but coin looks undergraded a grade so fair deal. I just bid the max of what I feel comfortable with and if its meant to be its meant to be.
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351 Posts
 Posted 12/12/2020  2:19 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Sharkman to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I do same as Jason. It just hasn't been meant to be recently.
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United States
938 Posts
 Posted 12/12/2020  2:23 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add NumisEd to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Skyrocketing prices apparently are not restricted to rare coins. This article talks about Pokemon cards that have doubled in value over the last 2 months:


Quote:
On Thursday, a sealed box of Pokémon booster packs sold for a record $360,000 through Heritage Auctions, while a similar set sold for $198,000 only two months ago.


https://www.marketplace.org/2020/11...ices-rising/
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 Posted 12/12/2020  2:54 pm  Show Profile   Check GrapeCollects's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add GrapeCollects to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
a sealed box of Pokémon booster packs sold for a record $360,000 through Heritage Auctions, while a similar set sold for $198,000 only two months ago.


To be fair, it is a first ed base set box.
My best finds: 1999-WAM:http://goccf.com/t/332161 1988-RDV-6:http://goccf.com/t/335954#2873459 1986-Off-center: http://goccf.com/t/335952
1999 WAM #2:http://goccf.com/t/338710&whichpage=1
1981 Double Struck In Collar: http://goccf.com/t/350199&whichpage=1
ANA id: 3194067
My Type Set: https://www.NGCcoin.com/registry/co...sets/236574/
If you want to buy something or sell something or just talk, shoot me a PM!
Pillar of the Community
United States
1745 Posts
 Posted 12/12/2020  5:06 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add kbbpll to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
When the most you can get on a savings or CD account is .5%, might as well buy something. That's my take on it.
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United States
358 Posts
 Posted 12/12/2020  5:16 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add PNWType to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I agree with what has been mentioned. When you decide your highest price, that's what you feel it's worth, and if you push above that, you risk feeling like you've overpaid or actually overpaying.

My regret when I miss an auction that went too high is usually short-lived, my regret when I receive an item I paid more than I meant to for never goes away.
Bedrock of the Community
Australia
18362 Posts
 Posted 12/12/2020  6:06 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add sel_69l to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I almost always loose when it comes to public auctions.
I am happy with that.
Why?
If I am interested in a lot that is going to cost quite a bit, I do intensive price research and numismatic background research on the item.
I then figure on a value for a single fixed written bid and submit it. I always attend the auction view day to examine the lot in hand.

The value of my bid is almost always for what I consider it to be a bargain. Thus, I always expect to loose.
That puts me in a win/win/win position:
1. I have had lots of fun doing numismatic and price research. "Getting there is half of the fun"- Samuel Cunard
2. If my bid fails at the auction, I have not spent any money
3. If I win, I have a new acquisition for my collection at a very good price.

Excitement and fun and work a bit like gold prospecting to my sort of mentality. - "We found gold!"
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United States
2898 Posts
 Posted 12/12/2020  6:06 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Slider23 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I found on Heritage that the more knowledge I had on identifying premium coins the less auctions won.

It is better to not win a coin, than chasing a coin down a rabbit hole and getting buried.
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United States
930 Posts
 Posted 12/12/2020  7:01 pm  Show Profile   Check Collects82's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add Collects82 to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I feel that the big houses are getting pretty strong prices right now in general. As you mention seeking premium coins, that's only going to compound the strong prices. Not to mention the 20% buyers fee, possible sales tax, and shipping. Be careful... that's going to add up to maybe 50%+ over your researched prices. "Losing" may be a win for your collecting fund.

Do you mainly buy through HA, or do you keep a close eye on Great Collections, eBay? Any favored dealers you could patronize instead? There is a ton of beautiful stuff outside of HA.

I should disclose that it's been 2 years since the last time I won on HA. My budget seems to have lagged behind my competition. Only 1-2 times in the last couple years have I regretted missing out, I see the realized prices and almost always feel like the winner by not having to cut that check.
My hoard of '82s is up to 204! 218 BC x 1, 118 BC x 3, 18 BC x 1, 82 x 1, 182 x 1, 282 x 2, 382 x 1, 582 x 2, 682 x 1, 782 x 2, 882 x 1, 982 x 4, 1082 x 1 1182 x 8, 1282 x 2, 1382 x 1, 1482 x 5, 1582 x 13, 1682 x 15, 1782 x 57, 1882 x 49, 1982 x 33
Edited by Collects82
12/12/2020 7:02 pm
Pillar of the Community
Canada
2568 Posts
 Posted 12/12/2020  7:51 pm  Show Profile   Check Wade's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add Wade to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
My regret when I miss an auction that went too high is usually short-lived, my regret when I receive an item I paid more than I meant to for never goes away.


THIS

on another note, you may have missed out by $50, but without outbidding the other buyer you will never know if you missed up by $50....or $500....

i always tell myself that it was by $500.

that said, if it's something I want I will pull out all the stops
Coin Collecting... "I'm in it for the money" ™
Pillar of the Community
United States
3298 Posts
 Posted 12/12/2020  8:10 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add hfjacinto to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
To win an auction you need to bid more than the other bidders.

To win smart you shouldn't pay more than an item is worth,

Based on what you posted,I believe you are winning by not winning the auction.
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United States
938 Posts
 Posted 12/13/2020  6:03 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add NumisEd to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I suppose that patience is a virtue. And even more so in coin collecting.
Moral of the Story: there will always be another beautiful coin for sale that will not be "overpriced" either as a BIN or auction item.
Edited by NumisEd
12/13/2020 6:03 pm
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55970 Posts
 Posted 12/13/2020  6:23 pm  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add Coinfrog to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
Agree, it's an important maxim to remember: When you're the underbidder at an auction, you'll never know how high the other guy would have gone.
Bedrock of the Community
Australia
18362 Posts
 Posted 12/14/2020  01:58 am  Show Profile   Bookmark this reply Add sel_69l to your friends list Get a Link to this Reply
I always submit a single fixed priced written bid on the view day, and have the auctioneer bid on my behalf. If I am the successful bidder, I am sometimes lucky enough to obtain the lot at a lower price than my fixed price bid.
In this sort of situation, my successful bid is only 10% higher than the highest underbidder.

I never actually attend the auction, and so I never get involved in a bidding war, where there can be a loss of pricing judgement under the pressure of the moment.
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