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Who wants to leave early?

Early show departure has become a hot topic in the pages of Numismatic News in the last several weeks.

Dealers have claimed the right to depart when they want to go.

Collectors have insisted dealers stay at their tables until the last minute of the last hour of the last day of the show has elapsed.

As someone who attends shows regularly, I see how this plays out in reality.

Shows near the end are virtually empty. Dealers are sitting there and looking at the four walls, that is they are unless somebody just happens to amble along.

The whole exonomic dynamic of a show is front-end loaded. There is a mad scramble at the beginning as every dealer tries to figure would what new things every other dealer has brought.

By the end of that first day, the broad outlines of that show’s success or failure can easily be evident. That’s why shows can sell Early Bird badges for such high prices.

On the other hand, who doesn’t feel bad for someone who might have driven a long way only to arrive late on a final day?

What’s the solution?

Perhaps it boils down simply to better disclosure.

On a show poster or website put the information as to whether dealers can leave early or must stay.

Sure, most people probably can figure it out without being told, but as a courtesy, the information could be posted.

It would save some bad blood.

I have had dealers tell me that some of their best deals have occurred late on a final show day.

It happens.

However, when I am at a show late on a final show day and I look around at all the empty aisles, I can’t help but feel that we simply need to face this reality and both collectors and dealers should work to cut each other some slack.

Buzz blogger Dave Harper is editor of the weekly newspaper “Numismatic News.”

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4 Responses to Who wants to leave early?

  1. Texascoins says:

    Since time began, the earlybird gets the worm. Less than 25% of the new visitors that show up on the final day are motivated buyers, 75% of the total final day visitors, are tire kickers. The final day shoppers usually do not show up until after noon. It is expensive to stay over, only to work the show for 1/2 the day, pack up and leave without rewards of satisfying business.

    If collectors wanted to find those certain coins, would they still be there at a reasonable price on the final day, final hour? I hardly think so.

    I prefer one day shows. You and the collectors know this is the only shot. They are in or they are out. Business is usually frantic and the dealers always stay until the end due to pure business damand. Customers are ready to conduct business and came there for that reason.

  2. pegarner@rocketmail.com says:

    Dear Dave:

    1. I pay for the table so it is my right to stay for as long or as short a time as I desire. If the show wants me to stay beyond what I am willing to, then pay me for the imposition!!! Either that or don’t sell me another table for the next show.

    2. I have driven as much as 1000 miles (one way) to a show. If there is little or no business why should I stay? Like any body else, I would like to go home and send some time with my family. Staying one extra day costs me.

    3. I have no great sympathy for those collectors who say that they can’t get to the show except on Sunday. They have the option to take a day of vacation so that they can go to the show. For some, Sunday is a religious day of observance, while others observe Friday. Do you propose making those people violate their religious beliefs just to cater to the person who refuses to take day off?

    4. Yes, I have also had a good show at the last minute. I kept records for the last two years and only once have I made my show in the last hour of the show, either by buying or selling. Based on those statistics, for me to stay past my normal time to leave, I would expect the show to reimburse my hourly expenses of $100 per hour for every hour they expect me to stay. Cash please, no checks.

    The old sarge

  3. dogfather says:

    Dear Dave, I, too, am one of those dealers who frequently leaves early on the last day, depending upon how far I have to drive to get home. If I am staying overnight anyway, I will stay later at the show, but if I can get home that night, I will leave at 3 or 4 o’clock. As the 2 previous posters stated, anyone who is a really serious buyer should not be waiting until the last minute to shop. Those last minute shoppers are just looking for cheap bargains. Out of courtesy for the hosts, I will stay until other dealers start to go, but I am never there at closing.
    dogfather

  4. kieferonline says:

    Sunday Catholic mass is another ocassion where the audience begins to quickly erode in the waning minutes (usually after Communion). Where I grew up, priest enlisted a couple of deacons to wait in the wings to give people the evil eye and a harsh word on the way out.

    Three ideas for coin shows: (1) Perhaps coin show hosts could create a deposit system, whereby the dealer receives his full deposit back at the show’s end or a pro-rated amount if leaving early. (2) Hold a must-be-present-to-win raffle among dealers at closing time. (3) Create a dealer rating system whereby the dealers receive scores based on certain criteria, such as being open for business during the full show.

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