If you don’t buy or sell anything made of precious metals, the daily fluctuations in the prices of gold or silver don’t really mean much.
If you own some bullion, prices might give you a boost psychologically when they jump and drag down your mood when they fall, but there is no real impact on your daily reality, or your collector budget.
When I signed in my computer this morning on the first day back after the informal end of summer marked by the Labor Day weekend, I was a bit startled to see gold had fallen to $1,268 an ounce on the Kitco website.
Since this is the first day of the autumn collecting season, I am thinking like a collector.
I wondered if late buyers of gold proof gold Kennedy half dollars would get a break.
If bullion falls another $18.01, they will. Such a drop would take gold to the next lower tier on the Mint’s pricing grid. At a bullion price of $1,200 to $1,249.99 collectors would pay $1,202.50 for the coin, which would be a treat for those with patience.
The early buyers, with their label-driven purchasing mania had to pay $1,240 on the first day of sales and then $1,277.50 before the price fell back to $1,240 again.
A drop to $1,202.50 would not make or break any collector’s budget, but it would be a nice little savings that might actually warm a collector’s heart, psychologically speaking, more than a theoretical profit on the daily swings in gold’s price.
There is nothing like that sense of triumph we feel when as a result of waiting, or dickering, the selling price of a desired item comes down a bit more than had been hoped for.
Naturally, once we buy something, we hope its price will begin to rise again, validating our smart purchase.
Perhaps someday the grading companies will create a label for last coin purchased at the lowest possible price. Until then, buying something cheaper will simply remain a private victory.
Buzz blogger Dave Harper is winner of the 2014 Numismatic Literary Guild Award for Best Blog and is editor of the weekly newspaper "Numismatic News."