I was doing a routine check of current offers on the APMEX website this morning.
I saw something of interest to me.
If you are presently in the market for circulated Morgan silver dollars, you are basically out of luck.
APMEX breaks down its offer of bags of 100 coins by grades.
Want a bag of 100 culls?
They’re yours for $18.99 each.
But going higher up the grade sequence, something peculiar happens.
Want an AG bag of 100 coins?
It is out of stock.
Cartwheels in five other grades up through XF are marked out of stock.
Not till you reach AU, where you can buy any quantity for $32.99 each, do you see an offer that can actually turn into a transaction.
Random individual dates of BU Morgans 1878-1904 are $39.99 each.
There are BU 20-coin rolls.
But if you want a bag of 100 BU coins, they are once again out of stock, and you are out of luck.
Where have all the Morgans gone?
Is this the signal of a market bottom where the price can only go up?
Perhaps it is.
Economists extol the virtues of the price mechanism.
Sellers stop selling something when prices no longer persuade them to part with what they have.
If you presently own generic Morgans, better times might just be ahead.
During my time in numismatics, Morgans have become a perennial crowdpleaser.
Not everyone can afford to buy top Mint State examples.
Having a few circulated pieces set aside fill the bill instead.
But today, buyers will have to look a little harder and perhaps offer a little more to acquire the coins that provide them that sense of Morgan dollar satisfaction.
If you are a potential buyer, it pays to remember that markets fluctuate.
What is true now might not be true next week, or next month, or even this afternoon.
Buzz blogger Dave Harper won the Numismatic Literary Guild Award for Best Blog for the third time in 2017 . He is editor of the weekly newspaper "Numismatic News."
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