Are you fickle?
I’ll bet you aren’t either.
I have been a coin collector for nearly all of my life.
I’ll bet you have been a collector for a long time as well.
Year in and year out we are loyal to our collecting goals and spend money accordingly.
That is not to say that we don’t vary our financial outlays year by year.
Life puts demands on us that must be met before we can buy this year’s proof silver Eagle or guide book.
But still, we are in numismatics for the long term.
People I met in my first year as a professional four decades ago I still see at coin shows.
As a co-worker told me after my first month or so in the office, “You’re a lifer,” as she poked me in the belly.
How right she was.
That is what gives numismatics its strength.
Who has confidence to spend $3 million or $4 million on a rarity?
High-end collectors do who know that when they want to sell in 10 or 15 years there will be a willing buyer.
Probably at a much higher price.
The same thinking goes into purchasing a coin to fill a hole in a Whitman album.
You know someone down the road will have an interest in it.
That gives you confidence.
Not all hobbies have the stability of numismatics.
In fact many of them are absolutely unstable.
The latest fad comes and goes.
Huge numbers of people suddenly spend huge amounts of money.
Businesses ramp up plans to meet these needs forever.
Five years later, the debris can be picked over because the public has gone on to the next fad.
Collectively, the public can be very fickle.
What set me off on this line of thinking was a Reuters report this morning.
I cannot recall ever seeing such a story that mentions spending on hobbies has fallen.
What hobbies these might be, I don’t know.
What I do know is if coin collectors cut back for the month of June, it is probably because they are saving up for a bigger purchase later.
I know they aren’t going anywhere.
We are in it together for the long term.
Buzz blogger Dave Harper has twice won the Numismatic Literary Guild Award for Best Blog and is editor of the weekly newspaper "Numismatic News."
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