I have spent nearly two weeks outside of my usual routine in order to attend the World Money Fair in Berlin, Germany.
This morning – finally, I got back to it by checking the Kitco website to see what the prices of gold and silver were doing.
Now don’t get me wrong, while I was in Germany I was generally aware of what precious metal prices were doing, but movement was limited and the prices did not affect the prices of coins being sold on the bourse or in the auction.
Prices of much of the material I saw are multiples of metal prices, so there was no need to adjust them moment by moment.
So imagine my surprise when I saw that gold at $1,677 an ounce this morning leaves owners more or less flat to where they were a year ago.
Now a one-year pause is not necessarily a bad thing. It keeps some of the more reckless gamblers out of the market. It also changes the narrative somewhat.
Inflation and financial Armageddon are giving way to calm deliberation of just where gold and the coins made of gold should fit in one’s holdings.
As readers know, I consistently advocate owning precious metals in the form of collectible coins. Collections intelligently assembled consistently beat haphazard assemblages when the time comes to sell over the very long term.
Of course, you can pick out the hottest years for bullion and say that the metals left collectible coins in the shade. There are years that is true.
But if you are in it for life, as I am, you need the interest in numismatics to help guide you. The outcome for collectors is they not only make money but they have learned much on the journey and very much enjoyed the experience.
I know that is true of me.
How often can I say I have truly enjoyed my retirement accounts?
I can’t, really.
Buzz blogger Dave Harper is editor of the weekly newspaper "Numismatic News."