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FUN start to 2016

With football playoffs dominating the sports news, perhaps it is appropriate to use a football metaphor to describe business at the Florida United Numismatists convention.

Dealers were focused on the numismatic ground game.

Those with knowledge and stamina were grinding out a few yards at a time.

Spectacular plays for huge yardage gains did not seem to be in evidence. At least I did not run across any.

I talked to one happy dealer at setup who said it didn’t matter who showed up on the floor because the fresh material she possessed would virtually sell itself.

That is a dream situation, but it does not happen often.

Other dealers were more cautious.

I make it a point to always visit with Jack and Sondra Beymer at major shows. I have done it for many years.

They sell collector coins of great interest to my readers.

Usually I manage to catch the two together, but it wasn’t to be this year.

I asked Jack where Sondra was and he said she was out on the floor making business happen. That is a hallmark of a veteran.

At a show like FUN, opportunities can be made especially when the goal is to keep inventory turning and generating the cash for the next purchase.

Lack of American Eagle bullion coins on the floor meant that form of trading action was mostly missing.

Advance orders were being taken by some dealers.

The U.S. Mint today begins accepting orders for bullion coins from its Authorized Purchasers.

How big will the flood of demand be this year?

We’ll see, but real gold and silver bullion coins will soon be in the hands of buyers.

The Mint booth at FUN was virtually deserted every time I walked by. One person watching the video actually looks more forlorn than when no one is.

There was more action at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing next to the Mint booth, but then it holds drawings to attract a crowd.

Public attendance on the bourse floor was wonderful on Thursday. There was a big crowd that wanted to get in at ribbon cutting and they didn't care that a hapless Numismatic News editor was trying to get a photo of the event.

The buzz in the room Thursday lasted for hours.

Many old friends came by the table to say hello.

There was somewhat less public on Friday.

I was not present on Saturday.

All of our papers were given away. Show calendars were a hot item. We gave away more than we did last year. All that we had available were taken.

Because we were in Tampa, some dealers complimented the new location. Some lamented the impact on business of the relocation from Orlando.

Next year FUN will be in Fort Lauderdale.

What dealers were virtually unanimous about is the quality of the FUN show and the capability of the organization that runs it.

Dealers like being there for the opportunities that the FUN bourse floor provides, but they also like being there for the weather.

I liked being there as well.

It was 80 degrees in Tampa when I was there. Last night in Iola it was 10 degrees below zero.

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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