By Kerry Rodgers
Heritage is the latest major auction house to enter the vibrant Hong Kong market. Its inaugural Asian coin and currency auction held on Dec. 10-12 proved a great success. The auction room was packed tight to the point where the standing-room-only crowd overflowed. At final hammer fall the total realized was over $2.82 million of which $622,250 came from paper money helped by some high-quality, choice items.
“The overall results were better than even our most positive expectations,” said Kenneth Yung, director of Asian operations at Heritage Hong Kong. “As the official auctioneer of the 2015 Hong Kong International Numismatic Fair, the event attracted top dealers and collectors of Asian numismatics from all over the world. The overall feedback was very positive and we’re very much looking forward to continuing this success with our June 2016 auction and beyond.”
Among the notes on offer a proof Hong Kong Oriental Bank $500 (not in Pick) topped the sale. Graded PMG Choice Uncirculated 64 it fetched a handsome $45,410.
It was followed, albeit some distance back, by a newly discovered Year 25 Hupeh Government Mint dollar (seven mace two candareens), P-S2135. It made $28,680 in PMG About Uncirculated 50. The price was no doubt helped by the superb color of this item.
But it was a classic, imperial Ming Dynasty one kuan, c. 1368, P-AA10, that produced fierce bidding competition. At issue was the grade of the note: PCGS About New 53. This made it the highest graded example Heritage had handled. Little wonder it romped to $25,510. A second example graded PCGS Extremely Fine 45 managed just $11,950.
The Peoples Republic took a creditable fourth place with a choice, PMG Extremely Fine 40, 10 yuan of 1953, P-870. Given this is arguably the most coveted of modern Chinese notes it had little problem in taking $25,095.
Other top sellers included:
• Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corp. $1, Dec. 3, 1873, P-112, PMG 50: $17,925;
• Board of Revenue 50 taels, Year 4 (1854), P-A13b, PMG 20: $15,535;
• Portuguese India Banco Nacional Ultramarino, one rupia, Jan. 1, 1924, P-23A, PMG 58: $14,340;
• Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corp. $50, Jan. 1, 1934, P-175d, PMG 64: $13,145.
Full details can be sourced at Heritage’s website archives: http:/currency.ha.com/rare-world-paper-money.
This article was originally printed in Bank Note Reporter.
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More Collecting Resources
• Come on down to the Chicago International Coin Fair in Rosemont, Ill. on April 14 to 17, 2016 to see impressive world coins, meet new collectors and participate in Heritage Auction’s fantastic coin auction.
• The Standard Catalog of United States Paper Money is the only annual guide that provides complete coverage of U.S. currency with today’s market prices.