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PNG says coin market gained in 2018

Remember the old college question when we were trying to be profound?

If a tree falls in a forest and no one is there to hear it, does it really make a sound?

That popped into my head this morning.

Too much Christmas eggnog?

Not really.

When I walked into the office, virtually no one was here.

That’s what happens between Christmas and New Year’s Day.

People generally would rather focus on their holiday experiences.

If no one reads what I write here, does this blog really exist?

It would be a shame if it doesn’t, because it has important news.

The Professional Numismatists Guild has released its annual assessment of the state of the coin business.

The group offers two key figures:

$4 billion

$345 million

The first number is the size of the American coin business.

It’s huge.

This figure does not include sales by the U.S. Mint or sales of bullion coins.

It is the collector coin market being measured.

With so many dollars at stake, numismatics is not going to go the way of the dodo.

Four billion dollars is a number that is too big to ignore. It shows we collectively are in rude health, even if the way the market works is not the same as it did in 1965, 1985, or even 2005.

Numismatics is redefining itself for a new generation.

Where large sums of money are involved, you can be sure there will be many individuals looking to join us – but it will be in their new ways, not our old ways.

The $345 million is the total of prices realized of U.S. coins sold at major public auctions in 2018.

This is up a solid 8.8 percent from the $317 million figure compiled by PNG for 2017.

This also shows that numismatics is in rude health.

Why do I write “rude health?”

Two reasons.

This term means strong and healthy.

This is the present state of numismatics.

But rude has another meaning.

It means not being polite in an in-your-face manner.

This is accurate, too, in that numismatics is so rude as to disprove the naysayers wrong.

Numismatics is not dying. It is thriving.

Thank you, PNG, for providing the figures to demonstrate this.

There were more million-dollar rarities sold in 2018 compared to 2017.

PNG points this out.

I will provide a link to a previous story done for Numismatic News a couple of weeks ago by Mike Thorne for the Florida United Numismatists special issue.

It was posted online yesterday.

We have much to look forward to in 2019.

I am excited by it.

Whether this blog exists or not, the numismatic marketplace definitely exists.

So does PNG.

Let’s all plan on making it real in 2019.

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."