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Mint statistics hint at number of new collectors

 (Image courtesy

(Image courtesy

The aftermarket for collectible coins is always difficult to access. There is no clearinghouse through which dealers report their sales. We need to rely on a series of co-incidence barometers to check the temperature of the business of coins.

The recent uptick in the trading ranges for bullion gold and silver have impacted bullion and bullion-impacted yet collectible coins in a positive way. It is still unclear if any noticeable increase in bullion-impacted coin purchases is due to an increase in the number of buyers or to the higher price each coin now commands.

Auction activity is brisk, with an increase in the total hammer price, but again the question remains – how many new buyers are getting involved? More coins are being offered through auctions than in the past. The increase in the value of the supply is important, but so is the demand side of this equation.

There may be a hint to the number of new collectors that can be seen through recent U.S. Mint collector coin statistics. The Apollo 11 commemoratives were at near sell-out prices at the time this article was being written. Proof Silver American Eagles had gained by about 6,000 pieces during the first week of February. Presidential medal sales increased, yet America the Beautiful five-quarter proof sets sales remained weak. The 5-ounce examples sold well.

We appear to be heading in a positive direction, but we still have a long way to go to reach levels seen a few years earlier.

This article was originally printed in Numismatic News. >> Subscribe today.

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