One of three known 1822 $5 half eagle coins sold for $8.4 million on March 25, this being followed by a British 1937 Edward VIII £5 pattern realizing $2.28 million one day later. This once again illustrates the strength of the rare coin market. Individual coin sales are of interest, but there are coincidental factors outside the business of coins that also show just how much demand there is not only for numismatic objects, but for related items as well.
Among these coincidence barometers is the recently released Global Art Market Report 2021. Since the report covers 2020 results, which of course were impacted by the pandemic, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the U.S. art market fell by 24 percent in 2020 to $21.3 billion, but remained 76 percent above the level in the Great Recession in 2009. During 2020, online sales exceeded retail sales.
Female collectors spent more than did their male counterparts, which should be of interest to the future of coin collecting. Millennial collectors were the highest spenders during 2020, with 30 percent having spent more than $1 million versus 17 percent of baby boomers.
Another coincidence indicator is the Numismatic Stock Index. The foreign sector of the NSI was recently trading at 83.3 percent of its 52-week price average as compared to 79.9 percent one month earlier. The U.S. sector average was skewed since Collectors Universe is no longer publicly traded, but A-Mark Precious metals was at 86.1 percent compared to 83.7 percent, and Crane Paper was at 98.1 percent compared to 92.8 percent one month earlier.