Lithuanian Coins Always On The Rise
Tight markets with limited supply and broad collector demand always make for good appreciation. One of the best modern examples comes from Lithuania, where the art of matching mintages to collector base has become quite highly refined.
The Bank of Lithuanialimits their commemorative new issue program to a reasonable number of types each year and keeps their mintages close enough to satisfy their countries active collectors, while allowing for a healthy upward swing in the secondary market. If you collect Lithuanian coins, you probably know exactly what I mean, once the Bank sells out, you will have to work hard and pay dearly to get an example on the seconary market.
This 2005 silver proof 50 Litu, KM#144, is a perfect example. I don't recall the exact issue price, but would guess it to have been around $50. The catalog value rose up to $75, but that may have been conservative guess work too, as the very limited mintage of 1,500 would have meant that this type would not generally have been available at all after the Bank of Lithuania had finished primary sales.
Just this month however, I noted one selling on eBay and watched as bidders drove it up to a closing price of $325. That's what you get with a ravenous collector base, intelligent coin program decisions, attractive designs and carefully thought out mintage limits.
Other examples of recent rising prices in Lithuania include:
1998 10 Litu, copper-nickel proof, KM#115, former $30 = now $70
1999 10 Litu, copper-nickel proof, KM#116, former $20 = now $75
1995 50 Litusilver proof, KM#98, former $150 = now $200
1997 50 Litusilver proof, KM#105, former $150 = now $350
1999 50 Litusilver proof, KM#119, former $55 = now $200