Bullion Pushes Up Common Date Prices
Better date, better condition Indian cents have been increasing modestly in prices recently. The value of many lower grade Barber dimes, quarters, and half dollars has been declining, although these coins remain above the spot price of their silver content.
This is somewhat ironic, since the spot price of silver is continuing its slow but steady uphill climb. This appreciation in the spot price of silver has benefited silver American Eagle investors. However, the value of the key date collectible SAES have remained stagnant. While generic gold coins are worthy of watching, it should be remembered that by a note-worthy 17 percent within the last year, outperforming gold on a percentage basis.
Proof and Mint sets are continuing to do what they have done a lot of recently—nothing! Overall, U.S. Mint products continue to be a drag on entry level collectors’ budgets, many of whom may never graduate to taking an interest in better coins due to getting burned financially by these overpriced and oversold products.
Beginning collectors learn this, the hard-way when they go to resell what they purchased directly from the Mint. They don’t like what they find out. Most of these Mint products rarely ever appreciate in the secondary coin market. Inexperienced coin collectors usually get burned financially in this process.
Prices for precious metals, along with just about everything else, depend on the relative levels of supply and demand plus available inventories. To judge where gold and silver prices are likely to trend, investors and numismatists alike have an interest in knowing if there are current and likely future supply shortages or surpluses. Two consultancies that produce the most widely cited analyses of precious metals markets are GFMS (formerly called Gold Fields Mineral Services) and CPM Group.
The periodic reports by these two entities can and do sway market activity and, therefore, prices. GFMS produces its yellow metal research to be publicized by the World Gold Council. While such information is better than nothing, keep in mind that much of what is going on in the gold and silver markets is opaque.
In other words, there are private and government actors in the markets that do not want their actions publicly known. Motives they also want to keep secret. Particularly suspect are the quantities of central bank gold reserves that may have been sold, leased, or swapped onto the markets.
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