When auction results and price guides don’t help you.....
Long read, sorry.....
I happened to be in town with my family and stopped by the Vegas PCGS invitational yesterday & today. At the table of one of my favorite dealers I was shown two separate coins that I was really tempted to buy, but ultimately passed on both.
The first is in a PCGS 67+ CAC holder, has ridiculously nice toning, and was priced at $10k. At 67, CU price guide says $700. At 67+ CU says $2k and at 68 it’s $22.5k. The coin in question previously sold for $15k. Hmmmmm. Virtually all of the coins at this grade level are technically fantastic and most are killer toners. This coin is monstrously beautiful and I thought in three or four tries it would likely upgrade to 68....... but that’s a HUGE paper-value jump and NOT something the graders do every day of the week. Getting a plus is easy. Getting a numerical jump to near top-pop country....... doable, but not a given. Ultimately it sounded like more risk than I wanted to commit that much $$ to, so I passed.
Even in the 67+ holder I know it’s worth WAY more than the average 7+...... but it’s darn hard to value stellar coins between grades at “the jump”. If I had a slightly bigger war chest right now I probably would have bought it.
The second coin is in an older 63 holder, CU book value $115. It was offered at north of $3k, but had stop-the-presses, no-equal-on-planet-earth, gorgeous (did I say gorgeous?) toning. These coins are almost universally ugly. This one was oh-so-attractive, but was technically graded at 63 due to portrait hairlines/scuffs. In today’s world I’d see it as a technical 64+, possibly carried to 65 by the stupendous toning. It was never tried for a sticker, from a very old collection. CU at MS65 is $1100. I could easily see it getting a gold sticker at MS63.
No guide helps you with decisions like this. Ultimately I passed on this one too, but if I had purchased it, everyone here would have absolutely gone bonkers for it. Again, with a little more free cash, I’d have probably pounced on it.
It was fun to chat with some great dealers, look at great coins at lot viewing, and take my wife to her first coin show of any kind. If you’ve never been to one of these, do yourself a favor & just go. The atmosphere is relaxed, PCGS was handing out 35th Anniversary ball caps, and the food at the Bellagio is incredible. Thanks PCGS!!
One my coin in the auction is tempting me. We’ll see how that plays out.