What is the definition of a successful coin show? Does the answer lie in the number of collectors present? If so, PAN checked that box. Maybe, wholesale activity is the measure of success. Again, PAN also checked that box. Perhaps, the answer does not lie in the total head count, but rather in the quality of the customer. Although this measure is harder to quantify, PAN lured in serious customers, most of whom were more interested in opening their checkbooks than kicking Goodyears. The mood of the show was positive throughout, the crowds robust, and as always, the PAN organization bent over backwards to insure that environment was conducive for business. What more could we ask for?
Preceding PAN, there was some trepidation over whether this bull market had run its course. Certain areas of the market appeared over-promoted and over-valued, resulting in excess supply of ordinary coins. But, the operative word here was ordinary. Great collector coins proved to be short in supply and demand for them was as intense as ever. Conversely, common-date CC dollars were everywhere. Not surprisingly, this week we have witnessed corrections in the prices of 1882, 83 & 84-CC Morgan Dollars in basal mint state grades. Equally as predictable, the dealers driving the prices of these coins have excess stock, and are finding less liquidity in the current marketplace. Is this an indictment on the overall coin market? Is the bull market running out of gas? After four days of PAN, we would submit that there is no correlation. Again, great coins were elusive, and common coins proved common. Yes, there is a line in the sand. But for those of us seeking out the less ordinary numismatic material, conditions are still challenging. Our first day back in the office has affirmed that the demand for collector coins remains as strong as ever. Virtually every small type coin that we posted from PAN, is either sold or in play. Today, we will be listing the larger type, dollars and gold. We are expecting a similar response. We shall see….
The summer is typically a more challenging season for the coin business. Vacations usually take precedence to hobbies. We’ll see if this predictable shift impacts the coin market. It will be a good litmus test for the actual underlying strength. We remain cautiously optimistic that the numismatic arena will prevail. Next up, in approximately 2 weeks, is the quintessential Whitman Baltimore Coin Show, which should provide at least a preliminary answer to this question. Stay tuned!