INVENTORIES DRYING UP

GreysheetMixed results were experienced at the summer F.U.N. show in Orlando. Attendance was moderate, but not expected to be anywhere near the overwhelming attendance usually seen at the January F.U.N. conventions. Friday’s attendance may have been somewhat diminished because of the final Space Shuttle launch, which drew in an estimated one million spectators. Not surprisingly, given the current market conditions, pickings were slim for some dealers at the show who were looking to purchase high-end coins. Dealer inventories have been lacking in such material for many months, and astute sellers will likely wait until the upcoming ANA convention in Chicago next month to offer their wares . Sales of lower to middle priced coins were reported to be much more active than for rare coins of premium quality in the higher price range which were scarce and remain so. Heritage’s Orlando auction hammered a total in excess of $11.2 million. We have listed a few of the many highlights herein.
Dealers are finding that the motivations of customers have largely changed—as a result of economic considerations—from buying as collectors, to buying out of fear for financial preservation. This fear based buying most often focuses on purchasing bullion products. However, there are those who are moving into rare coins as well. Undoubtedly, some of this has to do with information found on the internet and other media. Coins promoted by many of these sources include common generic material that can be purchased in bulk, such as $20 Saint-Gaudens and Circulated Morgan Dollars.
The Langbord trial, regarding the family’s ten 1933 $20 Saint-Gaudens, got under way July 7 in Philadelphia. A jury was selected, and opening arguments were presented. The government contends that the coins were stolen, as none of them were legally released into circulation. The Langbords contend that there was a window of time when the public was allowed to make exchanges for freshly minted Gold coins, and there’s a real possibility that either directly or indirectly this is how Joan Langbord’s father, Israel Switt, obtained these ultra rare Double Eagles. The trial is expected to last about three weeks. The 51st annual Missouri Coin Festival is scheduled for July 28-30 at the St. Charles Convention Center. Scotsman auction house will hold their Midwest Summer Sale July 29 in conjunction with the show. The auction will include an eclectic mix of US coins and Paper Money, with a group of sixty-five modern Chinese rarities.

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