Hard times present a unique investment opportunity for the savvy investor in rare obsolete US coins, and they have for quite some time. The time to get in on this excellent investment opportunity is now becoming a sooner rather then later chance to make some good returns. I'll tell you my story when it comes to numismatics and remind you that the invention known as the world wide web has made it possible to get in from whatever corner of the world you live in.
This global phenomenon has let everybody in. The prices of rare obsolete United States coins has just started to make what I like to refer to as the big move. This is the point where enough people realize the potential, to push the prices to obtain these collectibles beyond where we can still make a profit.
A long time ago, I walked on a beach in northern New England. My Grandfather had brought me along on one of his many beach-combing excursions. A storm had just ended and the dunes had been thrust up into a mound.
This had uncovered a huge amount of what he told me was virgin golden sand. His meaning being that this sand was normally very deep and hadn't been sifted thoroughly by the many thousands of metal detectors that we're constantly being swung, back and forth over every inch of beach there was.
That day out produced a dozen 1800s victory nickels, several silver dimes and a gold ring. All in all, quite a haul for a day's walk.
In the same aftermath of the same storm my grandmother walked the beach without a metal detector, just a sharp eye on the horizon looking for small bumps. These bumps proved out to be victory nickels that the winds of the storm had eroded the sand around them and left the coin sitting on a pedestal. Easy money for her, having lived through the great depression, when a nickel was a meal. The point I'm slowly getting to is that these coins today bring large sums of money. Unfortunately we don't have a good storm often enough, so we have to find our investment the old fashioned way. We have to buy it.
Today's stock market, from what I've seen, is not a very pleasant place to hang out lately. I'd rather take my money to the ponies. The reward is no longer worth the risk. United States coins have historically retained their initial investment cost and more often then not, increased in value. The opportunity to obtain these coins now, is better then it ever has been. The instability in the markets and the incredibly horrible economy, has created what can only be called in the words of my grandfather "the perfect storm" (OK they used it in a movie too) but that was long after my walk on the beach in New England.
We are coming out of a serious recession and people are having to release certain assets into the open market. These assets normally, would sleep hidden away in collections for generations. At the same time, consumer confidence is at an all time low. People are afraid to buy things, in favor of holding onto their hard earned cash.
This anomaly is limiting the amount of buyers out there. where prices we're sustaining the highest appraisals, we're seeing the market slow and bids are reduced for quality US coins, rarities that are now becoming acquirable to investors.
Lets take a look at a few facts; the United States mint has recorded mintage numbers for every US coin minted, since its inception in 1793.The amount of existing coins is a variable we don't know. However, there are numerous publications out there, citing research that over the years has been shown to be very reliable.
More coins of significant rarity are becoming available, due to many different contributing factors, all at the same time.There are fewer buyers bidding on these rarities, due to the current faltering of not only the US economy, but the entire global financial scene.
These anomalies of supply and demand, add up to an incredible opportunity. All of these factors point to a good investment. When these items are bought and placed in collections or safe deposit boxes as heirlooms for future generations, they reduce the amount of available coins of that type and denomination. When this happens the supply is reduced. The demand however is increasing dramatically with the invention of the Internet and the multitudes of websites, buying and selling these items. eBay alone has single handed reduced the supply of quality coins dramatically in just the past few years, while at the same time has increased the amount of lower grade coins available. This has expanded the buyer base for US coins to the point they are depleting the supply of available high end US coins. The people coming into this market, are not all collectors. Some of them are smart investors. They see an opportunity and grasp the buffalo nickel by the horns.
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This is the only time to let emotion enter the equation. We need to decide where to make the investment. Pick a coin that you like. Maybe the design peaks your interest, or maybe when you we're young you got a quarter for an allowance. Maybe your mother looks like a barber dime. Whatever the reason, my point being you need to focus on one coin. Research the coin and find out how many were minted. Take to the Internet and search till your Bing is broken and your Google finger is kaput.
The next step is to find out how many known examples exist and what are the highest grades known. This information is available on line through company's like PCGS.com, coin world magazine and many others. Make sure you exhaust your supply of available information, ___before you buy!___
Once you know where your focus will be, you can start searching for the best examples your budget can afford. One coin is one way to go. Another is to acquire each variety to make a complete set of a certain issue. Some people create type sets of certain years or other time frames, either way will return great investments over time.The benefit of one coin is obviously the time involved and much less research. One benefit of the set method is sometimes finding them all carries a great premium. Another is the added joy some people get from collecting in general.
In conclusion, getting the most from your investment dollar today is no easy feat. The US coin market is a good investment. A safe haven where historically great sums of money have and will continue to be made.