Pacific Rim Coin Auction June 2012 Results
I thought I would write a brief article about the June 2012 Pacific Rim Online Coin Auction results (Auction 3). The Pacific Rim Coin Auctions have been quiet for a while, at least when it comes to Australian coins but it certainly came back with avengence recently. Pacific Rim Online Auctions are conducted completley online unlike many other major Australian rare coin and banknote auctions. This is a fantastic idea as it gives all bidders a fair opportunity to participate rather than just those who can get to an auction venue. What really makes this auction stand out is that most coins up for sale had been graded by a third party coin grading service, generally the Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS). This is still a relativley new way of grading and storing coins in Australia but it is growing in popularity and this auction is evidence of that.
The amazing thing about this auction is the prices most coins sold for! It is clear that there are buyers out there who have come to realize how difficult it is to obtain Australian pre decimal coins in very high-grade.
Many Coins exceeded estimate and some notable example are listed below:
1920 Plain Penny - Estimate $50-65,000 - Sold for $86,250
1920 Double Dot Penny - Estimate $1,500-$2,000 - Sold for $4,025
1929 Penny - Estimate $7,500-$8,000 - Sold for $14,950
1955 Penny - Estimate $150-$200 - Sold for $2,300
1928 Threepence - Estimate $1,250-$1,500 - Sold for $7,187
1934/33 Threepence - Estimate $10-12,500 - Sold for $28,750
1910 Sixpence - Estimate $2,000-$2,500 - Sold for $7,187
1922 Sixpence - Estimate $6,500-$7,500 - Sold for $14,375
1946 Sixpence - Estimate $600-$750 - Sold for $3,220
This is just a sample of the coins on offer during this auction; for a complete list I suggest you visit the auction site.
In addition to the fantastic prices listed above there were plenty of coins that either didn't sell or sold at or around estimate. What makes coins like those listed above interesting is to look at the grades given to them by PCGS. For a long time rare coins with very high grades have typically done well at auction, this is nothing new. What makes this auction stand out for me is that some of the coins above have not really been considered difficult to find. Take for example the 1946 Sixpence. Typically this coin could be picked up in Gem Uncirculated condition for $250 to $350 (maybe a little more) but that is assuming you could find it to begin with. What I belive we are seeing is a group of collectors who have sought these coins in very high-grade and have come to the realization that they are far more scarce than previously thought. As a result when examples like these become available the bidding war begins! Most items listed above are way out of my price range but in my search for high-grade coins (i.e. no less than GEM) it has become increasingly obvious to me that they are just not available. Even in common dates they are very hard to find. I have a theory and I emphasise that it is my theory and others are more than welcome to disagree. It is that Australian Pre Decimal coins in GEM state are far less common than previously thought or at least are far more popular than they used to be and demand has far outstripped supply. It's probably a combination of both.
If you are new to collecting then I suggest reading my infobarrel article Collecting Australian Coins or visit The Pacific Rim Coin Auction website.