A Companion to Rare Coin Collecting - Are Rare Coins For You?

Rare Coin

Are Rare Coins For You?

As with other investments, there are many anecdotes about individuals earning enormous wealth from collecting coins. Yet, even the more believable stories are about people who spent twenty years or more patiently learning and developing their numismatic skills. Unlike stocks or real estate, collecting rare coins requires a deeper commitment to learning and dilligence to augment personal knowledge. For successful collectors, there is an emotional attachment to the art not found in traditional avenues for personal finance. In short, as a serious long-term investment strategy, collecting coins is not ideal for everyone.
There are three important prerequisites one should consider before engaging any investment strategy. The first is: Do I have long-term funds that can be committed for a number of years? The second: Do I have the ability to meet ordinary living expenses with other resources. The third: Am I confident of my knowledge of my target investment?
Having the long-term funds to commit to your investment is particularly important when you consider the nature of rare coins. As with other investments, rare coins require a minimum period of "holding" and, to reap the best investment earnings, timing is essential. Rare coins have demonstrated a pattern of growth spanning many years and, for those "hold" their investments over extended periods, profits are the rule rather than the exception. However, for those expect an immediate profit, the results are often disappointing. Keep in mind that some coins might suffer from overexposure and investors who purchase at the peak of a particular cycle may experience substantial losses if they sell into a softer market.
Meeting your ordinary living expenses is paramount over any investment activity. Never expose yourself to possible losses that could jeopardize your standard of living. Since rare coin investing is a non-income producing asset, it should never be viewed as a "savings account" to dip into as the need arises. While certainly capable of providing strong capital gains, rare coins serve mainly as an excellent vehicle for capital preservation, as well as a hedge against inflation and other forces which erode the value of more traditional paper assets.
Knowledge can mean everything. At least where investing is concerned, knowledge can be your best asset. Being able to "see" a good deal is probably just as important as "smelling" a bad one. Unfortunately, there are always those individual who are eager to feed on the naive and gullible. Nearly all of the horror stories surrounding bad rare coin investments concern people who knew absolutely nothing about what they were buying. Save yourself the grief and learn the basics before you buy.
This text discusses some of the many books, magazines and newsletters that are available on the subject. Reading them will help sharpen your ability to "see" and "smell" the opportunities you may find.


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Rare Coins News
06/16/2018
Rare coins and medals from Hawaii will be part of Holabird's June 22-26 mega-auction in Reno
Separate email addresses with commas. You may provide up to 30 emails at a time. RENO, Nev. – Holabird Western Americana Collections’ upcoming five-day auction, June 22-26 – officially titled June Treasures from Pacific Shores – is loaded with ... more info

06/18/2018
Rare Coins From All Over the World: Sincona Auction Review
Sincona’s auction 46 was all about gold – and gold has captivated people since the beginning of time. Lot 13: Australia, Sovereign 1861. Estimate: 800 CHF / Price realized: 2,500 CHF (excl. premium). The numismatic journey began in Australia where we ... more info

06/18/2018
Walton 1913 Liberty 5¢ coin sells in private transaction
The 1913 Liberty Head 5-cent coin once owned by George O. Walton and his heirs has traded hands in a private transaction for a price between $3 million and $4 million. Co-owners Jeff Garrett from Mid-American Rare Coin Galleries in Lexington, Kentucky and ... more info

06/18/2018
Rare 1,000-Year-Old Amulet with Arabic Blessing Found in Jerusalem
Teams from the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) and Tel Aviv University unearthed the rare ornamental piece beneath the Givati ... including precious stones and gold coins, beneath the Givati Parking Lot — the largest excavation site in Jerusalem. more info

06/11/2018
Singapore Postcard: Summit adds value to North Korea's coins
In this Monday, June 11, 2018, photo, rare coin dealer Joseph Poh displays two North Korean coins depicting its rockets program in Singapore. Stamped with images of “Eternal President” Kim Il Sung, national monuments or ballistic missiles, coins minted ... more info

06/15/2018
Disastrous wars led to coin trickery
are slightly less rare. The workhorse silver coin was the 2 mark, struck in all but the last year, as was the considerably less popular 1 mark. That output profile reminds me of the Spanish practice of making far more 2 reales than any other denomination. more info