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NumisMedia Monthly

January 2014

FUN at Heritage Platinum Night: One to Remember

       A new year will bring new beginnings and new challenges, but 2014 will not make it any easier to acquire rare coins. The majority of dealers are optimistic that better to rare date coins will continue to be in strong demand and advanced collectors will be aggressive in their pursuit of the very best coins available. The FUN Show will be the first opportunity to see how the market will absorb the rarities brought to the show by the hundreds of dealers along with the tremendous auction that will be hosted by Heritage Galleries.

       We can't say for sure what the dealers will bring to the table at FUN, but we certainly know what Heritage Galleries has to offer in the Official FUN Auction. After many years of numerous wonderful FUN Auctions, Heritage always seems to rise to the task of outdoing themselves. This year has a superb ensemble of coins. The 'Big Three' in this sale will certainly garner a great deal of the attention: The Olsen specimen 1913 Liberty Head Nickel graded PR64 by NGC with the CAC sticker, the 1927 D $20 Saint Gaudens graded MS66 by NGC, and the 1787 Brasher Doubloon with hallmark EB on the Eagle's wing graded MS63 by NGC also with the CAC sticker.

       Easily one of the most recognizable U.S. coins is the 1913 Liberty Head Nickel. With only 5 coins known, just three are in collector hands. Of the other two, one is in the Smithsonian and the other at the ANA, both not likely to appear on the market again. The one available in this Heritage Auction is the same coin that last sold in the FUN 2010 Heritage Signature Sale for $3,737,500, which is the current record sale price for this date. This is also the very same coin that was featured in the Hawaii Five-O episode in 1973.

       Over the last seven years, the 1913 Liberty Nickel has steadily increased in value. In January 2007 the FMV was $2,312,500 in PR64; today it is $3,968,750. This is an increase of 71.6%.

1913 Liberty Nickel PR64 FMV

       The 1927 D $20 Gold is the highlight of any Saint Gaudens collection. With only thirteen coins currently traceable, four of them are in museums; the remaining nine coins rarely come onto the market. There were originally 180,000 minted but most were destroyed when President Roosevelt issued the executive order to prohibit ownership of almost all gold coins. This MS66 coin is one of two certified by NGC, while PCGS has certified five coins. The current FMV for the MS66 grade is $1,968,750. There is one graded higher in MS67 by PCGS.

       By most accounts the Brasher Doubloon is known as the world's most valuable coin. Just two short years ago the AU50 Bushnell Brasher Doubloon sold for almost $7.4 million in a private sale. The history of the Brasher Doubloon and the originator, Ephraim Brasher, is an exciting story that generates much historical background into the origin of the U.S. Mint. It is the history of this coin that attracted Walter Perschke to it in 1979 when he purchased it in the RARCOA Auction '79. The price he paid was a new world record at the time for any coin - $430,000. This is the finest certified Brasher Doubloon of the seven known reported coins.

       There are several more coins that warrant the status of 'highlight of the auction' if it were not for the three coins listed above. The 1884 Trade Dollar in PCGS PR65 with a CAC sticker is sure to attract some energetic bidding. This is the only coin certified in PR65 by either PCGS or NGC; there are two certified in PR67, one by both services. This PR65 coin has quite a pedigree including Legend Numismatics and Jack Lee. The FMV for this coin is $790,000 with the CAC sticker.

       Another coin suited for the highlight reel is the 1870 S Seated dollar; this one is graded XF40 by PCGS and there are only nine confirmed coins in all grades. The highest grade is a PCGS MS62. The current FMV for the XF40 is $656,250. In January 2007 the FMV was $525,000; there has not been much movement since that time but it is likely a result of infrequent trades for this rarity. The results of this sale are definitely going to influence the FMV for next month.

       There are sure to be many other featured coins that attract lots of competitive bidding activity. Some highly sought after rarities are listed below along with the current FMV.

Date/DenominationGradeCurrent FMV
1793 Wreath Cent Vine & BarsPCGS MS65 BN CAC$200,000
1922 No D Strong ReversePCGS MS65 BN CAC$72,150
1918/7 D Buffalo NickelPCGS MS64$84,380
1798/97 Bust Dime 13 Stars Rev.PCGS MS62 CAC$83,130
1822 Bust Quarter 25/50CPCGS PR65 CACN/A
1918/7 S Standing Liberty QuarterPCGS MS66$131,250
1838 O Bust HalfNGC PR64 CACN/A
1921 S Walking Liberty HalfPCGS MS65$95,550
1794 Flowing Hair DollarPCGS XF40$268,750
1863 Seated DollarNGC PR69$126,500
1886 O Morgan DollarPCGS MS65 CAC$206,250
1848 $2.5 Gold CAL.PCGS MS64$143,000
1879 $4 Gold Stella Coiled HairPCGS PR66 Cameo $1,050,000
1826 $5 Gold Capped BustPCGS MS66 CAC$357,500

       These are but a few of the many coins that will attract buyers to this first major event of the year. Add to this the many thousands of coins that dealers will bring to the show and it will be another FUN Show to remember. The FUN Show and Heritage Auction will certainly set the tone for 2014.

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