This edition of the weekly Greysheet is mailed in conjunction with the Monthly Supplement and Quarterly I newsletter and your CDN editors have spent a considerable amount of time reviewing every series on all of these pages to account for market activity. Overall, market levels are down on many of the classic issues we report in mint state grades – especially MS64 and higher. We’ve only recently added MS66-67 grades to these pages, and already we are seeing marked pull-backs in pricing in these higher grades.
The reasons for this are numerous. First there has been the usual selling pressure brought on by a spate of sizable live auctions over the past few months, starting with ANA and heading through Long Beach. Many of these sales have included wonderful offerings and exciting material, which is very tempting for buyers, yet the market is still digesting the recent sales of Newman, Pogue, Gardner and so on. The absence of these prolific collectors is also noticeable, especially in the series they coveted (like Seated and Barbers). Nowhere is this more palpable than Barber halves in gem condition – a series which has seen overall price declines for at least three straight months in MS65. We may not be at the bottom quite yet, but the supply and pricing of these coins is extremely attractive now.
A second reason for prices declining in high grade is over-supply at the grading service level. Populations of gem coins at PCGS have risen steadily over the past year. The dealers who make a living upgrading and crossing over such coins typically sell off their coins immediately putting pressure on an already-saturated market. One thing we’ve noticed is that NGC coins are starting to outperform their PCGS counterparts in many auctions due to this supply balance. It will be interesting to see how this changes over the next few months.
Finally, it’s an election year. Fortunately, we only have one more painful month before the November 8 presidential election. This period is disruptive and unsettling for all of us, and typically affects the appetites of collectors and investors across all categories.
IT’S NOT ALL BAD, THOUGH
Despite an overall weakness, some series are still enjoying quiet strength. Early copper and Walkers are especially solid in today’s market. Additionally, many of the collector series we’ve reviewed in the past six months, like Seated, 2-cent and 3-cent pieces, Shield nickels, are finding steady results at auction.
THIS WEEK’S MARKET
Morgan Dollars: We have started an review of the Morgan dollar series this week. Levels are adjusted in Bluesheet & Greysheet from 1878-1882, and we will complete the analysis in the October 14 issue. Generally, sight-unseen levels are down but solid thanks to bidding on CCE. On CDN Exchange, however, we reflect CAC and stronger sight-seen bidding activity.
Large Cents: Large cents have been completely reviewed and repriced in Quarterly I – a huge task that has never been attempted to this degree.
Hawaiian Coinage: Prices for this popular area have been added to Quarterly I.
The Rest: There are literally thousands of price changes this week, so please review your sheets carefully.