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Half Cent Auction Sets Pace for Long Beach
By Harry Miller, Numismatic News
February 04, 2014

This article was originally printed in Numismatic News.
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Just days before the Long Beach Expo, Goldberg’s sold the finest ever assembled collection of half cents where 228 coins brought $18 million and a second session of other issues realized nearly $8 million. There were two half cents that each realized over $1 million each. (Read full story here.) Rarities are certainly bringing higher and higher prices. Think about that $1.14 in face value bringing $18 million, even Warren Buffet would envy that kind of compounding of an investment.

This morning we have precious metals under pressure after the Fed announced a further taper of $10 billion, reducing the amount of bond purchasing to $65 billion monthly. I believe this news was already a forgone conclusion as last week as we saw emerging market currencies under extreme downward pressure (some literally crashing) and a strengthening U.S. dollar. Gold, surprisingly, held up after the announcement but overnight dropped $25. Silver declined to a 65-to-1 ratio versus gold and platinum at 1.17 to 1 a few days ago is now 1.13 to 1. The economic signals are certainly mixed, but these numbers and the foreign exchange situation tell me the rest of the world is worried about deflation. Here we have consumer spending up, but latest jobless claims also up. How do jobless people spend more? Go figure. Only in America!

The type coin market has been steady with little noticeable change since early January. Gold issues have been active with many increases, but I fear that today’s bullion drop has erased those moves.

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