on Tuesday, 12 April 2016 17:41. Posted in News

Paul and I arrived in Baltimore on Wednesday morning, the day before the show opened.  Many dealers will come in early to try and do business to get a jump on the competition.  Some will share rooms to show coins in the Hilton or the Marriott and others set up in rooms at the convention center.  Some dealers even come in two days early.  I am thinking about that for the fall show!  There are not a tremendous amount of fresh coins in the market.  So the earlier we can see coins for sale, the better the opportunity to buy.

As soon as we arrived, we dropped our bags at the hotel and started trying to do business.  Alas, it was the same as most of the shows for the last couple of years.  I’d see a coin or two of interest but the value was out of whack.  I know you have to stretch on top quality, but I also have to set a limit to protect the interest of our clients.  So we hunted and pecked and scratched out a double row box of new purchases.  It was a real battle.

Whatever happened to the days of large, fresh deals of coins breaking at the show?  There is one dealer in particular that states that they sell great coins at shows and are offered every deal in the business.  I can just tell our clients that I’m not seeing it and none of the dealers I associate with are either.  However, it’s a great time to buy coins if you work hard to find real value.  Many coins are cheap, especially 19th Century type.  Technical, strictly graded coins can be found.  You just have to exercise patience.  Commercial graded coins are everywhere, especially dollars.  I’m trying to help knowledgeable collectors assemble Morgan & Peace Dollar sets.  Before I left for the show, a longtime dealer sent me a dollar deal.  It was a pass or play at the prices he quoted.  I bought almost everything except for an 1889-O in MS-64 PCGS.  A nice looking coin but I couldn’t get over the removed spot on the neck.  He said “wow, you really look at the coins.”  I said “yes, I do.”  He said “I removed the spot before I submitted it to PCGS.”  I had to pass on a nice 1900-S in MS-64 old green holder because of P.V.C. residue.  On a previous invoice, I passed on a 1935-S Peace Dollar in MS-63 because of a large staple scratch on the obverse.  He said “I sold them all easily at the show.”  I said, “I’m not surprised,” but as you said earlier… I really look at the coins.  Label readers are everywhere and their clients don’t know the difference.

I decided to give up our table at this show!  It was strange not operating out of a home base after many, many years.  But the cost hasn’t been justified in probably 5 years.  If we sold moderns or commercially graded coins, we’d be able to justify it.  As the coin buying public ages, more and more knowledgeable collectors are disappearing.

The auction was huge…over 7,000 lots including the internet sessions.  If you had the time, deals could be found there.  I was also surprised at the lack of Pogue and Gardner coins on the market.  I’m happy to see that dealers weren’t buying these great coins and most went to new happy appreciative collector homes.  It takes a lot of money off the market for a while but it will snap back…I hope!

 

Best Wishes,

Warren

on Wednesday, 06 April 2016 13:31. Posted in News

Over 200 Years Of Combined Numismatic Experience At Your Disposal.

  April 2016 Issue

A Newsletter By:

 

My Coin Journey Part X

By Warren Mills



Did I ever tell you how much I love and enjoy the hobby of collecting coins?  I hope you can tell from my previous coin journey articles that I feel I am very blessed to work at my hobby.  I am thankful for the path of learning on which God put me, so that we can offer assistance and advice “from soup to nuts” to almost all of our RCNH customers.  I always tell people that I am still learning many things in numismatics.  There are many collectors and dealers of rare coins that specialize in a certain area or two.  We try to be more general practitioners in the field and thus have a working knowledge of many series.
 
From 1979 to 1987, I personally handled tens of millions of dollars’ worth of coins.  That exposure to so many coins gave me an opportunity to hone my grading skills and to gather more knowledge on many series of U.S. coins.  In 1987, I found myself back in the retail end of the market.  I was fortunate to have a good numismatist, Joe Presti, now an RCNH colleague, go to bat for me with a large retail company that had a good reputation.  I worked hard to never compromise my standards, so a firm with good standing was very important to me.  Dealing with an end user of the product was also wonderful.  Every day I was allowed an opportunity to speak with new and old customers that loved the hobby as much as I did.  It was always fun and exciting. 

on Tuesday, 01 March 2016 15:29. Posted in News

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Over 200 Years Of Combined Numismatic Experience At Your Disposal.

  March 2016 Issue

A Newsletter By:
Rare Coins of New Hampshire's Logo

My Coin Journey Part IX

By Warren Mills



I was not privy to the ins and outs of how PCGS came to be.  I’m sure my employer at the Rarities Group was involved in discussions with the original PCGS owners relative to the viability of an industry-accepted and supported grading service.  My job was to sell coins. 
 
In 1986, the industry was very active.  Martin would buy coins and organize them, and from there, I would fine-tune the coins into groups that I knew I could offer to specific market makers.  Our operation ran like clockwork.  It was stressful and exciting at all times, and it seemed like there was always a large deal somewhere to be bought and sold.  The time and effort to keep up with the avalanche of buying was very tough.  One of my colleagues would regularly step outside and occasionally throw up.  It seems hard to believe that working in the coin business could result in that much pressure.  I told him it was time to either find a new line of work or a less intense environment, and that his health was more important.

on Tuesday, 02 February 2016 15:01. Posted in News

Over 200 Years of Combined Numismatic Experience at Your Disposal.

  February 2016 Issue

A Newsletter By:

My Coin Journey Part VIII

By Warren Mills


 
It was a real blessing to be contacted by my future employer – The Rarities Group, from Marlboro, Massachusetts.  The owner, Martin Paul, heard that I was leaving Dallas to move back to Massachusetts to be closer to my family.  He was kind enough to extend a generous moving allowance and since I had no prospects, I decided to accept the position that he offered me.  The transition from retail to wholesale was quite easy.  I was shocked at how much the experience in dealing with retail clientele on a personal basis was also somewhat important on a wholesale one, too! 
 
Now, I can’t say it was all fun and games.  There were lean times and boom times, but once I established a relationship with many dealers, it started to go pretty smoothly.  Just be honest with people.  Don’t say a coin is original if it’s not.  If you say you have 2,000 gem Morgan Dollars and the dealer takes them, you better deliver 2,000 pieces that are all there.  So, in many ways, it is similar to a retail customer except on a larger scale.

on Wednesday, 13 January 2016 16:15. Posted in News

Paul and I left balmy New Hampshire on Wednesday, January 6th at about 9 am.  When I jumped in the car it was 3 degrees!  We hit the tarmac in Tampa around 12:30 and it was over 70 degrees.  What a nice time of year to go to Florida.  We went right to the Convention Center and hit the floor running.  I went to see my favorite dealers that have a nice selection of coins for me and was shocked at how little inventory was new and fresh.  I knew right off it was going to be a bad buying show.  There were not enough nice coins available but I did my best and our double row box of new coins will be up on our site soon.

We sold a fair amount of coins to dealers that appreciate the difference between commercial grading and technical grading.  If you can hone your eye to learn technical grading, you will do well in this business and your collection will be more desirable.  Some people can’t or don’t want to believe that all coins are different and unique from others even in the same grade.  I’m glad CAC is maintaining a strong presence in our industry because it lends credence to what we’ve always said, “Buy the coin, not the holder.”  It’s ignorant to complain when you go begging to sell junk or you do have a nice coin and you let an unscrupulous dealer steal it from you for commercial prices.  It happens all the time.  We are always happy to make offers or give opinions on coins at no charge.  It’s free to get the opinion of numismatists with 4 decades of experience, here for the asking.

Attendance was good and it created a nice buzz on the floor.  Kudos to F.U.N. for paying for Florida Coin Clubs’ transportation to the show.  It’s a nice perk to talk to so many collectors.  Paul and I sometimes spent over an hour with collectors to give them an A-Z tutorial on coins or grading.  We love our profession and hobby and always want to help out.  One collector came to the table with a modern issue he wanted to sell or trade.  We are not up on moderns, so I said “let me take it to a modern market maker and get a price for you.”  The first four were only selling them, not buying.  But the fifth was a hit; a real offer to buy for $1,477.  I told the collector that we can pay you $1,477 whether you sell or trade.  He was impressed with my effort, so he elected to trade the coin.  I sold it for $1,477 as fast as I could.  When I went back to the dealer table he wanted to pay less and I said that was okay as long as I can sell it.  He was a nice guy and said okay to the $1,477.  Beware of the modern market, it can get illiquid.

The auctions were weak!  Most of the currency went begging.  There were also good deals in the coin auctions.  Marginal pieces got murdered!  So much money has been expended in auctions in the last year that there is a glut of coins entering auctions. Look for people to start offering more coins on the bourse floor in the future.  When coins sell cheap in auctions and you have to pay the sales commissions, it’s a huge double whammy!  Nice coins still brought strong money.  Our prices realized for our consignment was shockingly high!  It’s not unusual for us to sell coins in auction for more than we could price them for retail.  The coins just have to be technically nice and with good eye-appeal.

Please check our newsletter out in the future and feel free to call or e-mail.

 

Thanks.

Warren

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