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Money Words

17 May

I just discovered the artworks of Justine Smith, and I think she’s brilliant.  Yes, her works are created with a political edge to them and are her statements on how money touches all aspects of our lives, rather than a lazy day do-it-yourself project.  But they are graphically stunning and inspire me.

I’ve always loved foreign currency – bright colors, big graphics, and so different from our own boring dollars.  But what do you do with a handful of cash that you can’t spend?  You can turn it into art!

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We’re number 2967!

22 Feb

We’re number 2967!  We’re number 2967!  Sounds kinda funny, but we are definitely excited to be ranked number 2967th in the top 150 million American web sites.

HA.com, proved itself the dominant online auction source last month, obliterating its competition with nearly 725,000 unique visitors to the Heritage Auctions site in the first month of 2012, according to Compete.com, a website devoted to tracking web traffic.  Compete.com ranked HA.com as one of the top 3,000 sites (#2967 to be exact) in America of over 150,000,000 American web sites.

Wow….

The total number of unique visitors to HA.com is nearly double the combined total number of unique visits the websites of Heritage Auctions’ five closest competitors’ web sites (Christies ranked as #9093, Sothebys #36,342, Bonhams #36,363, Stacks & Bowers #154,997 and Phillips De Pury #244,256) received in the last 12 months. Christies.com, was the closest, with just more than 238,000 unique visitors.

Wow….

Quote from the Co-Chairman:
“We put a tremendous amount of research and time into making our website comprehensive, customer friendly and easily accessible,” said Jim Halperin. “Collectors, historians and art aficionados alike have responded with great enthusiasm. We’re humbled and grateful for that support and will continue to strive to make HA.com one of the most useful sites on the web.”

I think there are great positives to our website.  It has tons of information if you know where to look.  I, personally, discover new bits all the time.  Just the other day, I found a link under our historical department that takes you to our Testimonials page.  Now you too can read comments from happy clients.

AND I found the World’s Largest Hallmark Database.  Who knew?!

But my very favorite reference guide is the U.S. Coins Price Guide for Beginners.  You can find images of the front and back of each type of coin, with the years it was minted, and an easy to use value guide.  It’s handy!

Image:  1793 S-4 With Periods Chain Cent, MS65 Brown
Sold for $1.38 million (January 2012)

FUN Update – US Coin Sales total $61.6 Million

9 Jan

FUN Stats:
January 4-8 – Orlando, Florida
5 Days 
10 Sessions
9,500 lots
Total value of sale rumored to be upwards of $50 million
 

 

 

 

Day 1 Totals
Session 1:
Sold $15.8 million with buyer’s premium
83% by value
79% by lot

Session 2:
Sold $1.6 million with buyer’s premium
95% by value
96% by lot 

Session 3:
Sold $1.7 million with buyer’s premium
89% by value
92% by lot

Session 4:
Sold $5.7 million with buyer’s premium
100% by value
100% by lot

Session 5:
Sold $25.5 million with buyer’s premium
90% by value
90% by lot

Session 6:
Sold $3 million with buyer’s premium
89% by value
92% by lot

Session 7:
Sold $3.6 million with buyer’s premium
90% by value
92% by lot

Session 8:
Sold $2.3 million with buyer’s premium
90% by value
91% by lot

Session 9:
Sold $853k with buyer’s premium
98% by value
99% by lot

Session 10:
Sold $1.4 million with buyer’s premium
95% by value
95% by lot

Total sold $61.6 million – just in U.S. Coins.  World Coins, Ancient Coins, and Currency will only add to this total.  The market is great for rare finds with great provenances and high grades.  No big surprise there.  It’s like that for all auction categories.  Those with discretionary incomes are spending; everyone else is saving their pennies.

FUN Update – Day 2

6 Jan

 

FUN Stats:
January 4-8 – Orlando, Florida
5 Days 
10 Sessions
9,500 lots
Total value of sale rumored to be upwards of $50 million


 

 

 

Day 1 Totals
Session 1:
Sold $15.8 million with buyer’s premium
83% by value
79% by lot

Session 2:
Sold $1.6 million with buyer’s premium
95% by value
96% by lot 

Session 3:
Sold $1.7 million with buyer’s premium
89% by value
92% by lot

Session 4:
Sold $5.7 million with buyer’s premium
100% by value
100% by lot

Session 5:
Sold $25.5 million with buyer’s premium
90% by value
90% by lot

So we’re just over $50 million now with 5 more sessions to go!  And that’s just for U.S. Coins.  World Coins had their sales in New York earlier this week, and Currency has their sales this week in Orlando too.  The total January sales for the numismatic field will some of the best ever.  Heritage is estatic at the moment, with a renewed energy for the new year. 

You’ll notice that the sales totals changed slightly from yesterday’s numbers to today, as I’m also updating the post-auction buys into the totals.  Yay!

Last night’s session included the 1829 $5 Large Date – the Garrett Specimen.  Final sale price was $1.38 million!

FUN Update

5 Jan

FUN Stats:
January 4-8 – Orlando, Florida
5 Days 
10 Sessions
9,500 lots
Total value of sale rumored to be upwards of $50 million

 

 

 

 

Day 1 Totals

Session 1:
Sold $12.98 million with buyer’s premium
80% by value
78% by lot

Session 2:
Sold $1.51 million with buyer’s premium
95% by value
96% by lot 

So far, so good.  The news from Orlando is there is excitement in the air, on the floor, and all around.  The sales continue with three more sessions.  Tonight is Platinum Night Part II, which includes some of the sales biggest lots.  Stay tuned, as FUN week is just getting started.

Happy New Year!

4 Jan

It’s January and that means it’s time for FUN! 

The Florida United Numismatists (FUN) are holding their 57th annual convention in Orlando this week. This is the nation’s largest coin show, attracting over 15,000 collectors and dealers from around the U.S. and the world. 

FUN has made history in numismatics several times over the years. In 1959 it held the first major silent auction in the history of coin conventions. Officials in Jacksonville would not allow the group to conduct their regular member auction without paying a $2,500 fee. Instead blackboards were placed around the room which listed the number of the auction lots. Bids were taken on slips of paper, then posted on the boards with additional bids taken up to a closing time when the high bids were declared the winner. Not a word was spoken. Another first in numismatics occurred in 1960 when the FUN annual convention was held in St Petersburg and Grover Criswell conducted an outdoor auction, under the stars and waving palm trees.

Heritage Auctions is the official auctioneer of the show and will host a 5-day sale of over 9,000 lots of phenomenal rare coins and currency.  Tonight is Platinum Night!  420 lots are expected to bring lots and lots and lots of money. 

The one to watch:

1829 BD-1 Large Date Half Eagle, PR64
The Garrett Specimen
The Only Certified Proof of its Type

The magnificent 1829 $5 Large Date PR64 PCGS, CAC, Ex: Garrett is the centerpiece offering of the unmatched Harvey B. Jacobson, Jr. Collection of 1820s era Half Eagles, presented by Heritage Auctions.  This is the first Large Diameter Capped Bust half eagle certified as a proof by a major grading service. Both PCGS and CAC have agreed on this coin’s proof status and a grade of PR64. Any Large Date, Large Diameter 1829 half eagle is an extreme rarity – our catalogers have traced just seven distinct specimens – so this coin’s status as a proof or special striking makes it even more important.  While just those seven mentioned above are known today, U.S. Mint records claim that 57,442 examples of the 1829 half eagle were struck. These coins, including the Large Date and Small Date varieties, became important collectibles early on, known as important rarities since the 1860s.

The current bid is already $700,000.

The Ides of March are upon us…

14 Jul

 

 

 

 

 

Well, not really, since it’s mid July…. But!  Heritage will be offering this September the most famous ancient coin in existence, the “Ides of March” silver denarius struck by Julius Caesar’s assassin Marcus Brutus, celebrating the infamous deed.

“The ‘Ides of March’ denarius, struck in 42 B.C., is the only Roman coin to openly celebrate an act of murder,” said David S. Michaels, Director of Ancient Coins for Heritage, “the only Roman coin to mention a specific date and one of the very few ancient coins to enter the popular imagination.”

Should the coin reach its pre-auction estimate of $500,000+, it will establish a record price for a Roman silver coin.  Stay tuned and Beware!