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How can one determine how much a coin is worth?


gxseries
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Just something I was wondering, but if you had a particular coin that you have in your collection and it seems to be "rare" after research, how would one expect the market value to be? Afterall, it only takes two bidders to rise the prices to whatever prices they like.

 

Does anyone happen to know of a good idea, or you just put them up on auction and put in ridicious reserve price?

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You can never really tell what the value is at a particular moment in time. Researching prior auction results of similar coins (probably the best method of estimating value of coins) can be helpful, as can researching private sales where such information is available. Dealers probably provide the most useless estimates because most (not all) will grab the greysheet or whatever sheet applies to the subject coin.

 

Even selling the coin at auction cannot tell you exactly what the thing is worth because there will always be some "expert" out there that says the coin "sold for way too much" ... at the same time there will be collectors or investors who will say "I would have paid more had I know about the auction" ... blah, blah, blah.

 

Just my humble opinion :ninja:

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:ninja: Good one there Brett.

 

GDJMSP, there are some extremely hot markets right now, in particular the Polish, Russian, Korean coins are going a lot faster than what I could dream of. Catalogue prices are not anywhere close to what I am seeing these days.

 

Another thing is, how would one know the value of error, pattern coins and such that are normally not priced in catalogues? :lol:

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I never pay much attention to catalog prices as they are largely meaningless in comparison to the real world. Of course there are times when you have little else to go on and on those occasions I think it acceptable to use the catalog prices as long as you note you are doing so.

 

But the values for most coins can be researched in auction archives if one is willing taking to take the time. And as you mention gx, the prices you say you are seeing are not in line with catalogs. This is a perfect example of what I am saying - where are you seeing these prices if not in auctions ? Realized prices are always your best indicator of current market value.

 

But I strongly disagree that it only takes 2 bidders to determine value for coins. One sale indicates very little actually for emotion often plays a large part in some purchases. But if you can see a consistent price range in several auctions for a given coin of a given grade then I would agree that that establishes a baseline value for a given coin. You must be able to turn around and sell your purchase for a similar price in order to say a given coin is worth a given amount.

 

On the other hand a large variance in prices for a given coin merely indicates to me that the buyers have little or no idea of the actual value for the coin and thus bids are all over the place. In those cases I tend to think there is more validity on the low side of the scale than on the high.

 

If you are not already doing so gx I would suggest that you use this auction archive search tool to help with values for ancient & world coinage - Coin Archives

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GDJMSP, most definately a thank you for typing out such excellent points. :lol: I do agree with most of yours points and I really appericate it. I will definately give a check on Coin Archives later.

 

On the other hand, how would one determine if a particular coin hasn't appeared on the market for some period of time, let's say over 5 years and the demand has been increasing? :ninja:

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Well some coins simply don't appear on the market except a few times every 2 or 3 decades, some even less often. In those cases there is no way to establish value estimates, it's simply not possible. But for coins like that there is little reason to attempt to do so for they will never have an established market value for there simply is no market.

 

For any coin to have a market value it must first be available enough that it trades often or at least on a regular basis. And if the coin in question has only a handful of known examples this is simply not going to happen but perhaps once in a lifetime. Coins like these are the exception to the rule. All that can be done is to report the last sales price. Luckily when such a coin is sold it makes the news - it is known and reported. And sales prices are available for those who keep up with such things.

 

One other comment - it is all but impossible for demand to increase on coins of great rarity. As I explained above demand requires availability and if there is no availability there is no demand.

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