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Rough times for Russian coin collectors


khokhloma
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So I drove 177 miles last weekend to attend a coin show in Jackson, MS. It was a medium size event with over 80 dealers in a large public building.

 

The dissapoimentment came from overall atmosphere among dealers that since "Russian market is hot" they feel like charging extremely high and unrealistic prices taken from who knows where. No more Krause catalog values (retail, of course), just some stories of how much this and that coin was sold in Moscow. Someone told me about 22 new coin shops opened in the last year in Moscow alone. :ninja: Availiability of coins was very low, a dealer with most (and interesting ) coins has shared his view that: a. All silver Russian coins of XVIII c are gone b. Russian silver of the first part of the XIX c is dissapearing quickly. c. Whatever remains will be bought by Russian dealers soon.

 

So the overall feeling is that Russian coins are very scarce and prices went through the roof. It looks like a giant vacuum cleaner sucking all Russian/USSR coins to where they come from. ;)

 

 

Does anybody here share the similar experience in the US? What about other countries?

 

Thank you.

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I haven't actively collected them in awhile, I bought mine when they were all inexpensive, ie back in the 1980's and early 1990's. My biggest regret was selling a set of Russian gold several years ago, coincidentally to pay for a trip to Ukraine. The price I sold them for was a pittance of what the 7.5 and 15 Rubles coins are going for now.

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It is now a matter of choosing what to do with one's collection. Expanding the collection is always the better option, but the growth rate will be hampered. As for me, I have been revisiting my collection (I paused a few years back).

 

I am working on a web site update. I am expanding my library. And I am looking up old dealer friends to get the few "common" coins I thought I would be able to find whenever I got started again.

 

The really interesting aspect of the hobby I enjoy is the TRUE rarity. Aside from the eBay fakes, a catalog entry for a rarity is a pleasant find. And a memory of yesterday can keep me focused on maintaining the collections until prices adjust or I win the lottery.

 

If money is the issue, then work on a scholarly pursuit.

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The rising prices of this material make me ponder the possibility of selling off all of my Russian coin collection, save the Siberians which are near and dear. It really is an area now where I don't have a lot of interests, it was a side interest anyway and I got to where I was collecting 19th century Rubles etc. With the dollar so low in value, I wonder that a lot of material here in the USA will end up going back to Russia.

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Availiability of coins was very low, a dealer with most (and interesting ) coins has shared his view that: a. All silver Russian coins of XVIII c are gone

Many Russian coins of the 18th century have gone home, but not all. :ninja:

 

 

b. Russian silver of the first part of the XIX c is dissapearing quickly. c. Whatever remains will be bought by Russian dealers soon.

These can only be bought if the owner is willing to sell. Not everyone wants to sell just because prices are up. Eventually, all will be sold but significant coins still remain.

 

 

So the overall feeling is that Russian coins are very scarce and prices went through the roof.

Russian coins were always scarce and a series that abounded in rarities. Even in 1979, when I bought my first Imperial coin, Russian coins were scarce and required effort to locate and obtain. The only difference then was that there was far less competition for the coins and prices were much lower than they are today.

 

But this was always an artificial situation because people in Russia before 1991 could not buy the coins that were in the West. Now they can and prices are up as a result.

 

Even in the early 1980s, Russian coins were closely held and did not flip from dealer to dealer to dealer and hang around the market forever.

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But this was always an artificial situation because people in Russia before 1991 could not buy the coins that were in the West. Now they can and prices are up as a result.

 

Could not legally buy or collect for that matter, but like all vices real or manufactured by some party plutocrat it didn't stop determined individuals from collecting. But even after the laws were eased in the mid 1990's interpretation differed according to who was enforcing or believing they were enforcing, as collectors I know in Russia said then that they could still sometime be harassed by the militsiya for trading in coins.

 

I can remember having people offer to sell me 5 Ruble gold Nicholas coins for something like 1500 rubles or something, I looked at the coins and they appeared authentic, but I didn't trust the seller didn't have it in with the militsiya so I passed.

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From the point of view of us collectors outside of Russia we are up against:

 

1. high, and increasing, demand in Russia.

2. Economic resources to accomodate rising prices incured by this demand.

3. One way flow of material into Russia, and nothing out... enforced by law.

4. A falling dollar. (european and asian buyers not so much..)

 

But these are trends. Trends change. Prices are rising for all collectors, yes. but all the coins are still around. Just on a different continent. For now.

 

If the economy in Russia crashes, say if they are crazy enough to get into a war with, say China... 20 years from now... (not so long a time.. i remember the '80s like yesterday)

 

The new millionairs may face instant hard times... and guess what goes first? The Mercedes? the Dacha? no. The shiny jewels, coins, and artwork.

 

Anyone see today Wall St Journal? Siberian oil production is down for the first time in 10 years. maybe not a crash, but i'll bet the cell phones are buzzing and the cigarettes are burning overtime!

 

Yes Its tempting to sell, and definitely a good time to do it.

 

But that kind of defeats the point of collecting Russian coins, doesnt it? . This isnt the stock market, is it?

 

So coins sell for 10 times what they did a few years ago... buy one coin, instead of 10, and keep going!

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From the point of view of us collectors outside of Russia we are up against:

 

1. high, and increasing, demand in Russia.

2. Economic resources to accomodate rising prices incured by this demand.

3. One way flow of material into Russia, and nothing out... enforced by law.

4. A falling dollar. (european and asian buyers not so much..)

 

But these are trends. Trends change. Prices are rising for all collectors, yes. but all the coins are still around. Just on a different continent. For now.

 

Yes Its tempting to sell, and definitely a good time to do it.

 

But that kind of defeats the point of collecting Russian coins, doesnt it? . This isnt the stock market, is it?

 

So coins sell for 10 times what they did a few years ago... buy one coin, instead of 10, and keep going!

 

Squirrel, :ninja:

I cannot tell you how happy I am that you have said what you have here. ;);)

 

Ever since I've become interested in collecting Russian coins and joined this forum, I have been hearing about unrealistic prices and how difficult it is to collect in the current market. Some collectors decided to quit altogether. ;)

 

I do not have the luxury of remembering better days, and the changing market makes it difficult for me to keep up because in addition to the changing prices there is also the problem of fakes, the questionable practices on ebay, the unreliability of grading companies and my own ignorance.

 

But I still try to buy whenever I can. And I don't buy a lot of coins because I simply cannot afford it. But evey coin I get, regardless of its price, is my very own personal treasure. :D

 

It will take me a lot longer to gather a decent collection now than it would have a few years ago, but I intend to enjoy every moment of the process. ;)

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I think it is good time to fined very rare coins on the market .Of course collector should sell more coming coins from collection to have funds buy very rare coins, and it is very hard decision working only for long time collectors.

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I think it is good time to fined very rare coins on the market .Of course collector should sell more coming coins from collection to have funds buy very rare coins, and it is very hard decision working only for long time collectors.

 

Makes sense. High prices encourage old collectors to sell.... making rare coins available, that otherwise would sit in a vault, and create opportunity for new collectors.

The price of this profit is the loss of a coin with perhaps sentimental value, and regret down the road. But a pocket full of cash to buy something new!

 

and

to Maya: Thank you for the kind words! To a new collector, the prices are what the prices are. good attitude, and enjoy the hobby! I think we are all learning that ebay is a home for scammers, forgers, and a dumping ground for problem coins. Ironicaly, the occasional "find" keeps us coming back for more. By the way did you recieve your Nicholas I poltina yet?

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