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Are you talking about Krause? Syme's stuff?


I'm thinking you are probably talking about the Krause catalogues... basically all of the information given is pretty obvious and nothing more than what is needed to identify a particular banknote.


By "info" do you mean the values given? I think they are wrong all of the time, especially in recent years. That doesn't necessarily mean they aren't good to make a good basis of what something is worth.

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It's not fair to pin down on general catalogues being unaccurate. In fact, if you were to say Krause, of course it can't be possible that it is very accurate. Afterall, it is a general encyclopedia.


It would be the best if you can get a specific type of catalogue for each country / era that you are collecting or else, prices will most likely be very off.

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i've found the standard catalog of world paper money is about 75% accurate when it comes to descriptions (names & features). i find it more useful to visit central bank websites for better information. a lot of times, the catalog would list something as a "temple", "gateway", or "mosque" instead of giving them their proper names. with portraits, i've found more than a few with wrong names/initials even though the name is right there printed under the portrait.


for values, i think the catalog is about 35-40% accurate. most of the time, it lists overvaluations, such as giving note values at $1.00 or $2.00, when you can find the same note in 50 cent bargain bins. i've also found instances of retail values that are below current exchange rates, as well as a few "what-were-they-thinking???" values like the north korean 5000 won note listed at $300.00.


as gxseries says, it's a good book for general reference. it's just not very accurate when you get down to specifics.

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Colin, you've asked a good question.


My best answer is to consider these references as a guide only. The 'best' references are those that are on a more current timeline such as 'Bank Note Reporter' and auction catalogs with 'prices realized' [usually available within a couple of weeks after the auction]. That's for pricing/value info. As far a descriptions are concerned, the issueing authority's own info would seem to be the best.


Having said that, I want to make you aware of the various publications put out by the hobby organizations. Society of Paper Money Collectors bi-monthly magazine is full of great info. International Bank Note Society also has an excellent bi-monthly magazine. Each of these organizations also put out specialized books prepared by dedicated numismatist-scholars that are also very useful. In the world of militaria [focused on WW II] you can't go wrong with Joe Boling and Fred Schwan's "World War II Remembered".


There are many other excellent texts available. I have many times kicked myself for not buying [at Half-Price Used Books in Dallas] a 4-volume set of books which was prepared for, and fully described, Australian paper money. New this set cost over $100, at Half-Price they were only $30. Stupid me! Stupid me! Stupid me!


For Canadian, IIRC, Charleton is the best reference.


For US stuff the Freidberg series of catalogs is also top-notch. as is the Krause publication on US paper money.


Look to the folks who have been around for many years. They wouldn't last long if their stuff was bad.


The old adage of 'buy the book before buying the coin [or other numismatic item]' is a good one to remember.


Considering the texts I've mentioned above, 'factual'? Yes! [with a grain of salt]. As far as 'well-researched' on the whole, I'd say extremely well researched...

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Would you Consider the Info Stated In The Paper Money Books facts Or Not?


The information listed in most all catalogs such as Pick or Krause are as factual as can be determined. Some information is generalized, some is assumed accurate, and some is exact fact.

Mintage figures are often given as what the mint has set as a "maximum mintage", while the actual number of coins existing may be much lower. With some mintage figures, the numbers provided to the catalog publishers may be the "fiscal year mintages", which may or may not correlate with the actual dated year of the coin/note minted.



And are these Books Researched Very Well Or Not? :ninja:


For the most part, yes, they are. Unfortunately, not all information that is researched can be verified. More often than not, if something cannot be verified, such as a counter-signature, then that information is not included in the catalog until it can be confirmed that said counter-signature is official, and not some after-market graffiti added to the note.

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