Thursday, August 21, 2014

Cavorting At A Local Coin Show

Well maybe not cavorting in the true sense of the word but I had a great time at a small, local coin show recently. And small it was with less than 10 dealers present. But most had impressive inventories to display (it wasn't just a bunch of Morgan dollars, Mercury dimes and Silver American Eagles). It just goes to show that even small coin shows can have value for coin collectors and investors.

I took time to examine some old silver coins, most notably a Capped Bust 1827 silver half dollar in About Uncirculated condition. It is a great coin for serious collectors but for the asking price of this coin, I could purchase just shy of 15 Silver Eagles or Silver Maple Leafs which is more to my liking (confirming my casual investor status). This 1827 coin will have to be someone else's treasure to have and hold.

I am less of a fan of silver rounds and tend to favor government-issued silver bullion coins. But I do make exceptions for silver rounds at a good price BUT they must have good eye appeal. As luck would have it, I found some nice rounds at a good price (in the low $20's with the spot price at just over $20.00) at this show...

This first silver round is modeled after the U.S. Indian Head Quarter Eagle and Half Eagle minted from 1908 through 1929 (none were struck from 1917-1924).  These gold coins set a U.S. precedent in that the figures (a.k.a. devices)  and lettering were sunk below the coins' surface (incused) as opposed to other U.S. coins in which the "devices" were and are raised from the surface of the coin.  The silver round's obverse closely matches the gold coins' obverse but the reverse of the silver coin differs from the gold coins as it identifies a private mint plus the weight and silver fineness of .999.

I was not familiar with the issuer of this round, the Golden State Mint, so I visited their web site at GS Mint. They have a number of interesting silver and gold rounds and bars (of various sizes) with a $500 minimum purchase. To their credit, they have survived the many lean years, having been founded in 1974. Next I did a quick Internet search for "Golden State Mint Reviews" and "Golden State Mint Complaints" with nothing alarming showing up. They look like a good company to do business with but please be aware: 1) I have absolutely no affiliation with this company and receive no compensation for any purchases by anyone; and 2) I am not recommending that you do business with Golden State Mint without doing your own due diligence. You are responsible for your own decisions regarding the purchase of precious metals.

Another silver round I picked up at the show is also modeled after a U.S. gold coin - the 24-karat (.9999 fineness) American Buffalo which began production in 2006 (and this gold coin was modeled after the historic buffalo nickel minted from 1913-1938). The silver round's obverse closely matches the gold buffalo's obverse (just missing a date) but the reverse of the silver coin differs from the gold coin as it specifies the weight (one troy ounce) and silver fineness (.999) among other lettering differences. The Silver Buffalo was also purchased at a good price in the low $20's.

To my way of thinking, silver rounds that are modeled after well-recognized
and popular designs (24k Gold Buffalos, Morgan dollars, gold Krugerrands, $20 Saint Gaudens, etc.) stand a better chance of being favored over lesser known (and less attractive) designs when it comes time to sell. In addition to the purchased silver rounds, I was able to pick up some nice Barber and Standing Liberty quarters, a 2014 Australian Saltwater Crocodile 1 ounce silver coin and my first Maria Theresa thaler (a historic but not so rare Austrian coin containing .7520 troy ounces of silver) but that is the subject of a future post.

Changing gears, are you familiar with the IRS reporting requirements when buying and selling precious metals? The good people at JM Bullion have put together a helpful Infographic if you are unfamiliar with these requirements or need a refresher. You can find it at JMInfographic Its purpose is educational and shouldn't be considered financial advice. Of course you are responsible for any capital gains tax on profits from sales even if your transaction(s) don't require dealer reporting.  

At the time of this post, spot silver is at $19.45, Silver Eagles month-to-date are at 1,510,000 and the year-to-date total is 27,613,500.

One last note, I have published my ebook "The Last Canadian 80 Percent Silver Coins - A Buying and Selling Guide " on Smashwords so it is now available on Apple iBooks, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Oyster as well as Kindle and a few more. You can see the Smashwords listing at  Canadian Silver Coins . My other ebooks, "The Last 90 Percent Silver United States Coins - A Buying and Selling Guide" and "A Guide to Buying and Selling Peace & Morgan Silver Dollars" are still available on Amazon only.

Thanks for reading, keep the faith.