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The Bret Leifer Rare Coin Letter
Professional advice you can trust

The 1999 American Numismatic Association Coin Convention was held in Chicago this year. There were very different paths reached for different coins. The early coins (pre - 1834) are still enjoying much demand and price increases. The more generic coins like the 4 and 8 piece gold sets, are seeing weak prices as no one seems to want them any more. Their prices are very soft. $20 gold pieces were weak at the show. this is easy to understand. The price of gold is low and the government keeps reporting no inflation now or in the future. This is what they say, in spite of the fact that there seems to be a labor shortage for specific industries. If you've ever wanted to own a gem 4 or 8 piece gold set, now is the time. Call me, and I will personally select the pieces.

In fact, there are huge dichotomies in the coin market. I couldn't find six coins for which I was looking. I thought it would be easy, but I was wrong. So what was I searching for? OK, I was looking for a wonderful $3 gold piece in MS 64. I couldn't find one I liked. I did see a proof 65 $1 gold piece I will make an offer on. I also bought many other coins that I thought were good values, mostly key dated coins. Some were among the finest known for their respective issue.

Gold commemoratives in MS 66! They are getting difficult again because the prices fell so much. Collectors are hoarding them once more. There are 11 pieces in the set, not counting the (2) $50 gold pieces, so it is the easiest gold set to assemble. I have put together many sets in the past, but prices today are a fraction of past prices. I was searching for a specific date (not that rare) of proof gold- Nada! I was fortunate in that a coin I bought from a collection was graded MS 68 by one of the prominent grading services. I hope this piece finds a suitable home.

My guess is that gold and silver coins will be very active as the last part of 1999 and the millennium come to a close and people stock up on goods and tangibles.

What January may bring is up for grabs, but we'll be watching. I have seen that there are many serious collectors now, who will continue to fuel the coin market. Coin prices should be firm in the year 2000. I always like when prices are soft because you pick up the coins you want at favorable stocks, that's a good thing. A rare coin we sold last spring for $55,000 is now worth $110,000.

What will cause the next coin buying frenzy? How about Y3K? Get an early jump for your heirs? After another 1000 years, coins themselves maybe a dated relic. An artifact once used by a frenzied, fast paced world to settle accounts. As a child I collected coins, filling in the spaces in those blue and brown coin books. I loved it. It was so much fun to add another coin to the collection. The ongoing hunt to either add another piece or upgrade a current holding is always satisfying. Now that I am older, I can look to add a few coins as a diversification to my portfolio/ Since gold prices are so low, the timing for a gold diversification is just about perfect. We'll see.

© Bret Leifer Numismatics
P.O. Box 5225 * Wayland, MA 01778
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