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The Bret Leifer Rare Coin Letter
Autumn 2000 NEWSLETTER
Professional advice you can trust

The media tells us that there is no inflation and that inflation will not come back. That's one reason why gold is cheap now - no one wants it. What I know about gold is that gold is money.(sort of) We can sell a mint state MS 63 $20 gold piece for $452. That's the lowest price I can remember.

One of my daughters told me that her history teacher asked his students if they wanted paper money or if they wanted gold coins. she said she was the only one who took the gold. "The other kids didn't get it," she said. What she knows is that paper money represents something else. It is fiat. Every country has its own paper money, and some of it is better than others. The U.S. , compared to Peru for example, and Switzerland vs. the U.S. , but it's still paper. As long as paper is accepted, we are okay. Gold is money. As a precious metal, it carries its own value. Paper is paper and is fine in the new economy of the new century, I think.. Use some of those STOCK MARKET gains to buy some rare gold coins. Build a superior collection!

Whether you would like to have a drawer full of low premium gold coins or build a super outstanding collection, you should use the services of Bret Leifer.  He will guide you through the maze of tricks, traps, and he will keep you away from coins that have been worked on, puddied, and ugly coins that although encapsulated, are not the pieces that top dealers would own themselves. They would sell them, BUT not own them, and you shouldn't either. We won't sell these ugly mistakes to you unless you beg us. You should only own coins that are fine for the grade or OUTSTANDING pieces...with our help, of course. There is no better time than right now.

Last issue, we mentioned that readers should exchange lower quality coins for higher quality, rarer pieces. We had quite a number of callers who said they were comfortable and very happy with their mid-grade MS (62-64) $20 gold pieces. (We didn't mean the $20 gold piece.) That coin, which has .9675 ounces of gold in it, is used by many to store and hold gold. We do our share of the $20 gold piece business. I have personally sold millions of dollars of the $20 Double Eagle gold coins. In fact, I believe our prices are the best of ANY national coin dealer. Yes, all coins ARE graded by either PCGS or NGC. If you can find a lower price, let me know. If its legit, I will match it. The prices of these are the lowest I can remember since grading services were formed. The prices of this antique coin (at least 70 years old and many over 100 years) is low because the price of gold is low and the premiums are very tiny. Y2K didn't happen, so the very high premiums have evaporated.  $20 gold pieces are also an excellent, convenient way to transfer wealth. $20 gold pieces are like an insurance policy that you only pay for once. The premium vanishes after the purchase, but the protection lasts as long as you own the gold. I wish my other insurance policies were like that. These $20-'s are for wealth preservation. They might increase in value, but the emphasis is on maintaining value. Ms 63's were $1495. last time around. Now $452! It's a more friendly price.

We have been very fortunate in locating choice, high quality, truly rare coins. However, It is getting very difficult to find such pieces, but our well developed network uncovers them. Even with these sources, we find that people are hoarding again. It seems that many think the stock market won't go up 35% each year. It is possible, isn't it?

Coins are inexpensive, and the public is testing the waters again. Those who get in early, generally fare better than those who show up late. In any thinly traded market like coins, price swings can be fast and substantial. That's why it's a good idea to hold selected, high quality pieces at market lows. You can make serious money as the market improves. When markets are low, there is an opportunity to amass some gems. Obviously, The concentration should be focused on Rarity & Quality. This is how real collections were and still are formed. If you'd like to explore this concept, Call 1-800-331-2646(COIN) or e mail

From Robert Prechter's Elliott Wave Theorist

"Cycles are useful in alerting the investor to the probable, and therefore in preparing him to take action if certain market events occur. It is better to buy in an oversold condition than in an overbought one and better to buy near a cycle low than elsewhere. That cycle analysis can help you recognize such points may not guarantee profits, but it substantially increases the probability of profits."

Our rules for investing

Try not to lose all your money.

Hold relatively safe assets.

Hold assets which have a fundamental reason to increase in value.

The potential increase should be greater than the potential risk of loss.

Productive rule - for the extremely safety minded(e.g., cash won't go down incrementally, and you know you'll receive interest). Gold is gold.

Coins are now closer to their next rise in price than they were five years ago! The Saint Gaudens gold piece contains .9675 ounces of gold and are at least 70 years old, so they are antiques.

Use some of your Stock Market profits and excess Stock market holdings(get rid of those losers) to buy  rare coins, and perhaps gold coins too! Call me personally, 1-800-331-2646 and I will help you select a path.

Here's Our $20 Gold Offer

St. Gaudens Gold Offer

If the price of gold goes down, so will our prices.. All Prices must be confirmed. Prices can and will change. Ten piece minimum. We pay postage door-to-door. Remember, we also buy and broker coins! Let us know what you have for sale or trade.

Platinum versus gold

In December/96, platinum was lower than gold for the third time in over twenty years. So, we bought platinum and sold gold. This is a spread/trade which takes advantage of this price anomaly. The next day, platinum went up $13. That week gold went down $28 and platinum went down $11, so it worked. We don't know why it happened, & at the time did not know if it will prove profitable, but in the last twenty years, the spreads have been $50-$300 between these metals, like they are today. We'll keep you posted. We do like the odds and the history. You have to do this on the futures exchange if you are interested. I think platinum is currently too high at $575. Gold seems like a bargain in the $275. range, but as you know, we like rare coins better.

Our Las Vegas trip

Our last trip to Las Vegas was interesting. Those huge hotels. New York, New York  opened. Packed casinos, higher minimums, a great sight for owners. There was a very interesting, chic, cigar bar in the hotel. Cigars and cognac! Viva Las Vegas.

Visitors leaving their money at the tables. It is an interesting concept, people go there and try to make money on tables where the odds are stacked against them. One slot machine had a sign on top that read 97.4% Payout. The sign was used to attract players. It meant that for every 100 chips you put in, you would get back only 97, not 50 or 60. This is a great thing. I guess you can play longer before you have no chips left. The casino was very proud of this sign.

Its a lot of fun there, but we were happy to leave. If there is an incarnation of the devil, I think it lives in Las Vegas.


Bret Leifer Numismatics take a serious, no-nonsense approach to coin collecting. Our low overhead assures you the best possible price. We offer a variety of services including:

In the special issue of Personal Finance, January, 1997, Editor Stephen Leeb says he likes gold. This is quite a turn. Ten years ago, Mr. Leeb said there would be low inflation and huge stock market gains. He was right! i think he's a bit early, but.....In the October 2000 issue of CIGAR AFICIONADO, Mario Gabelli says "gold is too cheap and a rise seems economically justified."

One of the attractions for all collectors is the pursuit and ownership of coins necessary to complete a specific collection. Each aquisition brings with it much satisfaction and joy. It could also be a source of profit. We encourage you to collect whatever brings you happiness.

Every once in a while, a collector attains that goal of completing a set, and feels an incredible sense of fulfillment. Perhaps he even had to stretch for a coin he thought they would never own, but the rewards and satisfaction are indescribable.

Investments in coins at these relatively low levels has been a secret that serious numismatists have always known, but which was generally not revealed to the public. There can be substantial profits when you purchase coins. In our opinion, the emphasis should always be on quality and rarity. In addition, the pursuit of a goal, whether it is a denomination set (one each of every denomination of a certain design), a year set, or a type set (different styles of coins) brings with it, a purpose of joy.

If you would like to see pictures, call us toll free at: 1-800-331-2646.

We can send you illustrations of all U.S. coins.

Pictures can be seen on this site by clicking gold coins.

To have and to hold, or, to trade and to change.

In our last newsletter, we encouraged you to trade in your lesser pieces, which we still believe to be great advice. BIG money has always been made on BIG type, which means high quality rare gold and silver coins. However, many readers mentioned that they are only interested in $20 gold pieces. There are many different grades. We have been, and continue to be, mega-players with $20 gold pieces. These gold pieces are different from other quality coins in that they contain almost an ounce of gold in each piece. These coins were originally worth $20. Today, the range is about $450 to $1100 each, with some of the rarer pieces fetching much more. In fact, the famous 1907 High Relief (the first Saint Gaudens $20 gold issue struck) was inadvertently struck in such high relief that the coins would not stack properly, so the mint redesigned the coin with Arabic numbers. These were then struck with a very low relief. We sold 4 different grades of the High Relief in the summer 2000. They are very popular!

The High Relief piece is not a "rare" coin, but it is very popular and it has become the most expensive generic coin. The Low Relief 1907 $20 gold coin is difficult to find in true gem condition.

Also, in 1907, the $10 Indian was created by Augustus St. Gaudens, without the motto "In God We Trust." Teddy Roosevelt wanted a coin with an Indian head dress, and this is the result. These two pieces are perhaps the most beautiful of all U.S. coins.

© Bret Leifer Numismatics
P.O. Box 5225 * Wayland, MA 01778
Tel: 508.655.1125  *  Fax 508.650.1847  *  US: 1.800.331.2646 * Email:
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