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Gerry's Daily Blog

June 16, 2019

Yamatin Family and New Sound System Arriving Soon

Happy Father's Too!

Greetings and welcome to a Sunday Blog edition.

Today brings the calm before the storm. Matt, Chikae and Natusumi are scheduled to touch down at Boston's Logan airport at 10:20 pm. Their journey to Maine continues with a Concord Trailways bus ride to Portland followed by transport by Meme and Grandpa from the Portland bus station to Raymond. If all is on schedule, the family arrives to the Raymond homestead after 2:00 am Monday morning.

Now to the New Sound System!

Bernie (The Audio Store, Newington CT) called on Saturday to confirm his arrival at approximately 11:00 am Monday for assembling the new Focal, Naim, Sony, and Marantz sound system. Components have been arriving in two locations up to this point. The electronics portion of the system successfully passed a three day burn-in period at The Audio Store. Bernie tested the pass through capability of the Naim integrated pre-amp and power amp. This allows the Focal front speakes to be driven exclusively by the Naim power source. My existing B&W rear speakers will be driven by a Marantz A/V surround sound receiver via signal passing through the Naim. Here are the electronics while being testing in Newington.

Back at the homestead, the Focal Kanta speakers have arrived and are in a ready and waiting position. Last evening, a new wood stand was assembled specifically to house the electronics and support the 65" Sony OLED flat screen. The Sony OLED remains boxed until Bernie arrives on Monday morning. Our plan is to install and debug the electronics first, followed by adding the Sony flat screen to the system. Below is current status of the the basement sound room.

 

Sunday a Busy Day In GFRC Office

With early Monday morning pick-up of the Yamatins followed by the sound system integration, the GFRC business will be on hold that day. Therefore, my plan is to spend all of Sunday processing Twin Lakes and Dr. Peterson Collection images along with preparing Monday's shipping in advance.

If wishing to make a purchase and speaking directly with the GFRC owner/chief sales person, you are free to call at any time.

Come Monday noon time, I plan to be camped out in front of the new sound system for the balance of the day!

 

Other Commentaries On Sunday Morning

GFRC is not your traditional coin dealer! Some collectors and dealers have yet to understand this fact. Building and operating GFRC is for the love of the numismatic hobby and the offering of a cost effective solution for assembling and divesting collections. I strive to be fair at all times and promise to never bury a person in a coin. There is no need to be greedy as this is a enjoyable final career of a lifetime.

Aging Coins on GFRC Price List

Saturday brought one of those email offers that leverages the zero sum approach to conducting business. For those who are not well versed with the term zero sum, it means there are winners and losers during a business deal. Previously, I have had similar conversations. There is a perception, by some collectors and fellow peers, that coin dealers are always hungry for a sale. Furthermore, there is a perception that aging inventory is a terrible situation for a coin dealer. Yes, common knowledge is that coin dealers must constantly have fresh inventory and sell aging inventory at a loss, if necessary.

Again, GFRC is not your traditional dealer. The GFRC mission is focused on developing long term relationships with clients. I have a multi-year perspective towards building the GFRC business and helping clients to construct noteworthy collections. The operative word is relationships. During strong relationships, there is give and take by both parties. I'm entitled to a profit for services rendered if the client is pleased with the consulting and products.

Traditional dealers that own their entire inventory frequently face cash flow management issues. GFRC's business model is heavily skewed to consignments. As a result, cash flow is not an issue which allows me to hold coins in inventory that I believe are fairly priced for the quality. This advice is often given to consignors:patience is critical in a collectibles market that is thinly traded.

When individuals come along and attempt to justify a a 20% price reduction offer by indicating that my coins are aging, a terse response might be at hand. These are indiviudal using the zero sum approach without attention to the relationship aspect of the business. I would gladly sell a coin at a small loss to a client who is loyal to GFRC and frequents my price lists. But for those who come out of left field and attempt zero sum, don't expect open arms.

Color Variations Between GFRC Images and How/Where a Purchased Coin is Viewed

Saturday also brought a phone call from a new customer. He had purchased a beautifully toned coin, based on GFRC images, but could not see the same colors during home viewing. He was at a quandry as to the next step. My response was to return the coin if not pleased. The conversation was a reminder of the importance of lighting conditions and the impact on the viewing experience.

Once GFRC ships a coin to a customer, I am unable to control the customer's lighting environment. Lighting has become complicated with halogen, flourescent, incandescent, LED, and natural sunlight. Each lighting source will accentuate different aspects of the color spectrum. Flourescent lighting is downright terrible. Incandescent is middle of the road and will hide certain blemishes including hairlines. Halogen is my primary indoor lighting reference as it faciliates critical assessment. With halogen lighting, all surface defects are seen along with ease in checking for luster breaks.

As a reminder to all who purchase coins from GFRC, photography is accomplished in natural sunlight to secure natural colors. If a purchased coin is viewed under flourescent lighting, the colors may not match. If there are any questions concerning the toning or coloring on a GFRC purchased coin during indoor viewing, please view it outdoors and the coloring should match.

 

Back to GFRC New Listings

A few new listings reach the price list on Saturday. The highlight is an 1872 key date 2 Cent piece graded PCGS AU58 and housed in an old green holder. You guess it! The offering is from the Twin Lakes Collection.

Key Date Two Cent Piece Offering - Twin Lakes Collection

1872 PCGS AU58 OGH 2C

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

Let's end today's ramblings at this point. There is a need to process a substantial amount of images in the next 12 hours for potential clients galleries in Monday's Blog edition. Afterwards, I'm going to enjoy the new sound system once assembled. The GFRC business can wait for a day while cherished recording are explored with the new system.

How do I can plan to debut the new sound system? The decision has been made. For CD recording, it will be Supertramp's Crime of the Century. For movie concert, the choice is Loreena McKennitts's Nights at the Alhambra. The StoneCold Collection consignor will not be surprised....

A sincere thank-you goes out to StoneCold for his insightful consulting and educational efforts. It has been years since engaging with modern sound system electronics. StoneCold placed me through a thorough education; here in the Blog, and also during our visits to Take 5 Audio and The Audio Store.

It goes without saying that I will be in the GFRC office the entire day and will respond immediately to purchase inquiries . But please don't send me an email suggesting a 20% price reduction to help me unload an aging coin ;-)

 

 

 

June 15, 2019

Top Quality New GFRC Arrivals!

Greetings on Father's Dad weekend and welcome to the Blog.

Southern Maine weather has been operating in a methodical manner in June, a single sunny day followed by two days of clouds and rains. Today's forecast calls for a beautiful cloudless day with a high of 79F. Then the temperature drops to 51 degrees during the overnight, followed by more rains on Sunday and Monday. Actually, I am thrilled with this weather pattern for a host of reasons. The ongoing rains are nuturing the landscaping and maintaining the lawn's lush green color. Having periodic days with bright sunshine allows me to stage GFRC photography and process images during cloudy conditions. Finally, the lack of humidity and cool evenings is consistent with how the Fortin house is constructed. There is no air conditioning; therefore, long periods of high temperatures and humidity are most unpleasant for working and sleeping. Life is great in Maine!

Mid June brings the flowering of the west facing rhododendrons, and I'm thoroughly enjoying the 34 years old planting. They have become huge (overgrown per Diane) and bring majesty display of magenta coloring to the property. There is, however, one caveat. Honey bees will congregate on the flowers, and it's best to be cautious during the blooming timeframe.

34 Year Old Magenta Rhododendrons

 

Quality New Purchases

A GFRC client emailed last week wishing to sell/trade prior purchases for new offerings. I'm always favorable to buying back my previously sold coins and quickly made a deal. The lot arrived on Thursday with photograhy taking place yesterday. Two of these pieces were sold back in the 2015-2016 timeframe and lacked images in the Sales Archive. Buybacks also facilitate the populating of images for earlier GFRC sales in the Archive.

The 1811 O-103a Capped Bust half is so choice with iridescent luster at the VF35 grade level. The 1871 Seated half is a near gem with deep gun metal gray-blue patina. The 1874 Seated half is from the Dr. Glenn Peterson Collection and resides in a 1st generation ANACS holder with serial number #CD5000. How cool is that? The 1914 PCGS MS64 CAC St. Gaudens will reach the price list today.

GFRC New Purchases To Consider

1811 Large 8 O-103a PCGS VF35 CAC 50C                                            1871 PCGS AU50 CAC 50C             

    

1874 ANACS EF45 OWH 50C  Ex. Peterson                                              1914 PCGS MS64 CAC G$20           

    

 

Twin Lakes Collection Consignment - PCGS AU58 Offerings

The latest Twin Lakes Collection consignment has been quietly aging in the GFRC queue and will be photographed today. It will be a long session, considering the forty piece lot size. All are graded PCGS AU58 other than two Standing Liberty quarters graded AU55. I'm sure there will something for a broad range of GFRC customers in this offering. I'm particularly pleased with the 20th century coins to help beef up those price lists.

Following are the contents for your consideration. First Rights of Refusal are recommended if a forthcoming offering catches your eye. This lot should not take too long to process.

Indian 1c: 1863 AU58 CAC; 1869 AU58

Lincoln 1c: 1909-S AU58

Silver 3c: 1852 AU58 CAC; 1861 AU58 CAC

Liberty 5c: 1884 AU58

Capped Bust 5c: 1829 AU58; 1837 Large 5C AU58

Seated 5c: 1845 AU58 CAC; 1849/8 AU58; 1873 AU58

Capped Bust 10c: 1836 AU58

Seated 10c: 1845 AU58

Barber 10c: 1893-S AU58; 1895 AU58; 1908-S AU58; 1909-O AU58

Mercury 10c: 1919-D AU58; 1924-S AU58; 1927-S AU58

Capped Bust 25c: 1831 Large Letters AU58; 1835 AU58

Barber 25c: 1892-O AU58; 1899 AU58; 1914-D AU58

Standing 25c: 1924 AU55 CAC; 1924-S AU55; 1928-D AU58; 1928-S AU58 CAC; 1928-S AU58; 1930-S AU58

Seated 50c: 1873 NA Closed 3 PCGS AU58 CAC

Walking 50c: 1917 AU58; 1917-D Reverse AU58; 1933-S AU58

Trade $1: 1875-S AU58

Morgan $1: 1889-S AU58; 1891-CC AU58

Gold $5: 1879 AU58 OGH; 1912 AU58 OGH

 

Wanted - Higher Grade Barber Coinage

GFRC has been on a mission for the past three years: building a quality United States gold product line. That effort has matured with the support of the Osprey Collection. The gold price list currently has 170 offerings. Nice United States gold is being regularly consigned and I expect momentum to build during the balance of 2019. This product line ramp is essentially completem so it is time to shift focus towards building another product line.

Next up is Barber coinage. I must admit that GFRC does offer a reasonable selection of solid Barber coins, but more could be done to expand the price list content to include better dates and higher mint state content. Therefore GFRC is issuing a request for incremental Barber coinage consignments. If you wish to sell a collection, then I'm also interested.

 

Featured Consignor of the Day

Let's showcase a few Twin Lakes Collection offerings as a fitting wrap-up to end the Blog. How about six Capped Bust halves all housed in PCGS AU58 holders?

Twin Lakes Collection - PCGS AU58 Capped Bust Halves

1829 O-111 PCGS AU58 50C                                                           1830 O-123 PCGS AU58 50C

    

1831 O-104 PCGS AU58 50C                                                          1833 O-103 PCGS AU58 50C

    

    1833 O-112 PCGS AU58 50C                                                         1834 O-114 PCGS AU58 50C

    

That's a wrap for today's Blog edition. Thank-you for checking in.

I will be in the office the entire day and welcome purchases via phone call, email, or text message. The shipping department has eight boxes queued for my attention since there was no shipping on Friday. Best to get to those immediately against noon pick-up deadline.

See you tomorrow.

 

 

 

June 14, 2019

Liberty Seated Dime Festive Friday

Greetings and welcome to the Blog on a Friday morning.

A lovely southern Maine day is on the horizon (literally) as current temperature is a cool 49F. Cloudy skies will give way to bright sunshine and a comfortable high of 70 degreees. Life could not be better.

So the Iranians have been caught red handed mining two tankers in the Gulf of Oman. Talk about a royal slap in the face to President Abe since one of the two tankers was Japanese owned. In an older time, war would have been declared over such an incident. It shall be interesting to watch potential next steps by the parties.

Spot Gold Quoting at $1358/oz

The escalating Middle East tensions bring a strong tail wind for spot gold pricing. I just checked the Kitco website with current quote standing at $1358/oz. Another one or more percentage points would place gold in an official breakout. The $1400 milestone is only 3% increase away. But! There is a major but to consider. United States major banks (Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs) have been known to dampen the price of gold during any run-up period. Can they keep the lid on prices this time around, considering that there is minimum physical gold to service contracts at the trading exchanges?

Kitco 2 Year Gold Technical Chart

 

Back in the GFRC Office...

Today's Blog will be on the brief side since I have an 8:30 am appointment in Lewiston concerning my father's estate. I planned ahead and worked late into Thursday evening building some eye catching client galleries to entertain readers.

We open the visual presentations with one of many new purchases during Tuesday's New England buying trip. I am absolutely thrilled to be sharing images of the finest known 1842 F-103b Liberty Seated dime. This gorgeous specimen resides in a PCGS Gen 4.5 (20011-2013) holder. The large F-103a die cud adajcent to stars 3 through 5 is readily evident. The second cud, starting at star 13, is covered by the PCGS edge view prong. The top of the cud can be seen through the prong adjacent to star 13 if one looks closely.

This dime along with the balance of the New England new purchases are off to CAC with a scheduled arrival date of today by noon time. Let's hope that USPS executes on this shipment. Currently, four First Rights of Refusal are on the books. Once CAC review results are known, this gem will be posted to the price list at my asking price. This R7 rarity will not be inexpensive given the beautiful toning and pristine surfaces.

GFRC Proudly Presents Finest Known 1842 Double Cud Obverse Liberty Seated Dime

1842 F-103b PCGS MS64+ 10C

 

The Rascal is Back!

GFRC consignors must forgive me, as it is my turn to add a few Gerry Fortin Reference Collection Liberty Seated dimes to the sales lists. Below is a well illustrated gallery of web-book plate coins that wish to find new homes. These piece have been patiently waiting in the GFRC safe for a chance to locate new friends in other advanced collections.

Requests were swift in arriving on Thursday evening. The amazing 1878 Type 2 F-108 dime reached the price list and was immediately placed on hold. The 1852 and 1877-S dimes already have FRoR, with asking prices to be determined today. The 1877-S F-106 dime looks much better in hand than on the images. This piece offers bold luster with active cartwheels. Why the PCGS MS61 grade is still a mystery to me.

Gerry Fortin Reference Collection Offerings

1878 Type 2 F-108 PCGS MS64 CAC 10C

  1852 F-108a PCGS EF45 10C                       1862 F-108 PCI MS63 10C                      1877-S F-106 PCGS MS61 10C

        

 1883 F-102 NGC MS61 10C                       1883 F-116 NGC MS61 10C                       1886 F-118 PCGS AU58 10C

        

 

More Great Offerings From Tenafly Collection

Tenafly is back with another consignment. He joins the ranks of other advanced collectors who immediately divest duplicates when upgrades occur. As a result, his CAC approved 1850 and 1861-S duplicate Liberty Seated quarters are available. Two incremental Liberty Seated dimes were added to the consignment with both being on First Right of Refusal. The two Seated dimes are already posted to the price list.

Tenafly Collection Consignment - Yes, Two Liberty Seated Quarters Included!

    1850 PCGS AU50 CAC 25C                                                          1861-S PCGS VF25 CAC 25C

    

      1876-S Type 1 F-118 PCGS AU55 10C                                   1878 Type 1 F-102 PCGS AU55 CAC 10C

    

 

Global Financial News

The Iranian attack on Gulf of Oman tankers is playing out in the financial markets. Global equities are down with a rush to safe assets that include physical gold and United States Treasuries. Let's have a look at the numbers.

The U.S. 10 Year Treasury bond yield dropped to 2.06% as demand for United States financial safety continues in these turbulent times. As already mentioned, spot gold is quoting at $1358/oz. Bitcoin jumped to $8294 due to other factors. Interestingly, the price of crude oil dropped to $51.84/bbl as fears of global recession grow.

It appears that China's President Xi is adding fuel to the fire with respect to Iran based on this Seeking Alpha headline. The China - U.S. trade matter appears to be turning into an all out conflict when talks of Yuan currency devaluation are threatened.

U.S. economic adviser Larry Kudlow is the latest to warn of consequences if Chinese President Xi Jinping refuses invitations for trade talks, as Beijing hiked anti-dumping duties on certain U.S. and EU-made alloy-steel tubes and pipes. Former PBOC governor Zhou Xiaochuan also issued a warning about a possible yuan devaluation, while the Chinese government has faced much criticism for its response to the mass protests in Hong Kong. If things couldn't get worse, Xi said overnight he would promote steady development ties with Iran "no matter how the situation changes," against the backdrop of yesterday's tanker attacks in the Gulf.

China's industrial output continues to contract due to trade pressures.

China's industrial output growth slowed to a more than 17-year low of 5% in May, well below expectations, weighing on stocks across the globe as trade pressures pose concerns for the world economy. U.S. data also looms, with traders looking out for upcoming retail sales and industrial production data for May, as well as the consumer sentiment index for July.

Traders are moving back to gold as a safe haven play during stormy times...

Set for its fourth weekly gain, gold overnight jumped as much as 1.2% to $1,359.50, surpassing the key $1,350 level for the first time since April 2018. "When the markets start waxing bearish economic data, it's the global recession they are concerned about, triggered by escalation of trade war," said Stephen Innes of SPI Asset Management. "With geopolitical risk premium ratcheting higher on the back of Middle East tensions and autonomy protest in Hong Kong, gold represents dependable insurance against those mounting geopolitical risks."

World demand for crude oil is forecasted to drop by the IEA

Following yesterday's bearish report from OPEC that trimmed its forecast for world oil demand, the IEA has also slashed its estimates for the second straight month. "Until recently, the focus has been on the supply side with the familiar list of uncertainties - Iran, Venezuela, Libya, and the Vienna Agreement," the agency wrote in its latest monthly report. "Now, the main focus is on oil demand as economic sentiment weakens." Revising down its estimate by 100K barrels, the IEA now expects oil demand growth to reach 1.2M bpd this year, before rebounding to 1.4M bpd in 2020.

Bitcoin's price move is tied to Facebook's cryptocurrency rollout. If Facebook can launch a cryptocurrency; then why can't China, Russia, and Iran do the same with a crytocurrency based on physical gold. Think about that for a moment.

With the likely unveiling of its cryptocurrency next week, Facebook has signed up more than a dozen companies in support, including Visa, Mastercard, PayPal and Uber, WSJ reports. Each company involved will invest about $10M into a consortium that Facebook has said would manage the currency. Reports last month had Facebook looking to gather about $1B for its "Project Libra" effort, including third-party governance and pegging it to a basket of government-issued currencies for stability.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

We must end the Blog here as it is time to brush teeth and drive into Lewiston for an early morning meeting with my deceaed father's financial adviser.

I should be back in the office by late morning and will be posting today's featured coins to the price list.

Wishing everyone a pleasant Friday.

 

 

 

June 13, 2019

GFRC Emphasis Shifts Back to United States Gold

Greetings on a Thursday morning and thank-you for checking in at the Blog.

There is a saying in Maine; "if you don't like the weather, then wait three hours." Today brings a rapid deterioration of southern Maine weather. Present cloudy conditions will continue to deepen and before noon, the rains will arrive.

The Fortin homestead has a weather change vantage point from our perch on top of Ledge Hill. Since we're able to see far into New Hampshire and the White Mountains, approaching weather systems are easily detected. Lighter gray clouds turn to darker colors until the northwestern horizon is black. If I'm mowing the lawn and watching the transition, there is typical a 20-30 minutes window before the sky will open and the rains arrive.

 

USPS Delivery Issues

USPS had been providing solid delivery performance until the past two weeks. A customer shipment is most likely lost after the omninous tracking message of Delivery attempt failed due to lack of access to premises. How I hate to see this message. The customer was home at the time of "attempted delivery" and received his regular mail. He checked with the local post office, postmaster, and his carrier. Alas, it was a busy delivery day and the postmaster added two other delivery people to the route. No one knows a thing about his 2 Day Priority package, leading the postmaster to advise the GFRC customer to have the sender file a claim. A gem original 1906-D PCGS AU58 CAC Barber half has disappeared.

On Monday, Diane and I prepared a substantial CAC submission that totaled over 50 coins. Included in the shipment was the new Jim Poston consignment. So much for Overnight Express delivery by USPS. Instead of heading south, the shipment went west to the White River Junction Distribution Center in Vermont and remained there all of Tuesday. The heavy package left the distribution center late Tuesday afternoon and is supposedly on its way to CAC in Far Hills, NJ. Let's hope it arrives today.

GFRC carries Hugh-Woods business insurance including coverage of USPS handling misfortunes. Every customer is assured a full refund if the worst happens with USPS. Unfortunately, there are deductibles that GFRC must take as a business loss along with the paperwork requirements for filing a claim.

 

GFRC No Longer Accepting Prepaid Debit Cards

It has been one of those weeks. A new Collectors Corner customer wishes to purchase a nice 1827/6 Capped Bust half and use combination of regular credit card and a Walmart prepaid debit card for payment. Yes, the funds transfer from both cards went smoothly via Bank of America app. Then the coin is immediately returned for refund. Accomplishing a refund with Paypal is easy as transaction fees are returned as part of the purchase refund. For the credit and prepaid debit cards, however, Diane has a challenge on her hands to navigate the BoA system to accomplish this type of refund.

If the future, GFRC will no longer accept prepaid debit cards as payment. A refund hassle is not worth the small purchase margin. I would rather forego the sale.

 

GFRC Emphasis Shifts Back to United States Gold

During the past week, more quality United States gold continued to arrive on consignment. The GFRC gold price list is becoming most substantial, with broad based offerings.

Below are five more consigned pieces from the Osprey Collection. The 1924-D St. Gaudens is a substantial offering at its NGC MS63+ grade level and pretty too! The $20 Saint is nicely augmented by Tuesday's transfer of four CAC approved $10 Indians while on our New England buying trip. These four Indians are already posted to the price list.

St. Gaudens Mint State Rarity - Osprey Collection

1924-D NGC MS63+ G$20

 

Important CAC Approved $10 Indians Offerings - Osprey Collection

1909-S PCGS MS63+ CAC G$10                                                 1910-S PCGS MS63 CAC G$10  

    

1912 PCGS MS64+ CAC G$10                                                   1912-S PCGS AU58 CAC G$10

    

 

New Twin Lakes Collection Consignment Arrives

The forecasted consignment flow has been steady and I've been managing to keep up with photography and price list postings.

Yesterday, a forty piece Twin Lakes Collection consignment was delivered. The consignment ranges from Indian cents through Morgan dollars and every 19th and 20th century denomination type in between. All pieces are graded AU58 with many being CAC approved. This broad-based consignment will have something for everyone. Complete details will be featured in Friday's Blog edition.

 

Global Financial News

Thursday opens with news of two oil tankers being attacked in the Strait of Oman, Iran's backyard. As a result, crude oil and gold prices are seeing an immediate lift. Crude oil is up to $52.67/bbl and spot gold has climbed to $1340/oz. The 10 Year U.S. Treasury bond yield dropped slightly to 2.12%. Even Bitcoin saw some lift to $8093/coin.

Let's check in on Seeking Alpha headlines for the latest on several global events. The torpedoing of oil tankers off the coast of Iran is problematic. Just step back for a moment to consider which countries benefit from higher crude oil prices. This is a scenario straight out of a Hollywood movie.

For the last few sessions, crude prices have been flashing red as they neared the $50 level, but attacks on two oil tankers off the coast of Iran early Thursday have sparked a sudden turnaround. WTI futures are now ahead by 3% to $52.66/bbl, while Brent contracts jumped 3.4% to $62.03/bbl. Frontline said one of its vessels, Front Altair, was on fire, while the other ship, the Kokuka Courageous, was damaged but afloat. The incident comes one month after four tankers were sabotaged in the Gulf of Oman off the UAE port of Fujairah, in an attack the U.S. linked to Iran.

Civil unrest in Hong Kong continues over a planned extradition law that is ominous. This law brings the end of Hong Kong's quasi-independence from Beijing Central government and is a turning point for Hong Kong citizenry. It has taken the Beijing Central government two decades to erode the original High Degree of Autonomy under the "One Country, Two Systems" princple established during 1997 when Hong Kong sovereignty was returned to the People's Republic of China.

The benchmark Hang Seng Index slid as much as 1.5% on Thursday, but closed back at the starting line, as thousands of protesters readied for more clashes with police over a planned extradition law. The one-month Hibor rate hit 2.63%, while three-month Hibor hit 2.56%, surging to their highest level in more than a decade. Analysts also attributed soaring rates to seasonally strong demand for the Hong Kong dollar ahead of upcoming corporate dividend payments and an expected raft of IPOs in the city.

 

Wrapping Up the Blog

My goodness, it is already 8:30 am, and it's best to hit the upload button and start another busy day in the GFRC office.

Thanks again for checking in. I will be in the office the entire day. Rains will be starting shortly, providing an opportunity to process images and write descriptions since no gravitational pull from the outdoor landscaping.

I look forward to seeing you on Friday.

 

 

 

June 12, 2019

New England Buying Trip - Rare Liberty Seated Dime Die Variety Surfaces

Greetings and welcome to the Blog.

Life is great as another comfortable southern Maine weather day is at hand. Skies are blue and cloudless with early morning temperature at 54F. Today's temperature is forecasted to peak at 76 degrees. Bright sunshine means another photography opportunity after Tuesday's New England coin buying trip. Best to secures those images promptly as Thursday brings another cold rainy day.

I'm certain that many readers are wondering what was discovered on yesterday's buying trip after posting a special evening headline. Already, there are two First Rights of Refusal on this rare Liberty Seated dime die variety that was uncovered. Believe me, I am absolutely thrilled with the discovery. Memories of cherrypicking the 1874 F-106 Polished Arrows, at the 2003 Winter FUN show, come to mind after yesterday's purchase. But first, let's visit with Seth Godin for some professional wisdom.

 

Seth Godin's Blog: Ten words per page

Two of the most important learnings during my days in the semiconductor business have to do with communications and promoting one's ideas. Communication simplicity is paramount! I'm sure many readers have sat through a Powerpoint presentation of some sort. Whether in business or education, Powerpoint presentations are omnipresent. The key to becoming an effective communicator is 1) simplicity and 2) clarity of the message.

I learned early in my career that viewers of a Powerpoint slide have an attention span of about 10 seconds. That is all the time that you, the presenter, have to get a point across. If the audience is unable to decipher the core point of a slide within 10 seconds, their minds start to wander. Communicators should target between 30 - 60 seconds per slide when speaking and then move on to the next slide to recapture the audience's attention.

Obtaining proficiency with simplicity and clarity is a powerful skill. Unfortunately, many professionals never achieve this realization as they lack empathy for their audiences. Seth Godin reminds us that the most effective communications are those with the fewest words.

Ten words per page

That’s how many words get scanned the first time through. Perhaps five on a billboard.

Which means that your memo, your ad, your announcement, your post–you get ten words.

Highlight the ten of the 1,000 you’ve written. Which ten do you want someone to scan so that they’re intrigued enough to slow down and read the rest?

If you can begin with the ten words and write around them, you have the foundation for an effective message.

As Jay Levinson said, the best billboard ever said, “Free coffee, next exit.”

What do we see when we scan your work?

 

New England Buying Trip - Well Worth The Time and Effort!

I was on the road by 5:30 am on Tuesday morning. Destination will not be discussed. The drive took over four hours through heavy downpours followed by breaks in the clouds. Dan White and I arrived at the destination at roughly the same time. It was great to see Dan on New England soil rather than in Florida. We immediately when to work as the GFRC buying team. When the day wrapped up, the following coins had been purchased. All of the following coins are heading to CAC today.

Yesterday's substantial discovery concerns a very rare Liberty Seated dime die variety. I have been searching for 1842 F-106b Double Rim Cud Obverse examples during my entire numismatic career. My first acquisition was the Frog Run sale example purchased back in November 2004 at an American Numismatic Rarities auction. $750 was paid for an EF45/AU50 example. Since that time, I have seen two other examples; a raw VF30 sold by GFRC (weak cud at 4:00) and an AU example that I was not able to purchase. That AU example may never come to market.

1842 F-103b 10c - The Frog Run Sale Specimen

Web-Book Plate Coin

    

GFRC is thoroughly pleased to announce the acqusition of a gem original PCGS MS64+ example which I believe will be CAC approved. I could not be more excited with this purchase and owning this R7 rarity example and finest known.

Capped Bust 5c: 1829 LM-1 PCGS MS64+ gem original with mirrored fields; 1833 LM-1 PCGS AU55 choice original gold patina with mirrored fields; 1835 LM-8.1 PCGS MS64 crusty gem original silver gray with thick mint frost

Seated 5c: 1847 PCGS AU58 choice original with lightly mirrored fields

Capped Bust 10c: 1835 JR-3 PCGS MS63+ near gem original with frosty cartwheels

Seated 10c: 1842 F-103b Double Rim Cud Obverse PCGS MS64+ gem original and now finest know example of this rare terminal die state; 1845 F-110 PCGS MS64+ another gem with same original toning as the 1842 F-103b.

Barber 10c: 1897-O PCGS EF40 gem original bullseye, deep blue and rose peripheral coloring

Seated 25c: 1868-S PCGS AU55 choice original dirty gray patina over frosty luster, so rare to find an 1868-S with unmolested surfaces! 1878-CC Canceled Die Obverse raw MS62-MS63 with heavily mirrored fields, an amazing example

Seated 50c: 1853 A&R PCGS AU58 choice original with thick frosty luster; 1853 A&R PCGS EF45 near gem original crusty gun metal gray-blue; 1876-CC PCGS AU58 gem original steely gray-brown

Trade $1: 1877-S PCGS MS62 classic steely reflective luster with transparent gray-gold patina, so pretty for type

Seated $1: 1843 PCGS EF45 choice original gray patina and completely unmolested surfaces

 

Global Financial News

Volatility is back for global equity markets as today's futures are all in the red. Two major developments are behind the sour mood for equities. First are major protests in Hong Kong concerning a proposed extradition law whereby Hong Kong citizens can be forcibly moved to the mainland for trial. Welcome to the slow oversight and control creep of the Beijing government as it attempts to silence critics in Hong Kong. Never underestimate the Beijing government's long game towards ultimate dominance of Hong Kong.

Second is the realization that the U.S. - China trade war will not be short lived. The timing of the proposed Hong Kong extradition law sends a bad signal to President Trump.

As expected with Asia market turmoils, spot gold pricing has recovered recent gains and quoting at $1339/oz. Crude oil price dropped to $51.90/bbl. Flight to safety of U.S. Treasuries dropped the 10 Year bond yield to 2.12%. Bitcoin is hovering at $7986.

Let's open Seeking Alpha headlines with the situation in Hong Kong.

The benchmark Hang Seng Index slid nearly 2% overnight as protests against Hong Kong’s controversial extradition law shut down key parts of the city, with police firing tear gas and rubber bullets to drive away thousands of demonstrators. Financial institutions also scrambled for liquid assets, triggering interbank interest rates in the territory to shoot up across the curve, with the one-month and two-month HIBOR reaching their highest level since late 2008. Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam argues the legislation is necessary to close a legal loophole that makes the city a refuge to criminals, but opponents say its approval would tear down the legal wall intended to keep Hong Kong's justice system separate from China's.

Traders with wishful thinking may be disappointed moving forward. Counting on interest rate reductions rather than fundamental is risky business.

Market focus is turning back to trade developments after President Trump said he was holding up a trade agreement with China and reiterated his stance that there might be no deal at all. The tough line on trade talks caused U.S. markets yesterday to close back at the starting line, while DJIA futures are now pointing to a 62-point decline at the open. Analysts are also starting to reassess the June market comeback, with some saying it doesn't quite make sense. "This rally is not fundamentally backed. Instead what we are seeing is a bunch of people getting swung around and now they are chasing stocks higher," said Tom Essaye, founder of The Sevens Report.

Major electronic companies are adapting to tariffs and making plans to exit China production. Foxconn is a huge electronics assembly company and their actions will send shock waves throughout Asian manufacturng industry.

Nintendo is shifting some production of its Switch videogame console to Southeast Asia from China to limit the impact of possible U.S. tariffs on Chinese-made electronics, people who work on Nintendo's supply chain told WSJ. It's not alone. Taiwan's Foxconn Technology Group said yesterday that it was ready to move assembly of Apple's iPhones out of China if necessary, and Japan's Sharp, which is controlled by Foxconn, said last week that it planned to move production of personal computers to Taiwan or Vietnam.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog - How About a Coin Purchase?

The month of June is always slow for numismatic sales and 2019 is no different. GFRC sales have slowed to a crawl this week and I'm itching to make a few sales on behalf of consignors. Even the Collectors Corner sales platform is quiet.

Yes, I will be in the office the entire day with lots of photograpy to accomplishe along with loading many more coins to the price list. If considering a purchase, please don't hesitate to call or email. There are limits on my ability to discount consigned coins but it does not hurt to ask.

Thank-you for checking in at the Blog. I will be back tomorrow morning with another regular edition. See you then.

 

 

 

June 11, 2019

Len Augsburger Guest Blog: CAC Update From John Albanese

Greeting on a Tuesday morning and welcome to the Blog.

I'm off on a New England coin buying trip with a very early start to the day. Best to be back home before dinner after a full day of driving. I hope the morning rains are limited to a few isolated downpours.

This week's Newtown and Jim Poston consignments are loaded to the price list with full descriptions. Response to both offerings has been above average and fantastic. As a collector, there is nothing better than to place duplicates for sale and have a strong response. The feedback is rewarding and a validation of one's selection criteria.

Today's primary Blog features is an insightful guest blog from Len Augsburger. Len has become a regular feature at the Daily Blog and provides deeper insights into the numismatic market and collecting. This summarization of a recent interview of John Albanese by Charles Morgan at CoinWeek is well worth the time to read and digest. The coin market continues to be dynamic with multiple forces at work to support their specifics business models and financial goals. The grading services, auction houses and a broad dealer network are all forces that must work in harmony to ensure stability and collector trust.

Len Augsburger Guest Blog: CAC Update From John Albanese

John Albanese is a busy guy, so when one gets an opportunity to hear his latest views on coin grading and the market in general, it’s always worth a listen. Charles Morgan of CoinWeek recently interviewed John Albanese for the CoinWeek podcast (full interview at https://forums.collectors.com/discussion/1020822/john-albanese-coinweek-podcast-talking-cac-coins-and-future-of-grading/p1). Here are a few of John’s latest observations:

The best coins are locked away in collections. When CAC first started, setting up at the first couple shows, the quality was higher and about 80% of the coins stickered. Lately it’s about 40%. At the current shows and auctions, what one sees is a lot of “tired” coins that slosh around the market. Better coins go off the market. This is not representative of the total quality that is out there! This has some effect to the market by dragging prices down, but these prices don’t necessarily reflect the quality of the coins buried in the hands of astute collectors.

John was able to buy CAC-level coins much more easily a few years ago. $2m of bids at a Heritage sale would previously be about 50% successful, now $2m of bids is buying only $40,000 or $50,000 at a similar auction. Collectors and dealers are recognizing quality and pulling it off the market.

John believes the current grading system is too complicated. There are four grades for AU coins, four grades for VF coins. Only two are really needed. What’s really the difference between a VF20 1796 quarter and a VF25? John suggests VF20 and “choice” VF (VF30) would be sufficient. John felt that more dealers and collectors were competent graders when the system was simpler. With today’s multiplicity of grades, John feels only about a hundred people truly have the “eye” to consistently differentiate between the minute grade levels. This is bad for the market – it overcomplicates the system and forces collectors to “trust” the professional graders. It would be better if collectors could have confidence in themselves rather than having to depend on a third party.

Ultimately, coin dealers grade by price and not necessarily by the numbers on the holders. At the end of the day it’s all about what a coin can be sold for. John argues that dealers are actually fairly consistent when it comes to grading by value and offers the example of taking a hundred random coins to a show and asking dealers to put a price on the entire deal. John believes most dealers will be within a few percent of each other. [John isn’t talking about a local show here, but a national show with experienced dealers.]

Coins that don’t CAC aren’t necessarily “bad” coins. Some coins trade very infrequently, and, if you have to wait a few years to get a CAC example, there’s nothing wrong with buying the coin at hand. John gives the example of 1796 and 1808 quarter eagles, for which one might wait a long time.

For coins where CAC certification makes a big price difference (ie. $20 Saints in MS66, Bust halves in MS65), it’s more likely any given coin has been through CAC. For coins where the price difference isn’t as great (an AU Bust half, or most commemorative halves), it less likely CAC has seen the coin.

Dealers push what they have. If a dealer has a lot of CAC coins, they are going to push them. If they don’t have too many CAC coins, then they probably won’t speak highly of CAC. “Crackout” dealers don’t like CAC since it’s another obstacle. They might score the occasional upgrade, but getting a sticker on it is another matter. John likes that the crackout crew dislikes CAC. “If those guys like CAC, then we’ve got a big problem.”

For more color on the above points, listening to the podcast is highly recommended – it will be a worthwhile 30 minute investment.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

I will be back on Wednesday morning with a regular Blog edition and potential insights on how the buying trip went. Order shipments will also resume on Wedneday.

Thank-you for checking in at the Blog.

 

 

 

June 10, 2019

A Diverse Jim Poston Consignment to Enjoy!

Greetings again and welcome to a Monday Blog edition.

Southern Maine weather continues to be absolutely ideal for working outdoors and sleeping. Sunday's daytime high was 80F while overnight temperatures dropped quickly to the low 50s. The coming week brings more periods of rain and comfortable temperatures. I'll take lush green lawns and comfortable sleeping temperatures over hot humid conditions any day of the week!

The only issue with ideal outdoor temperatures is the lack of enthusiasm to spend time in the GFRC office. When operating a business as sole proprietor, photographer, image processor, catalogger, and shipping department; work is not accomplished if enjoying the outdoors. Sunday was a balancing act between morning outdoor tasks and an afternoon in the office. My near gem original 1993 Mazda Miata received a thorough washing and detailing. This official Maine antique is all original equipment other than the radiator, hoses and belts. Yes, the ragtop is perfectly original and in pristine condition. I would rate her full gem original but there are a few paint chips and two trunk lid blemishes due to closing on large items that dented the thin steel. A large item is a relative term considering the tiny Miata trunk.

1993 Mazda Miata - Near Gem Original

 

Yamatin Family Arrives Soon!

The time has arrived for the annual Yamatin family stay at the Fortin homestead for six weeks. Little Natsumi has become a big girl, and it will be a pleasure to spend time with her. I'm looking forward to the traditional late afternoon time on the back deck with her. It is Grandpa's scotch time. We eat nuts together and and enjoy watching and listening to nature.

Usually when the Yamatins arrive, there are new GFRC website updates or applications. I've floated an idea with Matt and hope the concept can be turned to reality. Stay tuned for more details.

 

Jim Poston is Back with a Great Consignment

Saturday brought the arrival of another great consignment from Jim Poston. The shipment totaled fifty coins with eleven pieces for immediate consignment. The balance are heading to CAC. Following are those eleven pieces that are immediately available for purchase.

Jim continues to enhance his buying skills as is clearly demonstrated by this lot. First Rights of Refusals have been pouring in throughout Sunday along with another batch during the overnight hours. I will not go into individual details other than to say that the 1856 NGC VF25 Gold CAC $3 Princess is quite the novelty item. I rarely see United States gold with a gold CAC bean, let alone a $3 gold piece. The 1833 Capped Bust dime has awesome old album toning and should not last long. Finally, the 1855 With Arrows Liberty Seated quarter is a beautifully toned piece. It is housed in a first generation ANACS old white holder with early serial number (CD6328). I could easily seen this piece in a PCGS AU58 holder with CAC approval, it's so fresh and original. Also, don't overlook the 1856 Large Date F-104 dime graded PCGS AU58 and the 1854-O Crumbled Obverse Die quarter graded PCGS VF20. This example could not be more original.

A Diverse Jim Poston Consignment to Enjoy!

1856 NGC VF25 Gold CAC Fatty G$3

              1833 JR-4 PCGS AU55 10C                                     1855 WA ANACS AU55 25C 1st Gen Holder

    

    1844 V-3c NGC AU58 CAC 5C                  1872 PCGS MS60 Gold CAC 5C                 1842 F-105 PCGS AU58 CAC 10C

            

      1856 LD F-104 PCGS AU58 10C                    1862 F-106 PCGS MS62 10C               1943-D PCGS MS64FB Gold CAC 10C

            

1854-O Crumbled Die PCGS VF20 25C               1857 PCGS MS64 CAC 25C            

       

 

GFRC on Buying Trip Tuesday

Tuesday Blog edition will be written this evening as I'm off on a multi-state buying trip tomorrow. Dan White and I will be joining forces and calling on pre-arranged buying appointments. As a result, I will be out the door early to avoid the morning I-495 and Boston traffic.

To ensure that everyone's Blog visit will be enjoyable, Len Augsburger has prepared an incredibly insightful summary of a recent John Albanese podcast interview. You will not want to miss tomorrow's Blog.

 

Global Financial News

International equity markets are in rally mode. Why? I see two reasons for the optimism. First are consenus announcements from the Federal Reserve, European Central Bank, and now the Bank of Japan on accommodative financial policies. We are back into the mode of weakening economies, which is good news for investors. Second is Mexico's agreement to President Trump's demand for immigration control on its southern border. As a result, the threatened tariffs are canceled. It does appear that tariffs are a powerful economic weapon.

As expected, commodities have reacted to recent news. Crude oil has rebounded to $54.10/bbl and spot gold has retreated to $1332/oz. Bitcoin is priced at $7669 per coin and the 10 Year U.S. Treasury yield moved up slightly to 2.14%.

There is no question that the United States and China relationship has deteriorated with economic warfare becoming the new normal. Seeking Alpha captures a few points to demonstrate this fact.

Nokia and Ericsson are preparing to move sensitive operations out of China.

Two of Europe's biggest tech titans, Nokia and Ericsson, have started drawing up emergency plans to move some of their most sensitive operations out of China and split up their supply chains to counter increasing national security concerns, sources told The Sunday Telegraph. The drastic steps would include changes to their corporate structures, including setting up separate units in the Eastern and Western Hemispheres, in a bid to protect themselves against the escalating global trade war. Both companies make equipment used to run 5G networks.

Beijing is warning major technology companies of repercussions if they follow United States ordered trade restrictions and interrupt Chinese company supply chains. The day of reckoning for United States, Taiwan, and Korea based technology firms has arrived. Intel and Hynix have large wafer fabs in China. I'm so glad to be out of China and the semiconductor industry given these developments.

The Chinese government summoned major technology companies last week, including notable semiconductor firms, according to a new report from the NYT. The purpose was to warn them that they will face repercussions if they respond too aggressively to U.S. trade restrictions that ban sales of American technology to Chinese companies. Among the firms called in were chipmakers Intel, Qualcomm, ARM Holdings and SK Hynix, as well as Microsoft, Samsung Electronics, Dell Technologies, Nokia and Cisco Systems.

Back to monetary easing, the Bank of Japan is keeping all stimulus options on the table. Imagine going to a casino where the odds of winning were guaranteed? That is the current situation in global equity markets.

The Bank of Japan could deliver more big monetary stimulus if necessary, but needs to take care with its side effects on the financial system, according to Governor Haruhiko Kuroda. The comments come after Fed Chair Jerome Powell signaled a willingness to act if the economy needs it, ECB President Mario Draghi vowed to support growth and PBOC Governor Yi Gang said that he has "tremendous" policy options to stoke demand. While it doesn't need to act now, the BOJ's options would be cutting the -0.1% negative rate further, lowering the target for 10-year yields, increasing the monetary base, or boosting asset purchases.

 

Featured Coins of the Day

GFRC's weekend coin sales were slow other than the newly consigned Newtown offerings. It is indeed the June timeframe. Collectors are busy with other activities resulting in numismatics lacking attention.

How about showcasing some great offerings that are available on the GFRC website and on Collectors Corner? Here are some of my favorite offerings in each of the GFRC product lines. If I love the coin, then there is a good chance you might too!

1875 PCGS AU53 CAC 20C                                                   1848 PCGS AU50 OGH 25C

    

  1814 O-103 PCGS AU58 CAC 50C                                                    1871 PCGS MS62 CAC 50C

    

         1913 PCGS VF35 CAC 50C                                                        1874 PCGS AU58 CAC Trade $1

    

        1904 PCGS MS62 G$2.5                                                            1834 Plain 4 PCGS AU58 G$5

    

Thank-you for visiting with GFRC as we start another week in a life. I will be in the office the entire day catching up on image processing and loading more coins to the price list.

Wishing everyone a great numismatic week if time can be found for the Hobby of Kings.

 

 

 

June 9, 2019

Superb Newtown Collection Duplicates Arrive!

Greetings and welcome to the Blog on a peaceful Sunday morning.

Saturday brought an ideal summer day with bright sun and afternoon temperatures approaching 80F. The lawn was mowed along with the first round of ant spraying. There is no possibility of winning a war with outdoor ants. The best that can be achieved is holding them at bay and away from the house. There was even time to file the guides on the chain saw chain towards another round of cutting as prep work for a new landscaping project. The only negative for the day were the mosquitoes! What a huge crop this year due to a wet spring that continued into summer. It is not often that I am bother by mosquitoes in the middle of the afternoon.

New GFRC Consignment Arrivals

Saturday was also a busy delivery day with the regular postal carrier proceeding down the driveway followed by FedEx and a mid afternoon USPS Express delivery. GFRC is the quintessential example of an electronic cottage business. Other than driving into Raymond/Windham for USPS Express shipments, all other insourcing and shipment requirements can be accomplished at my front door. As long as there is internet or cellphone coverage, GFRC is in business. Yes, that includes the gasoline generator also for power outages. But I've regressed....

Newtown Collection Duplicates to Consider

The latest Newtown Collection consignment arrived before lunch and was immediately processed through photography and image processing. By now, Blog readers should understand the special relationship between the Newtown Collection and GFRC. GFRC strives to locate upgrades for Newtown's Liberty Seated dime and half dollar sets. Those sets can be found on the GFRC Open Set Registry. As Newtown upgrades, his duplicates are immediately consigned to GFRC for repositioning in other advanced collections.

Following is a new client gallery for Saturday's Newtown consignment. By evening time, half the consignment had been sold. Gone are the 1864-S and 1865-S Liberty Seated dimes along with the 1869 Libery Seated half.

Superb Newtown Collection Duplicates to Consider

   1854-O F-106 PCGS MS63 CAC 10C                                          1864-S F-101 PCGS AU53 CAC 10C

    

         1865-S F-101 PCGS AU50 10C                                               1875-CC IW F-110 PCGS MS64 10C

    

1875-CC F-101 BW PCGS MS63 CAC 10C                                                1869 PCGS AU58 CAC 50C          

    

 

Latest Jim Poston Consignment

During mid afternoon, a 50 piece Jim Poston consignment appeared via USPS Express delivery. The majority of the consignment is heading to CAC this week, while the balance will be photographed today. Jim has managed to locate another large lot of beautifully toned and strictly original type coins; many are in old PCGS and NGC holders.

Following are the offerings that are immediately available for sale. These will be heading directly to the price list.

Seated 5c: 1844 RPD NGC AU58 CAC iridescent blue/rose; 1872 PCGS MS60 GOLD CAC gorgeous aquamarine centers with peripheral gold

Capped Bust 10c: 1833 JR-4 PCGS AU55 classic old album rainbow toning

Seated 10c: 1842 F-105 NGC AU58 CAC lovely light gold toning; 1856 Large Date F-104 PCGS AU58 difficult grade; 1862 PCGS MS62 variegated rose-blue toning

Mercury 10c: 1943-D PCGS MS64FB GOLD CAC rattler

Seated 25c: 1854-O Crumbled Die Obverse PCGS VF20 so choice original and one of the nicest examples seen since operating GFRC; 1855 ANACS AU55 OWH beautiful bullseye toning with substantial frosty luster; 1857 PCGS MS64 CAC satiny gun metal gray with peripheral blues

Gold $3 Princess: 1856 NGC VF25 GOLD CAC Fatty holder with smooth distinctive surfaces, wow!

 

More Osprey Gold Reaches Price List

As Saturday dinner time arrived, the decision was made to go with Chinese take out (daboa in Mandarin). The nearest Chinese restaurant with quality food is in Windham which was fine by me. Late afternoon temperature was a comfortable 75F and perfect for a drive in the top down Miata.

After dinner, it was back to the GFRC office. Following are four additional United States $10 eagle gold pieces that reached the price list before calling it a day.

New Orleans $10 Eagle Gold - Osprey Collection

1894-O PCGS AU58 G$10                                                              1895-O PCGS MS62 G$10

    

1901-O PCGS MS63 G$10                                                              1904-O PCGS MS62 G$10

    

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

The flow of great GFRC offerings never stops. Each day brings the challenge of balancing life outside of the GFRC business with the ongoing flow of new consignments. Saturday brought a nicely balanced day and I expect the same for today. The Miata desperately needs to be washed and the internal leather detailed. The garage should be cleaned and my latest landscaping project needs one to two hours of attention. Once those activities are accomplished, it will be back to the office to process more coin images; and, hopefully, to have another client gallery prepared for Monday morning's Blog.

If there is a desire to make a GFRC purchase today, please send an email or leave a voice message if the cellphone is not answered. I will be checking both frequently throughout the day.

Thank-you for visiting with GFRC on an early summer weekend and wishing everyone a relaxing Sunday. Now it is time to wash the Miata.

 

 

 

June 8, 2019

Physical Gold At Breakout Threshold

Greetings and welcome to the Daily Blog on a beautiful June morning.

Southern Maine's forecasted weather will be ideal for being outdoors. Sitting in the GFRC office processing coin images or writing descriptions is not at the top of my priority list when new landscaping projects are calling out. June is well recognized for being a slow numismatic sales month as people wish to be spend time with nature, placing hobbies on hold.

Today's Blog edition is a spur of the moment effort. I'm hoping the first cup of coffee stimulates creative thinking but there are no assurances. Please forgive me if the Blog ends up being short or endless meanderings. This is the risk when attempting to compose on a daily basis.

 

Physical Gold at Breakout Threshold

When in the numismatic business and handling United States gold as a major product line, monitoring gold's spot price is paramount.

Friday's trading brought physical gold prices to a breakout pricing point. The end of day number stood at $1348/oz. The following 5 year Kitco trend chart illustrates the situation. Please note the horizonal line which marks the upside breakout threshold that has not be broken for five years. Also note the upward sloping diagonal line which shows gold making lower trading lows in that timeframe. Lower trading lows suggest confidence in a commodity or stock. There are ready buyers whenever that asset experiences a pricing pullback. As the lower lows climb, the upward pressure for a breakout increases.

Friday's United States job creation report was dismay, with only 75,000 new jobs added. We have returned to a situation where bad economic news is positive news for financial markets. The weak May job report will lead to a lowering of Federal Reserve interest rates to stimulate more borrowing. During period of low interest rates, pressure builds to move capital from low risk assets (cash) to higher risk assets (equities).

Low interest rates are bullish for gold prices since gold provides no interest for its holders. Physical gold is a financial insurance policy against inflation, currency swings, or a major financial crisis. Let's connect a few dots moving forward. If U.S. interest rates decrease, then the U.S. dollar will also weaken. It is well known that a weak U.S. dollar is bullish for gold as their relationship is inverse.

United States policy markets wish to see a cheap U.S. dollar to stimulate exports. We must also remember that the U.S. dollar is the world's reserve currency. A weak U.S. dollar is beneficial to other countries who must make foreign exchange payments in the global reserve currency. There are multiple forces attempting to drive the U.S. dollar value downward with respect to other world currencies.

Finally, the United States has weaponized the U.S dollar's status as the world's reserve currency. Sanctions against Russia, Iran and other countries are a form of economic warfare. Depriving access to U.S. dollar-denominated financial systems leads to countries finding other currency alternatives for foreign trading. Just this week, China and Russia announced cooperation to conduct trading among themselves in rubles and yuan, removing their dependency on the U.S. dollar. Weaponizing the U.S. dollar eventually leads those being targeted to find alternative currency trading solutions. Physical gold is the most common alternative for settling account payments given its historical status as hard money.

China and Russia have also been stockpiling physical gold. There are new speculations that an alternate trading currency could be established and settled with physical gold transfers similar to the state of global finance up through World War II.

My conclusion is that physical gold will see a breakout and price increase in the near term. When and under what circumstances remains an unknown. In the meantime, I will continue to slowly add more physical gold to GFRC inventory as a business valuation hedge.

 

Seth's Blog: Ahead of the curve

GFRC has reached another critical operational challenge. There is a new bump in the road that must be confronted. Yesterday, I responded to a consignment request in a negative manner. Today brings the possibility of a second rejection of a consignment request. The GFRC business model has proven to be wildly successful. Actually too successful, whereupon demand for services is now well beyond my operational capabilities. GFRC has reached the point of a strategy change and a few bumps in the road are possible while optimizing a business strategy.

I found the following blog post from Seth Godin as a vehicle to help explain what might be coming for the GFRC business during the balance of 2019 and into the future. Let's see how many readers catch my point.

Ahead of the curve

When you’re traveling ahead of the curve, it’s silly to imagine that the road will be straight and flat.

It’s actually more like a cliff. With bumps.

That’s all part of the deal. That’s why it’s not called the curve. You’re in the void, uncharted, ahead of what’s behind.

In fact, ahead of the curve, the weather is pretty lousy too. Often with catastrophic lightning storms.

On the other hand, if you choose to work inside this messy metaphor, you get the thrill of finding a new path instead of merely following the old one.

 

Featured Coins of the Day

Let's close out this Blog edition with some absolutely wonderful consignment offerings from the New Hampshire Collection. This individual painstakely considers his purchases and selects only the finest coins possible for monies spent. Any of the following offerings would be a great acquistion.

New Hampshire Collection Consignment - CAC Approved Offerings

1818 B-2 PCGS AU50 CAC 25C

1829 JR-6 PCGS AU55 CAC 10C                                                   1869 PCGS PR64 CAC 25C

    

1902 PCGS MS64 CAC G$2.5                                                   1907 PCGS MS64+ G$5

    

 

Thank-you for visiting the Blog on a Saturday morning. Shipping is up next, followed by time outdoors on the John Deere tractor moving the lawn and other tasks.

I will be checking emails and voice messages throughout the day for potential coin orders. Please have patience with my response time, as sitting in front of a laptop is not high on my priority list during a gorgeous early summer day.

 

 

 

June 7, 2019

Back of the Bus at Summmer FUN - Booth 827

Greetings on a Friday and welcome to the Blog.

Sunglasses are necessary as bright sunshine penetrates deep into the homestead. After several days of cloudy conditions and rain, my southern Maine day starts with deep blue skies and a landscape draped in wide-ranging natural green shades. This will be a wonderful day for outdoor work, or at a minimum, a long health walk. Once again, I'm so pleased to be back home.

Back of the Bus at Summmer FUN

One can easily become spoiled in terms of bourse floor table positioning after the Summer Baltimore show. Though some may not agree, I believe that bourse floor table location is an important parameter that must be managed. Having high quality inventory is also paramount for a successful trade show event.

GFRC missed the 2018 Summer FUN show due to Renee and Mike's wedding. Since not being front and center on my coin show schedule, the decision to take a table at 2019 Summer FUN was made after the application deadline. Being missing in action the prior year and overlooking the 2019 application deadline did not bode well for table positioning.

This week, a thick white manila envelope arrived from the FUN organization containing GFRC's assigned Summer FUN table number and a bourse floor map. The map was scanned and converted into an image file for sharing. GFRC will be located at Booth 827 which is at the back of the bus. No surprise here, and a lesson learned. Now the emphasis shifts to marketing the location in the Blog, and hoping that the word gets around among the Florida coin club communities. On a positive note, the GFRC booth is on a straight line from the entrance.

Summer FUN - GFRC at Corner Booth 827

 

StoneCold Collection Consignment - Strictly Original Liberty Seated Offerings

Last week, the StoneCold Collection consignor and I were driving around Connecticut and visiting high end audio shops. It was a thoroughly enjoyable experience and an opportunity to learned a ton about the current state of audiophile electronics.

Before wrapping up our day at The Audio Store in Newington, StoneCold handed off five Liberty Seated coinage duplicates for consignment. Those pieces were photographed and priced out yesterday. Asking prices were quickly settled with the lot scheduled to reach the price list by evening time today.

The consignment highlight is a choice original 1848 Liberty Seated dollar that is accurately certified at the PCGS EF40 grade level. I just love the toning patterns on this offering. For those who are not experts on the Seated dollar denomination, 1848 Philadelphia strikes were limited to just 15,000 pieces.

StoneCold Collection - Original Liberty Seated Offerings

1848 PCGS EF40 Seated $1

      1861 PCGS EF45 CAC 50C                                                         1866-S Motto PCGS VF30 50C

    

   1842 PCGS VF30 Seated $1                                                   1860-O PCGS VF30 Seated $1

    

 

A Consignment Wave Rolling Into GFRC

Just when there was a sense that progress was being made on consignment backlog, another consignment wave is building and will start reaching the GFRC shores by the weekend. Major GFRC clients are embracing my set building advice that includes the immediate sale of duplicates to fund the procurement of incremental upgrades. That is what set building is all about. Unless one is completely in love with a duplicate coin, it is wise to quickly turn that holding into fresh capital. Fresh capital easily funds new upgrade purchases. Selling duplicates is also an excellent feedback loop on prior purchases. In other words, how marketable are duplicates at collector purchase prices? That part of the duplicates divestment process is invaluable.

What can GFRC customers expect before Summer FUN? Following is a list of forthcoming consignments in no particular order.

Newtown Collection

Seated 10c: 1854o PCGS MS63 CAC ex Fortin Collection; 1864s PCGS AU53 CAC ex GFRC; 1865s PCGS AU50; 1875-CC IW PCGS MS64 ex GFRC; 1875-CC BW PCGS MS63 CAC

Seated 50c: 1869 PCGS AU58 CAC

Tenafly Collection

A five piece duplicates consignment including an 1861-S PCGS VF20 CAC Seated quarter.

Jim Poston Collection

Jim has been actively buying again. His latest shipment of fresh inventory arrives on Saturday. Contents are unknown at this point in time.

LaSalle Collection

An offering of Capped Bust halves and Liberty Seated quarters..

Twin Lakes Collection

This AU58 centric collector has decided it is time to divest a lot of 35 duplicates ranging from Indian cents to United States gold. The list is simply too long to publish in today's Blog.

Osprey Collection

Dan is enjoying a New England holiday and that means visiting area coin shops. He just can't help himself whether traveling in Europe or the United States. His recent acquisitions are starting to accumulate. More information will be available prior to the Summer FUN show.

Gerry Fortin Reference Collection

It is my turn too! There are two double row slabbed boxes of Liberty Seated dimes, from my reference collection, quietly waiting to be scheduled into the consignment flow.

 

Global Financial News

The talk of interest rate cuts and the potential for another round of ECB quantitative easing has steadied global equity markets. Central banks are afraid that the large global debt overhang could turn into a financial crisis. Best to head off a potential crisis early with more juice from the punch bowl.

Gold and crude oil prices have stabilized at current levels. Spot gold is quoting at $1338/oz while crude oil has moved up to $53/bbl. Bitcoin is inching back to the $8000 milestone and quoting just shy at $7969. The U.S. 10 Year Treasury yield stands at 2.13%

Germany is the economic engine of the Eurozone. This Seeking Alpha headline explains why the ECB is moving rapidly to lower interest rates and contemplating more quantitative easing.

Further signals of an economic slowdown are continuing to build, with Germany reporting a staggering 3.7% plunge in April exports - the most in nearly four years - alongside a 1.9% contraction in industrial output. The figures were severe enough for the country's central bank, the Bundesbank, to slash its 2019 GDP forecast in half to just 0.6%. "For economic growth and, to a lesser extent, for the rate of inflation, it is the downside risks that predominate as things stand today," the central bank said in a biannual update of its projections.

The Huawei crackdown continues in the western world, with growing concern from U.S. tech giants about losing Chinese market share. Google's worries are self serving.

Facebook is no longer allowing pre-installation of its apps on Huawei phones, the latest blow for the Chinese tech giant as it struggles to keep its business afloat in the face of a U.S. ban on its purchase of American parts and software. Meanwhile, Google has warned if the U.S. administration moves ahead with sweeping ban on Huawei, it risks compromising national security, FT reports. While the sanctions are expected to hurt Huawei in the short term, industry experts say it could force the company to develop more home-grown technologies, hurting the dominance of American companies.

Grocery battle hits next level - Would you allow strangers to enter your home and stock your refrigerator? Walmart believes so.

As the delivery wars continue to heat up, Walmart is restarting a service that brings grocery orders inside shoppers' homes and into their kitchen refrigerators. This time, Walmart will use its own employees - who have been with the retailer for at least a year - and use its own vehicles. Workers will also be required to wear wearable cameras and enter the home by putting in a one-time code on a smart lock. The service will begin this fall across three cities - Kansas City, Missouri; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; and Vero Beach, Florida.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

The 8:00 am Blog publishing time has come and gone. Now it is 8:30 am and it's time to hit the upload button followed by starting another regular GFRC business day.

I will be in the GFRC office for most of the day and looking forward to your phone calls or email based orders. Thanks for visiting with me this morning.

 

 

 

June 6, 2019

Many Short Topics Today!

Greetings on a another wet southern Maine morning and welcome to the Blog.

Heavy rains are at hand as another GFRC business day arrives. Today's rains should wrap up by noon time. The next few days are forecasted to be warm and sunny. Warm is a relative term in Maine. Forecasted highs going into the weekend will be in the mid to high 70s! Lawns are colored a lush green sustained by all the recent rainfall. By the weekend, it will be time to spend a few hours on the John Deere tractor to groom the new growth. How I enjoy that mindless task along with time away from coins and the office.

On a negative seasonal note, wood ticks have arrived. 2019 brings a plentiful crop. Already, I've removed several ticks acquired by just walking on the property. Can you imagine working in the back 20 acres cutting trees? My body would be covered with ticks.

Shifting attention to a broader perspective, the western world is focused on the 75th anniversary of the D-Day invasion of Normandy shores. Brave young men fought and died to relieve the world of tyranny. Volumes have been written on the topic and there is little else I could add. Modern society owes much to the Greatest Generation, and it's easy to forget or overlook their historical contributions due to fast paced lives in the 21st century. Speaking of the 21st century, I do believe there is another Cold War underway. However, the war is being fought with economic weapons.

 

GFRC at Booth 827 at Summer Fun Show

When one is late to a party, then there is a good chance that seating will be at the back of the room. That is the case for the upcoming Summer FUN show in Orlando.

After not attending the 2018 event due to family matters and then sending in the 2019 application late, GFRC has been placed at Booth 827 next to the message center. In tomorrow's Blog, I will publish the Summer Fun bourse floor layout and Booth 827 location. Best to start advertising the remote location early to enable customers to find Gerry and Dan. GFRC will have a corner table with eight cases of great silver type and United States gold. Please check back tomorrow for more details.

 

Huge Love Token Collection Arrives at the GFRC Office

Since the February timeframe, I have been in communications with a gentleman from Tennesse concerning an inherited love token collection. GFRC is one of the few to offer a love token price list on the internet. When individuals conduct a Google search for love tokens, GFRC is one of the top links. As a result of the notoriety, this individual contacted me concerning a substantial collection his wished to sell. A written list of the contents was first provided. The list described a wide-ranging collection including many large denomination silver pieces, foreign copper, some gold, and the usual engraved Victorian era half dimes and dimes. After several months of discussion, we decided to move forward with the property transfer.

The collection arrived yesterday. Below is a quick cellphone image of the double row box. Nearly all are stored in old yellow paper 2x2 envelopes with meticulous notes on each. Before starting today's Blog edition, I took a quick tour of the box and opened a few envelopes. Yes indeed, this is a historically significant collection. So far, my favorite is a mystically engraved 1876 Trade Dollar that could the subject of substantial research and a Gobrecth Journal article. John Frost, are you reading this Blog edition?

 

Orchard Liberty Seated Quarters Reach Price List

As promised in Wednesday's Blog, Liberty Seated quarter offerings from the Orchard Collection reached the price list late last evening. I hope that those with First Rights of Refusals will consider the offer prices and render a quick purchase or pass decision as I expect more inquiries today.

 

More Dr. Glenn Peterson Liberty Seated Halves Arriving to Price List

The great thing about operating GFRC is the seemingly endless supply of consigned coins waiting to be processed and loaded to the price list. Case in point is another lot of Dr. Glenn Peterson Liberty Seated halves from his Dansco collection. I worked until 11:00 pm Wednesday evening formatting the low mintage Philadelphia later dates images. Those offerings should appear as a client gallery this afternoon, followed by reaching the price list before bedtime.

 

Global Financial News

Major central banks throughout the globe are sensing a slowdown in economic growth and moving to a "dovish' or easing posture. U.S equity markets are in rally mode now that the Federal Reserve has signaled a forthcoming rate cut. The China - U.S. trade war provides Fed Chair Jerome Powell with the cover to slowly ease interest rates.

As with our favorite commodities and long bond, crude oil prices continues to exhibit significant weakness at $51.79/bbl. This is great news for American drivers as gasoline prices should be dropping to the mid $2.00 per gallon range. Actual prices vary state by state due to taxes. Spot gold continues to hold recent gains at $1341/oz and is positioned at a multi-year breakout level. Will it break through or fall back? I'm sure there are huge bets on COMEX concerning gold's next pricing move. Bitcoin is quoting at $7798 to start the day.

The 10 Year Treasury bond yield has dropped to 2.1%. I'm reading forecasts of a continued bond rally with yields potentially reaching 1.75% within months.

Let's wrap up this segment with several noteworthy Seeking Alpha headlines. We open with the European Central Bank contemplating more negative interest rates.

The European Central Bank announced its easy-money exit strategy one year ago, but twelve months on, the world couldn't look more different. With dovish policy signals being broadcast across the globe, the ECB's Governing Council meeting in Vilnius will be the event of the day. Traders are now betting on a cut in the next year, only months after a raise had been the consensus, while hopes are high for more details on what the central bank's renewed TLTRO program will look like. "The conceivable range for the spread (for the negative rate) is between 0 bps and -40 bps," said Natixis's Dirk Schumacher. "A small spread would imply that the new TLTROs are predominantly meant to provide a backstop. A high spread would signal that the ECB sees a need to stimulate bank lending."

The Reserve Bank of India is easing interest rates.

Growth impulses have weakened significantly, the Reserve Bank of India said as it cut its benchmark interest rate for a third time this year. The widely-expected move saw the repurchase rate reduced by 25 basis points to 5.75%, the lowest in nine years, to support an economy growing at the slowest pace since 2014. The six-member Monetary Policy Committee voted unanimously for the cut and also switched its stance to "accommodative" from neutral.

Trump's Mexico tariff threat is impacting that nation's bond rating and future borrowing costs.

"Progress is being made" in talks with Mexico, according to President Trump, but "not nearly enough!" Discussions will continue today, but "unless an agreement is reached a 5% tariff on Mexican goods would begin on Monday." The peso yesterday slid as much as 1.3% as credit ratings agency Fitch downgraded the nation’s sovereign debt near junk status - citing risks posed by heavily indebted oil company Pemex and trade tensions - while Moody's lowered its outlook to negative.

As mentioned earlier in the Blog, we are experience another Cold War; this one conducted with economic weapons. China is moving ahead internally with 5G networks before the U.S. stops Huawei from accessing foreign-made components.

Speeding up its 5G launch, China has given the go-ahead for its major state-owned mobile carriers to start rolling out next generation networks, granting licenses to China Telecom, China Mobile, China Unicom and China Radio and Television. "First and foremost, the tech cold war is going on, and China does not want to remain behind the U.S. and Korea," said Neil Shah, research director at Counterpoint Research. "Second, in light of the Huawei trade ban, (Chinese officials) want to provide Huawei with an early base to use their equipment and roll out before they don’t have access to U.S. components and gear."

And finally, being a country person, I don't get the need for Amazon drones delivering toothpaste and soap to my doorstep. People should be in contact with other people and take advantage of routine shopping to gain a sense of belonging to a community.

Amazon drones will be making deliveries in "months," beginning test runs of toothpaste and household goods weighing as much as five pounds. "From paragliders to power lines to a corgi in the backyard, the brain of the drone has safety covered," said Jeff Wilke, who oversees Amazon's retail business. Where will the program start? It's not known yet, but the devices will make deliveries within 7.5 miles of a company warehouse and reach customers within 30 minutes.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

My apology for the lack of coin images in today's edition. Tomorrow will be better.

My morning is replete with activities including packing/shipping and composing a late President's Message for the upcoming Gobrecht Journal. How I wish that days could expand from 24 to 36 days!

Thanks for stopping by and I look forward to seeing you tomorrow at the Blog.

 

 

 

 

June 5, 2019

Orchard Liberty Seated Quarter Collection Debut!

Greetings once again and welcome to the Blog.

As forecasted, rains have returned to southern Maine and will continue into Thursday. Yesterday was another perfect weather day with high temp topping out at 70F, sunny skies, and a reasonable breeze. The breeze is paramount for keeping black flies away when working outdoors. That I did and it is a two Advil morning. The homestead driveway has been trowel patched with six buckets of asphault grout. Winter freezing of the earth during Maine winters is tough on roadways and driveways. Over time, the base will shift. Large rocks are pushed upward and gravity pulls gravel that rests on an incline. As a result, our driveway develops more cracks each year. At some point, I will hire a local firm to grind down the asphault and refinish; but first, rocks must be dug up and the base reconstructed. It is a substantial project. For 2019, I believed the procurement of a new sound system was a higher priority as compared to the $120 cost for six buckets of asphault grout and half a day's labor to apply. Now for those two Advils.

Seth Godin's Blog: Surrounded by yes

Living on the internet has become a way of life for many in society. I'm an obvious example as the GFRC business is a national and global numismatic sales entity. I have never sold a coin to someone locally and rarely to a Maine customer.

But living on the internet brings risks. Well known are hackers and viruses. But other forces are also at play on the internet that may not be so apparent. Seth Godin shares his perspective. The short commentary is worth the read, followed by contemplation. It may explain some of the behaviors I see from certain new Collectors Corner inquiries.

Surrounded by yes

It’s good news and bad news.

The web knows what you like and it’s working hard to surround you with reminders that you’re right.

This is good news because it can help an outsider feel more normal. If you have something you’re interested in, you’ll see more of it, news about it, affirmations… all of which will help you find the confidence to speak up and lead. Everywhere you look, you’ll see reminders that the world is actually just the way you hoped.

And this is bad news because it amplifies bad behavior. It normalizes behavior that successful cultures work hard to diminish. This reinforcement makes your bubble ever thicker and makes it easy to believe that in fact, the world does revolve around you.

Everyone doesn’t agree with you, the web just makes it feel that way.

 

Another Round of Summer Baltimore New Purchases

I worked late into Tuesday evening to ensure there were several galleries for today's Blog. First up is a nice mix of copper, silver and, gold coins to consider. AU58 CAC approved coins in all denominations are quite popular and being added to inventory whenever located. The 1857 Large Date large cent is perfectly original and choice. Next is an 1856-O Seated quarter graded PCGS AU50 with eye appeal. This date is available in grades up to EF but become scarce in AU.

The 1849 WB-9 Seated half is the definition of crusty original, and resides in ANACS old white holder. The double date is bold, but there is a bonus to be had; some date strike doubling. Then there is more quality gold to review. The 1904 G$2.5 is a stunning little piece with huge mint frost and eye appeal. Some reverse field chatter hold back the grade and makes this piece a compelling value. We close with two $20 Saints that should garner attention as gold climbs to $1341/oz.

More Quality Summer Baltimore New Purchases

1857 Lg Date PCGS AU58 CAC 1C                                                   1856-O PCGS AU50 25C        

    

1849 WB-9 Double Date ANACS EF45 50C                                             1904 PCGS MS62 G$2.5              

    

1908 NM PCGS MS63 G$20                                                   1909-D PCGS MS63 OGH G$20

    

 

Orchard Liberty Seated Quarter Collection Debut!

As the GFRC business continues to establish tenure, I'm learning there are many coin collectors in Pennsylvania. A fair number are pursuing Liberty Seated coinage, as is the case for the Orchard Collection. This individual walked up the GFRC table at the Summer Baltimore show based on recommendations from numismatic friends. He wished to divest his Liberty Seated quarter collection and was told that GFRC would be the best option. So here we are with the initial offering of slabbed better date quarters from that collection. For the record, the key date Carson City pieces are missing from the set. Asking prices for the following pieces have been determined and I'm waiting for the consignor's approval to list. This lot should reach the price list by evening time. Already, there are FRoRs on the 1864-S and 1886 quarters. Yes, the 1886 is the sole PCGS AU58 certified.

Orchard Collection - Important Liberty Seated Quarter Dates

1864-S PCGS F12 25C

 1860-S NGC G06 25C                                  1865-S PCGS F12 25C                               1869 PCGS VF30 25C

            

       1872-S PCGS Genuine 25C                  1873 Closed 3 PCGS Genuine 25C                   1886 PCGS AU58 25C              

            

 

Global Financial News

World wide equity markets remain on edge but have quieted down in the near term. Commodity prices remain active and continue to reflect economic fears resulting from the China - U.S. trade war along with growing international debt levels at the country and corporation level.

Spot gold increased again during the overnight hours to $1341/oz. Gold now confronts the steel overhead ceiling that has block many prior rallies. Crude oil pricing has seen a substantial pullback in the past week and currently quotes at $53/bbl. Cryptocurrency optimism is also waning with Bitcoin priced at $7806/coin. Finally, the U.S. 10 Year Treasury bond yield stands at 2.13%.

Seeking Alpha offers several headlines that are worth sharing. We open with the Federal Reserve chair signaling that an interest rate cut may be in the cards. I believe the larger issue is the amount of zombie corporations that remain in business, being sustained by low interest rates. Further rate increases would launch a corporate debt crisis.

President Trump may finally get the rate cut he has been demanding as top Fed officials began warning this week that the global trade war may force them to respond. Chair Jerome Powell made a subtle move in that direction on Tuesday, dropping his standard reference to the Fed being "patient," and said it is prepared to "act as appropriate to sustain the expansion" amid intensifying trade tensions. Futures are now pointing to opening gains in the U.S., up about 0.6%, after the major indexes yesterday had their second-best day of 2019. The DJIA rose 512 points, while the S&P 500 jumped 2.1% and Nasdaq Composite surged 2.7%.

Samsung is exiting China-based manufacturing of its cellphones.

Samsung Electronics is cutting production and laying off workers at its only remaining smartphone plant in China as it continues to shift production to lower-cost Asia locations. The world's biggest smartphone maker has only about 1% market share in the country, down from about 20% in 2013. The intervening years have seen a bout of anti-South Korean sentiment following a diplomatic spat, as well as a shift to local champions like Huawei at a time of deteriorating Sino-U.S. relations.

GM and Ford China operations are being impacted by the trade war.

General Motors is not getting a pass on tariffs snagging its Chinese-built Buick Envision. The Trump administration has refused to grant the automaker an exclusion for the SUV, keeping in place a 25% duty on the import. According to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, the vehicle is "strategically important or related" to Chinese industrial programs such as "Made in China 2025," which it views as a national security risk. Separately, China has fined Ford's Changan joint venture $24M for violating anti-monopoly law.

Italy is once again heading towards disciplinary actions from its European Union masters.

Recommending the launch of disciplinary procedures, the European Commission has escalated its debt level battle against Italy as the country has only made limited progress in hitting European budget targets and backtracked on structural reforms. The Commission, however, has not yet opened an "excessive deficit procedure" - EU states must first have their say in two weeks' time - though it's still a significant move in the long clash between Brussels and Italy's coalition government.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

Let's end this Blog edition without a Featured Coins segment. There is a substantial amount of shipping to get done along with several overnight orders from new Collectors Corner customers. Yes, I need those two Advils as a first priority...

Given the rainy weather, I will be in the office most of the day and working until 9:00 pm. A quick road trip to the Portsmouth NH Best Buy may take place today or tomorrow to retrieve the 65" Sony OLED purchased last week. First priority is checking to see if the box will fit inside the MDX SUV.

Thanks for visiting the Blog on a Wednesday morning!

 

 

 

June 4, 2019

Physical Gold Makes Strong Upside Move!

Greetings and welcome to the Blog on a beautiful southern Maine morning.

How great it is to live in Maine when the day starts with a cool temperature of 53F along with gorgeous blue skies as a backdrop to the colorful landscaping outside the office window. It is a pleasure to be alive and enjoying nature's visual bounty.

Today's Blog is a bit delayed as priority was given to watching FOX News video of the President Trump state visit and Buckingham Palace banquet. Queen Elizabeth remains enchanting after being on the throne for seven decades.

Physical Gold Makes Strong Upside Move!

Global equity markets are in turmoil due to trade wars. Now the United States is beginning inquiries into the business practices of the high tech monopolies. Investors are worried and equity profits are being redirected into safer assets. The result is a sharp increase in physical gold prices in the past several days. If there was a time in recent history for physical gold to break out above the $1350 steel ceiling, then global conditions appear to be supportive. Following is this morning's Kitco two year technical chart which illustrates gold's strong upside move. The current quote is $1330/oz. Most impressive for the rally is the fact that the U.S. dollar remains strong and the U.S 10 Year Treasury bond yield is down to 2.1% Clearly, there is a flight to safety which is gold and United States bonds.

Kitco 2 Year Spot Gold Technical Chart

 

Len Augsburger Guest Blog: Cool Coins in the GFRC Bourse Case

Our resident guest blogger, Len Augsburger, is back with a marvelous review of an 1851 PCGS EF40 CAC Liberty Seated quarter that was added to inventory at the Summer Baltimore show. This is the second time that this piece appears on the GFRC price list. Don't I enjoy buying back coins that have been previously sold into collections.

Just about any coin has a lot of interesting things going on, if one looks hard enough. This 1851 PCGS EF40 / CAC quarter, recently arrived in the GFRC inventory, is such an example. Let’s start with the date. Two things are immediately apparent – the date slopes upwards, and the date is quite large, consuming most of the vertical space between the rim and the base of rock (this area is known as the “exergue,” but that is not such a common word even for coin collectors). A quick check of the Briggs reference confirms there is only one known obverse die for this date, and this piece matches Briggs’ description. The date style is arguably too large, and the Mint agreed, moving to smaller date punches for the quarter series beginning in 1859. This wasn’t the first time the Mint had considered this problem – look at the 1848 and 1849 half dimes in the Steve Crain collection (https://nnp.wustl.edu/library/imagecollection/514182). The 1848 dates literally overlap the rock, and this problem was clearly addressed in 1849.

The year 1851 is also significant. With the discovery of California gold in 1848, gold began flooding the world markets and caused the value of gold to decrease in relation to silver. In turn, the U.S. silver coinage became worth more than it’s face value. Those of us who experienced the same phenomenon in the 1960s and 1970s know what happens next – the silver coins quickly disappeared from circulation. I was seeing silver coins in circulation into the early 1970s but things got very dry after that. The 1850s were no different. Instead of taking silver to the Mint and having it coined, it was more profitable to trade the silver for gold and then have the gold coined. And that’s exactly what happened – gold coin mintages shot up, the $20 gold denomination was introduced, and the silver coinage plummeted. The 1851 half dollar is a key date in the series, and the 1851 silver dollar even more so. The quarter is not quite in the same rarity range but still merits “semi-key” status.

Finally, we get to the coin itself. Look at the stars on the right side as opposed to those on the left. See the sharper detail on the left stars? Now, flip the coin over and look at the same areas on the reverse. The strong stars on the left side correspond to the letters of UNITED on the reverse, which are noticeably weak. Look at AMERICA to the right, which is more boldly impressed – this corresponds to the weaker stars on the right. It is visibly apparent that the striking pressure was not even distributed across the entire planchet. Striking variance throughout the Seated series is all over the place, as industrial production was technically evolving. As a rule, the branch Mint coins have wider variance than the Philadelphia pieces, but even Philadelphia was not immune to problems, as seen here. This sort of strike on a 21st century coin would be most unusual.

Grading standards ask us to look at strike, marks, luster, and eye appeal, and in today’s market the last two attributes tend to be the most highly valued. Marks on this piece are consistent with the grade, and photography can get tricky here. In the photograph, my eye is drawn to the marks in the right obverse field, but it’s quite possible these are less obtrusive in person. Eye appeal can be a personal issue, but this one scores well in my book. I like the “dirt” in the protected areas, which to me is a sign of originality. Luster is the hardest attribute to judge from a photograph. For a coin at this level, I’m expected hints of original luster, but this is hard to discern without rotating the coin in hand. For this one it’s best to give Gerry a call if you have a question, and he’ll be happy to explain further. Overall, CAC granted a “thumbs up” to this particular piece, and I expect it to move quickly.

 

GFRC Price List Update and Forthcoming Blog Image Galleries

Monday brought a long busy day. New Liberty Seated dime die varieties from the Indiana Collection are posted to the price list along with much of the Summer Baltimore United States gold new purchases. With favorable weather conditions, more U.S gold and incremental consignments were photographed and will be prcoessed today. Consigned pieces will be from the Dr. Glenn Peterson's Seated half dollar collection and from a Liberty Seated quarter collection taken in on consignment at Summer Baltimore.

In between the GFRC business activities, I found two hours to apply asphault patch to driveway cracks and wrapped up the day by preparing GFRC's full page advertisement for the upcoming Gobrecht Journal edition. Once again, I was a bit tardy to the June 1 delivery deadline and my apology to editor Bill Bugert.

 

New GFRC Consignments in the Pipeline

The GFRC consignment pipeline remains robust and active. Tenafly just emailed to report a new consignment shipment that should arrive later this week. Newtown is visiting his bank box and extracting recently upgraded duplicates for consignment prior to August ANA. Behind the scenes, I have been in discussion with an individual concerning a huge old time love token collection that includes many half dollar and dollar love tokens. Pricing this collection will be challenging, but we will get it done.

Then there is the StoneCold Collection consignment of Liberty Seated half dollar duplicates to process. If that was not enough, the Twin Lakes Collection consignor is preparing another substantial duplicates shipment. The under $100 pieces may be destined for the new GFRC consignment outlet for lower priced coins. I am mentoring a younger dealer in Shanghai's Yunzhou Antique Mall and sub $100 U.S. coins appear to be selling well for this individual.

 

Featured Coins of the Day

Let's turn the Featured Coins of the Day segment into a mindless exercise as already past the 8:00 am publishing time.

Following are the nine coins being featured in the upcoming GFRC full page ad in the Summer Gobrecht Journal issue. All are priced between $4,250 and $29,000.

1855-S WB-3 NGC AU58 CAC 50C

     1865 F-101a PCGS MS65 10C                                                   1867 F-102 PCGS MS65 CAC 50C

    

1843-O Large O PCGS AU55 25C                                                     1849-O PCGS EF40 25C       

    

         1889 PCGS MS65 50C                                                            1890 PCGS MS65 CAC 50C

    

1848 PCGS MS63+ Seated $1                                                   1873-CC PCGS VF25 Seated $1

    

 

Thank-you for stopping by at the Blog and please consider a numismatic purchase. I will be in the office most of the day with only a short trip to Windham for more asphault driveway patch. The cracks get worst each year which dictates more buckets. This year's requirement is six buckets and an aching back....yet priceless.

See you tomorrow at the Blog.

 

 

 

June 3, 2019

Rolling Out GFRC New Offerings on a Rainy Sunday!

Greetings and welcome to the Blog. Another regular work week is upon us.

How's southern Maine weather? Thank-you for asking. Rains continued during the overnight hours with my front yard draped with light fog as today's edition is prepared. The weather forecast calls for a quick shift to sunny condition and a perfect 68F temperature. It should be a great day for numismatic photography along with patching cracks in the driveway for the nth year in a row.

With unpleasant weather on Sunday, there were ample excuses for staying in the office and processing a wide range of new GFRC offerings. Today's Blog is illustrated with Summer Baltimore United States gold purchases and a fresh Liberty Seated dime consignment from the Indiana Collection. As an FYI, the Baltimore gold offerings are labeled as Part 1 since more are forthcoming. I did not wish to overwhelm the customer base with too much shiny gold!

On Sunday, two more new offerings reach the price as shown next. I'm pleased to report that the 1866 Motto PCGS F12 quarter last just a few hours on the price list before being scooped up by an advanced collector. The 1916-D Barber quarter offers stunning luster and should not last long.

Sunday Price List Arrivals

                1866 Motto PCGS F12 25C                                             1916-D PCGS MS63 25c - Incredible Luster

    

 

Part 1 - Summer Baltimore U.S. Gold New Purchases

Before discussing Summer Baltimore U.S. gold purchases, I'd like to take you on a short tangent and talk about strategies for constructing an incremental GFRC product line. Much was learned in the semiconductor industry on strategies for product development, marketing, sales and application support. Many of those learnings are being applied to the ramping of GFRC's United States gold product line. This product line was launched over three year ago during early 2016 at the Winter FUN show. The initial step was establishing a partnership with a known expert in the U.S. gold arena to compliment my expertise with Liberty Seated coinage. Dan White became an important GFRC consignor and operated under the Osprey Collection name. Since Dan frequently travels to Western Europe, his ability to dig out sheltered U.S. gold was ideal for expanding the product line. Both individuals worked diligently over a three year period to carefully expand GFRC inventory via capital investment and searching out original eye appealing U.S. gold across all denominations. I believe that GFRC's current U.S. gold offerings speak for themselves. It took three year to methodically build up a new product line. Presently, GFRC's United States gold sales have become substantial and are second in revenue generation behind Liberty Seated coinage.

You may think that three years is a long time to construct a product line. In the semiconductor industry, that was the typical forecasted leadtime from initial product design to the point that the integrated IC was offered in an end application on a store shelf. It takes time to build up expertise and ensure that a new IC product meets end of line customer expectations. The same was true for the GFRC U.S. gold product line. Time was necessary to learn who was collecting gold and their expectations. Many collectors pursue gold on a type set basis. Others wish to own gold as a combination bullion and numismatic play. Then there are a advanced collectors who focus on short series like $5 branch mint half eagles. We've yet to find a serious collector of $3 gold, and if you know of a person, I'm all ears.

So with that preamble and background sharing, I hope these insights translate into a new awareness of the amount of effort taken to locate the very best United States gold for GFRC clients. Following are the Part 1 new offerings.

Summer Baltimore New U.S. Gold Purchases - Part 1

1874-CC PCGS AU55 G$20

   1915 PCGS MS64 CAC G$5                                                        1909-S PCGS MS62 CAC G$10

    

          1851 PCGS MS62 CAC G$2.5                     1915 NGC MS63 CAC G$2.5                    1926 PCGS AU58 Rattler G$2.5     

        

  1909-D PCGS MS63 CAC G$5                    1909-D PCGS AU55 OGH G$5                    1901-S NGC MS62 Fatty G$10

        

        1907 NGC AU58 G$10                             1896-S PCGS AU58 G$20                        1908-D NM PCGS MS63 G$20

        

 

New Liberty Seated Dime Variety Offerings From The Indiana Collection

The Indiana Collection consignor has been a passionate enthusiast of the Liberty Seated dime denomination for decades. In today's Blog, we feature a select group of die variety duplicates that seek new homes. The lead illustrations should garner special consideration. The 1838 F-103b, with its bold reverse vertical die crack, is such a cool coin. The 1890-S F-102a die variety was struck with a double die obverse and a heavily lapped reverse die. This die pairing is rarely seen, especially at the mint state grade level.

Indiana Collection Consignment - More Liberty Seated Dime Varieties

1838 F-103b PCGS AU50 10C                                                   1890-S F-102a PCGS MS64 10C

    

 1840-O F-104 PCGS EF45 10C                 1856-O F-109a R6 PCGS EF45 10C               1857-O F-101a PCGS MS63 10C

            

 

Global Financial News

The first week of June starts with dramatic moves in commodity prices and interest rates. It appears that the China - U.S trade war will not be settled in the short term and global equity markets are bracing for the worst. During the weekend, spot gold prices jump up to $1320/oz while the U.S. 10 Year Treasury yield drop to 2.08%. There is economic fear and a flight to the safety with the yellow precious metal and United States Treasuries being obvious choices.

The opening Seeking Alpha headlines captures Beijing Central government propaganda to the mainland population. I remember being in Beijing and Shanghai during the Tibet riots. The Beijing Central government closed down access to western news websites and published the China Daily newpaper for a week with articles by noted Chinese history professors explaining how Tibet was part of China. Bottomline? Beijing was justified for its heavy action to quell the Tibet riots.

Washington's escalating trade war with Beijing has not "made America great again" and has instead "done serious harm to the U.S. economy," according to a Chinese government white paper that said unreasonable demands led to the collapse of trade talks in May. The document also claimed the U.S. was an untrustworthy negotiator and that any further discussions need to be based on sincerity, mutual respect and equality. China doesn't want a trade war with the U.S. but won't shy away from one, according to Vice Commerce Minister Wang Shouwen, who said the latter's strategy of maximum pressure and escalation can't force concessions.

Bitcoin is holding on to recent gains as Facebook's GlobalCoin initiative is reviewed by a trading commission. The current quote is $8512.

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission is in "very early stages of conversations" with Facebook in an effort to understand whether the company's plans for a cryptocurrency would fall under the regulator's auspices, FT reports. The bulk of the trading in Bitcoin, for example, is done via futures rather than cash-based markets, but Facebook's GlobalCoin - a version of a stablecoin - might be limited to the latter and therefore fall outside the CFTC's remit. That would nonetheless leave some "basis risk," a term that describes a situation in which the price of an underlying instrument and its derivative do not move perfectly in sync.

Crude oil prices are also on the move and currently quoting at $54/bbl. It appears that Russia is abandoning military support and training for the Maduro regime in Venezuela leaving just the Cubans to provide protection. If Muduro falls and normalicy is restored in Venezuela, more crude oil will eventually find its way into global markets.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

Thank-you for starting your week with a visit to the Daily Blog. At GFRC, we try hard to be a different type of numismatic dealer with a broad range of services. The Daily Blog is just one aspect of the many collector services.

Please make sure to return on Tuesday as Len Augsburger is back with an indepth guest blog that you will not want to miss.

It is nearly 8:00 am and the Maine sky has cleared with bright sun flooding through my office window. Time for shipping and then more numismatic photography to keep the GFRC new product supply chain flowing.

Yes, I will be in the office all day or outdoors with the cellphone in my pocket. Don't be bashful and please consider a new acquisition. With spot gold prices on the move, now is a great time to focus on $20 double eagles that are priced at the $1400+ level. There is minimal spread between the bullion value and numismatic asking price.

See you on Tuesday!

 

 

 

June 2, 2019

Liberty Seated Dime Web-Book Featured in Coin World June Issue!

Greetings on a Sunday morning and welcome to the Blog.

Another southern Maine starts with cool temperatures (50F) and fog; then the day goes downhill as rains arrive. There will be no time spent on landscaping projects, but let's be positive! My attention can be 100% focused on wrapping up Summer Baltimore new purchases and consignments. Let's throw in a Collectors Corner update too.

Liberty Seated Dime Web-Book Featured in Coin World June Issue!

After a long Saturday in the GFRC office, it was scotch time. Since the weather was not conducive for sitting on the back deck, the living room chair was the alternative. Next to the my favorite stuffed chair was the June 2019 Coin World magazine that had just arrived. As I made my way through the issue, there was a pleasant surprise on page 12. The Back to Basic segement features an article on die variety collecting resources with three screen captures serving as illustrations. I was most pleased to see The Definitive Resource for Liberty Seated Dime Variety Collectors homepage illustrated along with CoinFacts and CONECA. What an honor!

Yes indeed, the Liberty Seated Dime die variety web-book was a ground breaking project that was officially launched around the pivotal 2000 year followed by formal release at the 2004 Pittsburgh ANA World's Fair of Money show. I still remember the day that I stood up at an LSCC meeting and announced the project. The Liberty Seated Dime die variety reference would be exclusively published online without a hardbound book version. OMG, there was much negative feedback from the membership. What was I thinking? How could I not publish a hardbound book? There was one piece of feedback that stuck with me for years, "you will never secure a numismatic legacy unless you publish in hardbound format."

All the negative feedback was ignored due to my unique semiconductor industry experience and upcoming technology roadmap insights. The convergence of laptop computers, wireless communications, and cellphones was rapidly approaching. Now was the time to be bold and build a die variety reference platform that would be accessible on a hand-held device at a coin show. No one wants to lug a heavy reference book for die variety attributions at a dealer's table. Definitely not me!

After the Liberty Seated Dime web-book was launched and became mainstream, the feedback changed. The project was indeed groundbreaking as handheld technology had caught up with the original online publishing vision. Gone was the need for dealers to purchase and pack another die variety reference book for conducting attributions at major shows; only a tablet and internet access was required. Ditto for collectors who love free information! Launching the Liberty Seated Dime web-book brought about a realization that die variety analysis was migrating to online access. Other web-book or ebooks followed over the next decade.

 

LSCC's June 2019 E-Gobrecht Is Published

LSCC Publishing Guru, Bill Bugert, released the June 2019 issue of the E-Gobrecht on Saturday afternoon. This edition presents a host of LSCC activities and regular monthly columns. Dennis Fortier opens the edition with Stories from the Club Table followed by our favorite monthly columns from Greg Johnson, Craig Eberhart, Len Augsburger, and Dennis Fortier with Regional News. To download and read the entire issue, simply click here or on the below cover page graphic.

 

GFRC Summer Baltimore New Purchases and Consignments

Saturday brought a chance to process more Summer Baltimore new purchases and consignments. These are illustrated in the below gallery.

The 1831 JR-5 is a beautiful numismatic offering for type. Yes, the JR-5 die pairing is "common" for the 1831 date but please examine the high resolution images to gain a sense of this coin's exceptional preservation state. Under a bright light, this piece offers a golden glow that is so pleasing. Then there is CAC approval for all those collectors who only purchase CAC approved coins these days. There should be no reason for not adding this magnificent early dime date to your collection as the asking price is fair.

Within this lot are a few other notable pieces. The 1839-O F-108 Huge O dime is strictly original and accurate graded at the VF20 level. It resides in a PCGS old green holder and has been specially priced. The 1875 BF-1 double dime is actually a proof strike regardless of the NGC AU58 circulation strike designation. The bold lint mark by Liberty's left facing hand and the mirrored fields bring testimony to proof strike origins. The final row contains a crusty original 1851 PCGS EF40 CAC approved seated quarter along with a frosty 1873 With Arrows PCGS AU58 seated quarter. The latter has a PCGS mechanical labeling error and is designated as an Open 3 rather than Arrows. If you are into PCGS labeling errors, then this piece may be of interest. If not sold prior to Summer FUN, this one is heading to PCGS for labeling correction.

I hope the GFRC community enjoys the new offerings. More will be listed today.

More Summer Baltimore New Purchases and Consignments

All Available on Price List

1831 JR-5 PCGS MS64 CAC 10C - Osprey Collection

                  1837 F-101 PCGS AU50 OGH 10C                                     1839-O F-108 Huge O PCGS VF20 OGH 10C      

    

1849-O F-101b Large O Raw EF45 10C                                      1875 BF-1 NGC AU58 (Proof Strike) 20C

    

1851 PCGS EF40 CAC 25C                                                             1873 WA PCGS AU58 25C

    

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

There has been much content in today's edition and my first task of the day is completed! Time for a shower and a drive into town for landscaping supplies when HomeDepot opens at 9:00am. Afterwards, the balance of the day will be in the GFRC office and wrapping up Summer Baltimore new purchases and incremental consignments.

Don't be bashful on potential new purchases! I'm just a phone call or email away for accessing quality early silver type and great United States gold.

Thank-you for visiting the Blog. I will be back on Monday morning with more coin images and ramblings.

 

 

 

 

June 1, 2019

Here Comes New GFRC United States Gold!

Greetings and welcome to the Blog on a peaceful Saturday morning.

Yes, rain is in the forecast for southern Maine again along with sub 70F daily highs during the upcoming week. The cold and wet Maine spring is extending into June. Actually, I'm not complaining. Working outdoors in high 60s temperatures is perfect for the many yard improvement activities planned for the summer and fall months. Rather than taking a daily walk with weighs for an hour, that time will be spent each day on small progressive steps towards a major landscape improvement project. Time management is critical with GFRC operating at full throttle.

Friday brought a recovery day in the GFRC office with shipments and a host of month ending new orders. GFRC May sales results were 33% above 2018 levels thanks to excellent patronage from existing customers and the arrival of new friends from Collectors Corner. Already, the overnight order rate towards a fast June sale kick-off is robust.

Seth Godin: Cognitive load and the convenience problem

Since lacking prepared content other than two small galleries, I visited Seth Godin's website and reviewed his recent blogs. Our sage renders comments on excessive cognitive load that has been creeping into our daily lives as information technology continually evolves. Yes, we are able to access information at a staggeringly rapid pace and generate many more daily decisions than our ancestor. There is no question that the pace of life is accelerating due to information technology. The sad part is that this increased cognitive load creates stress. Some of us thrive with stress while others, on the fringe, fall apart and decend into mental chaos.

From my own perspective, I am much happier living in Maine than Florida. The reason is simple. The Maine home brings opportunities to pursue outdoor maintenance and improvement projects in harmony with nature. Getting back to basics is a mentally soothing alternative that balances the endless hours on a laptop and operating the GFRC business. Believe me, living in a Venice Florida condo just 5 minutes away from nearly all personal needs is the epitome of convenience.

Cognitive load and the convenience problem

Why do smart people trade away so much money and freedom for just a little convenience?

We do it all the time. We take the easy path, the simple shortcut or the long-term bad deal simply because it feels easier.

The reason? Thinking is not worth the hassle.

Cognitive load overwhelms us. Too many choices. The stakes feel too high. Every day, we make 1,000 times as many different decisions as our cavemen ancestors did. We’re exhausted from all the decisions, and more than that, from the narrative we have about making them poorly.

Over the years, marketers have offered us one wonder or another in exchange for just a little cognitive load. And those promises have often been empty. Not worth the hassle.

So now, we’ll press the re-order button like a pigeon in a lab. It’s easier.

If you want people to stop and think, you’ll need to do two things: Make a very big promise… and then keep it.

 

Quality GFRC United States Gold New Purchases

2019 Summer Baltimore is in the history books and time to rollout the United States gold that was purchased at the show or consigned from the Oprey Collection.

We open today's display with two wonderful 1834 Plain 4 Classic head $5 half eagles that Dan and I could not pass up for inventory. Talk about preservation state contrast between the two pieces. The MS62 example has lustrous greenish-gold patina while the AU58 is covered with an old time orange-gold skin. Look for these on the price list by afternoon hours.

A Super 1834 Plain 4 Classic Head $5 Pair

1834 Classic-Plain 4 PCGS MS62 G$5                                           1834 Classic-Plain 4 PCGS AU58 G$5

    

 

Dan White's European travels resulted in even more purchases than first reported. How about a nice four piece set of early branch mint $5 quarter eagle gold to spice up the GFRC price list? Coloring and eye appeal is nicely matched across the offering. These are freshly graded and CAC reviewed. All have mintages under 100,000 and will be priced attractively for their overall quality.

Early Branch Mint $5 Half Eagles - Osprey Collection

1843-D Med Date PCGS EF45 CAC G$5                                      1843-O Sm Letters PCGS AU50 G$5

    

1845-O PCGS EF40 CAC G$5                                                       1846-O PCGS EF45 CAC G$5

    

 

Featured Consignor of the Day

Last week, the New Hampshire Collection consignor indicated he was heading off to a week long holiday in upstate New York. I was on my own in terms of Daily Blog grammar and spelling integrity. He also provided pricing flexibility instructions for his consigned items before leaving email contact. It seems like a good time to feature his coins and hopefully find new homes for a few.

It is difficult to believe that the 1818 B-2 Capped Bust quarter has not sold. This piece has to be one of the most attractive examples seen since starting GFRC operations.

If you don't like the asking prices, then consider rendering an offer. All I can do is say no and revert with a counter offer.

New Hampshire Collection - CAC Approved Offerings

1818 B-2 PCGS AU50 CAC 25C

1829 JR-6 PCGS AU55 CAC 10C                                                   1869 PCGS PR64 CAC 25C

    

1902 PCGS MS64 CAC G$2.5                                                   1907 PCGS MS64+ CAC G$5

    

 

So ends today's Blog edition. Yes, I will be in the office the entire day given the forecast for more cloud cover and rain. There are many new Baltimore purchases and consignments to load onto the price list.

Please check back this evening at the Blog for a new client gallery and also the 30 day price list for new offerings.

Thank-you for visiting with me today and wishing everyone a restful weekend.

 

 

 

May 31, 2019

A Connecticut Sound System Shopping Adventure!

Greetings on the final day in May 2019 and welcome to the Blog.

My apology for the lack of numismatic content in today's ramblings as Thursday was a long sound system shopping day. The end outcome was favorable and I am thrilled with the selections. Before going further, a major shout out is warranted for the StoneCold Collection consignor for arranging appointments at two Connecticut audio shops. Without his kind help and thorough advice, locating a dream sound system would not have been straightforward and fun. Just as Dan White and I work coin pre-shows together and use consensus decisioning making on purchases, the StoneCold Collection consignor and Gerry finally located the ideal sound system that brought consensus agreement.

There are many parallels between passionate numismatists and audiophiles. This should become apparent as you read through this Blog edition. Numismatics has a special vocabulary as does the audiophile world. One needs to understand audio equipment technological changes and evolution to gain a true sense of today's electronics. Thursday brought an intense crash course on the technological evolution behind today's products.

Take 5 Audio - New Haven, CT

I was up early on Thursday due to a 10:00 am appointment in New Haven at Take 5 Audio. Take 5 Audio is located on Whitney St in the heart of Yale University. Take 5 Audio stocks Dynasound and Wilson speakers along with lower priced B&W. My sound system budget is $25,000, which limited the speaker options to the $12,000 to $16,000 per pair range. Bob is the owner of Take 5 Audio and a most knowledgeable audiophile. StoneCold and I listened to the Dynasounds and quickly discarded this option. We moved on to Wilson speakers and first audtioned a pair of Sashas at $25,000/pair. Dave Wilson is famous in the high end audio world for his studio monior Watt/Puppy 5 through 8 series and transitioned that technology into beautifully crafted home speaker/furniture products. The Sashas were wonderful but out of budget. Then we listened to Sabrinas at $16,000/pair and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. The Sabrinas were well balanced and not as "bright" as the Bowers & Wilkins 803. As Bob mentioned, the B&W 803 are wonderful speakers early on but with time can become tiring as too bright at the high frequencies. The Take 5 Audio session ended at 1:00 pm with Bob committing to produce a sound system proposal based on the Sashas against my budget.

Lunch took place a Pepe Pizzeria, an iconic eatery in New Haven. Yes indeed, the pizza was out of this world and worth the time to visit. Then we drove north to Newington to visit with Bernie at the The Audio Store. Bernard Manocchio is a lovely Italian man who has been selling audio equipment for most of his adult life. Bernie knew his products and stocked a host of speaker brands and models. We arrived at 2:30 pm and by sheer coincidence, the U.S. national sales manager for the Focal speaker (France) and Naim electronics (Great Britian) visited with Bernie. StoneCold and I had the undivided attention of two serious audiophile for the balance of the afternoon.

The Audio Store - Newington, CT

The Audio Store audition started with Focal speakers. Focal speakers are available in multiple product lines from $700 to $100,000+ per pair. The top of the line speakers are Utopia, then Sopra, and the more budget friendly Kanta. Our listening experience started with a Sopra N2 pair priced at $16,000; a direct competitor to the B&W 803 and the Wilson Sabrinas. Frankly, we were not impressed with the Sopra speakers. Could it be that hearing exhaustion was setting in? The Sopra N2s were precise speakers but lacked low end response and did not image well. What do I mean by imaging? When listening to a pair of stereo speakers and closing one's eyes, you should hear a wall of sound and not separate left and right channels. The B&W 803 offered superior imaging as a reference. Next to be auditioned were a pair Paradigm Personal 5F speakers, manufactured in Canada, and at roughly at the same price range as the B&W 803, Wilson Sabrinas, and Focal Sopras. Paradigm speakers are famous for using beryllium metal in their tweeters and midrange components. It took only five minutes of listening to discard the Paradigms as they are all about high frequency performance and tuned for classical music listening. They are terrible rock n' roll speakers.

At this point, StoneCold and I are tired. The choices appear to be between the B&W 803s and the Wilson Sabrinas. The final Audio Store option is a pair of lower priced ($12,000/pair) Focal Kanta N3s. On principle, we gave the Focal Kantas a listen. The Focal U.S. sales manager warned us that the Kanta line brings a more "fluffy" sound and are best as all around speakers rather than being strict audiophile instruments. I believe he was attempting to communicate that the Kanta N3s are great rock n' roll speakers for the average person rather than being geared for critical listening of classical or jazz music. He was right! All listening exhaustion disappeared as we played Peter Gabriel's Red Rain for the nth time as the opening auditioning song. The Kanta N3s offered superior imaging and were perfectly balanced across the entire frequency range range. They pumped out deep bass when audio tracks contained the content but performed magnificently during the audition of Loreena McKennitts' Nights at the Alhambra. StoneCold and I looked at each other and agreed, the Kanta N3 were the best speakers heard the entire day and provided a comfortable listening experience. We wanted more and did not wish to leave the Audio Store. We continued to explore the Kanta N3 with all types of CD recordings brought by StoneCold. Every CD performance was exceptional from Fleetwood Mac, Dire Straits to King Crimson. StoneCold had to return home at 5:30 pm, so we closed out his day with Peter Gabriel's Here Comes the Flood. The decision was made to purchase the Kanta N3s, and at a lower price point!

Focal Kanta N3

After StoneCold departed, I remained at the Audio Store and worked with Bernie and the Focal/Naim sales manager to assemble a complete sound system within my budget. The monies saved by purchasing the Kanta N3 allowed for the acquisition of top of the line Naim power electronics with integrated streaming. Todd (the Focal/Naim sales manager), just happened to bring an integrated Naim power amp with him. His visit at the Audio Store was designed to convince Bernie to stock the Naim product line. Todd added the Naim power amp to the Focal N3s and we listened for another hour. One can read spec sheets until blue in the face but listening to the Focal Kanta N3 driven by Naim power amp convinced me to commit and move forward. Then we added a Sony BlueRay player and a lower priced Marantz surround sound A/V receiver to drive the back two channels on a pass through basis. If wishing to move from stereo listening and adding the rear speakers, just turning on the A/V receiver will do the trick. Best of all, all components will be shipped directly to Maine home and Bernie will drive up to Maine in several weeks to assemble and tune the entire system as part of the deal. He has coins left by his father that need professional evaluation. This I will do while he is assembling the new basement sound system.

I finally made it home at 11:00 pm and immediately went to bed as no energy left to respond to GFRC orders.

Summary and Conclusion

Why did I not go with the B&W 803s? The Best Buy sound system solution supporting the 803s was mediocre. The Rotel electronics or using a Marantz A/V receiver in bi-amp mode was expensive and not an optimum powering solution. When spending a substantial sum for speakers, the powering electronics must be consistent with speaker demands. The Rotel integrated amp lacked streaming capability. The add on Sonos option for streaming Title content was less than stellar. Installation charge was an addition $800. Best Buy lacked the quality electronics (at a favorable price point) to support the B&W 803s. I was not going to pay huge monies to move up to McIntosh tube amp equipment. And finally, Bob at Take 5 Audio was right. The bright B&W 803 high end response would probably become tiring over the long term. The Focal N3 speakers remind me of my early Altec Lansings that dated back to the late 1970s. Rock n' roll listening remains my core passion and best to purchase a pair of speakers that are well balanced over the frequency range, easy to listen to, and with superior imaging.

 

StoneCold Collection Consignment

Thursday was not completely devoid of numismatics. The StoneCold Collection consignor passed along five Liberty Seated duplicates for consignment. All a perfectly original and crusty gray.

Seated 50c: 1861 PCGS EF45 CAC choice original; 1866-S Mott PCGS VF30 choice original

Seated $1: 1842 PCGS VF30 thick gray-rose patina with three obverse cuds; 1848 PCGS EF40 choice original gray and a JUST BUY IT NOW recommendation; 1860-O PCGS VF30 original surfaces

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

Let's end the Blog at this point as I need to get a shower in followed by two days of packing and shipping orders. There are many email orders that must be responsed too. Your patience is appreciated but please understand that I needed a full day off to pursue the new sound system.

Thank-you for checking in and sharing my audio system shopping journey. I hope that my enthusiam could be felt once locating the Focal Kanta N3 speakers. At 63, I'm still a rock n' roll fan at heart!

 

 

 

 

 

Amazing Bowers & Wilkins Diamond 803s!

Greetings and welcome to the Blog on a Thursday morning.

This edition is being composed on Wednesday evening due to an early out-of-state sound system listening adventure on Thursday.

As the title line suggests, the time has come to find that ideal basement sound system upgrade. I'd like to purchase the replacement systems as soon so as possible to enjoy until the 2019 winter migration to Florida. Wednesday brought a short drive to Portsmouth, NH and a visit to well staffed Best Buy Magnolia Sound Center. Best Buy appears to have exclusive rights to stock the top shelf Bower & Wilkins speaker series, an England based designer and manufacturer. The ultimate B&W speaker is the Diamond 800 ($30,000/pair) which are the studio monitors at Abbey Road Studios. Next in the family is the Diamond 802 priced at $22,000/pair and the Diamond 803 priced at $17,000/pair. Considering the size of the basement sound room and a realistic electronic budget, the targeted speakers for today's listening adventure were the 803s.

After making an appointment yesterday, I arrived to the Portsmouth Magnolia Sound Center at 10:30 am and spent over one and half hours listening to the B&W 803s. We started the audition with Peter Gabriel's Red Rain, then Rush's YYZ and Witches Hunt from Moving Pictures. I was most impressed with the deep crisp bass and overall mid range handling. Then came Loreena McKennitt's Nights at the Alhambra concert recording to challenge the 803s at top frequencies. Both myself and 30 year Zach were just blown away by the crystal clear sound and handling of Loreena's voice. Zach had never heard of Loreena McKernnitt and immediately took a cellphone image of the DVD/CD dust jacket. Here is a picture of Gerry and the B&W Diamond 803s. Do I look like a happy kid or what?

Part of the sound room upgrade strategy is adding a top end flat screen TV to the sound system for rock concert viewing enjoyment. That decision has been quickly rendered as a 65" Sony OLED Flat Screen was secured at Best Buy. A 2018 Sony OLED was purchased at a $900 discount to the new 2019 models. Talk about one year depreciation on electronics these days.

 

1861-O Bonanza Liberty Seated Halves Loaded on Price List

Upon returning to the GFRC office, the emphasis was on loading the 1861-O Bonanza Collection to the price list and notifying those individuals with FROR. That task is completed with initial sales moving along nicely.

 

Len Augsburger Guest Blog: The Coin Dealer Collection of Hats

Welcome to the second of a two part guest blog from Len Augsburger that investigates the many hats worn by professional coin dealers. Coin dealers are small business owner and must master a host of skills to operate in today's competitive marketplace. Within today's second segment, Len goes on to explore other coins dealer roless including their online presence (IT Manager), the challenges of dealing with a broad range of collectors and some with limited etiquette, (Counselor), and finally being skilled at coin evaluations (Coin Grading).

I hope that Blog readers will ponder and absorb Len's insightful commentary. Being a coin dealer is not easy. Relationship building is paramount along with being tech savvy among the many hats worn.

The Coin Dealer Collection of Hats - Part 2

Rare coin dealers have to play a surprising number of professional roles, especially when it’s a one-man show. Some do better at some parts than others, but at various times a coin dealer has to do a lot of different things. Here are a few hats that a typical dealer has to wear at different times.

IT Manager: You wouldn’t have thought of this 20 years ago, but today it is mission critical. Coin dealers now think of purchase decisions in terms of “how well will this coin image for Internet?” The entire business really revolves around the website, even when the dealer is at a show. You’ll notice, that if their back is turned to you a bourse table, they are frequently making live updates to their site. To be sure there is still the occasional guy playing Solitaire on his cell phone, which is pretty much the same as if you did it in your own workplace – not good. Complicating all this is that I don’t know a single dealer that does their own site programming – so all have to be IT managers rather than IT guys. The results are mixed, and you can tell pretty quick browsing through a dealer site who is effective and who isn’t.

Counselor: If you created college curriculum for being a coin dealer, you’d have to include this topic. Collectors come in all stripes, and you have to deal with all of them. Watching these types at a coin show is great entertainment as long as you are not the dealer. Try this one – collector walks up to your table, shows a crappy coin he bought from another dealer, and wants your opinion as to “how he did.” How do you effectively counsel potential clients who just buried themselves with the competition? Then there is the collector who tries to trade you the same ugly coin show after show. Is it possible to educate such a person without wasting your time? Some people are willing to learn, some aren’t. The trick is to quickly tell the difference and move on.

Coin Grader: Remarkably, we haven’t talked a lot about actual coins yet. So much of the coin business falls into “support” functions that sometimes the most important thing is forgotten. If you don’t possess above average grading skill, it’s going to be tough. You can have the greatest website in the world, but if the product isn’t there the business won’t be sustainable. Having the “eye” and understanding how PCGS and CAC might evaluate your potential purchases is a huge plus, and more than a few people in the coin business support themselves with this skill alone. Making matters harder still is that most trading between dealers is “pass or play.” You have to make quick decisions on quality, you don’t get to show a potential purchase to all your friends first before deciding. Even the best dealers make occasional mistakes when dealing on this basis, so it becomes a numbers game. Nothing to be afraid of here, even the strongest chess players in the world will sometimes make terrible moves when operating under time pressure. But not engaging is even worse, so you have to jump in and take your lumps like everyone else.

And here we have to end, because Albert Almora just knocked a grand slam against the Phillies. Go Cubs!

Thanks Len, for the time taken in preparing this guest blog. It is one of your best offerings to date.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

My apology for the lack of a Global Financial News segment is today's edition. By the time that Seeking Alpha issues their 7:00 am ET email, I will be somewhere between Raymond, Maine and Connecticut. Thursday brings the final day of sound system auditions and a quick decision towards a system purchase. I'm excited.

The GFRC website remains open for business on Thursday like any other day. Emailed orders will be responded to during the evening hours.

Thank-you for checking in at the Blog and for making May 2019 a very favorable sales period.

See you bright and early on Friday morning.

 

 

 

May 29, 2019

Summer Baltimore New Purchases to Consider!

Greetings and welcome to another edition of the Daily Blog.

Will Maine summer weather ever arriving during 2019? Tuesday brought a day of rain with the temperature stuck at 42F. At least the rain has moderated to a mist this morning, but the below normal temperature prevails. On principal, I am not starting the wood stove and will wear warm clothes until conditions improve on Friday.

Today's Blog edition offers two important segments. First are six large denomination silver pieces purchased at the Summer Baltimore show. Then I share the first installment of a lengthy guest blog from Len Augsburger. The second and concluding installment will be published within Thursday's Blog edition. Let's call it a guest blog mini-series.

 

Summer Baltimore New Purchases

Locating choice original early type on a wholesale basis requires persistence, long term relationships for first shots, and sometimes just dumb luck. The GFRC team was most active during the Summer Baltimore pre-show. We visited nearly all larger dealers who were offering inventory on a wholesale pricing basis. Believe me that "wholesale pricing" is not as you might imagine. There are no magical deep discounts. Many times, Dan and I encountered "wholesale prices" that were above expected retail prices. Pricing coins is an art and not a science with strick formulas. Everyone is rendering intelligent estimates on what a coin is worth.

To locate exceptional offerings at reasonable prices, we must look at hundreds of coins and pick out the best pieces followed by pricing investigations. Most of the time, the asking prices simply don't work and we are forced to pass. But on occasion, the pricing does work leaving some room for GFRC to enjoy a profit.

Up next are six above average offerings in terms of strict originality and old time eye appeal. All will receive GFRC gem or choice original quality ratings. The gallery opens with two exceptional Liberty Seated halves. The 1853 Arrow and Rays PCGS MS64 is fresh to market from an old type set and has not been to CAC. The 1890 PCGS MS65 CAC half is from a mintage of only 12,000 and is almost in the condition census. How about an 1839 No Drapery Seated half at the PCGS AU58 level and in an old holder too? This piece is from the same old time type set as the 1853 A&R offering and has not been to CAC. Inquiries on this offering are mounting as the 1839 No Drapery date becomes a rarity in Mint State. We close with an 1875-S PCGS MS62 Trade dollar with a single chop mark. This is a gorgeous example with one inquiry arriving from China customer base and more are expected.

Large Denomination Summer Baltimore New Purchases

1853 A&R PCGS MS64 50C                                                         1890 PCGS MS65 CAC 50C

    

1838 RE PCGS MS62 CAC 50C                                                   1839 No Drap PCGS AU58 50C

    

                  1865 PCGS AU53 50C                                                   1875-S Chop Mark PCGS MS62 Trade $1

    

 

Len Augsburger Guest Blog: The Coin Dealer Collection of Hats

Welcome to a two part guest blog from Len Augsburger that investigates the many hats worn by professional coin dealers. Coin dealers are small business owner and must master a host of skills to operate in today's competitive marketplace. Within today's first segment, Len explores the requirements of knowing your products (Scholar) and inventory management skills (Logistics Specialist). Tomorrow, Len will go further and discuss other dealer roles including IT Manager, Counselor, Coin Grader. I love the Counselor role....

I hope that Blog readers will ponder and absorb Len's insightful commentary. Being a coin dealer is not easy. The hours are long and the chance for mistakes is high unless a systematic approach is employed for executing the many roles. Please read on.

The Coin Dealer Collection of Hats - Part 1

Rare coin dealers have to play a surprising number of professional roles, especially when it’s a one-man show. Some do better at some parts than others, but at various times a coin dealer has to do a lot of different things. Here are a few hats that a typical dealer has to wear at different times.

Scholar: A good coin dealer should be able to speak authoritatively about any coin in their inventory. Of course, there is always the occasional oddball coin you have to take in a deal, and if you see some obscure colonial variety show up in the GFRC inventory, it’s a safe bet Gerry didn’t cherry pick it out of a dealer junk box. On the other hand, if you ask about most seated dimes, except for high-mintage issues with 20 or 30 die varieties, you can expect an instant attribution and knowledgeable advice on rarity and market availability. Be aware that “knowledge” can mean different things to different dealers. Some dealers might be more fluent when discussing the historical context of a coin (delears in colonial material, or tokens and medals tend to be in this category), while other dealers seemingly have the entire PCGS census in their head – dealers in high-end type and “trophy” coins tend to fall into this bucket. If you have the highest-graded widget, the PCGS census is your friend.

Another important distinction in coin “knowledge” is what’s written down and what isn’t. Anyone can look up price and census information, or read all manner of history and economics on the Internet. A more valuable currency is knowing who owns what, who needs what, and how much they’d be willing to pay for it. These facts won’t appear on the Internet, no matter how hard you look, because it is dealer proprietary information and carries significant monetary value. The only way to gain this sort of knowledge is to spend a lot of time on the bourse floor trading and networking with dealers and collectors. In one situation I was conversing with a dealer and identified one of his “secret” clients by name. You can be sure the dealer remembered me after that, and recognized I had certain connections. Corporate people work the same way – information is power and someone who just seems to know more than anyone else in a corporate setting, especially about unwritten things, is perceived as more connected and influential (whether they are is a whole other story).

Logistics Specialist: What is war all about? Effectively moving military and machines into the right place at the right time. It’s a massive logistical exercise. Coin dealers do the same. Coins come in and out of the post office, in and out of the grading services, in and out of clients’ hands. Money is constantly going in all different directions. It’s a juggling act, and if everything isn’t tracked, something will eventually go missing. This would be easy enough if all the inventory was in one place and didn’t move around. But when you do a show, you completely upset the apple cart, pulling many hundreds of coins out of inventory and putting them all back afterwards. You have to continually resort your boxes [the writer is distracted at this point because Anthony Rizzo just hit a 3-run home run, over the Budweiser sign in right field] and hope nothing gets out of order. In the library business they say if you misfile a book it is effectively lost forever. Pity the poor coin dealer who gets an order for an expensive coin that was accidentally placed in the “cheap box” a week ago.

 

Global Financial News

I expected this to happen in the tit-for-tat U.S and China trade war. Beijing is now threatening to use rare earth elements as a bargaining tool during current trade negotiations. 90% of the globe's rare earth elements are mined by China. These elements are fundamentall not "rare" but found in very low concentrations in the soil. As a result, the mining process is expansive and dirty. U.S miners have chosen to stay away from the market since Chinese miners are willing to operate at lower costs in a less regulated environment. Today's opening Seeking Alpha headlines captures the new Chinese threat.

China is ready to use rare earths to strike back in the U.S. trade war, the ruling Communist Party's People's Daily warned overnight, saying in a strongly worded commentary "don't say we didn't warn you." Rare earths are a group of 17 chemical elements used in everything from high-tech consumer electronics to military equipment. U.S. stock index futures slipped further on the news, with the DJIA pointing to a 193-point loss, while the Shanghai Composite rose as much as 0.9% during the session, boosted by shares of rare earth miners in Asia Pacific.

Long bond interest rates continue to drop as global investors are running to United States equities and bonds for safety. The current quote for the 10 Year Treasury bond is 2.22%. Following is more Seeking Alpha commentary on the topic.

10-year Treasury yield heads to 2%: With risk aversion increasing globally in recent days, bonds are rallying. At the beginning of May, the yield on the 10-year Treasury was about 2.55%, but it's now hovering around the 2.22% level, marking an over 30 bps move downward this month alone. Some analysts have also increased bets that the Fed will cut U.S. interest rates not once but twice this year, countering concerns about slowing global growth that have been inflamed by the worsening U.S.-China trade war.

Regardless of global trade turmoil, spot gold prices are flat at $1283/oz. Then there are crude oil prices which are holding below the important $60/bbl level at $58.32. More Seeking Alpha commentary on this topic.

Russia is considering a possible extension of its oil output reduction agreement with OPEC and other producers, according to First Deputy Prime Minister Anton Siluanov. "There are many economic issues and strategic issues (related to this)," he said on the sidelines of a conference in Kazakhstan. OPEC, Russia and other producers agreed to cut output by 1.2M bpd from January for six months to boost oil prices. The group is next set to discuss extending the pact in Vienna on June 25-26.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

It will be another busy day in the GFRC office. Shipping is up next followed by loading the 1861-O Bonanza Collection Seated halves to the price list and contacting individuals with First Right of Refusals.

Please remember that I'm just a phone call or email away for ordering any coins on the GFRC price list.

See you tomorrow with another Blog edition!

 

 

 

May 28, 2019

Here Comes The Summer Baltimore Consignments!

Greetings and welcome to the Blog as we wrap up the month of May. It has been a busy month that started with the GFRC office migration from Florida to Maine.

After a beautiful Memorial Day in southern Maine, today's weather shifts to rain by lunch time. Already, cloudy conditions are at hand and the weather will go downhill during the morning hours. In anticipation of wet and cloudy condition through Thursday, the lawn was mowed yesterday and looks great.

 

RIP - NAD Audio/Video Receiver

I'm pleased to report that my decades old NAD A/V receiver died last evening. Being raised by French-Canadian parents, I was taught to use things until completely worn out. The death of the NAD A/V system is timely as this week brings a new sound system shopping and selection process adventure. Now I feel comfortable and vindicated for not disposing of an item before its end of useful life arrived.

How does an A/V receiver die? The NAD has an integrated DVD player. Last fall, the center channel electronics stopped functioning. The center speaker was disconnected leaving me with limited usage in the enhanced stereo mode. After returning from Florida, the DVD player would randomly stop functioning part way through a movie or CD. Last evening brought the end to a long relationship. The DVD player could not process more than 30% of a recording before stopping. After two power down and up sequences in the hope of finishing an early Free CD, the receiver made its last electronic gurgling sounds and left this world.

 

Seth Godin's Blog: On finishing well

We've not checked in with Seth Godin for several weeks. My day started with a review of his postings for pertinent advice for numismatists and someone who just loss his A/V receiver. The following post is well worth the time spent to read and absorb. Godin reminds us that nothing in life is permanent including life itself. How we finish a task, a career, or a small business, speaks of that individual's planning abilities and approach to living. Please read on...

On finishing well

If you start a book, you will do better if you have a plan for finishing your book.

If you take the time and spend the money to go to college, it’s worth considering graduating as well.

Aretha Franklin died without a clearly stated will. As a result, her heirs will waste time, money and frustration, because Franklin was both naive (a will doesn’t make it more likely that you will die) and selfish.

If you’re born, it pays to plan on dying.

Every year, millions of people needlessly suffer in old age because they didn’t spend twenty minutes on a health care proxy.

If you’re going to take a job, everyone will benefit if you think about how you’re going to leave that job.

And if you start a company, you should realize that you’re probably going to either sell it or fold it one day, and neither has to be a catastrophe or a failure.

Beginning is magical. So is finishing. We can embrace both.

As I have stated on numerous occasions in the Blog, collectors should have some type of exit strategy for a major collection. Leaving a collection to heirs is an option but shifts the divestment burden to others who were not core to the set being built. The collector is the person who enjoyed the journey of assembling historical items towards a major goal. Once that collection is completed, it will require divestment at some point as we don't live forever. Leaving divestment instructions for heirs is wise but faciliating the collection's disbursement, while capable, is better for extracting maximum return and saving loved ones some anguish.

 

Here Comes The Summer Baltimore Consignments!

Three consignments were insourced at the Summer Baltimore show. On a sunny Memorial Day, conditions were perfect for photographing all of the Baltimore new purchases and consignments: well nearly all. The Dansco Liberty Seated quarter collection consignment will need serious attention at some point in June.

Following are two consignments to kick-off Summer Baltimore post-show offerings. Look for these pieces to reach the price list later today or tomorrow as asking prices are not settled or approved by the consignors.

Malvern Collection Consignment

The Malvern consignor has been working with GFRC for years. He appeared at the Baltimore show with three quality coins that insisted on new homes. As usual, this individual collects out of the mainstream and enjoys less popular denomination other than Morgan dollars.

The consignment opens with a pleasing and attractive 1892-CC Morgan dollar for its PCGS MS61 CAC certified level. Surface abrasions are minimal at the assigned grade level and the luster is all there. AU58 collectors will find the 1868 Shield nickel and 1875-S double dime to be worthy candidates for their collections.

More Great Offerings from the Malvern Collection

1892-CC PCGS MS61 CAC $1

              1868 PCGS AU58 5C                                                           1875-S BF-16 PCGS AU58+ 20C

    

 

1861-O Bonanza Liberty Seated Half Dollar Collection Consignment

I can assure you that the 1861-O Bonanza Collection consignor is a focused and passionate individual. His 1861-O die pairing attributions are spot on and even taken a step further with die state designations. Each slab is covered with printed stick-on notations for die states and primary attribution points. These notations are valuable and will be left on the PCGS holders during the sales process.

As a quick reminder for new Blog readers, 1861-O Seated half dollar strikes were conducted under three different administrative governments prior to the New Orleans mint being closed at the end of April 1861. Randy Wiley conducted ground breaking analysis and identified fifteen different die pairings for 1861-O strikes and was also able to associate those strikes during Union (January 1861), State of Louisiana (Feb-March 1861), and CSA (April 1861) administrations. The fifteen die pairings and governing bodies are as follows;

Union: W-1, W-2

Louisiana: W-3 through W-8

CSA: W-9 through W-15

The highlights of the 1861-O Bonanza Collection are the 1861-O W-2 PCGS AU58 and 1861-O W-11 (CSA Obverse) PCGS EF40 CAC offerings. I'm not surprised to find that the scarce to rare W-1, W-5 and W-10 offerings are raw and two with issues. These are three difficult die pairings to locate at any grade level.

Proposed pricings will be submitted to the consignor later today for approval. Once offer prices are settled, I will be contacting the many collectors who asked for First Right of Refusals. Your email inputs are logged in my Inbox and will be reviewed in the order received.

1861-O Bonanza Seated Half Dollar Collection

     1861-O W-2 PCGS AU58 50C                                                1861-O W-11 PCGS EF40 CAC 50C

    

1861-O W-1 Raw G06 50C                   1861-O W-3 PCGS EF40 CAC 50C               1861-O W-4 PCGS EF40 50C

        

1861-O W-5 Raw EF Details 50C               1861-O W-7 PCGS EF45 CAC 50C                1861-O W-7 PCGS EF45 50C    

        

 1861-O W-9 PCGS EF40 CAC 50C           1861-O W-10 Raw AU Details 50C                 1861-O W-13 PCGS AU53 50C   

        

  1861-O W-14 PCGS VF35 50C               1861-O W-14 PCGS VF35 50C

    

 

Global Financial News

Another global equity market week is underway. The major news of the day involves cryptocurrency being legitimized by Facebook. As a result, Bitcoin increased to nearly $9000/coin in the past two days. The latest quote is $8679. Following is the related Seeking Alpha news item.

Facebook is planning to release its cryptocurrency, internally called GlobalCoin, in about a dozen countries during the first quarter of 2020, according to the BBC. CEO Mark Zuckerberg reportedly met with Bank of England Governor Mark Carney in April to discuss the crypto, and also spoke with U.S. Treasury officials regarding regulatory issues and firms such as Western Union to discuss transferring funds. Plans for the crypto comes as Bitcoin rallies near $9,000 (up by about 120% YTD).

Crude oil is quoting at $59.13/bbl while spot gold is holding ground at $1283/oz. Long bond yields continue to drop. The current 10 Year U.S, Treasury yield is down to 2.29% as the U.S. dollar remains strong.

Theresa May is out as U.K prime minister and now the contest begins for her replacement.

The contest to replace Theresa May as U.K. prime minister has begun, with former foreign minister Boris Johnson the clear front-runner in a field of more than a dozen candidates. "We will leave the EU on October 31, deal or no deal," he told an economic conference in Switzerland. Electing a new Conservative Party leader is a two-stage process. Starting the week of June 10, the party's 300 or so members of Parliament will whittle down the field of candidates to two through successive rounds of voting. After that, the party's rank-and-file members will decide which of those two finalists gets to be leader.

 

Featured Consignor of the Day - Ft. Lauderdale Collection

How about shifting from Featured Coins of the Day to Featured Consignors of the Day? Our first individudal to receive the new spotlight is the Ft. Lauderdale Collection.

Ft. Lauderdale Collection Highlights

        1822/1 O-101 PCGS AU55 50C                                                       1827/6 O-102 NGC AU53 50C     

    

1845-O DDD WB-16 PCGS EF40 50C                                                  1873 Arrows NGC AU55 50C      

    

          1883 PCGS PR67 50C                                                             1881-S PCGS MS64 CAC G$5

    

 

So ends today's Blog ediiton. I will be in the office most of the day and just a phone call away for potential orders. Email inquiries also work well!

Thank-you for checking in and wishing everyone a pleasant balance to the Memorial Day week. See you tomorrow.

 

 

 

May 27, 2019

Memorial Day Guest Blog: Evil Coin Dealers Don’t Service Want Lists

Greetings and welcome to the Daily Blog on Memorial Day 2019. Happy Memorial day to all readers!

What a great morning at the Maine homestead. Skies are crystal clear with blue shades to the horizon. Temperature is a comfortable 55F and ideal for an early morning health walk. After sitting behind a bourse table or driving in the MDX, a round of active exercise is in order. I would already be outdoors, but someone has to write today's Blog edition.

Sunday brought a long business catch-up day. With the lone GFRC support staff traveling, the boss was left to deal with accounting, check deposits, inventory aggregation and yes, placing 850 plastic sleeves on PCGS and NGC slabs. The office is mostly in order with a few more sleeves to go before preparing for a long photography session. Southern Maine weather brings clouds and more rains through Thursday; therefore, today is the day to get images done.

For those wondering about FRoR status for the 1861-O Bonanza Collection offerings, the consignment will be loaded into the COIN system today and the FRoRs will be sorted out. I can only do so much in twelve hours, and I'm attempting to stay focused on the completion of major tasks.

Since most readers are on vacation and taking it easy, today's blog will be limited to a guest blog that arrived yesterday afternoon. Len Augsburger read my Sunday commentary concerning the Baltimore customer who did not understand why GFRC was not stocking Civil War Liberty Seated quarters at the PCGS MS63 grade level. Please read on....

 

Len Augsburger Guest Blog: Evil Coin Dealers Don’t Service Want Lists

I got a chuckle out of Gerry’s story from the Baltimore show in which a potential client was upset that Gerry’s stock wasn’t overflowing with Civil War-dated seated quarters in PCGS MS63. For fun I looked up the number of auction appearances of each date (1861-1865) over the last ten years. The chart is telling:

Once you get past the (relatively) common 1861 date, the pickings are slim to none. For the 1862 date, only five such coins have appeared at auction since 2010. It falls off even further after that – 1863 has only two coins, 1864 has no coins, and 1865 has only three coins. Even for 1861 you are averaging only about one coin per year. In short – these coins just are not out there. A couple years back I purchased an 1861 PCGS MS63/CAC at one of the Baltimore shows. It was priced more or less as a type coin, and, to be straightforward, that’s about what’s it worth. The overall population of uncirculated examples simply doesn’t merit a higher valuation. You can’t look at MS63 pieces only.

There is a certain danger in insisting that all the coins in one’s collection have the exact same grade. I know AU58s are quite popular, and there are many attractive coins at that grade level, but sticking to a specific numeric level causes problems. First of all, you seriously decrease your potential reach by staying at one grade level. Seated coins are scarce enough without confining one’s choices even further. The collector who will buy an 1864 25c only in PCGS MS63 will have to wait many years before one shows up, and they will have to follow auctions and dealer stocks very carefully on a consistent basis to even find one for sale. In the meantime, they have missed out on many attractive pieces in the MS61 – MS64 range. Secondly, you put yourself at the mercy of the grading services when you focus on one grade only. There are many MS64 pieces that might well grade at the 63 level if cracked out. As has been said many times, buy the coin and not the holder. The holder is great for physical protection, guarantee of authenticity, and professional grading opinion. But don’t take it more seriously than that.

Early in my collecting career I somehow became convinced that any coin listed in the Guide Book should be available at the price listed. After all, they had coins listed for G, VG, etc., so those pieces must exist, right? I had a lot of common and semi-key Seated quarters but was stuck on tough dates, and even more so from an affordability point of view. Off went my want list to Bowers & Merena, who, being far and away the best coin firm ever in the universe (that was my amateur opinion at the time), I was sure, could instantly produce early Carson City quarters in choice good at the current Guide Book prices. Needless to say I never heard back. Somewhere later I read that Civil War-dated seated dollars were a great buy in AU grades. Off again went the want list this time to a different firm, and nothing ever came back. There was no doubt in my mind that all coin dealers were simply lazy and unresponsive. There were several realities I completely missed. First, some coins simply don’t exist in sufficient quantity as to allow an active market. Second, dealer want lists really aren’t a good way to build a collection unless you are steady client with a particular dealer. Finally, you have to match the want list to the dealer, and if you ask about coins that are outside their usual business line, there won’t be much business that gets done.

Even with my lack of want list success, I remained convinced that there was some secret wholesale outlet where dealers got all their coins, and I really wanted to tap into it, whatever that was. After being in the game a few years, it was clear that no such thing existed. Most of the rare coins out there are in collector hands, and the dealer stocks only represent the few per cent that happen to be on the market at any time. Dealers can make phone calls to possible sellers, but, alas, there is no secret stash that will always contain the coin a client wants. And, quite honestly, coins would be a lot less interesting if it were that easy to fill the holes in one’s collection.

 

Midwest Collection Consignor Issues Price Reductions

How about a few recently consigned gem type coins at reduced prices? The Midwest Collection consignor is in a happy mood and issues a price reduction on several offerings. The 1898 Barber dime graded PCGS MS65 and approved by CAC is a no-brainer at the new offer price. What a wonderful piece for type. If proof Barber coinage is your cup of tea, then this eye candy 1905 PR66 CAC dime might be tempting. Finally, another legacy piece from the Col. Green and Eric P. Newman collection is in GFRC inventory. This 1832 JR-3 Capped Bust dime is as you would suspect; background luster under thick old envelope toning. A piece for connoisseurs of pedigreed items.

Midwest Collection - Memorial Day Price Reductions

1832 JR-3 NGC AU58 Ex. Col. Green/EPN - Reduced to $1,400

1898 PCGS MS65 CAC 10C Reduced to $575                           1905 PCGS PR66 CAC 10C Reduced to $1,800

    

 

Great New Whitman Baltimore Offerings Arriving Shortly

Much was communicated about GFRC's sales activities at the Summer Baltimore show. Behind the scenes, Dan and I were busy buying. Our pre-show was decent, especially for United States gold. During the three day bourse event, we had a few walk-up purchases along with Dan scanning the bourse for coins fitting the GFRC quality profile. He managed to locate several.

All new purchases will be photo'ed today and will start appearing on Wednesday.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

Today brings a full GFRC agenda of stuff to get done. Being single and hanging out with Buddy, I might as well work through the day and prepare tomorrow morning's shipping. As you can imagine, attending the Baltimore show leads to an accumulatiion of online and Collectors Corner orders to be processed and shipped.

Yes, GFRC is open for business on Memorial Day. Why not?

Thanks again for checking in at the Blog. The promised guest blog mini-series from Len Augsburger will appear this week. I could not resist posting his evil coin dealer blog today, it's so timely.

 

 

 

May 26, 2019

Back In Maine Plus Summer Baltimore Show Wrap-up!

Greetings on a quiet Memorial Weekend Sunday morning and welcome to the Blog.

It is great to be back in the GFRC Maine office and composing today's Blog edition. XM Radio is offering a free music streaming event through June 4 and I'm taking full advantage of the opportunity in the office.

The Fortin homestead landscaping is still in the leafing process. The flowering plums are a bright crimson red while the mighty oaks will need another week for their leaves to be full formed. The constant rains have turned lawns a lush green. Nature on Memorial Day weekend is downright beautiful and I'm so pleased to be home after a long Baltimore coin show event.

One benefit for driving on a Saturday during Memorial Day weekend is the calm traffic. By later afternoon and early evening, most people were already at their holiday destinations and engaging in cook-outs and other relaxing events. In the case of Dan and Gerry, we departured the Baltimore convention center around 1:45 pm and headed to Connecticut as a first stop. Traffic on I-95 through Maryland and Delaware was light, along with I-295 in New Jersey up through Trenton. We made the crossover onto the New Jersey Turnpike and then saw something strange. The Cars Only center lanes had tractor trailers traveling with cars. There was no difference between the Cars Only lanes and the Trucks, Buses and Cars lanes. Being an experienced Turnpike traveler, one knows to go the Cars Only lanes during weekdays but use the Truck lanes during weekends. This we did, and cruised along nicely. I-287 and the new Tappan Zee Bridge were also quiet. The old Tappan Zee structure is fully disassembled and gone from sight. I'm at a loss for an explanation on why there were trucks in the Cars Only portion of New Jersey Turnpike.

Dan's drop-off in Essex, CT was earlier than planned due to favorable traffic conditions. I continued on through Hartford and following I-495 to New Hampshire and Maine. As I arrived in Maine, the rains started. Overall, the trip was relaxing with XM Radio dialed to a Jazz "Spa" channel and a host of new age music. The MDX performed flawlessly and is recommended to anyone considering a luxury SUV. There is a feeling of complete safety regardless of weather conditions.

 

GFRC Baltimore Show Summary

I must temper my enthusiam concerning sharing GFRC results at Summer Baltimore, as general feedback is that most dealers had a mediocre show.

On Saturday, the GFRC booth continued its successful ways and we enjoyed more sales. Once again, collectors that visited with GFRC were there to buy. We sold four more coins and have one story to share. There was a new face to GFRC who sought Civil War dated Liberty Seated quarters but all had to be graded PCGS MS63. There was no question that the collector was at the right booth for locating his targeted coins. Unfortunately, we could only offer PCGS MS64 or NGC MS63 examples. This individual became frustrated with us and wished to understand why we did not stock the dates at his specific TPG brand and grade level requirement. After fifteen minutes of explaining that Liberty Seated quarters are challenging to locate in mint state overall, and specifically the Civil War years being rare, I walked away. Dan continued to persuade this individual that we were not magicians and unable to make PCGS MS63 examples appear out of thin air.

In summary, GFRC had an outstanding Summer Baltimore show. Results were well beyond expectations and I could not be more pleased with the outcome. What are the potential reasons for outstanding results? Here are my thoughts;

- Location: GFRC booth location was on the front aisle and adjacent to the entrance. Nearly everyone who walked onto the bourse found their way to GFRC. The location and booth size are a standing commitment to the Whitman show manager. GFRC has become a major exhibitor at all three Whitman shows.

- Inventory: GFRC offered the broadest array of early silver type and United States gold on the bourse. That fact coupled with the extensive amount of CAC approved offerings attracted customer attention. Ten cases equated to nearly 850 quality coins, including rare dates and an increasing amount of mint state pieces.

- Reputation: GFRC is recognized for its commitment to fair trading and taking the time for thorough discussions and explanation of surface conditions and actual rarity. Dan White's expertise on United States gold is quickly becoming recognized and those who bought gold felt comfortable with their selections.

 

Next GFRC Show Event - Summer FUN

GFRC's next major show will be Summer FUN in Orlando, Florida. The show takes place on July 10 through July 13. Dan and I will have a corner table with eight cases of great coins. Once Cindy Wibker announces our booth number and location, in about two to three weeks, Blog readers will be the first to know.

 

What to Expect During Coming Week?

Dan and I made many new acquisitions at Summer Baltimore. Those wlll be photographed and posted within upcoming Blogs prior to reaching the price list. GFRC took in two important consignments; 1861-O Bonanza Collection of Seated halves and a Dansco Liberty Seated quarter collection that wil be ideal for value buyers looking to fill out their Dansco or Whitman albums.

Today's immediate priority is administrative and accounting work plus reassembling show inventories with the office inventory. Just think of the workload to place 850 coins into baseball card plastic slips! The GFRC website must also be updated to remove sold coins along with a Collectors Corner update. There is much to do in the next twelve or so hours.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

In Saturday's Blog, I made mention of a mini-series guest blog from none other than Len Augsburger. Let's delay publishing Len's latest insightful commentary until tomorrow as there will be little time today to format images towards a new eye catching client gallery. The admin work must be done and will consume the entire day since Diane is off to Austin, Texas visiting our daughter Renee.

Thank-you for checking in and sharing GFRC's Summer Baltimore show results. You can count on straight talk at the Blog. If we have a great show, the results are shared. If we have a terrible show with GFRC cases becoming a museum, you will also be the first to know.

See you tomorrow.

 

 

 

May 25, 2019

GFRC Enjoying a Great Summer Baltimore Show!

Greetings once again from the Inner Harbor Days Inn and welcome to the last Blog edition from Baltimore.

The second day of the 2019 Summer Baltimore show has concluded. Once again, Dan and I are worn out after another non-stop day on the Baltimore bourse floor. We enjoyed a quick dinner at the Pratt St. Ale House and then found our way back to the hotel. How I wish to relax and place the mind in idle mode. Unfortunately, another Blog edition must be written as to not disappointed the hundreds of daily readers who wish to stay current with the numismatic market.

My day started by hosting a Liberty Seated Collectors Club regional meeting. Luckily, I am a proactive person and make a point of being early for appointments, air travel and business meetings. Being proactive was beneficial today. I arrived to the convention center at 8:20 am to find the 301 meeting room locked. After locating a Whitman person with the room key, the next step was setting up my laptop and a pico projector. My luck was waning as the pico projector would not power up. So much for giving the planned presentation on Liberty Seated dollars. Instead, I made an on the spot decision to have an informal meeting where everyone exchanges ideas for improving LSCC membership levels and enhancing the Gobrecht Journal for a more friendly experience for inexperience club members. About ten members were in attendance and the informal discussion was focused and worthwhile. Several action items were taken by club president Gerry Fortin and the meeting adjourned at 9:40 am.

For a second day in a row, the million dollar question remained concerning Summer Baltimore show attendance. From my vantage point, the morning hours brought strong attendance of high yield customers. What do I mean by high yield customers? High yield customers are the opposite of tire kickers. Those who attended the show on a Memorial Day weekend were serious about their hobby and were there to buy. Dan and I worked non stop from the show open at 10:00 am until about 1:30 pm when a break in the action allow for one of us to grab crab cake sandwiches for lunch. After 1:30 pm, the bourse floor started to clear our and within an hour, the bourse was essentially empty.

At 4:30 pm, it was time for happy hour at the GFRC booth. I opened another bottle of Coppola black label claret and hosted dealer friends at the table.

 

Day 2 GFRC Baltimore Show Results

Once again, today's Blog headline announces the fact that GFRC enjoy another great sales day.

The day opened with a mid four figure sale followed by a substantial five figure sale. GFRC was off to another strong sales day and the action continued into early afternoon. Sales were across all product lines with the two United States gold cases securing considerable attention. A quick end of day sales tally indicated overall two day sales approaching the six figure mark. Who would have thought this possible just a few days ago?

First right of refusal demand for the 1861-O Bonanza Collection was fast and furious. Unfortunately, I was too consumed with the LSCC regional meeting followed by GFRC booth sales to respond to those who sent email request. Please trust my email time stamp accounting to sort out who has FRoRs for the individual pieces. Those with FRoR access will be contacted on Sunday.

The day's highlight was the consignment of a Liberty Seated Quarter Dansco collection along with nine holdered pieces. Typical grades are in the VF to AU range with many later date proof. Unfortunately, many of the quarters have been cleaned or dipped white. I will be sorting through this new consignment next week. The consignor is well aware of the preservation states and realistic about potential sale prices.

One final note is in order. GFRC purchased a frosty 1875-S PCGS MS62 Trade dollar with a single chopmark. I don't expect this piece to last long once placed on the price list.

 

Heading Back to Maine on Saturday

Current plan is to breakdown the GFRC booth between noon and 1:00 pm depending on show attendance and sales activity. If attendance is light, Dan and I will be packing up early and driving north together.

 

Wrapping Up the Blog

My goal with the past few Blog editions was to share a realistic view of the Summer Baltimore show as if readers had actually been in attendance. Please let me know if I was successful or how the reporting might improved.

And with that, it is time to close the laptop and watch FOX cable news for a few hours before calling it a day.

The next Blog edition will be published on Sunday morning and will include the first of a two part guest Blog series by Len Augsburger.

Again, thank-you for visiting on Memorial Day weekend.

 

 

 

May 24, 2019

GFRC Day 1 Baltimore Show Sales Well Above Expectations!

Greetings from Baltimore and welcome to the Blog on a Friday morning. Your continuing patronage is appreciated.

Dan and I are back to the Days Inn hotel room after a long successful kick-off day at the Summer Baltimore show. Exhausted is the best term to describe the GFRC team after taking in a New York vs. Baltimore baseball game last evening, followed by early start to the day. With the Summer Baltimore show bourse floor opening at 8:00 am, we were up early to catch breakfast followed by retrieving inventory from the security room and locating a front position for the floor open. Once on the bourse, there were ten cases to stage along with table covers, lighting, and wiring. With just Dan and I, the setup took a full 1.5 hours. We were ready for regular operations when the bourse opened to early birds at 10:00 am following by the general public at noon time.

The million dollar question for the Summer Baltimore show was attendance? Since the GFRC booth was adjacent to the show entrance, I watched the bourse doors open to public at noon time. I was pleased (and relieved) to see a strong flow of attendees enter the bourse. Within minutes, the bourse noise level increased to that healthy level that signifies active trading. The floor remained active until about 4:00 pm when the noise level decreased and aisles began to thin out. Overall, the first day of the Baltimore show brought collector attendance that was above my expectations.

GFRC Booth 635 at 10:00 am Early Bird Opening - Summer Baltimore Show

 

Day 1 GFRC Baltimore Show Results

Obviously, the headline gives away the fact that GFRC enjoyed a strong sales day to kick-off the Summer Baltimore show.

Since the GFRC booth location is on the main aisle and near the bourse entrance, we enjoyed considerable collector traffic throughout opening day. Thursday sales started well with an early bird vest pocket dealer purchasing six better date Liberty Seated quarters and United States gold pieces. More collectors keep arriving with Dan and I having our hands full to host every customer properly. Mixed in were GFRC customers picking up online orders and wishing to chat for awhile. Then an important 1861-O Liberty Seated half dollar die variety collection was insourced. More on this topic in a moment. Our booth remains busy until about 1:30 pm when Dan broke away from some lunch from the lobby food service facility. Afterwards, another wave of customers arrived delaying my lunch until mid afternoon. The highlight of the day was the sale of Osprey Collection 1861-O PCGS EF45 $20 double eagle. That sale, along with the balance of the day's activity, brought GFRC first day revenue well above the mid five figure mark. We could not be more pleased with results.

Happy hour arrived promptly at 4:30 pm with several clients joining the staff for some better Coppola cabernet savignon. Happy hour notwithstanding, we still made a few sales as everyone was relaxed after a most busy day.

So far, so good for GFRC at the Whitman Summer Baltimore show. With Friday bringing a full bourse floor day, Dan and I remain optimistic that another reasonable sales day may take place. With ten cases of quality early type and United States gold, there is pretty much something for every customer that walks up to the table.

 

Announcing the 1861-O Bonanza Collection Consignment

Yes indeed, GFRC is thrilled to be announcing another important 1861-O Liberty Seated half dollar die variety consignment. This collector had previously sold a few 1861-O duplicates to GFRC during the Summer 2018 Whitman Baltimore show. I received a phone call from the individual last week and we discussed his desire to liquidate the majority of his 1861-O die variety collection. The collector took a major divestment step today and consigned most of his collection. Following are the 1861-O die varieties forthcoming from the 1861-O Bonanza Collection. First Right of Refusals are encouraged to avoid disappointment.

1861-O Liberty Seated Halves

W-01 Union - Raw G6 and strictly original

W-02 Union - PCGS AU58 with frosty luster and light toning. Only the second W-2 handles by GFRC.

W-03 Louisiana - PCGS EF40 CAC crusty gray and choice original

W-04 Louisiana - PCGS EF40 crusty original

W-05 Louisiana - Raw EF45 cleaned with obverse marks

W-07 Louisiana - PCGS EF45 CAC choice original with crusty gray patina

W-07 Louisiana - PCGS EF45 original gray

W-09 CSA - PCGS EF40 CAC choice original with crusty gray surfaces

W-10 CSA - Raw AU50 details, an old clean and retoning, a great filler for this rare die pairing

W-11 CSA Obverse - PCGS EF40 CAC choice original and crusty gray

W-13 CSA - Bisecting Crack Through Date PCGS AU53, substantial eye appeal with rainbow coloring and radial toning

W-14 CSA - Bisecting Crack/Speared Olive Bud PCGS VF35 original gray

W-14 CSA - Bisecting Crack/Speared Olive Bud PCGS VF35 original gray, yes two pieces at the VF35 grade level

 

LSCC Regional Meeting Friday 9:00 am Room 301

A reminder that the Liberty Seated Collectors Club will be holding a regional meeting on Friday morning at 9:00 am in Room 301. Gerry Fortin will be hosting the meeting along with providing a presentation on Liberty Seated dollars. This meeting will be a bit more informal than normal. Everyone is welcomed to attend.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

It is hard to believe but the 9:00 pm hour approaches and time to adjourn for the day towards securing some much needed rest.

Thank-you for visiting with GFRC and sharing our initial perspective on the Summer Baltimore show. So far, so good!

 

 

 

May 23, 2019

Baltimore Pre-Show Buying Summary!

Greetings from Baltimore and welcome a mid week Blog edition. Thank-you for checking in.

Baltimore spring weather is comfortable with the Inner Harbor area being quite busy due to John Hopkins University graduations.

Dan and I were up early and started our pre-show buying day at 8:45 am and wrapped up at 3:00 pm. In the past, dealers would be co-located in the Baltimore Convention Center and Marriot Hotel. These venues are several city blocks apart and required back and forth walks. A change was made for the Summer Baltimore show, with all dealers located in three meeting rooms on the convention center's third floor. It was time efficient to move from room to room to accomplish pre-show reviews and buying. As a result, GFRC met more dealers and reviewed more coins than at past pre-shows.

 

Whitman Baltimore Pre-Show Commentary

Before sharing GFRC's new purchases, a few comments on the wholesale portion of the numismatic market are warranted. Dan and I spent about six hours visiting with our favorite dealers along with some new faces. We estimate reviewing nearly 1500 slabbed coins seeking to purchase eye appealing and strictly original silver and gold pieces. When the buying event was completed, we returned to the hotel room with ten new purchases. Here are a few observations from the buying session.

- The wholesale market lacks Liberty Seated and Capped Bust coinage (other than Capped Bust half dollars). We saw few quality Liberty Seated coins across all denominations and very few Capped Bust half dimes, dimes, and quarters. What we did see were either marginal or overgraded coins along with the usual higher end mint state and proof pieces that are difficult to place.

- When we did manage to locate a piece with strong eye appeal, stricty originality, and CAC approval, the "wholesale" prices were well above PCGS Price Guide retail levels. Some of the premiums were at 30-50% above the retail guide level. Dan and I could not bring ourselves to buy at these levels, since the resulting GFRC asking prices would appear too high. The last thing I want is for GFRC to gain a reputation for pricing coins at "moon money" levels. Therefore, we walk away from these expensive offerings.

- We spoke with a few old time dealers who commented that the United States gold market is down and its an excellent time to be buying. This is consistent with GFRC's observation. If one is diligent and digging hard, it is possible to locate superior coins with or without CAC approval at fair wholesale prices.

- As I've mentioned on many occasions, the highest quality coins are in collector hands. Until collectors start to divest, the overall market will remain full of average offerings across the grade levels. When superior coins do surface, the premiums are substantial and well above CDN bid. I can't stress enough the importance of collectors returning duplicates to market to enable other collectors to gain access. If collectors believe that GFRC or other specialty dealers will locate a host of quality coins simply through pre-show buying, that belief is mistaken. Above average coins are quickly absorbed by collectors leaving only average or below average "stuff" to trade among dealers.

 

GFRC Baltimore Pre-Show New Purchases

After six hours of pre-show hunting, Dan and I managed to acquire ten new inventory offerings. We were primarily focused on buying coins and not holders or CAC stickers. Here are the new offerings that will be in tomorrow's Baltimore show display cases.

Seated 50c:

1839 No Drapery PCGS AU58, a fresh coin to market for an old type set. This date and design type is rare in mint state with a steep pricing curve. AU58 is the last "affordable" grade. This example is perfectly original with frosty luster and light periperal gold. Housed in PCGS Gen 4.0 (1998-2002) holder without CAC attempt.

1853 A&R PCGS MS64, another fresh coin from the same type set as the 1839 No Drapery. Old time rose-gold patina on this gem original example. Strike is hammered.

1865 PCGS AU53, housed in Gen 4.0 holder (1998-2002) with lightly mirrored fields and reflective luster. A difficult date at the AU grade. Fully struck with light rose-gold patina. Should not last long.

Liberty/Indian G$2.5

1851 PCGS MS62 CAC, thick mint frost and frosty cartwheels. A few field blemishes support the technical grade, but eye appeal is better.

1915 NGC MS63 CAC, bold strike and frosty luster on this choice original example.

Classic Head G$5

1834 Plain 4 PCGS MS62, serious eye appeal is at hand with hammered strike, lightly mirrored fields, and swirling cartwheel luster coupled with greenish-gold toning.

1834 Plain 4 PCGS AU58, just a touch of rub with lightly mirrored fields and rich orange-gold patina. Dan and I have not decided which we like better, the AU58 or the MS62.

Indian G$5

1915 PCGS MS64 CAC, freshly graded with dirty orange-gold surfaces, a hammered strike.

Indian G$10

1909-S PCGS MS62 CAC, classic European dirty gold look, crusty orange-gold patina

Liberty G$20

1896-S PCGS AU58, lightly mirrored fields with swirling cartwheels, greenish-gold surfaces, and few abrasions. Eye appeal of a much higher grade.

 

Ending the Wednesday Afternoon Pre-Show Report

Shortly, Dan and I will be meeting with a group of coin dealers at the Baltimore Convention Center and then heading off to Camden Yards for an evening baseball game with the NY Yankees being in town.

Thursday morning brings an early start to the day as the bourse opens for dealer setup at 8:00am. Therefore, these pre-show ramblings conclude the May 23 Blog edition.

Thanks for checking in.

 

 

 

 

May 22, 2019

Effortless Baltimore Drive and More GFRC New Inventory!

Greetings from the Days Inn located across from the Baltimore Convention Center and welcome to a series of Daily Blog editions from the Summer Baltimore show.

As the headline indicates, Tuesday's drive from Maine to Baltimore was effortless, and actually relaxing. Time away from the GFRC office was warranted with the nine hour drive bringing an opportunity to recharge personal batteries. The drive started early at 5:00 am and allowed transit of I-495 before Boston traffic caused delays. Driving through Connecticut, New York, and New Jersey was also uneventful. Arrival at the Days Inn took place about 2:15 pm, followed by Dan flying in from Tampa.

Our first appointment of the day also went well. My favorite wholesaler arrived promptly at 6:00 pm with four double row slabbed boxes of fresh inventory. Meeting with this individual is always as a priority at every major show event. Yesterday's meeting was worthwhile as I spent into the five figures for some great new offerings. More shortly.

 

More Osprey Collection United States Gold Arrives

As a pleasant surprise, Dan brought more United States gold for consignment. This newest lot further expands the GFRC gold product line and guarantees we will have two full cases at the Baltimore show. It is my pleasure to share the latest offerings. Several pieces have already been added to the price list without images.

Liberty G$5: 1843-O Small Letters PCGS AU50 original surfaces; 1843-D Medium Date PCGS EF45 CAC choice original; 1845-O PCGS EF45 CAC choice original surfaces, 1846-O PCGS EF45 CAC choice underrated date, crusty surfaces

Liberty G$10: 1894-O PCGS AU58 choice original greenish-gold; 1895-O PCGS MS62 lovely frosty surfaces; 1901-O PCGS MS63 better date, choice original; 1904-O PCGS MS62

Liberty G$20: 1874-CC PCGS AU55 a popular date with original above average surfaces

St. Gaudens G$20: 1909-D PCGS MS63 OGH old time original gold patina, better date; 1924-D NGC MS63+ better date with thick frosted surfaces, choice original

 

GFRC New Purchases

Large 1c: 1857 Large Date PCGS AU58 CAC wonderful uniform chocolate brown surfaces in old blue label holder.

Bust 5c: 1835 Large Date, Large 5C PCGS MS62 gem original with old time Wayte Raymond bulleye toning. This one should not last long.

Seated 10c: 1837 F-101 Large Date PCGS AU50 OGH choice with pretty aquamarine gold patina

Seated 25c: 1851 PCGS EF40 CAC scarce date with uniform light gray surfaces; 1880 PCGS AU50 CAC huge eye appeal with golden peripheries

Reeded Edge 50c: 1838 PCGS MS62 CAC choice frosty luster with speckled gray patina, great for type

Seated 50c: 1890 PCGS MS65 CAC an absolutely superb gem with mirrored fields and multi-colored patina, should not last long

Liberty G$10: 1901-S NGC MS62 CAC Fatty holder choice original

 

Global Financial News

Global equity markets are mixed to start the day. Crude oil is hovering at slightly under $63/bbl while spot gold is holding the new $1274/oz level. My Beijing friend Rikinn warned me that gold would take one more technical deep before breaking out above $1350. He is an avid technical chart reader and now working for a Chinese hedge fund. Let's hope he is correct as GFRC definitely has a substantial United States gold position.

The 10 Year U.S Treasury yield has moved up slightly to 2.42%. Bitcoin is trading at $7911.

Let's review a few Seeking Alpha headlines to wrap up today's Blog.

China - U.S. trade tensions remain with global markets seeing another anxiety bout.

Trade anxiety is setting in again as the U.S. considers cutting off the flow of vital American technology to as many as five Chinese companies - including Hikvision - widening the dragnet beyond Huawei to include world leaders in video surveillance. DJIA futures are down 64 points on the news and shares in Shanghai closed 0.5% lower. Meanwhile, China's Xi Jinping called for a new "Long March," while ambassador Cui Tiankai commented on trade talks, saying the U.S. "changes its mind so often."

Turkey has a huge strategic decisions on its hand. If they align with Russia for missile defense systems, their access to F-35 jets is history along with a blowback from NATO.

Turkey has a little more than two weeks to decide whether to complete a multibillion-dollar deal for Russian S-400s as the U.S. offers to sell Ankara Raytheon's Patriot missile defense system, CNBC reports. At risk: If it goes through with the S-400 deal, Turkey faces removal from Lockheed Martin's F-35 program, forfeiture of 100 promised F-35 jets, imposition of U.S. sanctions and potential blowback from NATO. Turkey's lira has been sliding in part on concerns over the U.S. penalties, which would hit an economy already in recession after a currency crisis last year.

Who would have imagined? The Saudis strike a deal to purchase liquefied natural gas from the United States.

Saudi Arabia has agreed to purchase U.S. liquefied natural gas from Sempra Energy, marking a new strategic direction for the kingdom as it seeks to establish a footprint in the growing global market for the fuel, WSJ reports. The transaction demonstrates how the U.S. energy boom is dramatically changing global trade. Historically, Saudi Arabia has been a major supplier of oil to the U.S., but due to the shale revolution, the Energy Department predicts America will become a net energy exporter in 2020.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

It is time for breakfast before heading off to the Baltimore Convention Center for the day's pre-show buying.

Thank-you for visiting the Blog and please check back on Thursday morning for more GFRC news.

 

 

May 20, 2019

Summer Whitman Baltimore Show Week Arrives!

Greetings and welcome to the Blog on a Monday morning. Yes, it is Summer Baltimore show week.

Southern Maine weather continues to bring rains and cooler temperatures. Overnight rains arrived along with occasional mild thunder and lightning. Foggy conditions and more rain are at hand as the Blog is composed.

Last evening, I briefly watched television and the local news. The western Maine weather report called for thunderstorms as the weather person pontificated on the potential seriousness of the thunderstorms and even the possibility of a funnel cloud. Really? Has the media gone to extremes in their reporting? It seems so. Weather forecasters are currently armed with high powered radar and precise models. These new tools empower the weather people, but there is a downside. Some become overly sensitive and alarmists raising fears among viewers. I see this constantly on NBC evening news (since Diane watches this station and I must sit there as dinner concludes). The headlines are typically 20 million people in the path of severe weather. Guess what? There were snow storms, heavy rains, and severe thunderstorms when I was growing up as a kid and we took them in stride and survived. If the weather was crappy, we stayed indoors and played Monopoly or read a book. Again, the "news" media feeds on viewer emotions by raising fears with alarmist presentations. The result is elevated stress in our modern society due to excess information and how some communicate or spin the "news". Elevated stress does not facilitate a healthy life.

 

Summer Whitman Baltimore Show Week Arrives!

Yes indeed, Summer Baltimore show week is upon us. We will soon learn if scheduling a major coin show on Memorial Day weekend turns out to be a good or less than ideal decision. My approach is to not worry and move forward with preparations and hope for the best.

On a positive note, I get to hang out with my buddy Dan White for a few days and take in a NY Yankees vs. Baltimore Orioles game at Camden Yards on Wednesday evening. The Baltimore pre-show is always a dealer's delight as Dan and I search out potential candidates for inventory. Already, an appointment is on the books with my favorite wholesaler for Tuesday evening.

For those who are attending the Baltimore show, here is the final presentation of the bourse floor map and the GFRC booth location. As a reminder, the GFRC booth will be sharing a quality Coppola Black Label Claret at 4:30 pm on Thursday and Friday.

Front Row and Center Stage: GFRC Booth 635 at Summer Baltimore Show

 

Global Financial News

Financial markets are soft as another trading week opens. The United States and China trade war is cited as the culprit. China's Huawei is in a world of hurt as it supply chain is disrupted. More on this shortly.

Crude oil prices are staging a comeback as OPEC and others carefully deal with a supply overhang. This morning's quote is $63.10 per barrel. Spot gold, on the otherhand, is down to $1275/oz. Bitcoin is consolidating recent gains at $8017/coin. Finally, the 10 Year U.S. long bond yield moved up slightly to 2.4%

Let's review a few Seeking Alpha headlines to stay abreast of global developments.

Now that China's Huawei is on the United States trade blacklist, major semiconductor suppliers are cutting off Huawei's supply chain. The stock market is reacting as expected.

It's a rough start to the week for chipmakers as key semiconductor manufacturers cut off supplies to Huawei after the Trump administration added the Chinese company to a trade blacklist last week. Premarket movement: Qualcomm -3.1%, Intel -1.8%; Xilinx -2.7%, STMicroelectronics -7.4%, Micron -3.7%. Google started the trade suspensions over the weekend, leaving Huawei with access only to the open-source version of Android. Nokia, which usually benefits from the Chinese firm's woes, is up 4.1% premarket, while Ericsson shares are 1.6% higher.

OPEC and allied producers are holding to their oil output cut plans.

Crude futures climbed as high as 1.7% to $63.96/bbl overnight after Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih indicated there was consensus among OPEC and allied oil producers to drive down crude inventories "gently," although markets remain "fragile." "This second half, our preference is to maintain production management to keep inventories on their way declining gradually, softly but certainly declining towards normal levels," he told a news conference following a ministerial OPEC+ panel in Jeddah. Concerns about Iranian supply also gave prices a boost.

The Turks are trying to play both sides with Russian and United States sourced military armaments. They may not secure F-35s from the United States in the end.

The U.S. will "sooner or later" have to face reality and understand that Turkey's purchase of Russian S-400 systems is a done deal, President Tayyip Erdogan said, adding that Ankara would jointly produce the next generation S-500 system with Moscow. American officials have called Turkey's planned purchase "deeply problematic," saying it would risk its F-35 partnership because it would compromise the jets, made by Lockheed Martin. "They (the U.S.) are passing the ball around in the midfield now, showing some reluctance," Erdogan declared. "But sooner or later, we will receive the F-35s. (The U.S.) not delivering them is not an option."

And finally, Boeing has admitted that the 737 MAX's malfunctioning MCAS system was not replicated in their flight training simulators.

Boeing has acknowledged it had to correct flaws in its 737 MAX flight simulator software used to train pilots after recently discovering that they couldn't accurately replicate the difficult conditions created by a malfunctioning MCAS anti-stall system, which played a role in both the Ethiopian and Lion Air disasters. The company did not indicate when it first became aware of the problem, and whether it informed regulators, but its statement marked the first time Boeing admitted there was a software design flaw linked to the 737 MAX. BA -1% premarket.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

Another busy day is at hand in the GFRC office. The last of the new Osprey gold will be posted to the price list followed by packing inventory and accessories for the Baltimore show.

My apology, but there will be no Blog edition on Tuesday morning due to an early driving start to the day. The next Blog edition will appear on Wednesday morning and hopefully dcoument some new purchases. So please check back then.

Thank-you for stopping by at the Blog. Yes, I will be in the office the entire day and ready to take in last minute orders.

 

 

 

May 19, 2019

Web-Book Plate Coins Heading to PCGS at Baltimore!

Greetings on a Sunday morning and thank-you for stopping in at the Daily Blog.

Yes, the Whitman Baltimore show is on my mind. For collectors, booking travel to a major show and having spending monies are the two priorities. For a dealer, it is a whole lot more. There are a host of preparations to get done to ensure no client is disappointed. In my case, we add in hosting the LSCC regional meeting on Friday morning and formulating a worthwhile presentation for those who attend.

GFRC Baltimore Show Checklist

Ever consider being a coin dealer as a second career? Here is a glimpse into GFRC's Baltimore preparation activities, much goes on behind the scenes. Writing these down is actually a great checklist exercise.

- Write receipts for orders to be picked up at the show. In other words, don't forget to bring those coins else big time disappointments.

- Review email Inbox and ensure requested coins are transported to the show.

- Prepare a PCGS submission; more on this shortly.

- Build an LSCC regional meeting presentation. Oh, by the way, pray that the Whitman on site projector works and have your HDMI to VGA adapter packed in computer bag.

- Select two bottles of quality wine from the wine rack and make sure to bring cups.

- Pack the usual booth accessories: receipt pads, checkbook, loupe, table covers, case liners, locks, money bag, show badge, and coins.

- Bring empty double row slab box for consignments that might appear along with new purchases.

- Upload the COIN database (Excel file) to Hostway server in the event something bad happens to my laptop.

- Don't forget your cellphone (please take note Dan White!) else we'll have no bourse floor hotspot for CoinFacts access.

- Check the Baltimore weather report and ensure proper clothing is packed.

And you thought I might be relaxing on a Sunday?

 

More Liberty Seated Dime Web-Book Plate Coins Heading to PCGS

Yes, I was bored on a Saturday evening. Rather than write more burdensome coin descriptions, the time was spent going through two double row 2x2 boxes of Liberty Seated dime web-book plate coins. The goal? Pulling another 40 or so dimes that will definitely PCGS grade. All must be no question AU or Mint State offerings to make the effort and expense worthwhile. Below is an image of the thirty-six dimes that made the cut.

I recognize that die-hard Seated Dime die variety collectors will want a preview of the submission and what to expect for new GFRC offerings in the July timeframe. If clicking on the below image, a high resolution version will download and you will be able to see each dime and my 2x2 die variety designations. Have fun!

More Liberty Seated Dime Web-Book Plate Coins To Consider!

 

Peterson Seated Halves Loaded to Price List

Yes, Saturday's showcased Dr. Glenn Peterson Liberty Seated halves are now available on the price list. Already, the 1849 WB-10 PCGS AU55 CAC is on hold and Quick Ships on Monday. Please check the balance of the new offerings. All will be transported to the Baltimore show.

 

Osprey United States Gold Loads to Price List Today

Today's primary task is loading Dan White's European sourced United States gold to the price list. I will start working on this immediately after completing today's Blog edition since there is no shipping to consume the morning hours.

 

Major Collection Wanted - 2019 August ANA Debut

In Friday's Blog, I made mention of sourcing a major collection to be debutted at the Chicago ANA. There is indeed an opening in the GFRC schedule to take on a major collection during the June and July timeframe. Please be proactive and don't wait until July to reach a divestment decision. The sooner that the decision is made and coins are physically transferred, the better for all parties. Marketing a major collection takes evaluation time and a trip through CAC review. Timely preparations are key to the debut, plus I'm looking for some cool coins to write about in the Blog in the upcoming summer months. Otherwise, I may have to go back to politics and discuss upcoming presidential debates. That would not be good...

 

Featured Coins of the Day - Trade Dollars

Trade dollar sales seem to run in cycles. In the past three months, GFRC has sold eight Trade Dollars, but only one in the past 30 days. Let's showcase some quality pieces for your consideration. All TPG graded Trade Dollars will be on display at the Whitman Baltimore show with the goal of finding new homes for a few.

If you're wishing to consign or sell a Trade Dollar collection that is accurately graded, then I'm all ears.

1873-CC PCGS EF45 Trade $1                                                   1874 PCGS AU58 CAC Trade $1

    

1875-CC PCGS AU53 CAC Trade $1                                                   1875-S/CC PCGS AU55 Trade $1

    

1876-S NGC MS64 Trade $1                                                   1877 PCGS MS64+ Trade $1  

    

1877 PCGS MS62 CAC Trade $1                                                   1878-CC PCGS EF45 Trade $1

    

 

Again, thank-you for stopping by and reading today's ramblings!

I will be in the office nearly the entire day working on Osprey gold and Baltimore preparations. If you'd like to grab that special coin prior to its display at the Baltimore show, then now is the time! For customers well known to me, your order will Quick Ship on Monday.

Now time for another cup of java.

 

 

 

May 18, 2019

Get Ready For More Dr. Glenn Peterson Seated Halves!

Greetings and welcome to the Blog on a Saturday morning.

Southern Maine skies are clear allowing bright sunshine to start drying out the landscape. More rains fell during the overnight, soaking the grounds. If seeding or patching a lawn, one could not ask for better weather conditions.

Writing a long Blog edition is not in the cards today. I was up late on Friday evening processing more Dr. Glenn Peterson half dollar images, followed by researching state of the art audio/visual receivers. Self education is warranted as the Stone Cold Collection consignor has made listening appointments with two Connecticutt audio shops for the week after Summer Baltimore. Immediately after the Baltimore show, a new basement sound room system will be purchased. That is the current plan. Once the new system is installed, there may be an impact to how often I work late evenings in the GFRC office. We will face that pleasant possibility when it arrives...

Mid June also brings the return of the Yamatin family to the Raymond homestead for a six week stay. Matt and I are noodling over a new GFRC IT project to be executed while he is here. More on this topic to be shared at a later time.

 

Summer FUN Show Less Thank Two Month Away

It is not too soon to be discussing the Summer FUN show in Orlando. This year's event takes place July 11-13 at the Orange County Convention Center, in center hall WE1. GFRC's attendance has been confirmed. Dan White and I will be operating from a corner table and looking forward to meeting Florida area collectors. Once the bourse map and GFRC table number are announced, the information will be shared in the Blog.

 

Another Dr. Peterson Liberty Seated Half Dollar Lot

I'm working as quickly as possible to add more new inventory prior to the Baltimore show. There are just two days left as Monday is targeted for writing receipts for show pick-up orders along with pulling 13 double row slabbed boxes of coins for transport to the show.

Following is yet another Dr. Glenn Peterson client gallery. The nine Liberty Seated halves are part of the large group that were hand selected from two Dansco albums followed by PCGS grading and CAC review. Photography was done while in Florida under bright sun. The images' colors tend to be skewed towards greens when surfaces are frosty and untoned. Please keep this in mind when viewing the images.

I hope to have these on the price list by end of day. Already several First Rights of Refusal appeared during the overnight hours.

More Dr. Glenn Peterson Liberty Seated Halves

Hand Selected from Dansco Albums

1851-O PCGS AU50 50C

1848 PCGS AU50 50C                                                                1879 PCGS MS61 50C

    

 1849 PCGS AU55 CAC 50C                       1849-O PCGS EF45 CAC 50C                      1854-O PCGS AU50 50C  

        

1855-O WB-103 PCGS EF45 50C                 1858 WB-109 PCGS AU55 50C                        1869 PCGS AU50 50C       

        

 

Featured Coins of the Day - Gerry's Favorites

Let's face it, I'm constantly working with coins and can't help but to have favorite pieces in inventory. Some arrive via consignment while others are hand selected during major pre-show buying events. Some of the favorites sell immediately while others hang around on the price list. For the latter group, I just scratch my head and wonder why no one is purchasing. Today's featured coins are from that latter group and all CAC approved. Let's call this group "Gerry's Favorites". Please enjoy!

     1834 JR-1 PCGS EF45 CAC 10C                                             1876-CC F-134 PCGS MS63 CAC 10C

    

1875 NGC AU53 CAC 20C                                                   1815 B-1 PCGS EF40 CAC 25C

    

1818 B-2 PCGS AU50 CAC 25C                                                   1861-S PCGS VF30 CAC 25C

    

1803 Large 3 O-101 PCGS VF35 CAC 50C                                          1814 O-103 PCGS AU58 CAC 50C

    

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

Thank-you for visiting today! Time for a quick shower followed by the usual morning stint in the packing and shipping department. Early afternoon brings more photography.

I will be in the office most of the day and quickly responding to purchase orders.

See you on Sunday morning at the Blog.

 

 

 

May 17, 2019

Fresh European Gold Arriving to GFRC Price List!

Greetings on another cold Friday morning and welcome to the Blog.

Southern Maine skies are cloudy with imminent rains. Temperature is a balmy 42 degrees and the woodstove might be fired up again. The month of May is turning out to be one of the coldest on record in Maine with farmers struggling to get crops planted.

One of the challenges of being an owner operated business is the fact that if you don't work, nothing gets done. Thursday was a case in point. It was time to mow the lawn before more rains arrived. But first, the grounds needed to be aerated and last year's thatch blanket broken up. The afternoon was spent dragging a weighted aerator behind the John Deere tractor followed by mowing the entire property. The homestead grounds look wonderful this morning but little if any GFRC workload received attention during regular business hours. After dinner, I worked until 10:00 pm processing Osprey's United States gold images until my eyes were closing. Pre-dinner scotch does that for some reason. I awoke at 4:30 am to wrap up the display in today's Blog. The new client gallery looks rather nice as the day's primary visual highlight.

 

Fresh European Gold Arriving to GFRC Price List!

I'm most pleased to be showcasing a substantial offering of fresh European source United States gold. Courtesy of the Osprey Collection, the following client gallery illustrates the outcome of days of searching coin and jewelry shops in Belgium, France, Spain and other countries.

The first display highlight is an 1854 Small Date Type 1 $20 double eagle graded PCGS MS61 and approved by CAC. The CAC population reports indicates one of five approved at the MS61 level with two finer. 1854 Small Date double eagles are easily found in circulated grades but a rarity in Mint State. Serious $20 Type 1 collectors should take note and contact me immediately. The second key highlight is a very rare 1861-O $20 double eagle freshly graded PCGS EF45. This offering has the typical weak date with partial lower loop on the 8 digit and most likely struck during Union or State of Louisiana administration of the New Orleans mint.

Up next in the display are freshly sourced 1851 and 1852 Type 1 double eagles that are perfectly original and crusty. Both are graded PCGS AU50. I will let you inspect the balance of the Osprey gallery for morning enjoyment. Look for these offerings to arrive to the price list by late Saturday. In the meantime, First Rights of Refusals are being accepted.

Osprey Collection - Fresh United States Gold Offerings

1854 Sm Date PCGS MS61 CAC G$20                                          1861-O Weak Date PCGS EF45 G$20

    

1851 PCGS AU50 G$20                                                                  1852 PCGS AU50 G$20 

    

1904 PCGS MS64 G$20                                                               1924 PCGS MS65+ G$20

    

 1899 PCGS MS64 CAC G$5                      1899 PCGS MS63+ CAC G$5                     1900 PCGS MS63+ CAC G$10

            

 1900 PCGS MS63+ CAC G$10                      1926 PCGS MS64 CAC G$10                      1893-S PCGS MS62+ G$20

            

 

Major Collection Wanted - 2019 August ANA Debut

The GFRC consignment backlog is being steadily consumed as coins are posted to the price list on a daily basis.

I'm now in a position to take on a major collection consignment of 100 pieces or more with retail value in the $100,000 to $300,000 range. There will be sufficient bandwidth in June and July to prepare a major offering for debut at the Chicago ANA.

If you have been considering the divestment of a substantial numismatic property and finding it difficult to decide on how to move forward, then please give me a call or send an email to schedule an appointment. In the past 12 months, GFRC has marketed and sold several major collections including the Iowa Liberty Seated Quarter Collection, The Sunset Point Liberty Seated Quarter Collection, and the Tenafly Liberty Seated Dime Collection. Major auction houses are always a viable option for selling but GFRC might just be a more attractive option. If you like being hands on during the divestment process and have a longer term outlook for maximizing financial returns, then GFRC may prove to be an attractive candidate for retailing the collection.

 

Global Financial News

Global equity markets are again unsettled and flashing red futures as the Beijing Central government is ramping mainland China propaganda and preparing citizens for a long trade war. As a results, the Shanghai stock exchange is down hard.

Bitcoin took it on the chin during the overnight hours and dropped from yesterday's $8086/coin open to current $7215 quote. Crude oil prices are increasing again and quoting at $63.60/bbl. Gold has softened a tad at $1285/oz and the U.S. 10 Year Treasury bold yield is flat at 2.38%.

Let's review several Seeking Alpha headlines that expand upon the opening highlights. First commentary on the Chinese People's Daily front page communication event.

A fresh bout of risk aversion is hitting global stocks after tough words on trade from Beijing suggested that while a potential U.S.-China deal could happen further into the future, its impact on the world economy would be far more immediate. The Communist Party's People's Daily used a front page commentary to evoke the patriotic spirit of past wars, saying its trade battle would never bring China down. Stocks in Shanghai fell 2.5% on the news, while Dow futures are off more than 100 points. Other fears plaguing the markets are the prospect of European auto tariffs. While reports this week pointed to a delay, the White House has until midnight to decide on the levies.

Watch out Howard Schultz as a Chinese replacement for Starbucks trades publicly on the Nasdaq. Let's face it. Nearly every major western company doing business in China must eventually sell out to a local firm or face being replaced by a Chinese owned entity. And the Chinese wonder why there is a trade war?

Luckin Coffee, which begins trading today on the Nasdaq, has priced its IPO at $17 per share - the higher end of its indicated range - marking the biggest U.S. float by a Chinese firm this year. In a sign of strong demand, Luckin sold 33M American Depositary Shares - upsizing from the 30M originally planned - and raised $561M to give the Beijing-based coffee chain a market valuation of roughly $4B. Luckin currently operates 2,370 stores across China and plans to open 2,500 more this year with the goal of dethroning Starbucks as the country's largest coffee chain.

Why crypto-currencies took an overnight hit is unknown.

While the move didn't appear to have a particular trigger, a plunge was seen across the crypto space overnight following a strong recovery since early April. Bitcoin slid 10% to $7,215, according to Coindesk, while the price of Ethereum fell 8% to $241 and Ripple slipped 15% to $0.3993. "This last drop was likely caused by a combination of profit-taking and also algorithmic trading compounding the swift fall," said Jehan Chu, co-founder of Kenetic Capital. "We can expect these types of steep rises and drops to continue for some time until institutional investors grow market volume."

It appears that the Boeing 737 MAX MCAS software fix is completed with vigorous testing results.

Boeing closed the session up 2.4% on Thursday after completing development of a software update for its 737 MAX jets, along with associated simulator testing and engineering test flights. "We're making clear and steady progress and are confident that the 737 MAX with updated MCAS software will be one of the safest airplanes ever to fly," CEO Dennis Muilenburg declared. The 737 MAX has flown with the updated MCAS software for more than 360 hours on 207 flights to date. Boeing will also provide additional information to address FAA requests.

 

Featured Coins of the Day - GFRC Ramps United States Gold Market Presence

As with any capital intensive business, it takes time to locate funding towards assembling quality inventory. I believe that GFRC has crossed the credibility threshold with respect to being a source of top quality United States gold. Following are eight impressive offerings to consider.

GFRC Quality United States Gold Highlights

1852-O PCGS MS63 CAC G$1                                                       1856-S NGC AU58+ CAC G$1

    

1837 Classic Head NGC AU58 CAC G$2.5                                               1855-C PCGS AU55 G$5           

    

1855-S PCGS MS61 CAC G$5                                                      1878 PCGS MS63+ CAC G$10

    

    1859 PCGS EF35 CAC G$20                                                       1904 PCGS MS65+ CAC G$20

    

Another rainy day has arrived which will keep me in the GFRC office the entire day. If considering potential purchases or wishing to discuss a potential consignment, please don't hesitate to call. Once the loud background music is placed on hold, I'm sure we will have a productive conversation.

Thank-you for making the Daily Blog a regular part of your day. See you tomorrow.