Rare coins authenticated and certified for grade by Professional Coin Grading Service (www.pcgs.com) broke or tied dozens of price records at the Florida United Numismatists (FUN) convention auction sessions conducted by Heritage Auctions (www.HA.com).
"PCGS-certified coins ruled the day at the recent FUN show. Record prices were realized for a 1793 Chain cent as well as an 1829 large date $5, both bringing $1.38 million in the Heritage Platinum Night auctions. Strong prices were also realized for Denis Loring’s 1793 large cent collection as well as Dr. Steven Duckor’s collection of Saint-Gaudens Double Eagles," said Don Willis, President of PCGS, a division of Collectors Universe, Inc. (NASDAQ: CLCT).
The Chain cent (S-4) once owned by legendary Baltimore banker Louis E. Eliasberg Sr. ("the King of Coins") is graded PCGS MS65 Brown. The 1829 Half Eagle gold piece (BD-1), formerly in the famous Garrett Collection, is graded PCGS Secure Plus PR64.
Heritage officials reported that Dr. Duckor’s 52-piece Saint-Gaudens $20 collection realized $5.68 million — an average of nearly $110,000 per coin — and 33 of the coins set or tied record prices for their date and grade.
"It was very exciting, and Heritage did a fabulous job with a memorable catalog; 170 pages devoted to 54 lots of my collection, and with extensive comments by David Akers," said Dr. Duckor.
"I really like PCGS, and with only two exceptions, PCGS-graded coins are the only ones I’ve bought since 1989. Their Population Reports, grading accuracy, consistency and transparency of the company are all phenomenal. They’re the best for grading gold. My ‘mantra’ has always been to buy the very best quality you can afford — even stretching to buy the best including mortgaging my home! — and don’t ‘flip’ coins. I’ve now added another mantra: Buy the coin AND the holder. The (PCGS Secure) Plus grades have brought coins to a new level.
Dr. Duckor said the Saint-Gaudens Double Eagles from his collection benefited from PCGS Secure Plus grading, and he cited several examples: 1910 PCGS MS66+ sold for $54,625; 1911 PCGS MS67 $184,00, and 1928 PCGS MS67+ $54,625.
"My Barber Half Dollar Collection, auctioned by Heritage at the ANA World’s Fair of Money in Boston in 20120, was also certified PCGS Secure Plus, and did extremely well with record-breaking prices," he said.
Twelve varieties of 1793 large cents from Loring’s collection were offered and sold in the auction, all of them graded AU53 and AU58 by PCGS.
"I’m more than happy with the results. I received a number of kind compliments on the quality of the coins. Heritage did a terrific job both cataloging and marketing the collection," said Loring. "I’m still actively collecting, as I have non-stop since 1955. I’m very fortunate to have found a hobby that has given me great pleasure, and through which I’ve met so many fascinating people."
Underlying the continuing strength of the market for high-quality, rare U.S. coins, Heritage reported more than 7,000 bidders participated in the auction, vying for 9,420 U.S. coins in an auction that resulted in nearly $56 million in winning bids. All prices quoted include the 19.5 percent buyer’s premium.
"PCGS coins are universally respected and always command top dollar. That’s why the most valuable certified copper, silver and gold coins were all in PCGS holders when they were sold," said Willis.
With more than 23 million coins graded commanding a total current market value of over $26 billion, PCGS represents the industry standard in third-party certification.