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Fridayday June 14, 2024

Summer Baltimore is Strong!

and

What is All The Fuss About Baltimore?

 

 

Greetings from the Baltimore Hyatt Hotel and welcome to a Summer Baltimore Daily Blog edition. Thank you for checking in.

One never knows what to expect from a major summer coin show as the 2024 numismatic season moves through the month of June. To be honest, the GFRC husband and wife team went to Baltimore with muted expectations. I must say that we were pleasantly enamored with the first day results as the GFRC booth was non-stop busy until 4;00 PM. You know when a coin show is great by how late the lunch break, if you can call it that, when it takes place at 2:00 PM.

Of course, GFRC enjoyed one of the best booth locations on the bourse floor. That certainly helped from the visibility perspective. However, there must be active show attendance for a show to be considered as "strong".

That was the case for Thursday's Whitman Baltimore results. During the "early bird" two hour time frame from 10:00 to 12:00am, we enjoyed a five figure deal with another dealer to kick off sales. Once the bourse opened to the public at noon time, we were constantly busy with robust sales. I often use the term "yield" to describe collector attitudes. At some shows, the "yield" is high whereby most booth visitor will buy one or more coins during a visit. That was the case on Thursday. Collectors who took the time to attend had cash in their pockets and were serious about making purchases. I could not be more please with first day results as we took in a number of trade coins that were all there from a quality perspective along with conducting a regular stocking inventory purchase from my favorite wholesaler during the "early bird" period. GFRC will return to Maine with a host of great CAC approved or CACG holdered new purchases with considerable eye appeal. I'm looking forward to restocking the 30 Day Price list with a host of premium purchases at competitive prices.

 

What is All The Fuss About Baltimore?

For years, many collectors have been worried about traveling into Baltimore. Might those fears have been unfounded?

After we closed up shop on Thursday, Diane and I decided to walk through the Inner Harbor area towards locating a well known Italian restaurant called La Tavola on Albemarle St. The stroll across the Inner Harbor piers was thoroughly pleasant on an early evening. The Inner Harbor is similar to any other large city with an active waterfront. In Baltimore's case, it was Fleet Week and Fly Over presented by Northrop Grumman with a host of ships docks at the piers including a visit by the USS Marinette, a Littoral class combat ship that is docked at the pier adjacent to the Hyatt Hotel.

The former days of BLM demonstrations and street panhandlers was a distant memory last evening. I for one have changed my view of the Baltimore Inner Harbor area and would encourage collectors to seriously consider returning to Baltimore come the Fall show in late October. The Whitman staff has communicated to me, that Baltimore is seeing an improvement as a holiday destination and last evening brought recognition of that forecast.

Come this evening, Diane and I will once again take a stroll and locate another local eatery.

 

The Two CAC Approved Specialty Sets Auction Opens on Saturday at 9:00 PM

So far in this Blog edition, I've not mentioned the lot viewing for The Two CAC Approved Specialty Sets Auction that opens tomorrow evening at 9:00pm. One of the reasons for being so busy on Thursday was the staff multiplexing between supporting auction lot viewing and regular bourse sales. I was pleased with the amount of attention that the auction received from multiple visits. Clearly, the Cumberland County's "early date" Walkers were the star attraction among several visitors. I'm expecting to see some opening bidding activity on this portion of the auction lots once bidding opens.

I'm not the least worried about the JBN Seated dimes as there will be a large demand from the regular Seated collecting community given the generous opening reserves.

Good luck to those that decide to bid when the auction opens tomorrow evening.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

It is nearly 8:00 AM and time to close the laptop and head to breakfast before starting another day on the Whitman Baltimore bourse floor. I'm uncertain if there will be Blog edition on Saturday morning, if so, it might be composed from the bourse floor and appear around 10:00 AM.

Thanks again for visiting with GFRC and its coin show adventures. Be well.

 

 

 

 

Tuesday June 11, 2024

A Huge GFRC Week!

 

Greetings on a Tuesday evening and welcome to the Daily Blog. As always, thank you for stopping by at all time of the day.

This brief edition is being composed on Tuesday evening before closing down the Dell XPS laptop and accessories. I'm ready for an hour in the basement sound room before calling it a day. Tomorrow brings the Baltimore journey followed by Whitman Baltimore booth setup at 5:00 PM. Moving forward, the GFRC will be the Gerry and Diane team with supporting actors when possible. Like all things in life, there are transitions as we age. The Summer Baltimore show signals the transition from the Dan and Gerry business partners to the core Gerry and Diane staff. While in Baltimore, we will miss our daily two mile jog through the back acreage trails but then again, this is a great change of pace from rural to an urban settings

GFRC is showcasing its entire inventory at the Baltimore. This means 10 cases of premium inventory along with 2 cases housing the June 15 Two CAC Approved Specialty Sets auction lot featuring the JBN Seated dime and the Cumberland County Walking Liberty halves. What is there else to say? The Fortins are handling our end of the bargain as a leading dealer of Liberty Seated coinage and are participating in a host of coin shows through Winter FUN 2025.

GFRC has already done a five figure deal with one of our regular suppliers leading to incremental $20 double eagle gold being added to the cases on Thursday. Who knows what else might be offered along with working the bourse for new purchases?

Please note that the Mirror Collection Liberty Seated half dimes are free agents other than the 1838 Small Date and the 1851-O. These will be available for purchase at the show.

Please check the 30 Day Price List as more new offerings have been posted in the past 48 hours.

And on that note, I am closing the Dell laptop and packing the IT portion of the GFRC business for transport to Baltimore. The time has come for relax for one hour in the basement sound room before calling it a day. Will it be digital or old time analog 33RPM LPs this evening. Who knows how my musical inclines will be in a few minutes.

Please check back each morning as I will try to keep the community update on the Summer Baltimore events and bourse attendance.

Be well.

 

 

Tuesday June 11, 2024

Packing for Summer Baltimore Show

and

Mirror Collection Liberty Seated Half Dime Duplicates to Consider

 

Greetings and welcome to the Daily Blog.

It is an early Tuesday morning with the final shipping, before Baltimore departure, needing to get done. Afterwards, packing inventory and show accessories is the imperative.

There is much to get done today including scheduling Dave Wilkinson's excavator return on June 18 and maybe the 19th. We are working out the details this morning.

 

Mirror Collection Liberty Seated Half Dime Duplicates to Consider

Following is a final hour posting of the new Mirror Collection Liberty Seated half dime consignment for the community to consider prior to their exhibit at the Whitman Baltimore show. Already, a really cool 1838 Small Stars die state has been spoken. All lots are priced as marked. Those not sold come Wednesday at 5:00 PM will be included in the Baltimore show cases. Please call or email to reserve any of the remaining offerings.

Mirror Collection - Liberty Seated Half Dime Duplicates

Heading to the Whitman Baltimore Show

      1838 Small Stars NGC MS64 CAC H10C Fatty - HOLD                                      1862 NGC MS67 H10C - $1850                        

        

          1864-S NGC MS61 H10C - $1475                                               1865-S NGC MS61 Fatty H10C - $1750    

        

1840 No Drap PCGS MS64 H10C - $825                  1842 NGC MS65 H10C - $1250                1851-O PCGS MS62 CAC H10C - HOLD

                

1858 Inv Date PCGS MS62 H10C - $1300               1858-O NGC MS65 H10C - $1250                 1859-O PCGS MS64 H10C - $1075       

                

 

Having said the above, I will end today's Daily Blog edition at this point.

Thank you for the visit and my apology for a short edition.

Be well!

 

 

 

Monday June 10, 2024

Vinyl is Back in the Basement Sound Room!

Summer Baltimore Week Arrives

and

Lakeland Collection Discounts Full Inventory by 8%

 

Greetings and welcome to the Daily Blog on a Monday morning. Thank you so much for returning for another edition.

Sunday brought a typical erratic Maine weather day with overcast skies, showers, occasional sunshine, and heavy downpours. There is a well known Maine saying about the weather; if you don't like the current weather, just wait a few hours and it will change. This was the case yesterday.

Given the unsettled outdoor conditions, my attention shifted to completing several items in the ongoing project queue as I just could not bring myself to spend an entire Sunday in the GFRC office. Off to the barn I went and completed the electrification of the second 120V power circuit. At this point, the barn is completely wired in terms of indoor/outdoor outlets. The final step is adding two switched lighting circuits during the autumn time frame.

Also completed on Sunday was the installation of my 1980s generation Technics turntable into the basement sound system. What a thrill to have the ability to enjoy the fuller sound that only vinyl can provide. To verify this often reported fact that vinyl provides a "broader" or more wholesome listening experience than digital, I compared the first side of Jethro Tull's Aqualung with its streamed digital counterpart. The vinyl was a collector version on the Chrysalis label that had been unused. After listening to Aqualung, Cross eyed Mary, and Mother Goose (my favorite on the album) in both formats, I was convinced that vinyl is better. Thanks goodness that I did not follow through with a a thought to sell the below record collection last year. These 33 RPM vinyl piece were acquired between 1972 and mid-1980s prior to the music technology transition to CDs. Much could be shared about the contents of the record collection, but today is not the right time.

 

In other homestead news, Dave Wilkinson's knee replacement recovery is going very well. We chatted yesterday on the topic of pond management and during the conversation, he made it clear that our pond expansion project for late June is on track. This is great news for Dave and the back acreage development goals.

 

Summer Baltimore Week Arrives

It is difficult to believe but this week brings the Summer Whitman Baltimore show. For the final time, I will remind attendees of the GFRC booth location. We are nicely positioned at Booth 730 immediately to the right of the bourse entrance. Diane and I will have 12 cases of coins on display including two cases housing the JBN and Cumberland County auction lots. Wednesday will be a long exhausting day given the drive to Baltimore followed by setting up the booth upon our arrival.

If considering a consignment drop-off, please share this fact immediately with me so that the appropriate preparations can be made. With just two individuals managing a double corner booth, our time will be consumed with showing retail coins along with the auction lots as a first priory. Preparing consignment transfer paperwork in advance will be mandatory.

Diane and I look forward to seeing old and new faces starting on Thursday and Friday.

 

Lakeland Collection Discounts Full Inventory by 8%

After reading my commentary on the current numismatic market conditions, in the Sunday Blog, the mother and son Lakeland collecting team made a command decision to discount their entire consignment inventory by 8%. The pricing adjustments were promptly executed and posted to the 30 Day Price List.

Please take the time to visit this top viewed price list to see if one or more of the Lakeland Collection lots might be for you.

 

Global Financial News

Friday brought a gold and silver precious metals sell-off. Gold closed at $2290/oz while silver was down to nearly $29. The "reported" culprits were a better than expected U.S. jobs report along with a report that the Chinese central government did not purchase any imported gold in May. Terms like "market rout" and "sinking like a stone" were bantered about on Kitco. Well, the U.S. job report was a bust if looking closely into the details. The U.S. unemployment rate increased from 3.9 to 4.0% while the U.S. work force participation rate dropped for full time jobs. The headline jobs number was concentrated in the service sector, aka part time jobs. But the headline number made for a great talking point for the current administration and its media allies.

Secondly, the Chinese not buying gold in May did not surprise me. If you are the largest buyer of gold on the planet, would you not try to push the price down during your accumulation? Silver falling $2/oz on Friday afternoon was classic COMEX shorting by the big banks since Asia markets were closed.

During the overnight, gold traded at $2400/oz on the Shanghai exchange! The Kitco U.S. quote is $2300 which is a $100 gap between eastern and western trading exchanges. Silver has already recovered to $29.72/oz as the Blog is composed. The big bank manipulators can not longer hide their tracks when we have access to the Shanghai Gold Exchange numbers.

The S&P 500 closed Friday at 5,347 with morning market futures close to flat.

Due to Friday's U.S. jobs report number, the 10 Year bond yield climbed back to 4.47% and the DXY index increased to 105.3. All of this for part time jobs being created as full time jobs wane. One has to wonder.....

WTI crude is trading at $76/bbl.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today?

There is a decent amount of shipping to work through this morning. I'm not certain what the afternoon will bring but hopefully there will be enough sunshine to photograph the Mirror Collection Liberty Seated half dimes along with wrapping up the pricing proposal.

Tomorrow brings inventory and accessories packing for the Summer Baltimore show.

Thanks again for checking in. Be well!

 

 

 

Sunday June 9, 2024

The CAC Approved Specialty Sets Auction Sale - A PDF Catalog

and

Price Reductions on the 30 Day Price List

 

Greetings and welcome to the Daily Blog on a Sunday morning. Thank you for checking in.

Yes, it is a Sunday with most people not working at their regular day job. But here I am as usual with yet another round of numismatic ramblings for the day.

The primary news is that the June 15 PDF auction catalog has been completed and is accessible by clicking on the following catalog front page. Building this catalog also does double duty as the final quality control check for the individual descriptions. Since building the catalog via copy/paste actions into Microsoft Word, each description is automatically checked for spelling mistakes along with grammar recommendations. I don't know about you, but my strengths lie in math and science rather than languages. Therefore, the power of Word is priceless in solidifying quality descriptions.

The CAC Approved Specialty Sets Auction Sale opens in less than a week, specifically next Saturday at 9:00 PM and will run for a full week of bidding fun. Please don't be bashful about asking questions concerning certain lots as one client did this morning. You will get straight answers as I want everyone to be pleased with their auction purchases.

There is a lot viewing opportunity that arrives this Thursday through noon time Saturday at the Whitman Baltimore show. If planning to be a substantial player in the auction, then a drive into Baltimore and one day visit might be worth your time. As much as I try to showcase each lot with accurate illustrations and descriptions, there is no replacement for seeing each coin in-hand under a bright light.

The CAC Approved Specialty Sets Auction Sale - A PDF Catalog

 

Price Reductions on the 30 Day Price List

Collectors and consignors need to face the fact that the numismatic has slowed during the past 12 months. On a positive note, I believe the market has stabilized pricing wise, but unfortunately at a lower level than its peak during early 2023. I wish that there was a graphical representation of this fact. The PCGS3000 pricing plot would be ideal but the folks at PCGS managing the price guide have not updated their 1 year graph since August 2022. Coincidently, the August 2022 one year graph still shows a rising market. Is this a political move on PCGS's part to not illustrate the fact that the numismatic market has flatten?

As a result of the current market cycle, some consignors are reducing prices to move their coins to new homes. In the past 48 hours, 12 coins have seen price reductions with nearly half selling at their new levels. Once the Blog is uploaded, I will update the price lists with a refresh.

One of the phenomenons of a flat numismatic market is that collectors have less motivation to sell their coins. In a rising market, collectors are able to buy and sell while pretty much breaking even. Higher prices can cover the commission costs associated with selling coins. In a flat market, there is no near term pricing appreciation. When selling coins purchased in the immediate 12-24 months, there will be a loss against purchase price due to selling commissions. Some collectors are cool with this and see it as "rent charge" for owning the coin. Others can't accept the possibility of a loss on a coin purchase and instead hold on to their coins until prices move up again. The problem is that it is difficult to predict when the next up cycle will take place, thus less material returning to the marketplace.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today?

Light rain and overcast skies will dominate southern Maine today. As a result of the weather conditions, I will be working in the barn and completing the wiring of the second power circuit. Afterwards, it is back in the GFRC office. The Liberty Seated half dimes, from the Mirror Collection, will be loaded into the COIN system along with a pricing proposal being generated. The Mirror Collection lots may not reach the price list prior to leaving for the Baltimore show, but will assuredly will be in the show cases.

That is pretty much it for the day's plans.

Thanks again for stopping by. Be well!

 

 

 

Saturday June 8, 2024

The Two Specialty Sets Auction PDF Catalog Arrives Today

and

Saw Mill Run and Spring Branch June 15 Auction Highlights

 

Greetings on a lovely southern Maine Saturday morning and welcome to the Daily Blog. Thank you so much for the visit.

Today's preamble will be brief as all of Friday was spent assembling The Two Specialty Set Auction PDF catalog. That effort is about 85% complete with the catalog being published during the evening hours.

Furthermore, the latest Mirror Collection Liberty Seated half dime consignment is now in house and will be photographed during the morning hours.

I'd like to get a head start to the day for enabling some outdoor time during the afternoon time frame.

Let's move on to a display of the incremental lots, in the June 15 auction, from the Saw Mill Run and Spring Branch Collections. While most of the auction marketing has been geared for the JBN Liberty Seated dimes and the Cumberland County Walking Liberty halves, there are important Liberty Seated quarters and halves also offered in this sale. The time has come to showcase those lots.

 

Saw Mill Run and Spring Branch June 15 Auction Highlights

1856-S WB-2 PCGS MS63 50C

1891 PCGS MS65 Gold CAC 25C                                                          1851 WB-2 PCGS EF45 50C 

        

     1855-O NGC MS64 CAC 50C                                                        1856-S WB-6 PCGS EF40 CAC 50C 

        

 1843-O Br 1-B PCGS VF35 CAC 25C                1840 WB-6 PCGS MS62 CAC 50C                1850-O WB-7 PCGS AU55 CAC 50C  

                

 1865-S WB-7c PCGS AU55 50C                        1873-S WB-1 PCGS EF45 50C                              1885 NGC MS62 510C        

                

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

So ends another Blog edition. Please remember that GFRC will be attending the Whitman Baltimore show next week. This would be a ideal opportunity for a consignment drop-off if so inclined.

Otherwise, I will say farewell for this edition and get started on another day in a numismatic and outdoor life.

Be well!

 

 

 

Friday June 7, 2024

Preparing The Two Specialty Sets Auction PDF Catalog

Whack-a-Mole, A Homestead Summer Game

and

When Will Coin Dealers Learn?

 

Greetings and welcome to the Daily Blog on a Friday morning. Another day arrives in a life. Thanks for checking in.

The countdown to the next GFRC Online Auctions event is now underway. Bidding for The Two Specialty Sets Auction opens next Saturday evening as Diane and I will be traveling back to Maine after the Summer Baltimore show. The last deliverable for the third GFRC 2024 auction is the PDF catalog which will be finalized during the next 48 hours.

Unfortunately for all of us, there is no prepared content for today's edition. Yesterday was spent outside of the office with multiple outdoor projects. The algae filled back acreage pond was cleaned followed by being shocked with a bleach application to get back to square one. With several days of rain and cool weather in the forecast, it will be possible to start fresh in terms of algae growth and its control with MuckOut product. After the forthcoming expansion project, once Dave Wilkinson is fit for excavator work, I will be adding an aerator powered by a solar battery.

The other spontaneous project of the day was dealing with a ground mole that has taken residence in my new lawn adjacent to the settler's stone wall right entrance. Just image having a gorgeous silver coin that was spotting in the prime focal area due to no fault of your own? How would you feel? This mammal had been at it for two days with a fair number of volcano shaped mounds appearing. Off I went to Home Depot to secure Tomcat bait to poison the intruder. After carefully following application directions and placing the worm-shipped bait into tunneling lines, I was off to the pond for that clean-up. Upon returning, there was yet another fresh mound which told me that the mole was in the immediate area. I just happened to have a large maul for splitting wood in the barn. It was retrieved followed by patiently waiting for the slightest ground movement in one of the tunneled areas. Sure enough, I could see the mole's subterranean movement by a slight upheaval of the grass sod. The log splitting end of the maul was then pounded into the ground at the point of movement and within a 6" ring of that movement. So far this morning, there are no new mounds. I'm not a violent person but will take necessary steps with chipmunks and moles that tear up an attractive property and all the associated efforts.

After reading the above, the Running Boar consignor could not resist and emailed this line. Too funny!

I see the new summer game on the Maine homestead is Whack-a-Mole?

 

When Will Coin Dealers Learn?

Let's share two National Crime Information Center (NCIC) emails that arrived during the past two days. The theft reports have become much too similar with dealers exiting a coin show followed by stopping at a restaurant and leaving coins in their vehicle. When will dealers learn not to take this risk?

A dealer attending the Salem-Roanoke coin show in Salem, VA was the victim of a vehicle burglary after leaving the show for the evening on 6/1/24 and stopped at a restaurant to eat. The victim went inside the restaurant and when he returned to his vehicle unknown suspects had broken out the rear window and removed his inventory. The victim had taken his coins out of the show cases to take back to the hotel instead of leaving them at the show. No suspect or vehicle information is available at this time.

On May 25, 2024, a dealer, traveling home from a show in Crown Point, Indiana was the victim of a brazen theft that occurred in Crete, IL. The victim stopped to eat and while in the restaurant, two suspect vehicles pulled up on both sides of the victims vehicle. The suspects then broke the victim’s van window and grabbed totes with the victims inventory. The incident was captured by the restaurant parking lot video and took less than one minute. The suspect vehicles were described as a blue Odyssey and a blue Dodge Caravan.

We have reached a point in time where dealers attending smaller coins shows should assume that they are being followed upon breaking down their table and heading home. At smaller coin shows, dealers arrive before the attending public with their cars obviously visible on the venue's parking lot. License plates can be easily recorded. Once existing the parking lot, a spotter can radio a partner towards setting up a tailing situation.

The GFRC standard operating procedure is straightforward for not being a victim. First, is have a full tank of gas. Second is be aware of cars behind you during your departure. I've often done a U-turn after existing a small coin show parking lot to test the driving environment behind me. Finally, I will drive a bit aggressive and watch if anyone is attempting to keep up with me. BUT MOST IMPORTANT, is to never stop at a restaurant on your way home leaving inventory unattended in a car or SUV. Why can't dealers understand this fundamental point as nearly all smash and grab theft is done when a dealer leaves his inventory unattended in a parked car.

 

Global Financial News

Silver metal volatility continued during the past 48 hours. After bottoming out at roughly $29.50/oz, silver jumped up to $31.25 during yesterday's trading. Today's early morning trading brings a pullback to $30.28. These types of daily moves appear atypical with an underlying explanation that will need further research..

Have Blog readers been following the price of copper? After trading at an average of $3.75/lbs during the second half of 2023 and into March 2024, copper jumped to over $5/lbs in mid-May as has since retreated into the $4.60 range. Why do I bring this fact up? When at Home Depot yesterday, it was noted that copper wiring was now placed behind locked plexiglass. These are certainly signs of the times in terms of increasing value and theft risks.

The S&P 500 traded flat on Thursday and closed at 5,353 with today's morning market futures also flat at the moment. However, the U.S. employment report drops at 8:30 AM with its potential impact on the equity markets.

Gold is trading at $2332/oz along with WTI crude at $76/bbl.

The 10 Year bond yield is quoting at 4.31%

 

What Is Gerry Up To Today?

The entire day will be dedicated to constructing Two CAC Approved Specialty Sets Auction PDF catalog. Therefore I will be working in the office and look forward to your purchase order, or consignment proposal.

Thanks again for taking the time to check in at the Daily Blog.

Be well!

 

 

 

Thursday June 6, 2024

The Two Specialty Sets Auction Catalog is Done!

Huge GFRC Online Auctions Announcement Arrives Soon

and

Spot Gold Price Gap Is Closing

 

Greetings on a Thursday morning and welcome to the Daily Blog. Your ongoing visits are appreciated.

Today's edition will be brief as I've had a late start due to chasing down several chipmunks and spending a bit too much time catching up on geopolitical matters. Unfortunately, I was not able to secure a shot at the fast moving rodents. As for the geopolitical news, it is disconcerting. Now that the IDF has captured the Philadelphi corridor along the Egypt border, a large number of Hamas cross border smuggling tunnels have been discovered and destroyed. With Israeli control of the entire Gaza border, Hamas no longer has a supply line and will eventually wither under IDF pressure. Is it therefore not a surprise, that Hezbollah is increasing its rate of attacks on the northern border? Let's remember than Iran is the puppet master in this theatre and can see the end of Hamas coming. Therefore, igniting a war on a new front is their next step for maintaining pressure on Israel. Lebanon presents an easier approach with supply lines through Syria and Iraq.

Over in eastern Europe, NATO can sense the degrading situation in the Ukraine-Russia war and has allowed Kyiv to use NATO weapons for striking targets inside Russia. Already, one strike has taken place with Putin reminding the west that he has and could use tactical nuclear weapons if the Russia Federation feels its integrity is under attack. Let's be clear here. A tactical nuclear weapon is not a pinprick. The U.S. bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki were in the 15-20 kilotons range while a "tactical" Russian nuke is at the 60-70 kilotons level. Any use of a tactical nuclear weapon in Europe would be devastating including a crash in the equities markets.

With no end is sight for two wars, one has be cautious given the political nature of the current U.S. administration as it starts to recognize that defeat in November is a growing possibility. Near term political decision could have far reaching consequences.

 

The Two Specialty Sets Auction Catalog is Done!

I'm pleased to report that online catalog for The Two Specialty Sets Auction was completed on Wednesday afternoon. Please feel free to click on the above auction banners to access this catalog and the entire list of descriptions and lot reserve prices.

Come Friday, work begins on the PDF catalog consistent with my June 10th publishing date commitment.

 

Huge GFRC Online Auctions Announcement Arrives Soon

Also during the past 48 hours, I've been working with Brenda Wyen and Dini Hampton at COIN WORLD for the newest GFRC Online Auctions full page advertisement that will appear in the August monthly magazine and also do double duty within the summer Gobrecht Journal, a publication of the Liberty Seated Collectors Club. . The subsequent auction event, after the near term June 15 sale, will be huge and the largest GFRC undertaking to date. I have received the inventory lists for the sale items with an overall price guide value approaching $2,500,000. GFRC will spend the balance of 2024 preparing this event with multiple auction lot viewing sessions at major coin shows.

Currently, I am planning to announce the auction sale contents immediately after returning from the Whitman Baltimore show.

 

Spot Gold Price Gap Is Closing

The day starts with spot gold trading at $2361 after being as high as $2370 overnight. Silver is back over the $30 mark with a current quote of $30.25.

Now that the precious metal's pricing power has shifted to the eastern countries, via the Shanghai Gold Exchange (SGE), I've been keenly watching the price gap between the SGE and COMEX and providing an insight into that gap here in the Daily Blog.

As of this morning, the pricing gap has closed to parity between the the western and eastern trading exchanges. The SGE late afternoon price fix was $2363/oz. I'm not certain what this observation means but can speculate that the COMEX, a 97:1 leveraged paper market, has lost its ability to drive down gold prices via extensive shorting activities. I will keep watching that gap and will report back in due time.

 

Global Financial News

Wednesday brought a substantial equity market rally in the high tech sector on the possibility of a Federal Reserve rate cut that could take place in the next few months. A private payroll data report revealed a hiring slowdown slightly before the consensus number. This is all it took for the tech sector to jump higher with the S&P 500 closing at 5,354 on the day. The Dow Jones only moved 0.25% while the NASDAQ rose by 2.0%. In other words, the smaller cap companies are not participating in this rally. Our high flying equity markets are being driven by a select few technology giants with Nvidia now being the third largest company on the globe in terms of market value. Seeking Alpha discusses this fact in the following article.

The exclusive $3T market cap club has a new member... and a new antitrust investigation. The fresh probe into Nvidia, Microsoft and Microsoft-backed OpenAI will explore the dominant roles the companies play in the artificial intelligence industry, according to The New York Times. Both the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission will be involved in the investigation as advances in generative AI threaten to upend the world as we know it (or so they say).

Backdrop: The probe follows the meteoric rise of Nvidia, which is up 150% YTD and +770% since the beginning of 2023. It adds to several other recent regulatory inquiries surrounding artificial intelligence, including consumer protection risks at OpenAI and in-depth deal examinations with AI startups. Previously, the DOJ and FTC had been at the forefront of reining in Big Tech, with claims that other Magnificent 7 players like Alphabet, Amazon, Apple and Meta all violated anti-monopoly laws.

As they flex their power and share prices rally, the weightings of the new AI giants are giving them more sway in the market. Microsoft, Nvidia, Alphabet and Apple now account for nearly a quarter of the S&P 500, prompting countless investor discussions about concentration. "Nvidia is making money on AI right now, and companies like Apple and Meta are spending on AI," noted Jake Dollarhide of Longbow Asset Management. "There's a lot of retail money that's piling in on what they see as a straight shot up."

The 10 Year U.S. Treasury bond yield currently stands at 4.30% while the U.S. dollar is flat at 104.3.

WTI crude is priced at $74.41/bbl.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today?

After spending two solid days wrapping up the June 15 online auction catalog, today brings a day outside of the GFRC office. I've not heard back from Mark at Automotive Everything and will be dropping in to check on the status of our 1993 Miata among other things. The day's plan is to spend the afternoon on Johnny2 as southern Maine weather has cooled down. I also wish to wrap up wiring the second power circuit in the barn and connect to the main circuit breaker panel. There are a host of electrical tools that need battery charging and having powered outlets in the new bench area is mandatory.

As usual, my thanks go out to everyone who checks in at the Daily Blog and to those that make a GFRC purchase.

Be well!

 

 

 

Wednesday June 5, 2024

Full Speed Ahead on Homestead Solar Installation

The Two Specialty Sets Auction Catalog Wraps Up Today

and

The GFRC Consignment Flow Restarts

 

Greetings and welcome to the Daily Blog on a Wednesday morning. We thank everyone for their ongoing readership.

Southern Maine weather continues to be exceptional with mid-summer like conditions during early June. Each day brights tons of sunshine and the opportunity to spend time outdoors. Here at GFRC, I'm doing my best to strike a balance between homestead projects and continuing to support our loyal customer base. Case in point was yesterday where the entire day was dedicated to completing the June 15 auction catalog.

Let's move into the headline topics as there is much to get done today. We open with a most positive report on the homestead's off-grid solar installation.

 

Full Speed Ahead on Homestead Solar Installation

I truly enjoy working with Phil Walter at Maine Solar in the same manner as working with Dave Wilkinson for back acreage excavation and Pete Theberge for the barn construction project. Phil is an easy going individual with a mastery of off-grid solar system designs. We spoke yesterday and finalized the Fortin installation plan that includes 13 SEG 550W panels and the two Powerwall3 battery systems. We gave up on moving a roof vent as the relocation options were a non-starter for me. As a result the panel count dropped from 14 to 13. However, installing state of the art SEG 550W panels is more than sufficient to cover the one panel reduction.

To enable the generation of a formal contract and installation schematic, Maine Solar sent a technician to our home during the afternoon hours. A drone was deployed to capture our roof layout and dimensions. Once that data is fed into the Maine Solution models, Phil will be able to build a graphical display of the placement of the SEG solar panels on our roof towards verifying fit and compliance to local codes. This graphic output then become the basis for the contract along with the usual terms and conditions to protect both parties. We are hoping to see the contract by early next week before departing for the Baltimore show.

Once a 33% deposit is placed, our installation job will be scheduled with one of the three Maine Solar operational teams. Currently, Maine Solar Solutions is the largest Maine based solar installer in the state and carrying a substantial project backlog. I'm working under the assumption that the install will be completed by the end of July.

 

The Two Specialty Sets Auction Catalog Wraps Up Today

As previously mentioned, the June 15 online auction catalog was Tuesday's prime focus here in the GFRC office. The Cumberland County Collection Walking Liberty set is complete through 1938 with the balance to be wrapped up today. This will provide a two day break before assembling and publishing a PDF catalog for all auction lots.

Description writing, with the coins in-hand rather than from images, is the best option for a accurate presentation of each lot. It is also a learning opportunity with respect to the "CCC" Walkers as this long series has a host of semi-key dates and different striking characteristic. The Walker series is divided into three subgroups namely, the "early dates" from 1916 through 1929-S then the "middle dates" from 1933-S to 1940, and finally the "short set" from 1941 to 1947.

The Cumberland County husband and wife collecting team placed most of their numismatic capital into the "early dates" which will drive considerable attention to this auction event.

Please remember that all June 15 auction lots will be on display at the Whitman Baltimore show starting next Thursday at our Booth 730 immediately to the right of the bourse entrance.

Whitman Summer Baltimore - GFRC at Booth 730

 

The GFRC Consignment Flow Restarts

The past 48 hours has brought two fresh consignment proposals. The first is a 10 piece Liberty Seated half dime lot with all pieces being at the Mint State level. Following is a listing of the Mirror Collection duplicates that will be processed after our return from the Whitman Baltimore show. It should be readily obvious that this consignor is aggressively upgrading his Seated half dime collection to a top level. Please be aware that I am NOT taking First Right of Refusals for this group at this point in time. After this lot is fully processed, there will be a showcase in the Daily Blog prior to loading these to the 30 Day Price List.

Date/Grade Cert #
1838 H10C MS64 CAC Small Stars NGC 245366-005
1840 H10C MS64 No Drapery PCGS 35281592
1842 H10C MS65 NGC 3218421-017
1851-O H10C MS62 CAC PCGS 32266436
1858 H10C MS62 Inverted Date PCGS 30510638
1858-O H10C MS65 NGC 3061335-004
1859-O H10C MS64 PCGS 39234277
1862 H10C MS67 NGC 3603610-003
1864-S H10C MS61 NGC 6613149-013
1865-S H10C MS61 NGC 131000-004

Along with the Mirror Collection, the Lakeland Collection mother and son collecting team have proposed a three piece consignment that shipped yesterday. More will be shared once the lots are in house.

Finally, a long time client reported that his numismatic friend attempted to find an auction house partner for his collection at the Central States show. He approached Heritage and Stacks without success as those firms were only interested in handling a subset of his lots. I've asked for an inventory list towards determining if GFRC might be able to help this individual. Between GFRC and GFRC-Lite, our selling strategies might be a viable option for this collector. Frankly, that is why we are in business, namely to help collectors gain fair value for their life long collections.

 

Global Financial News

Tuesday also brought a nice chat with Carlo, our financial manager at Merrill Lynch in Lewiston. We both shared our views of the U.S. economy, the Federal Reserve posturing, and what our favorite market analysts are predicting. Our conclusion was that the balance of the 2024 is very difficult to predict in terms of equity market direction, therefore we will stay on a conservative course with the Fortin portfolio. Small cap stocks are struggling with the higher for longer interest rate scenario that is underway. The same is true for small regional banks that are awash in bad commercial real estate loans. Credit card delinquencies are also increasing along with a portion of the population now using the Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) financing method for purchases. Did you know that BNPL debit is not being reported to the credit rating agencies? This means that there is a shadow finance industry in our midst that could be the final straw that breaks the consumer's back.

I did increase my position in the silver metal now that the spot price has dropped below $30/oz. There is belief that this drop is temporary as the major U.S. banks attempt to unwind a short squeeze on the COMEX at less painful prices. These banks were facing huge losses when silver jumped to $32+. Once that unwinding is completed, there is a sense that silver will move towards the $35 level or higher.

The S&P 500 start the day at 5,291 and close to its all time high. Morning market futures are optimistic with a 0.25% gain forecasted at the opening bell.

Spot gold is trading at $2334 in the U.S. and $2378 on the Shanghai Gold Exchange. Silver is priced at $29.60/oz.

The 10 Year U.S. Treasury bond yield has inched down to a welcomed 4.34%. Meanwhile, the U.S. dollar remains flat at 104.4.

WTI crude is priced at $73.40 a barrel which is good news for the summer driving season.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today?

Today brings two goals. As mentioned earlier in this edition, the completion of the June 15 online auction catalog is the day's prime deliverable. Secondly, and if time allows, I wish to spend several hours on Johnny2 towards wrapping up the erosion repairs on the bottommost section of the Hill Trail.

At this point, I have yet to hear from Mark at Automotive Everything in Raymond on the fate of our beloved 1993 Miata.

As always, thank you for carving out a few minutes from your day towards reading the Daily Blog. Be well!

 

 

 

 

Tuesday June 4, 2024

When a Small Czar Invades Local Government

A Revised View from the Back Deck

and

Dave Wilkinson Enjoys Speedy Knee Replacement Recovery

 

Greetings on a Tuesday morning and welcome to the Daily Blog. It is a another day with another story to tell.

Yes, today's edition will not have any numismatic content other than a short piece from Rich Hundertmark at GFRC-Lite. Let's get going as I have a busy morning with Maine Solar's Phil Walter and Carlo at our Lewiston Merrill Lynch office.

 

When a Small Czar Invades Local Government

I'm certain that readers have run across those individuals in a life that believe they know better than most. We have seen this phenomenon playing out at the federal and state government levels. This is the "elite class" with degrees from prestigious universities who hold a belief that they are superior thinkers and must protect the general population from themselves. This attitude also comes with a thirst for power and control.

Yesterday, I was on the phone with Maine Solar Solutions and learned the back story on why this top rated solar installer refused to take business from the town of Raymond citizens. The head of the volunteer fire department had become a "little czar" in our community believing that he must protect the "ill informed or naive" residents of our small town. To that end, he mandated that solar installers must not only file a construction and electrical permit application (standard procedure for all Maine towns) but also a fire department permit application. The standard permitting process can be accomplished online in the town of Raymond. However, the new fire department permitting application must be manually prepared. Maine Solar explained that this customized application would take 6 hours of effort to accomplish. As a result, Maine Solar terminated any further installations in Raymond. It just so happened that the Fortins were the first client to be captured by this "little czar" in our small town midst. Interestingly, the new town manager (Sue Look) was not aware of this situation until pressed by Joe Bruno, the Chair of the Board of Selectmen after my plea for help. To Sue Look's credit, she called in this "little czar" and vacated his fire department permitting requirement, then calling Maine Solar and assuring them of a standard permitting process consistent with other southern Maine municipalities.

There is a happy ending to the story as I received a quotation from Phil Walter on Monday. We will be employing new state of the art SEG 550W solar panels with a 22% conversion efficiency along with two Tesla Powerwall3 units. These two units provide 27KW/hr of electrical storage along with integrated power inverter. The remaining question is the movement of a single roof vent to allow the placement of 14 panels versus 13. The Maine Solar modeling, for Maine sunlight conditions, estimated the generation of nearly 10,000KW/hrs of power per year with a 14 panel configuration. This is well beyond our current usage as snowbirds but does improve the resale value of our homestead for full time residents. With a 30% Federal Tax credit, the installation is a no-brainer given what would be spent for a Generac backup generator and large unsightly propane storage tank.

The motto to the story is that when a "little czar" invades a community, we must fight back. I was fortunate to have a good relationship, from past school board service, with the top town selectman who did the heavy lifting on my behalf.

 

A Revised View from the Back Deck

Since the GFRC consignment queue is empty, I spent the afternoon hours taking the next step for beautifying our view from the back deck. Now that the unsightly burn pit is in the history books, the next step was to remove a small tree stand that had been blocking the burn pit view. For several hours with my trusty Husky chain saw and a grapple on Johnny2, that tree stand was removed. I am most pleased to share the following revised view from the back deck. This image was taken at 6:00 PM with light clouds.

The new look features a continuous settler's stone wall and the light tan area, to the left of the entrance, that will become the shrub and rock garden. Given the area to work with, we will be striving for large plantings like rhododendrons and lilacs that can cover this space in a matter of a few years.

 

Dave Wilkinson Enjoys Speedy Knee Replacement Recovery

Yesterday also brought a text message conversation with my excavation buddy, Dave Wilkinson. Dave is a tough Irishman and reported a speedy recovery from his May 16 knee replacement surgery. He is again mobile and already mowing his lawn with a lawn tractor. He is pleased with the recovery pace and indicated that its will be a few more weeks before he can start operating his dump trucks and excavator. Modern medical is truly amazing...

The above back deck view would not have been possible without the foresight and ongoing support from Dave. He was the one who convinced me to recover the settler's stone wall and coastal horizon view. Dave has been a powerful enabler and mentor for this huge project.

 

Rich Hundertmark (GFRC-Lite) Has a New Coin Show Banner

Yesterday also brought an email and phone call from an excited Rich Hundertmark. I was just wrapping up the tree stand clearing task when the cellphone rang. Rich immediately asked if I had seen his email. Here is why....

 

Global Financial News

Let's keep this segment brief today as I have a morning phone call with Carlo in a few hours. The topic is silver and taking a larger position on a pull back to below $30/oz. Spot gold is holding flat in its current trading range.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today?

Today brings an office day as there are orders to respond to along with some morning shipping. A new Seated half dime consignment proposal also arrived during the overnight hours.

My focus will be on description generation for the Cumberland County Walking Liberty half dollar lots during the afternoon hours as the week is moving along too quickly..

And finally, deciding with Phil Walter how we will handle the repositioning of that roof vent to secure a full 14 panel solar array.

Life is never boring here in southern Maine.

Thank you for the visit, be well!

 

 

 

 

Monday June 3, 2024

Taking First Steps for Building a Shrub/Rock Garden

 

Greetings and welcome to the first full week of June 2024. Thank you as always for dropping by.

Southern Maine has been enjoying mid-summer like conditions for the past five day with a few more in the weather forecast. It has been difficult to work in the GFRC office when there is continuous bright sunshine and seasonally warm temperatures. Sunday brought an outdoor day with the focus on burying a larger burn pit that has served its purpose well when clearing the land surrounding the barn. Unfortunately, there is no prepared numismatic content for today's Blog edition since all consignments have already been processed and posted.

So let's move forward with several images from yesterday's back acreage efforts as an ugly burn pit is transformed into an appealing shrub and rock garden. This project is expected to span the entire summer.

This first image was taken at roughly Sunday 9:30 AM with a bright blue sky and a single airline jet contrail in the background. Johnny2 is prepared to move 32 yards of fill into the burn pit, kicking off the shrub garden project. These fill piles were dropped off by Dave Wilkinson prior to his knee replacement surgery on May 16th.

This second image was taken at about 7:30 PM as the sun is quickly setting in the western sky behind the homestead. Not only did I fill the burn pit hole with fill, but also returned during the afternoon hours with the JD D140 lawn tractor to brush hog the area surrounding this location. Please note the small tree stand that is blocking the view of the setting sun and the homestead. This vegetation will be mostly be removed this afternoon to expose the full length of the original settler's stone wall.

This final image was taken as the same time as the one above and illustrates the view from our neighbor's back deck. The extent of the brush hogging is much more apparent from this vantage point. Let's remember that just a few years back, this entire area was thick forest that has been cleared and transformed into its current state. I can already imagine the forthcoming colorful shrubs that will be planted in this area.

As with any landscaping project undertaken on the property, water flow management is critical to avoid surface erosion. For the forthcoming garden, the wafer flow must be channeled in front of the freshly graded mound. To that end, I've asked Dave to deliver another 16 yards of fill to increase the mound height and providing for an obvious water channel around the garden. Once the mound is fully shaped, the last delivery will be a 16 yard load of loam tailings. Loam tailings are the byproduct of loam sifting through a large screen. The remaining debris, small rocks, and large loam clumps are set aside and sold as an inexpensive form of fill. There is sufficient organic material in loam tailings to be used as the final layer for the garden.

 

Global Financial News

Another financial trading week arrives with equities still close to their all time highs. The S&P 500 saw a 0.80% gain on Friday and current stands at $5278. Morning market futures are pointing to a 0.15% gain at the opening bell.

Spot gold is currently quoting at $2331/oz in the U.S. markets while trading at $2377/oz at the Shanghai Gold Exchange. Silver is quoting at $30.31/oz.

The 10 Year U.S. Treasury bond yield has pulled back slightly to 4.46%. Following is an interesting article via the Kitco website on the state of "zombie" companies in the U.S. A zombie company is defined as one that has interest payments exceeding earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT).

The Federal Reserve's lenient monetary policy over a prolonged period has led to an increase in zombie companies: those that do not make profits and simply survive, or rather, subsist on debt.

To be more precise, these are companies that have been around for at least a decade and whose interest payments on loans exceed their earnings before interest and taxes.

As early as 2018, central investment banks such as Goldman Sachs warned that the situation was approaching critical. The move to ultra-loose monetary policy during the coronavirus pandemic only worsened matters.

In addition, the US authorities began buying corporate bonds to stem the tide of bankruptcies, effectively granting hundreds of distressed companies almost unrestricted access to credit markets.

It was expected that once regulators tightened monetary conditions, zombies would have no chance of survival, which could trigger a severe crisis in the financial system.

The reason is that borrowing new money would become prohibitively expensive, and they would be unable to repay their debts.

In fact, according to the American Bankruptcy Institute, the number of bankruptcies filed by businesses and consumers increased by 18% in 2023. However, this has not yet led to a total catastrophe in the market or the economy. 

However, it is premature to assume that it will not lead to a disaster.

A study by Apollo Academics reveals that 41% of Russell 2000 companies are posting negative earnings. The Fed's rate hikes are affecting small and mid-cap companies more than larger ones.

Notably, the adverse effects are being felt especially in the technology, enterprise software, venture capital and related sectors, where companies are often experiencing profitability and revenue problems.

Therefore, it is crucial to closely monitor through the personal stock screener the debt positions of companies within these niches in your portfolio, paying special attention to their maturity dates to protect against additional risks. 

What will all this ultimately translate into?

The Government is not preparing for a “tsunami” of companies seeking rescue through restructuring plans this year despite the cost pressures that continue to affect small businesses.

However, the rise in bankruptcies will shadow global economic activity and job growth in the coming years. If we manage to exit the high-interest rate cycle smoothly, perhaps the increase in small business insolvencies will not have a dramatic system-wide impact.

WTI crude oil is trading at $77/bbl. The latest crude oil news is that OPEC+ agrees to extend production cuts through the end of 2025 to sustain current and future oil prices. As a result, we can expect existing gasoline prices to stay fixed or increase slightly during the summer of 2024 driving season.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today?

Today brings three primary tasks. First is a busy morning in the GFRC shipping department. Once the shipping is staged for Diane, I will be adding more "CCC" Walking Liberty half dollar descriptions through the noon time hour. After a quick lunch, I return to the shrub garden project and will cut down that remaining small tree stand by the settler's stone wall. With those trees removed, the underlying surface and rocks will be visible. Most likely, I will have Dave drop another load of fill in that area to smooth out the surface and providing easy access to the stone wall with Johnny2.

Since there are no new consignments to process, I'm planning on enjoying the outdoors prior to rain returning on Thursday and staying around into next week.

Oh, the fate of the 1993 Miata will also be learned as Mark at Automotive Everything has promised to begin work on our little automotive treasure in the next few days.

Thank you so much for staying current with the Fortins homestead property development and other happenings. Be well!

 

 

 

 

Sunday June 2, 2024

Consider Traveling to Baltimore for a Whitman Coin Show

and

Two CAC Approved Specialty Sets Auction Statistics

 

Greetings from southern Maine and welcome to a Sunday Daily Blog edition.

Maine weather continues to be conducive for outdoor activities. After today's Blog is uploaded, I'm heading to the barn and will be firing up Johnny2 for the last of the trail repairs and other smaller projects.

In this Blog edition, I will focus on the forthcoming Two CAC Approved Specialty Sets auction that opens on June 15. Saturday brought the inclusion of the Spring Branch Seated lots as the final posting step. Remaining is description generation for the Cumberland County Walkers prior to building the PDF catalog. This third GFRC Online Auctions event of 2024 has come together nicely and will be completed before our departure for the Summer Whitman Baltimore show next Wednesday.

Before moving into the auction statistics, let's address the Baltimore city issue with respect to the ongoing a coin shows at the Baltimore Convention Center. Many clients no longer wish to travel into Baltimore to attend a Whitman show. This is a sad trend as the Baltimore location is at the center point between New England and the mid-Atlantic states. Accessing Baltimore by air, rail, or car is straightforward. For years, as a collector then dealer, I have been traveling to Baltimore. Sure, there were a few moments like BLM demonstrations, but overall the Baltimore Convention Center and its surrounding hotels are ideal for staging a large coin show. Being a smart show attendee is paramount and all will be fine.

So what does it mean to be smart show attendee? Simply stated, collectors and dealers need to stay focused on the core reason for being in Baltimore. That is the numismatic hobby and associated activities. Dealers have grown accustomed to protecting their inventory consistent with any other national show. If driving into Baltimore, there must be two individuals in the car so that one person is always connected to the luggage containing the inventory. Rest stop breaks and hotel drop-off are obviously examples. Once unloading inventory, one person remains with the luggage while the other parks the vehicle. The best approach is to time an arrival such that the show inventory can be moved to the convention security room immediately after being unloaded. Once coins are inside the show venue, dealers are free to pursue their evening activities.

Smart collectors should limit the amount of coins that are carried on their person and have a security plan. Walking the streets of Baltimore at night with a backpack full of coins is dumb. Leave coins with a favorite dealer in their security case or locked body bag. Exit a show during daytime hours and use a well known transport service to the BWI airport. If driving, don't announce your departure time, rather heading to a parked car and leaving a parking garage during the middle of the day. The key is having a full tank of gas, or close, and not stopping for any reason whatsoever if traveling alone. At a rest stop, bring your coins with you to the bathroom.

The ongoing number one reason for coin theft, after a coin show, is dealers leaving their inventory unattended in a parked car. Always assume that someone is watching you and behalf accordingly to protect your coins from a smash and grab event. It really is that simple to protect yourself. Based on the host of reported automotive thefts by NCIC, all were unattended smash and grabs events rather than armed robbery. Chaining luggage to tie-down points in an SUV is a smart move if traveling alone. Pack a sandwich and water if traveling longer distances rather than stopping at a restaurant. Use a drive thru and eat the meal in the car.

For those new to Baltimore, I would advise to not use the light rail train from BWI to the Baltimore convention center or back. This train makes many stops with the opportunity for a passenger to grab someone's luggage when heading to the exit door. I took the light rail during my first year as a coin dealer due to the attractive price. However, the risks were immediately obvious. Instead, I started using the Blue Shuttle for transport and always keeping the inventory luggage with me inside the shuttle cabin.

I really hope that collectors will return to Baltimore for the Whitman shows and not fall into the mental trap that Baltimore city is a dangerous place. If staying in the immediate Inner Harbor area and having a security plan for purchased coins, you will be fine.

 

Two CAC Approved Specialty Sets Auction Statistics

Let's open this segment with a few June 15 auction highlights!

 

Two CAC Approved Specialty Sets - Auction Highlights

 1844 F-102 PCGS AU50 CAC 50C OGH                                                 1856-O F-101 PCGS AU55 CAC 50C 

        

    1891 PCGS MS65 Gold CAC 25C                                                      1856-S Briggs 1-A PCGS MS63 50C 

        

 1917-D Reverse PCGS AU58 CAC 50C                                                   1919-S PCGS AU58 CAC 50C     

        

 1920 PCGS MS64+ CAC 50C                                                            1920-S PCGS MS64 CAC 50C 

        

 

OK, let's get to those June 15 auction statistics as quite a noteworthy event as the above lot images might make apparent.

- 119 lots are being offered with a cumulative reserve value of $205,000.

- 93% of lots are CAC Approved with 4 Gold CAC beans to consider.

- Reserve prices range from $100 to $12,500 indicating a broad range of collectibles for all numismatic budgets.

- 35% of the lots are Liberty Seated with the remaining 55% being an essentially complete set of Walking Liberty halves.

Please remember that auction lot viewing is available at the Whitman Baltimore show starting on June 13, throughout the day on June 14, and up to noon time on June 15.

 

Wrapping Up the Blog

Last evening was spent in the basement sound room enjoying some amazing recordings. A 100 ft. Ethernet cable was installed within the drop down ceiling and now provides for a hard wired connection between the GFRC office router and the Naim streamer. The music quality was incredible and even better than when using WiFi in the past. Now that this issue has been resolved, my next significant repair challenges are a hydraulic leak on Johnny2's backhoe along with a back acreage pond full of algae. We will get to those issues during the month of June.

Thank you for the visit and as always, please be well!

 

 

 

Saturday June 1, 2024

Spring Branch Additions to June 15 Auction

 

Greetings on the first day of June 2024. Welcome to the Daily Blog.

As compared to the wet spring of 2023, southern Maine weather has been ideal this year with limited rain and seasonably warm temperatures. The current reading is 55F with a forecasted high of 77 degrees during the mid-afternoon hours.

Today's Blog will be brief as there is much office admin work to catch up on followed by spending time on Johnny2 and wrapping up the back trail repairs. I'd like to get a head start on the office work rather than sitting here trying to create content on a random basis. Let's move to today's primary news, the arrival of the final consignment for the June 15 GFRC Online Auction. But first, a short note that the June 15 auction is now closed for submissions with a total of 119 lots. All 119 lots be available for auction lot viewing at the Summer Baltimore show that arrives on June 13. GFRC will be at Booth 730 immediate to the right of the entrance.

 

Spring Branch Additions to June 15 Auction

The Spring Branch Collection branding name is new though this consignor has been actively selling duplicates on an anonymous basis. Today brings his first branded release that is heading immediately into the June 15 online auction catalog. Since four of the six lots are prior GFRC purchases, those pieces have already been posted. The final two lots will be photographed today.

Leading the Spring Branch release is an exceptional 1891 Seated quarter graded PCGS MS65 with Gold CAC approval. I'm aware of several individuals who have chosen to pursue Gold CAC type as a new project. Let's just say that the 1891 would be an outstanding inclusion into those efforts. Also returning to the auction catalog is a super 1840 WB-6 that previously resided in the Newtown Collection. Please pay attention to the 1855-O Seated half graded NGC MS64, also with CAC approval. This lot offers proof like surfaces under the mottled rose-gray patina and warrants a GFRC-Gem quality rating.

 

GFRC Sales Archive is a Powerful Research Tool

Since GFRC is primarily Liberty Seated coinage centric, the accumulation of a decade worth of sale prices, descriptions, and images can be quite useful during collector research. The Sales Archive is accessible via its link at the top gray links bar.

Given the generally low CAC approved populations for Liberty Seated coinage, many of those approved coins have passed through the GFRC business with their sales records and ownership pedigrees in the Archive. In a number of cases, a piece might have been handled by GFRC on multiple occasions as premium lots move from one advanced collection to another. As often mentioned in the Blog, duplicates are "dead" numismatic money and should be promptly sold to continue funding the upgrading cycle.

Please note that the Sales Archive results are sortable by Grade, Die Variety, and Date. The Die Variety sort is quite useful when wishing to study the price list appearance of rarer varieties.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

The month of May sales have been solid and I'm pleased with where the GFRC business currently stands. CAC approved collector gold sales have begun to perk-up a bit which is good news.

That is all she wrote on a Saturday morning.

Thanks again for the ongoing visits. Be well!

 

 

 

Friday May 31, 2024

Solving a Two Year Naim/Focal Sound System Issue

and

Important Saw Mill Run Additions to June 15 Auction

 

Greetings and welcome to the Daily Blog on the final day of May 2024. Thank you so much for the ongoing visits.

Let's be clear on one thing. I'm not touching what took place in NYC on Thursday. The cable media will be all over this story for days to come and no need to pig-pile on the matter. Life in rural Maine goes on per normal. Today brings another warm and sunny spring day which I am thankful for.

Thursday brought yet another busy day in the GFRC office and on the homestead property. The day's outdoor accomplishment was removing a host of oak and maple seedlings from the front mulched area between the driveway and Valley Rd. Now that the property oaks and maples are massive, their annual seed discharge settles in the mulch which provides futile ground for seedling development. Earlier in the day, I shot a fourth chipmunk for the season with more to go. Finally, the lawn was mowed for the final time with dull mower deck blades.

 

Solving a Two Year Basement Sound System Issue

Thursday was also a great day as a several year basement sound system issue was resolved. During the past two summers and autumns, I've not been able to enjoy listening to the Tidal music streaming application due to a range issue between the Naim streamer and home router. For those new to the Daily Blog, an audiophile grade Naim and Focal sound system was purchased four years ago. For the Naim streamer to operate properly, it must connect via WiFi to our router. During the past two years, that connection has been problematic to the point of the streamer being unusable. A WiFi range extender was added with marginal results leaving me with only DVD rock concert movies and regular CDs as viable music sources.

Last week, the Fortins lost internet capability after the Wallace Roofing installation. The root cause was a crushed coax cable by a Wallace truck as it transited the edge of the new driveway. Noah, the Spectrum technician, repaired the cable followed by conducting an internet speed and noise assessment for the homestead's coax cabling and its performance. While Noah was in the basement, we discussed the Naim streamer issue. My suggestion was adding a second modem and router into the basement behind the sound system, specifically for connecting he streamer box. Noah indicated this was possible but suggested a much simpler solution of running an Ethernet cable directly from the existing router to the streamer. Since the router and streamer are at opposite ends of the building, a 100 ft cable would be required and placed in the basement ceiling.

Wednesday brought the arrival of a 100ft Ethernet cable as purchased from Amazon for all of $18. Last evening, I ran the cable from the GFRC office, down the basement stairs, and connected to the Naim streamer. The issue was immediately resolved with incredible sound quality since the streaming signal was hardwired rather than transported by WiFi. Today brings the installation of that cable into the basement drop ceiling along with finding an approach for passing the cable through the GFRC office floor and connecting to the router. There is a hot water baseboard in the room right behind the router with pipe openings into the basement. My plan is to drill a small hole, wide enough for the Ethernet cable, next to one of those floor openings. The Ethernet access point would be hidden under the baseboard.

The motto for this story is to never give up on issues as solutions are always possible. Working with a skilled consultant towards a simple solution is typically the right approach.

 

Important Saw Mill Run Additions to June 15 Auction

Thursday also brought the arrival of a new Saw Mill Run Collection consignment for the June 15 auction. This is a five piece Seated lot with an 1843-O Briggs 1-B quarter and four Seated halves. The 1850-O and 1865-S lots are from the famed Seal Beach Collection while the 1856-S PCGS MS63 lot is truly special and a five figure offering. If my day goes as planned, these five lots will be added to the June 15 auction catalog by end of day as the consignor has already set his reserve prices.

 

Global Financial News

Rising U.S. Treasury bill yields are continuing to weigh on investors. The yield curve remains inverted with a 3 month bill yielding 5.5% while the 10 year offers 4.56%. Given the attractive 3 month yield, why would investors risk their capital in the equities market now that stocks are priced to perfection?

The S&P 500 had another off day on Thursday dropping to 5,235. For once, we have the Seeking Alpha morning market futures as illustration. Inflation will take the spotlight this morning as markets prepare for personal consumption expenditures (PCE) price data before the 9:30 opening bell. 

In Asia, Japan +1.1%. Hong Kong -0.8%. China -0.2%. India +0.1%.

In Europe, at midday, London +0.4%. Paris flat. Frankfurt -0.1%.

Futures at 7:00, Dow -0.2%. S&P -0.3%. NASDAQ -0.5%.

Spot gold is trading at $2344 along with silver at $31.28/oz.

WTI crude oil is priced at $78/bbl.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

Today brings time in the GFRC office with continued attention to the June 15 auction catalog and placing the previously discussed Ethernet cable into the basement drop ceiling. The GFRC shipping department has the day off after successfully closing out the delivery of that Chicago customer package. Diane is a the master of working within the USPS system to resolve these types of issues.

Your purchase orders and consignment proposals are most welcomed on the final day of May.

Thanks again for the visit. Be well!

 

 

 

Thursday May 30, 2024

JBN Liberty Seated Dime Auction Descriptions are Done!

and

An 1860-S Gold CAC Dime Heading into the Wisconsin Collection

 

Greetings on a late May Thursday morning and welcome to the Daily Blog. We are so pleased with your ongoing visits.

Wednesday was a super day for GFRC as the business engine was firing on all cylinders along with some USPS service luck. Where do I start?

The first important development was the sale of my 1860-S PCGS MS63 Gold CAC dime within minutes of it being posted in the Daily Blog. Our congratulations go out to the Wisconsin Collection for his bold purchase decision after waiting for an extended period for my verdict between the Gold CAC example and the PCGS MS64 CAC Kamal Ahwash plate coin.

Next came a decent response to the ten piece $10 Indian gold lot that was also showcased yesterday. Three of the ten lots sold in the matter of a few hours.

Though southern Maine weather was ideal for working outdoors, the completion of the June 15 JBN Collection auction description was paramount for my mental well being. Having a major project deliverable hanging over my head is bothersome and best to remove that background shadow. The entire afternoon was spent writing Liberty Seated dime descriptions. The effort went smoothly, actually fun, since knowing the Seated dime series better than the back of my hand along with the lots being all Choice or Gems. It is straightforward to write positive notes concerning premium lots along with some die variety background as educational content.

Happy hour arrived at 5:00 PM with Diane sharing a favorable USPS package delivery development. The back story is a case of what possibly can go wrong does at times before a happy ending. Last week brought a hurried shipment of a $2700 order to a client in Chicago. Gerry cut the USPS Priority label but forgot to add the client's apartment number as I was expecting Doug the Mailman to arrive momentarily for his usual pick-up. After Doug's pick-up, I realized the mistake and took off in the Miata with a pen to hopefully catch Doug on his usual rural route to hand write the apartment number of the label. Unfortunately, Doug could not be located. OK, the next option was reprinting the label and handwriting the apartment number on that label and delivering to the Raymond post office to update the package before going out on the daily mail truck at 4:00 PM. Great plan, heh? Well, the Raymond post office was closed due to lack of staffing as too many individuals called in sick. What do I do now? When driving back to the homestead, I noted another postal carrier and flagged him down. He took the updated label and promised to place it on Doug's desk with a note to update the package. At this point, I though there had been recovery for my mistake. Wrong....

Doug had transferred all of the GFRC shipments to another carrier so that the packages would be back in time for the 4:00 PM USPS truck pick-up. Doug returned to the Raymond post office to find my revised label and note after 4:00 PM per his phone call.

Without an apartment number on the label, USPS will attempt delivery and then ship the package back as undeliverable based on past history. I asked Diane for help at this point. She works through the USPS online system and places an intercept on the package with a special hold at a Chicago distribution center that also allows pick-ups. Issue is resolved, right? Nope...

The package arrives to the regular Chicago destination post office and then is forwarded to multiple distribution centers across a three day time frame and never settles at the designated hold location. This package was literally a ping-pong ball bouncing around multiple Chicago area distribution centers. After May 20, the package tracking stops requiring Diane to call her contact hot line at USPS for tracking help. Somehow, the package had broken free from the Chicago area and was in Atlanta of all places. The USPS contact promised to rerouted the package back to the Chicago hold location, as arranged by Diane. Yesterday brought a personal phone call from that USPS contact to Diane informing that the package had arrived at the designated hold location and was available for pick-up. Diane immediately notified the customer who has been good about the entire situation.

Yes, it was a good GFRC day.

 

More June 15 Auction Lots Arriving Soon?

GFRC has noticed that USPS Express service has become problematic again. Two incremental June 15 auction lots were shipped by long term consignors on Tuesday and Wednesday. The Tuesday shipment is delayed and it appears that the Wednesday shipment is also suffering the same dilemma. Hopefully these 10+ Liberty Seated coinage lots will be into the office by tomorrow as time is running short. These are better date Liberty Seated quarters and halves that were previously purchased from GFRC.

 

Global Financial News

Rising U.S. Treasury bond yields rattled equity markets on Wednesday with the S&P dropping by 0.74% to 5,267. The 10 Year Treasury bond yield has increased to 4.6% from 4.5% in just two days. Weak Treasury bill auctions are continuing and fueling the higher interest rates. Would you lend money to a "drunken sailor" with a debt to GDP ratio of 122%? Many in the global investment community feel the same way with China selling its Treasury bill holdings at a record rate. Those proceeds are heading into gold.

Spot gold is trending at $2338/oz per the Kitco website while at the Shanghai Exchange, gold is priced at $2389. That is a $50/oz difference between Shanghai and London trading.

The U.S. dollar is current at 104.9 per the DXY index.

Morning market futures are pointing to a 0.4% drop for the S&P 500 when trading resumes.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today?

Today's goals are threefold. First is the addition of the seven unsold $10 Indian gold lots to the 30 Day Price List. Second is preparing descriptions for the Cumberland County Collection's Walking Liberty half dollar lots. Lastly, is mowing the lawn again before pulling the mowing deck off the John Deere D140 tractor in anticipation of replacement blades being delivered by Amazon on June 3. Boredom is never an issue between the GFRC business and homestead projects.

Thank you so much for today's visit. Be well!

 

 

 

Wednesday May 29, 2024

Gerry Fortin Core Collection - Releasing Two Duplicates!

and

Ten $10 Indians Seeking a New Home

 

Greetings and welcome to the Daily Blog on a late May Wednesday morning. Thank you so much for taking the time to visit these ramblings.

What a gorgeous southern Maine morning weather wise as the sky is crystal clear blue providing a lovely backdrop for the green front yard landscaping. Spending the morning hours in the GFRC office will be difficult as I would much rather be outdoors on a day like today.

Today edition brings the culmination of a personal collection decision process along with the promised showcase of ten $10 Indian gold pieces that are immediately available. There is little else to discuss in the regular preamble.

 

Gerry Fortin Core Collection - Releasing Two Duplicates!

After years of consideration, I've made a decision to release two duplicate lots from my personal Liberty Seated dime collection. Those two lots are an 1860-S F-101 dime certified PCGS MS63 with Gold CAC approval along with an 1873-S F-101 dime that is certified PCGS MS64 with green CAC approval.

The 1860-S has been "in the family" since mid-2004 while the 1873-S joined the Fortin collection during early 2006.

In a past Blog edition dating several years ago, I showcased the two 1860-S dimes currently residing in the core set. There is this 1860-S PCGS MS63 Gold CAC specimen and an 1860-S PCGS MS64 CAC example which has the distinction of being the Kam Ahwash plate coin in his pioneering Liberty Seated Dime encyclopedia as published during 1990. I've made a decision to hold onto the Kam Ahwash specimen which means that the Gold CAC lot is a free agent.

The 1873-S date is underrated in AU58 or better in the Seated dime, quarter, and half dollar series. I'm certain that astute collectors of these series are nodding their in agreement with this statement. The time has come to release one of the two examples that I've been "hoarding" for decades. My other specimen is also graded PCGS MS64 with CAC approval and is the F-102 die pairing with lightly mirrored fields. This newly offered F-101 is a frosted piece.

So what is driving the decision to release these two lots? How about a little extra spending money to fund a new vehicle. The 1993 Mazda Miata is currently sitting at Automotive Everything in Raymond and will be diagnosed come next week by Mark. Mark has been servicing the Miata for years and will be checking my lost timing belt theory and whether the engine survived the event. If if did not, I'm most likely purchasing an modern MX-5 replacement. If the 1993 Miata engine remains solid, the target shifts to a Landmaster AMP EV 4x4 UTV for the Maine property.

Following are thoroughly accurate images of both lots for your consideration. The Gold CAC 1860-S is a truly special example and offering. The 1873-S is priced above the CAC guide, but then again this date is underrated. My cost basis is $4750 years ago as recognizing its rarity in higher grade Mint State.

 

Gerry Fortin Core Collection - Releasing Two Duplicates

      1860-S F-101 PCGS MS63 Gold CAC 10C - HOLD                              1873-S F-101 PCGS MS64 CAC 10C - $4,850            

        

 

Ten $10 Indians Seeking a New Home

As promised, today brings a lovely ten-piece $10 Indian gold lot for your consideration. These lots were part of an eighteen-piece release from a client in central Maine. Our consignor has decided that the time has come to sell his U.S. gold collection with GFRC selected to handle the sale. All are immediately available and will post to the price list in the next 24 hours.

 

Ten $10 Indians Seeking a New Home

      1912-S NGC AU55 G$10 - $2050

      1907 NGC AU58 G$10 - HOLD             1908-D No Motto NGC AU58 G$10 - HOLD         1908 Motto NGC AU58 G$10 - $1475

                

 1908-D Motto NGC AU58 G$10 - $1500            1909-S NGC AU58 CAC G$10 - $1950                 1910-S NGC AU55 G$10 - $1425     

                

  1914 NGC AU58 CAC G$10 - HOLD                 1914-S NGC AU58 G$10 - $1550                    1916-S NGC AU58 G$10 - $1750     

                

 

Global Financial News

More and more research is being done with respect to the current rally in gold and silver prices. Now that gold has been repriced between $2330 to $2400/ounce, my attention has shifted to silver. This monetary and industrial metal is undergoing acute physical demand from both China and India due to the fast ramping solar panel market. For years, U.S. banks have been able to control the price of both gold and silver via leveraging resulting in a huge amount of short contract on the COMEX. That leverage has been essentially 100:1. In other words, for every ounce of silver in the COMEX global warehouse network, the banks were able to write contracts for 100 ounces. These short contracts suppressed the price of precious metals for years until the Shanghai Gold Exchange was founded in 2002 and has since wrestled away price discovery from the western countries. Based on my research, U.S. banks are seeing a short squeeze and risk losing their remaining COMEX warehoused metals to Chinese buyers. Once metals are moved to China, Chinese law does not allow for the metals to be moved outside of the country. Just think about that for a moment. The Beijing Central government is working towards being in a majority ownership position of both gold and silver.

Bottom line, silver at $31-$32/oz may be a good entry point as there is more upside potential simply due to industrial demand and the phasing out of western pricing manipulation. Western retail demand continues to be weak given that most Americans are not excited to own physical silver and gold, rather seeing a price rally as a cash-out opportunity.

This morning's Kitco gold and silver prices stand at $2345 and $31.92 respectively.

The S&P 500 starts the day at 5.306 after a flat trading day on Tuesday. Morning market futures are down 0.62%.

The 10 Year U.S. Treasury bond yield continues its slow rise with a morning quote of 4.57%. Weak Treasury bill auctions are becoming the norm. I'm staying away from 10 and 20 year T-bills and focused on only short maturities. Let's remember that we still have an inverted yield curve with 1 and 2 year T-bills paying more than long term issues. Why in the world would anyone be willing to take a long term bond market pullback risk (rates climbing to 5-6%) given the out of control U.S. deficit spending.

WTI crude is priced at $80.38/bbl. I'm certain that the Biden admin is not pleased with this development as the 2024 election approaches.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today?

Sitting in the GFRC office is the last thing I wish to be doing on such a wonderful Maine spring day. However, the business must go on with its usual premium service to clients.

The priority tasks are writing descriptions for the JBN Seated Dime lots in the upcoming June 15 auction along with posting the ten-piece $10 Indian gold to the 30 Day Price List. Of course, there is the usual email correspondence and some light shipping.

Thanks again for stopping by at the Daily Blog.

Be well!

 

 

 

 

Tuesday May 28, 2024

GFRC Online Auctions Proudly Presents

Cumberland County's CAC Approved Walking Liberty Half Dollar Collection

 

Greetings from a fogged in southern Maine and welcome to the Daily Blog. Thank you so much for the ongoing visits.

Considerable time has passed since we checked in with Seth Godin. One of his recent blog posts struck a cord as they say. As a serious fan of continuous learning, I've found myself absorbing a host of YouTube videos on various topics. If needing to wire a barn, there are tens of videos on how to install electrical wiring and outlets the right way. Ditto with landscaping and gardening. If there is a self improvement need, there is most likely a YouTube video on the topic. However, the key in the learning process, is taking steps to execute those learnings with the recognition that initial mistakes will arise from inexperience. Working as an assistant to a contractor is an ideal approach which I have used repeatedly, over a lifetime, to garner a portion of the contractor's knowledge.

Here is how Godin sees the adult learning experience...

Seth Godin Blogpost - "I don't learn that way"

If you’re sitting on the dock, watching the swim class without getting wet, it’s more accurate to say, “I’m just watching.”

There are plenty of theories on how different people learn.

Online, we’re in the middle of the biggest learning experiment in history, with countless videos, podcasts and interactive courses teaching just about anything.

In my experience, there are two uncomfortable pedagogical methods that lead to better learning outcomes:

It’s certainly possible that you’re the rare learner who actually absorbs new ideas and techniques simply by reading a summary.

If it’s important, though, I hope you’ll try the two most effective methods instead.

 

GFRC Online Auctions Proudly Presents - The Cumberland County's CAC Approved Walking Liberty Half Dollar Collection

The Memorial Day holiday brought a nearly ten hour day in the GFRC office as Maine weather shifted back to a cold wet situation. The day's focus was preparing the "CCC" Walking Liberty half dollar collection for the forthcoming June 15 auction. Much was accomplished as the reserve pricing proposal was approved immediately before 5:00 PM happy hour along with constructing the following gallery for your viewing enjoyment.

Though marketing an essentially complete Walking Liberty half dollar collection may be a bit different than GFRC's mainstream Liberty Seated coinage focus, the effort was quite rewarding from a learning perspective. The most obvious learning opportunity was understanding the strike characteristic peculiarities between the early 1916-1923 dates as compared to those from the late 1930s and 1940s. Secondly, the Walker series requires a customized image processing flow to reduce the amount of luster glare at Liberty's shoulders and gown line along with the top outline of the reverse's eagle. After experimenting with the color balance and brightness/contrast settings, a specialized processing flow was designed and employed resulting in a much improved visual presentation of the Cumberland County Collection.

Astute Walking Liberty half dollar collectors will recognize that the heart of this series in terms of degree of difficulty are the 1916 through 1933-S dates. These dates circulated heavily and are typically found well worn. Choice AU and Mint State survivors are scarce overall and always in demand. It should be easily recognized that our husband and wife collecting team placed their emphasis on acquiring premium examples of these earlier key and semi-key dates.

CAC approval was a key acquisition parameter which will serve the "CCC" owners well during this sale. Included in this following presentation are three Gold CAC lots with a superb gem 1943-D housed in PCGS Gen 2.0 (1989) Doily holder.

This Cumberland County Collection will be on display at the forthcoming Whitman Baltimore show alone with the JBN Liberty Seated dime release. GFRC will be located at Table 730 immediately to the right of the bourse entrance. Diane will be most pleased to guide collectors through a lot viewing session if attending the show.

It is with great pride that GFRC Online Auctions presents the following showcase of a long term clients' accomplishment. Our congratulations go out to Scott and Sue for this collecting milestone. Auction reserve prices have been posted within the online auction catalog. The reserve prices were set at 5-8% back of the CAC Price Guide to stimulate bidding opportunities.

 

Cumberland County's CAC Approved Walking Liberty Half Dollar Collection

 1916-D RPM FS-501 PCGS MS65 CAC 50C                                             1916-S PCGS MS64+ CAC 50C       

        

 1917-D Obverse PCGS MS64+ CAC 50C                                             1917-S Obverse PCGS AU58 CAC 50C

        

   1918-S PCGS MS64+ CAC 50C                                                          1919-D PCGS AU53 CAC 50C 

        

     1919-S PCGS AU58 CAC 50C                                                          1920-D PCGS AU58 CAC 50C 

        

 1920-S PCGS MS64 CAC 50C                                                             1921 PCGS AU58 CAC 50C 

        

    1921-D PCGS AU55 CAC 50C                                                       1923-S PCGS MS64 CAC 50C 

        

   1927-S PCGS MS64 CAC 50C                                                        1929-S PCGS MS65 CAC 50C 

        

 1933-S PCGS MS65 CAC 50C                                                           1936 PCGS PR65 CAC 50C 

        

 1916 PCGS MS64 CAC 50C                         1916-D PCGS MS65+ CAC 50C                        1917 PCGS MS64 CAC 50C

                

 1917-D Rev PCGS AU58 CAC 50C                   1917-S Rev PCGS AU58 CAC 50C                      1918 PCGS MS64 CAC 50C     

                

   1918-D PCGS AU58 CAC 50C                          1919 PCGS AU58 CAC 50C                           1920 PCGS MS64+ CAC 50C   

                

 1928-S PCGS AU58 CAC 50C                           1934 PCGS MS66 CAC 50C                           1934-D PCGS MS64 CAC 50C

                

 1934-S PCGS MS64 CAC 50C                             1935 PCGS MS64 CAC 50C                           1935-D PCGS MS64 CAC 50C

                

 1935-S PCGS MS64 CAC 50C                        1936 DDO PCGS MS64 CAC 50C                      1936-D PCGS MS66+CAC 50C

                

 1936-D PCGS MS64 CAC 50C                          1936-S PCGS MS66 CAC 50C                          1937 PCGS PR66 CAC 50C  

                

    1937 PCGS MS64 CAC 50C                         1937-D PCGS MS64 CAC 50C                           1937-S PCGS MS64 CAC 50C

                

 1938 PCGS PR67+ CAC 50C                            1938 NGC MS66+ CAC 50C                           1938 PCGS MS64 CAC 50C  

                

 1938-D PCGS MS65 CAC 50C                          1939 PCGS PR67+ CAC 50C                           1939 PCGS MS66 CAC 50C  

                

 1939-D PCGS MS67 CAC 50C                             1939-S NGC MS67 CAC 50C                           1939-S PCGS MS64 CAC 50C

                

 1940 PCGS PR67 CAC 50C                             1940 PCGS MS67 CAC 50C                           1940-S PCGS MS64 CAC 50C

                

   1941 PCGS PR66 CAC 50C                             1941 PCGS MS64 CAC 50C                           1941-D PCGS MS64 CAC 50C

                

 1941-S PCGS MS64 CAC 50C                        1942 PCGS PR65 Gold CAC 50C                       1942 PCGS MS66 CAC 50C  

                

 1942-D PCGS MS64 CAC 50C                        1942-S PCGS MS65 CAC 50C                           1943 PCGS MS64 CAC 50C  

                

   1943-D PCGS MS65 Gold CAC 50C                    1943-S PCGS MS64 CAC 50C                           1944 PCGS MS64 CAC 50C         

                

 1944-D PCGS MS65 Gold CAC 50C                     1944-S PCGS MS64 CAC 50C                           1945 PCGS MS65 CAC 50C        

                

 1945-D PCGS MS64 CAC 50C                        1945-S PCGS MS64 CAC 50C                           1946 PCGS MS65 CAC 50C  

                

 1946 DDR PCGS AU55 CAC 50C                       1946-D PCGS MS66+ CAC 50C                        1946-S PCGS MS64 CAC 50C   

                

        1947 PCGS MS65 CAC 50C                           1947-D PCGS MS66 CAC 50C                       2016-W 100th PCGS SP70 50C    

                

 

Global Financial News

Let's baseline where our monitored commodities and major equity indices are positioned after a long holiday weekend.

The S&P 500 starts the day at 5,304, a near record high. Can this major market index be driven higher by the behemoths of the technology sector? Morning market futures are suggesting a slight upward momentum when trading opens in a few hours.

It is important to note that beginning today, the standard equity settlement cycle will be reduced from "T+2" to "T+1". What this means is that buying or selling a stock will become faster in terms of settlement time. The current standard of T+2, prior to today, was two business days between the transaction and settlement into individual buyer and seller accounts. As of today, the settlement time has shrunk to just one day.

Spot gold is currently quoted at $2344/oz via the Kitco website. This compares to the current Shanghai market price of $2369/oz. Why do I mention this fact? Simply, because the Shanghai exchange is now driving gold pricing with the COMEX paper market being in a trailing position. As I study the daily gold pricing movements, it is apparent that gold trades higher during the overnight hours in Shanghai followed by a pricing drop once U.S. trading opens.

Silver continues to hold its substantial breakout with a morning quote of $31.52/oz.

The 10 Year U.S. treasury bond yield stands at 4.465% while the U.S. dollar is trending at 104.4.

WTI crude oil is selling at $78.83/bbl with gasoline contracts priced at $2.49/gallon. Yes, that is the base cost for a gallon of gas in volume. The difference from our purchase price is retail profit and state/federal taxes.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today?

Today brings another marginal weather day which is a good reason to spend most of the daytime hours in the GFRC office. Since Diane and I have already accomplished most of today's shipping during the Monday evening hours, I will be able to focus on two goals. The first is image processing and pricing for the ten piece Indian $10 gold lot from a Maine consignor. The second task is writing descriptions for the June 15 auction lots. If my day goes well, I'd like to complete the descriptions for the JBN Collection's Liberty Seated dimes.

GFRC is open to new and fresh consignments that will be processed and marketed after the June 13-15 Whitman Baltimore show. Please don't be bashful about contacting me with what might be on your mind as a divestment.

I believe that this is the extent of today's fresh ramblings. Thank you again for visiting the Daily Blog, be well.

 

 

 

Monday May 27, 2024

Happy Memorial Day

1993 Miata Loses a Timing Belt

and

"CCC" CAC Approved Walkers to be Fully Loaded to Auction Catalog Today

 

Greetings on Memorial Day and welcome to the Daily Blog. The number of active readers never seizes to amaze me. Thank you for the visit.

So, what is the latest news from the GFRC office and the homestead?

Let's start with the 1993 Miata. My long time cream puff appears to have lost a timing belt on Sunday. I was heading into Gray with an empty grill propane tank and within a half mile of the homestead, I heard a pop with the engine immediately shutting down. It took AAA about 1.5 hours to arrive with a tow truck to transport the car to our regular mechanic in Raymond. Online research indicates that the early Mazda Miata engines have a non-interference design which means that losing a timing belt will not destroy the engine, rather just leaving the driver stranded. The timing belt should be changed at 60,000 (100,000 in California). This one is on me at the Miata has 88,000 miles. Lesson learned for certain. I'm hoping that the internet information is correct and that the engine survived this event. On a positive note, I'm glad that the belt did not break during my fast paced trip to West Gardner to retrieve the 18 piece gold $10 Indian lot.

The balance of Sunday was split between more progress on repairing erosion spots on the Hill Trail and loading the balance of the Cumberland County Collection's CAC approved Walker set to the online catalog. The catalog is now complete through the 1944 date with the final lots being completed this morning. Once the set is fully posted, a reserve pricing proposal will be formulated and issued to our husband and wide collecting team for their approval.

The 10 piece $10 Indian gold lot has been photographed. These images will also be processed today as rain is expected well into the overnight hours. Yes, Memorial Day will be entirely spent in the GFRC office.

So ends today's Blog as there is little else to share on a holiday weekend. Your purchase orders and/or consignment proposals are most welcomed.

Be well!

 

 

 

Sunday May 26, 2024

Memorial Day and the 1861-S Seated Liberty Quarter

and

Proof Like 1847 PCGS MS62+ $5 to Consider

 

Greetings once again on a Memorial Day weekend and welcome to the Daily Blog. We appreciate the ongoing visits.

Saturday brought a special occasion that I was unable to discuss in yesterday's Blog. Diane and I attended our 50th class reunion at the new St. Dominic's Regional Middle and High School facility in Auburn, Maine. It was a truly special time to interact with long ago classmates and learn how everyone has faired over half of a century. Several classmates had hardly changed since our high school years while others fell into the more difficult to recognize realm. Most felt that I had changed little other than my white hair while Diane fell into the latter category since being a bit more diminutive as compared to her late teenage years. Of the 60+ in our graduating class, 7 had already passed which was quite sad. Others could not make the event due to travel distances or health issues.

My personal highlight was spending time with a childhood best friend, Jean Bergeron (Bergy). Bergy and I was close companion for years and last evening was the first time I had seen him since 1978 as we roomed together during our college year summer months. Reliving some of the those memories and stories was priceless.

Let's move on to numismatics....

Rich Hundertmark is back with another piece for the Daily Blog.

 

Memorial Day and the 1861-S Seated Liberty Quarter

Hi Gerry,

Happy Memorial Day to you and the loyal blogamaniacs.

As a kid growing up in Somerville New Jersey in the early 1960’s I fondly remember participating in the Memorial Day parade as a Little Leaguer followed by the big “Tour of Somerville” bike race that attracted international racers and large crowds, mixed in with hot dogs, and lots of flag waving American patriotism.

Beyond being the unofficial kickoff to summer, it is paramount that Memorial Day be a day to remember the fallen warriors that heroically gave the holiday its name with nothing less than their last full measure.

So, with that said, I’d like to now discuss a coin issued in a year that embodies Memorial Day as well as any, the 1861-S Liberty Seated Quarter.

Many coin collectors are also students of American history and well know that 1861 was the 1st year of the Civil War. The country was politically split, (way more than now) , and about to live out an American tragedy that would go on for four long years, ultimately causing an estimated 750,000 deaths, and testing the foundations of our democracy.

Out in California, about 3,000 miles removed from the tragic battlefield events in the east, the San Francisco mint went about its business and produced 96,000 Seated Liberty quarters. The survival rate of this small mintage was further diminished by a lack of West Coast collectors with few coins preserved and saved.

The rarity of the 1861-S 25C can be quickly analyzed by looking at the current PCGS grade population. As of this writing, PCGS has certified 157 coins in all grades with AU58+ top pop of the condition census.

Now listed on the GFRC-Lite website are three examples grading G-4 PCGS, G-6 and VG-8 ANACS. Attached are the pics of the G-6 example.

Lite is extremely pleased to offer this 1861-S “mini hoard”. In fact, with 2 of the 157 certified PCGS coins in Lite’s inventory, that’s over 1% of the graded PCGS population. 

I’ll also mention that collectors won’t easily find the 1861-S in the offered G-4 and G-6 grades, PCGS auction results show the last G-4 sale in 2013 and the G-6 in 2018.

To finish the numismatic story, by 1864 the country was devastated by the war, the emotional pain palpable throughout the land. 

The 1st coin to display the motto “IN GOD WE TRUST” was the 1864 2-cent piece. At that time, religion played a much greater part in most American’s lives, the motto an attempt to convey the people’s faith. 

In 1866, the Seated Quarter added the “IN GOD WE TRUST” motto which continued through the last date of the series in 1891.

Thanks for reading and wishing all continued collecting success.

Rich

 

Proof Like 1847 PCGS MS62+ $5 to Consider

Let's showcase a fresh buyback as a next segment.

This proof like 1847 $5 gold piece was previously sold during July 2021 and arrived yesterday as a buyback opportunity. Mintage for this Philadelphia date was substantial for that era with 915,981 struck. What differentiates this lot from other's sold by GFRC are the partial mirrored surfaces that exhibit considerable reflective luster under a bright light. The PCGS MS62+ certified grade may have been assigned on a technical basis, but the eye appeal is that of a higher grade. The CAC price guide exhibits a wide gap from MS62 ($3600) to MS63 ($7500). Our offer price is slightly below that of the 2021 sale level to instigate a quick purchase.

1847 PCGS MS62+ CAC G$5 - $4300

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

Yes, I was able to spend time on Johnny2 on Saturday morning along with repairing some erosion spots on the Hill portion of the walking trails. If my day goes to plan, there will be another three hour session today to continue that process. How I enjoy the silent of the woods when working alone. Sadly, the pond continues to be covered with green algae given the lack of rain and warm temperatures. At some point in the summer season, an aerator will be purchased along with a smaller portable solar battery towards some progress for this issue.

Saturday brought more image processing progress for the Cumberland County Collection Walking Liberty halves that will enable a GFRC Online Auctions catalog update by end of day.

I hope that everyone is enjoying their Memorial Day weekend. Thanks again for the visit. Be well!

 

 

 

Saturday May 25, 2024

Whitman Summer Baltimore - GFRC at Booth 730

and

$10 Indian Gold Heading to the Price List

 

Greetings on a Memorial Day weekend and welcome to the Daily Blog.

What a fantastic Saturday morning in terms of weather for the Memorial Day weekend. The skies are clear blue with an early morning temperature of 59F.

Today's Blog edition will be brief. As much as I need to continue working on the forthcoming June 15 auction, there comes a time when personal priorities do matter. That fact translate into time on Johnny2 and continuing to repair the winter erosion on the back acreage walking trails.

Let's get right to the heart of the latest GFRC news.

First of all, there is no shipping today as a long weekend. Tuesday will bring a huge shipping day for ship ahead and paid for orders. USPS is once again in an unpredictable mode in terms of timely Express deliveries along with marginal customer support with problematic packages. Your patience is appreciated as once we hand-off outgoing packages to Doug the Mailman, there is little else that we can do to ensure a timely delivery.

Secondly, more progress is at hand for the June 15 auction catalog with the Cumberland County Collection's Walking Liberty halves. I was able to load dates up through 1939 into the online auction catalog on Friday. Image quality has been improved with several image processing tweaks specific to the nature of light reflectance on Liberty's upper body. In the past, that area was washed out due to the lighting being positioned at the top (north) of the coin. While still employing the same lighting position, an approach has been found to negate the wash out effect towards a more realistic presentation of Liberty's head, shoulders, and gown lines.

 

Whitman Summer Baltimore - GFRC at Booth 730

It is official from the kind Whitman Baltimore staff! GFRC will be located at its usual Summer booth 730 location immediately right of the entrance. The booth is an extended double corner layout as illustrated next. Regular price list inventory will be exhibited on the aisle facing three tables, while the June 15 Specialty Sets auction lots will be available for lot viewing at the table facing booth 733. Diane and I will be arriving on Wednesday in time for the 5:00 booth setup and will not be attending the regen-show dealer event. If wishing to sell coins to GFRC, this can be done on Thursday morning with an early bird badge.

Whitman Summer Baltimore - GFRC at Booth 730

 

$10 Indian Gold Heading to the Price List

GFRC is pleased to be presenting a lovely 10 piece Indian gold lot that will be heading to the 30 Price List in the upcoming days. This lot originally totaled 18 pieces, of which 8 common dates were directly purchased for my physical gold stash. The balance of the lots are better dates as should be made evident in the following image. First Rights of Refusal are welcomed and will be responded too starting on Monday. Please understand that these lots will carry some premiums based on date scarcity.

Central banks and many investors are now replacing U.S. Treasuries with physical gold as their top secure asset for protecting financial wealth. The U.S. has only itself to blame for the ongoing lost of trust in U.S. Treasury bonds due to sanctions and an escalating national deficit. In the end, deficits do matter with ongoing inflation unavoidable.

 

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

At this point, it is time to wrap up for another morning. Please remain close to the Daily Blog as June brings a huge $2,000,000 Liberty Seated coinage auction announcement. GFRC Online Auctions will certainly elevate its presence in the numismatic auction market once this announcement is made public. Already, a marketing campaign has been reserved with Coin World as a first step.

After responding to overnight orders, I am heading to the barn for a morning of Johnny2 relaxation.

Thanks again for the ongoing patronage as without you, GFRC would not exist.

I hope that everyone has a wonderful Memorial Day weekend. Be well!

 

 

 

 

Friday May 24, 2024

Memorial Day Weekend 2024 Arrives

GFRC Chicago ANA Table Draw - UltraPremium #431

and

Progress with June 15 Specialty Sets Auction

 

Greetings on a Memorial Day weekend and welcome to the Daily Blog. Thank you so much for the visit.

Yes, it is already the Friday prior to the long 2024 Memorial Day weekend. Southern Maine weather has been delightful for the past 48 hours and that trend will continue through Saturday. We are being treated to a taste of the summer months with sunshine and a beautiful green landscape. How I enjoy living in Maine and our homestead.

Today is also our 44th wedding anniversary. Where does the time go during busy lives? Now that Dan White has retired as a full time partner for the coin show circuit, you will be seeing Diane and Gerry as the GFRC operating team starting at the Summer Baltimore show and the Chicago Summer ANA.

Let's move directly into today's primary topics. The first is the GFRC booth location at the ANA World's Fair of Money event. Yesterday brought a noon time call from Logan Curtis for the GFRC table selection. This year, there were still corner tables available in the UltraPremium section of the bourse when our time came to pick. GFRC will be located at booth #431 and at a reasonable location given the depth of the Chicago bourse floor and the walking distance to reach the Premium, Select, and Economy sections.

Diane and I particular excited about attending the Chicago ANA as a husband and wife team. The GFRC Online Auctions portion of the business will be issuing a huge auction announcement at some point in June. These major Liberty Seated coinage collections will be on display at the ANA show as a first step in a long marketing and lot viewing campaign that will extend into early 2025.

Here is a screen capture of the Chicago ANA bourse floor and where you will find the GFRC booth.

GFRC Chicago ANA Booth - UltraPremiun #431

 

 

Progress with June 15 Specialty Sets Auction

Speaking of upcoming coin shows, the Whitman Expo staff has yet to announce the bourse map and dealer table locations for the Summer Baltimore show that arrives in just 2.5 weeks. As soon as the information is posted, you will be the first to know.

Since the GFRC Online Auctions Specialty Sets event begins on June 15, my top most priority is completing the online auction catalog in the upcoming week. Much progress was made on Thursday with the addition of more Cumberland County Collection Walker lots and adding opening introductions to both the auctionguide.com landing page and the auction.com catalog page. Today brings incremental emphasis on image processing towards posting all the "CCC" Walker lots.

The Spring Branch Collection consignment, that I mentioned yesterday, will be shipping immediately after the Memorial Day weekend. Our long time consignor has requested that his lots be added to the forthcoming auction. Since all the lots were purchased from GFRC with existing images and descriptions, the inclusion will be straightforward.

The June 15 Specialty Set auction will now feature over 100 lots. If having spare time this weekend, please visit the online catalog at the Auction link or simply click on the top auction banners for direct access.

 

Global Financial News

Spot gold has been a hot topic here at the Daily Blog as the yellow precious metal continues to rally. The morning quote presently stands at $2,340/oz.

The following Kitco article, by Ernest Hoffman, brings together gold buying research analysis by Gainesville Coins' Jan Nieuwenhuijis. Since having keen insights into the China landscape after living in Wuxi and Shanghai between 2006 to 2013 and being a China watchers afterwards, I believe the following analysis is quite solid. China is indeed in the driver's seat concerning the current gold price rally.

China remains firmly in control of price action in the global gold market, and the latest data indicates that this is likely to continue, while Western investors will likely join the precious metals party soon, according to the latest analysis by Gainesville Coins’ Jan Nieuwenhuijs published on Wednesday.

Nieuwenhuijs pointed out that China’s private sector imported 543 tonnes of gold in Q1 2024, and the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) added another 189 tonnes to its reserves during the same period. However, “Most of the PBoC’s purchases are ‘unreported,’” he warned.

“China continues to be the marginal buyer in the gold market, driving up the price. I expect that China will remain a robust buyer of gold going forward in support of the price.

In his previous analysis published in March, Nieuwenhuijs explained how China had broken the longstanding correlation between the dollar-denominated gold price and real yields to become “a driving force of the gold price” beginning in 2022.

“The data at my disposal ran until December 2023 which made me hesitant to conclude the sharp increase in the gold price since late February was also caused by the Chinese,” he said. “However, as new data has been released, I can confidently say that China initiated the current bull market.”

“The media is aware that since 2022 central banks mostly buy gold covertly (often referred to as “unreported” purchases),” he said. “By now, it’s widely known that the World Gold Council (WGC) publishes a single statistic on aggregate central bank buying each quarter, which is markedly higher than what all monetary authorities combined report to have bought.”

The problem, Nieuwenhuijs said, is that it remains unclear which central banks are accounting for that discrepancy, which has widened significantly since the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Field research from the World Gold Council indicates that central banks bought 290 tonnes of gold in the first quarter of 2024. “Most of the difference—I use eighty percent—between the WGC’s estimate and total purchases as disclosed by the IMF is 162 tonnes,” he wrote. “When we add what the PBoC has reported to have bought during this period, total purchases come in at 189 tonnes, 38% more than the previous quarter. Possibly, the PBoC had a stake in boosting the price since late February.”

Nieuwenhuijs provided the following chart showing his own estimates of reported plus unreported PBoC gold purchases by quarter.

Taking into account unreported purchases, the Chinese central bank now holds gold reserves weighing 5,542 tonnes, according to my research,” he said.

Turning to private demand, Nieuwenhuijs said the Chinese private sector’s net gold imports have been extremely strong. “From January through March imports accounted for a mammoth 543 tonnes, up 74% from Q4 2023,” he said. “This is definitely what pushed up the gold price. Import in April decreased somewhat to 125 tonnes.”

Nieuwenhuijs noted that Hong Kong saw significant net inflows of gold in recent months, which “mainly reflects strong demand in China,” he believes.

“In Q1, the UK and Switzerland both were net exporters, and Western ETF inventories declined,” he said. “At the time of writing the West has not yet joined the bull market, which primarily has its roots in China.”

Nieuwenhuijs referenced the recent report that Beijing sold a record $53 billion in U.S. Treasuries and agency bonds in the first quarter of this year, which he said “illustrates the PBoC is selling dollars for gold,” and with China’s foreign exchange reserves totaling $3.2 trillion, “there is plenty of firepower left for gold.”

He also expects Chinese private-sector gold demand to remain strong given the ongoing real estate slump on the mainland which has seen home prices fall in 30 of the last 33 months.

“The State Council is floating a plan to buy unsold houses through local governments, but these are already drowning in debt,” he said. “The Chinese public, which doesn’t have many investment options due to capital controls, will continue to invest in gold and support the price.”

Nieuwenhuijs predicts that the West will finally join the gold bull market in short order. “ETF outflows appear to have stopped, and it would only be logical for Western investors to rotate into gold at some point because of high asset valuations and an overconfidence in credit instruments,” he said.

Equity markets fell on Thursday with the S&P 500 ending the day at 5,267. The DJIA fell by more than 600 points attributed to a stronger than expected Purchasing Managers Index for May. Rather than indicating a slow down, the index moved up by 3.5% indicating that the U.S. economy is not being held back by inflation.

Morning market futures are pointing to a quarter point gain at today's opening bell.

Unfortunate for long term bond holders, the 10 Year Treasury yield is climbing again with a morning quote of 4.48%. The U.S. dollar is trending at 105 as compared to a basket of overseas currencies.

WTI crude oil has fallen to $76.50/bbl.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today

Well, our internet outage issue was repaired by Noah, a very capable Spectrum technician, during the Thursday noon time hours. One of the Wallace Roofing trucks had run over the cable location and crushed the line. The cable is located at the end of the new driveway extension and easily crushed if a heavy truck turns onto the driveway from our crushed stone construction road. I will be adding several larger rocks to prevent trucks from passing over the buried cable location.

I will be in the GFRC office for most of the day working on the "CCC" Walker images and responding to new purchase orders.

So ends today's Daily Blog edition. We look forward to seeing you tomorrow. Thank again for stopping by.

Be well!

 

 

 

Thursday May 23, 2024

GFRC Online Auctions

Presents JBN Collection's Premium Liberty Seated Dimes

 

Greetings and welcome to the Daily Blog on a Thursday morning. Thank you for the visit.

Southern Maine weather has shifted to summer-like conditions which will last through the weekend. The gravitational pull from the outdoors is quite powerful, but there is a host of GFRC business needs to also service as the forthcoming June Baltimore Show and associated auction are approaching much too quickly.

Wednesday brought Wallace Roofing to the homestead. That job was executed in the matter of hours given the 12 person Ecuadorean crew that first stripped the existing shingles followed by adding edging and then the new Morie Black shingles. Rot was discovered by our chimney requiring the replacement of two 3/4" plywood sections. Water seepage along the tall chimney has been an issue for years. This time around, I am most impressed with our the Wallace crew installed incremental flashing and sealing the edges properly.

The Wallace team was gone by 2:30 PM but leaving yet another issue to deal with, an internet outage. How, where, and why the Wallace team would come in contact with our buried internet coax cable is a mystery. We are currently operating with my Samsung cellphone hotspot until a Spectrum technician arrives at 11:00 AM to trouble shoot the outage. All I can say is that life is never boring when tackling substantial projects.

Today bring Summer ANA table selection day for the GFRC staff. Much of the bourse has already been taken with six corner tables remaining in the UltraPremium section. I'm praying and hope to secure one of the those tables as the alternatives are worse than grim if those are occupy when being called by Logan Curtis. GFRC would need to take a table in the Ancients section or situated way back in the Select area of the bourse. You will be the first to hear of the outcome in Friday's Blog edition.

These is no update on the Maine Solar situation which is fine by me at this point. I need to get through the internet outage issue and the ANA table selection process as the day's priorities.

The overnight brought an important consignment proposal from the Spring Branch Collection in Texas. The proposed lots are six quality Seated quarter and half dollar lots previously purchased from GFRC with the majority being CAC approved. I will be in a position to share more details come the Memorial Day weekend.

 

GFRC Online Auctions Presents a Lot of Premium JBN Collection Liberty Seated Dimes

As promised in Wednesday's Blog edition, GFRC Online Auctions is thoroughly pleased to be presenting a 30 piece Liberty Seated dime lot from the JBN Collection.

The JBN consignor has been a GFRC client for years and noted for his pursuit of CAC approved Liberty Seated coinage across all denominations. Our friend has been active in the many online auctions as he targeted lots with strictly original toning and above average eye appeal within the circulated grades. The time has come for our client to streamline his collecting goals with the decision to return his Seated dimes back to the market place.

Contrary to the approach taking by most auction consignors, the reserves for the following lots are notably below his purchase prices and the current CAC pricing guide. This reserve setting approach was selected towards enabling more bidding action when the auction opens on June 15. Please remember that these lots will be on display at the Summer Baltimore show along with the Cumberland County Walker collection.

It is with great pleasure that GFRC present the following JBN Collection showcase.

JBN Collection - Premium Liberty Seated Dimes at Auction

 1844 F-102 PCGS AU50 CAC 10C OGH                                           1845-O F-101 PCGS EF40 CAC 10C 

        

   1846 F-101 PCGS EF45 CAC 10C                                                1858-S F-103 PCGS EF45 CAC H10C

        

 1863-S F-101 PCGS AU53 CAC 10C                                              1865-S F-103 PCGS EF45 CAC H10C 

        

 1870-S F-101a PCGS AU58 10C                                                      1871-S PCGS AU58 CAC H10C 

        

1838 F-106 PCGS AU55 CAC 10C                1839 F-101 PCGS AU55 CAC 10C                1841-O F-103 PCGS AU55 CAC 10C

                

       1847 F-101 PCGS AU53 CAC 10C                  1851 F-103 PCGS AU55 CAC 10C             1856 Lg Date F-101 PCGS AU58 CAC 10C

                

1856-O F-101 PCGS AU55 CAC 10C                1860-S F-102 PCGS EF45 CAC 10C                  1864-S F-101 PCGS VF30 10C      

                

 1866-S F-101 PCGS EF40 CAC 10C                1868 F-108 PCGS AU55 CAC 10C                1869-S F-101 PCGS EF40 CAC 10C

                

   1870 F-101 PCGS AU58 CAC 10C                1873 Arr F-114 PCGS AU50 CAC 10C           1874 Arr F-108 PCGS AU58 CAC 10C

                

 1874-S F-102 PCGS EF40 CAC 10C             1877-CC Unlisted PCGS AU50 CAC 10C              1879 F-10x PCGS EF45 CAC 10C  

                

 1884-S F-102 PCGS AU58 CAC 10C                  1886 F-120 PCGS AU53 CAC 10C                1890-S F-117 PCGS EF45 CAC 10C  

                

 

Global Financial News

The commodities complex ran into selling pressure on Wednesday after the release of the April Federal Open Market Committee meeting minutes. Those minutes revealed an elevated concern among Federal Reserve officials over the persistence of inflation during the first quarter of 2024. Some members express the possibility of yet more interest rate increases to slay this persistent inflation. The FOMC minutes were seen as significantly more hawkish leading to a pullback in gold and silver prices along with a down day on Wall Street.

As of this morning, spot gold is trading at $2368/oz while silver is priced at $30.50.

The S&P 500 starts the day at 5,307 with morning market futures indicating renewed buying optimism. S&P 500 futures are pointing to a 0.55% rise when trading opens at 9:30 AM.

The 10 Year U.S. bond yield has increased even so slightly to 4.42% as the U.S. national debt will soon reach $35 Trillion dollars. Most concerning is the Federal debt to GDP ratio now stands at 122%.

WTI crude is priced at $78.20/bbl this morning.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today?

As much as I would like to be working outdoors, the forthcoming GFRC Online Auctions event requires a full day in the office processing Cumberland County images along with updating the auction page introductions. If wishing to purchase a coin or discuss a consignment, I should be in the office for the most of the day.

Thanks again for making the Daily Blog are regular part of your online reading.

Be well!

 

 

 

 

Wednesday May 22, 2024

Do We Have a Maine Solar and Town of Raymond Agreement for Fortin Install?

Barred Owl - Guardian of the Back Acreage Pond

and

All JBN Collection Seated Dimes Posted for June 15 Auction

 

Greetings on a summer like southern Maine morning and welcome to the Daily Blog. Thank you for the ongoing visits.

Living life in the fast lane is an excellent description of the past 24 hours and I'm not referencing the 1993 Miata drive to that secret U.S. gold deal location... Today's events will also be fast paced as Wallace Roofing arrives at 7:00 AM to complete the homestead re-roofing project that was launched during 2023. Therefore, this edition will be much shorter than anticipated.

Let's start today's reporting with an update of the Maine Solar Solutions' blacklisting of the town of Raymond status. I'm most pleased to confirm that the Raymond Town Manager did speak with a Maine Solar principal in the past 48 hours. Last evening brought a text message from Joe Bruno, Chair of the Board of Selectmen, that Maine Solar had agreed to move forward with quoting the Fortin solar installation project. It appears that Maine Solar was able to express their grievances with the Raymond code enforcement situation to a positive outcome. Phil Walter confirmed, via email, that he believes that the green light has been given and will confirm with his boss this morning towards issuing a formal quotation. To quote Phil, "I know that your enthusiasm and personal angle on this was a major factor with the staff I talked to today."

More updates on this project will be forthcoming.

 

Barred Owl - Guardian of the Back Acreage Pond

I'd like to introduce the Barred Owl that has been keeping watch over the pond area and our walking trails. In a prior Blog edition, I spoke of being down at the pond at dusk and being "hooted" by a pair of large owls and dive bombed by an accompanying crow. During yesterday's health walk, the "guardian" made his/her presence on the trail which facilitated an excellent photography opportunity. Let's just say that this is a formidable bird who is guarding the northeastern end of the property.

The allaboutbirds.org online website presents the following Barred Owl description that is certainly consistent with our situation.

Barred Owls are easiest to find when they are active at night—they’re a lot easier to hear than to see. Visit forests near water (big bottomland forest along a river is prime Barred Owl habitat) and listen carefully, paying attention for the species’ barking “Who cooks for you?” call. At great distance, this can sound like a large dog. Try imitating the call with your own voice and then wait quietly. If you’re lucky, a territorial Barred Owl will fly in to investigate you. During the daytime, a quiet walk through mature forest might reveal a roosting Barred Owl if you are lucky.

 

Barred Owl - Guardian of the Back Acreage Pond

 

All JBN Collection Seated Dimes Posted for June 15 Auction

For today's Blog edition, the original intention was to showcase the 30-piece JBN Seated dime lot as these pieces have been loaded to the online auction catalog. However, with Wallace Roofing arriving in a few minutes, that display will be postponed until tomorrow. If having a few extra minutes, you are invited to view all of the JBN Collection lots at the Auction link.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

I had planned for a much longer Blog edition, but the arrival of Wallace Roofing take precedence.

Financial markets, along with gold and silver, are trading flat. Therefore, there is not much to discuss for those topics.

Along with processing the Cumberland County Collection auction lot images, GFRC will also be working on a 10-piece $10 Indian gold consignment that was insourced yesterday.

GFRC sales have notably improved during the past seven days which is also adding to my workload. Please check back tomorrow morning for an update on homestead events, the Maine Solar situation, and a JBN Seated dime showcase.

Thanks again for visiting. Be well!

 

 

 

 

Tuesday May 21, 2024

Progress on the Maine Solar Project - Confronting Town of Raymond Challenge

and

The Miata has New Rubber for a U.S. Gold Deal

 

Greetings and welcome to more Daily Blog ramblings on an early Tuesday morning. Thank you for the visit.

I'm pleased to report that southern Maine enjoyed a lovely spring day on Monday with bright sunshine. The weather was ideal for the many tasks that were concluded during the daytime hours.

Shipping a substantial Estes K-Kit model rocket order was the initial priority with a large box of vintage kits currently being transported to a client in Plano, Texas. UPS is our carrier of choice for these types of shipments.

Once back home, the balance of the JBN Seated dimes were photographed while a dryer vent cleaning firm arrived to the homestead. Our dryer venting loop had not been cleaned for years. The service person climbed onto the roof and blew out the line with a host of accumulated lint and several hornet nests being removed.

Upon the service person's departure, it was the 1993 Miata's turn for maintenance attention. The drive into Raymond center was downright fantastic on a sunny day. In the matter of a hour, my little red sports car received a new set of Uniroyal Tiger Paws tires at 88,000 miles. There is nothing like fresh tires on a sports car as the ride home felt like driving on air.

While morning tasks were taking place, I was on the phone with the chair of the Raymond Board of Selectmen to discuss my Maine Solar Solutions challenge ie. Raymond being blacklisted due to onerous permitting and code enforcement requirements. . "Joe" and I served together years ago on the Raymond School Board, with Joe being quite active in town hall politics since that time. The call was productive as the Fortins were not the only individuals struggling with a local fire department that has been over extending its mission into code enforcement. In the matter of an hour's time, the town manager personally called to learn of the Maine Solar issue and promised to take actions towards removing the Town of Raymond from the Maine Solar blacklist. There was also a call into Maine Solar to inform them of the progress at the town level. It was further reinforced that I am waiting for a final quotation and initial project scheduling date. Let's see where this all goes by the end of week.

The balance of the afternoon brought image processing before our hard stop 5:00 PM happy hour time. One of my favorite parts of each day is hanging out on the back deck while grilling dinner. Yes, it was a great day on the project front along with a fair number of GFRC coin orders to round out a successful day.

As the second headline topic indicates, today brings a Miata drive to a secret meeting location for conducting an 18 piece U.S $10 Indian gold deal. GFRC will be meeting a client for a consignment transfer along with an outright purchase of the more common dates in the lot. Those dates are heading into my physical gold stash.

Let's end today's Blog edition at this point. The extra 1.5 hours will be used to wrap up the JBN Collection's Seated dime image processing. Every hour is precious here at GFRC and at the homestead.

Thanks again for the visit. Be well!

 

 

 

Monday May 20, 2024

Two CAC Approved Specialty Sets Auction Sale Announcement

The Cumberland County Collection "CCC" Walkers

The JBN Seated Dimes

and

Spot Gold Climbs to Record Levels

 

Greetings on a Monday morning and welcome to the Daily Blog. Your ongoing patronage is appreciated.

Southern Maine weather has been predominately cloudy with off-and-on showers. Sunday was a classic example leading to an indoor office day. I took the opportunity to focus on the next GFRC Online Auctions event that is being announced today.

I'm pleased to make known that the next auction will feature an essentially complete Walking Liberty half dollar collection that is entirely CAC approved. This Mint State centric set is only missing the key date 1921-S. Along with the Mint State pieces are the proof dates along with major varieties including the 1916-D Repunched Mintmark and the 1946 Doubled Die Reverse. This divestment also includes several Gold CAC approved lots, one being in a PCGS Gen 2.0 Doily holder.

The second specialty set is from the JBN Collection, formerly branded as the Grimject Collection. Our long time consignor has decided to release a 30-piece lot of CAC approved Liberty Seated dimes. Yes, the 1870-S is not CAC approved for accuracy. Many of these offerings were purchased directly from GFRC via price list or auction. This individual has decided to set auction reserve prices well below his acquisition points to stimulate bidding. We commend our consignor for this decision.

This forthcoming auction will be held on June 15 with bidding opening on the closing day of the Summer Baltimore show. The number of lots is roughly 110 pieces and will require my diligent attention to bring these offerings online in the next few weeks. Already, there are 22 lots posted to the Auction catalog link as of this morning with more on the way today as image processing continues. The reserve prices for the JBN Collection Seated dimes have already been set.

The Summer Baltimore show brings an auction lot viewing opportunity on June 13 and 14 at the GFRC booth. Our booth number will be announced shortly.

Unfortunately, there is not sufficient time to open up this auction event to incremental consignments. Between operating the regular GFRC business, this auction, and our home activities in Maine, the next few weeks will be fully consumed. The last thing I wish to do is over commit and not delivery on those promises.

Please stay close to the GFRC Online Auctions page as these two noteworthy collections are processed and loading onto the online catalog.

 

Spot Gold Climbs to Record Levels

During overnight trading in Asia, spot gold pricing climbed to $2447/oz and is currently quoting at $2426. There is no question in my mind that gold pricing leadership has moved to China as years of U.S. Treasury efforts at price suppression on the COMEX have come to an end. The Chinese government is incentivizing its citizenry to seek gold as an investment asset and is managing prices to ensure that its gold holders are seeing a fair rate of return on their investments. The result is that both the Chinese central government and its massive population are absorbing physical gold at an unprecedented rate.

What we are currently experiencing is the movement of physical gold from the Western alliance to China and Russia. Most Americans are not paying attention to this phenomenon as we have become dependent on fiat currencies that are being debased. The U.S. media is downplaying the situation or not even providing coverage of the fact that gold is now in a revaluation phase outside of U.S. control.

Silver has broken out in an even grander fashion than gold and is currently trading at $31.43/oz.

The fact that both precious metals are moving up so quickly should bring pause to the U.S. citizenry that all is not well with the state of U.S. politics and economic management. The current level of global sanctions and tariffs is a signal that the United States is now on the downside of its long term economic cycle (global hegemony) and no different than the collapse of the British Empire. The major difference is the speed at which the collapse is occurring. For example, the latest Biden admin 100% tariffs on Chinese made electric vehicles (EV) is a signal that China has won the EV development and manufacturing war since U.S. automotive industry is no longer cost competitive. Those tariffs are inflationary as the cost of a U.S. purchased EV will be double that of those purchasing outside of the United States. The U.S. automotive industry is being "rewarded" for failing to develop competitive technologies and dealing with the high cost of union labor manufacturing within existing facilities. Of course, the political class will claim that China is not playing fairly. In the end, those claims do not matter as Chinese citizens will be owning EVs at $20,000 as compared to U.S. citizens seeing a $40,000 cost of ownership. Where do the tariff monies go? Of course, to the federal government.

 

Global Financial News

Another trading week is upon us with the S&P 500 at 5,303. Morning market futures are trending slightly positive at 0.15%. The 10 Year U.S bond yield is again trending upward with a morning quote of 4.42%. With the United States operating at $1 Trillion deficit spending every 100 days, one has to wonder if the cost of borrowing will ever decrease. Have you realized that deficit spending is a boom for the elite population and major corporations? Those are the parties that are in a financial position to purchase Treasury bonds and are rewarded with government issued interest payments. The U.S. government makes those payments by extracting taxes from the overall population including social security taxes on every working soul.

WTI crude was trading above $80/bbl during the overnight and has settled down to $79.78/bbl.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today

Today's priorities are straightforward; shipping, a tire replacement appointment for the 1993 Miata, and continuing to work on the forthcoming GFRC Online Auctions event.

I will be in an out of the office today but always monitoring emails and text messages for potential orders.

Thanks again for today's Daily Blog visit.

Be well!

 

 

 

Sunday May 19, 2024

A Sunday Daily Blog Break

 

Greetings and thank you for checking in on a Sunday morning.

I've decided to take a pass at composing a Daily Blog edition today. Instead, the time will be shifted to other priorities as there are many between the GFRC business and regular homestead maintenance items.

Honestly, there is no prepared content and trying to force some commentary is just not in the cards today.

I will be back on Monday morning with a regular edition.

Be well!

 

 

 

Saturday May 18, 2024

Silver Breaks Out!

and

Nature remains...

 

Greetings and welcome to the Daily Blog on a mid-May weekend.

There are two themes for this edition given little to share concerning the GFRC business. Yes, pricing for the three Running Boar $5 gold pieces has been solidified and these will be posting to the 30 Day Price List today. Otherwise, my attention has been focused on the aftermath of the barn shelving project and secondly, repairing several moderately eroded areas on the back acreage walking trails.

Here is a late afternoon image from the back deck while grilling a pork tenderloin for Friday evening dinner. The spring tree leaves are about 85% present as of May 17 with the maples and oaks still another full week away from their complete summertime foliage.

 

Silver Breaks Out!

There is no question that the precious metal sector had been heating up during the past few months. Most of the attention has been focused on gold as it takes a stair step revaluation journey driven by major owners in the east. Gold closed at $2415/oz on the week.

Lying in the background has been silver which exhibited a huge breakout on Friday, closing at $31.48/oz. Kitco's Neil Christensen provides a mid-Friday afternoon update as follows:

After a relatively slow start in the first quarter, silver is making its move, significantly outpacing gold as it trades at an 11-year high.

Just ahead of the weekend, silver prices have broken above $30 an ounce. July silver futures last traded at $30.74 an ounce, up nearly 3% on the day. By comparison, gold is trading at $2,406.20, up 0.88% on the day.

Soaring silver prices have pushed the gold-silver ratio below 80 points, and it has been trading at its lowest level since August.

According to some analysts, silver is just getting started as the precious metal has solid momentum.

“Silver does not look overheated, as it is only now entering overbought territory on the RSI on the daily timeframes,” said Alex Kuptsikevich, FxPro senior market analyst, in a note on Friday. “Last month, silver was actively added for another three weeks after the RSI entered levels above 70. A two-week pullback in the second half of April later removed that overbought area. Technically, this clears the way up.”

Kuptsikevich added that his near-term target for silver is $33 an ounce; however, he added that the precious metal could make a serious move to its all-time high of $50.

“Long-term trends are also on the bulls' side. In the last two years, they have been able to quickly turn the price to the upside after dips under the 200-week moving average. This year, the price is successfully pulling away from that line, but the most furious part of the rally may be ahead,” he said. “Silver could be ready to repeat the growth spurt it showed in 2010-2011.”

In a recent interview with Kitco News, Michele Schneider, Director of Trading Education and Research at MarketGauge, said that silver’s value play makes it more attractive than gold.

She added that silver tends to outperform in a higher inflationary environment. Although April’s core Consumer Price Index, which strips out volatile food and energy prices, saw its first decline in six months, Schneider said it remains elevated at 3.6%.

While some economists have celebrated the drop in consumer price pressures, Schneider said they are still looking at inflation in all the wrong places.

She explained that rising geopolitical uncertainty and renewed pressure to onshore manufacturing in the U.S. will drive prices higher and weaken the U.S. dollar.

“This move in silver is telling us that we have fractures in the economy, but we don’t know how these fractures are going to manifest,” she said. “Is it going to lead to a debt crisis? Is the Fed going to have to lower rates? Either way, we should expect to see higher inflation.”

Schneider said that the $30 level represents an important resistance point for silver.

“If silver is going to hold 29 and get through 30, I don't see any reason why we can't get to 35 eventually and 40,” she said.

However, not all analysts are convinced that silver is thriving as a monetary metal. In a comment to Kitco News, Julia Khandoshko, CEO at the European broker Mind Money, said that she sees this move in silver as a reflection of the broader bullish momentum in commodity markets.

Silver’s rally comes as copper prices have pushed to all-time highs above $5 per pound.

“Today, all metals, including silver, are growing for a simple reason—cautious sentiment on global economic growth,” said Khandoshko. “If we look at commodities charts, we can see they have a cyclical price trend: when there is an economic downturn, they are cheap; when the economy is recovering, they rise in price.”

Khandoshko added that she prefers gold over silver as a monetary and safe-haven hedge.

I'd like to remind readers that the rise in gold and silver prices correlates to weakening fiat currencies. Though the DXY index indicates that the dollar is at 104.50, its overall value continues to degrade due to insidious inflation. The DXY index is simply a comparison of the U.S dollar's value against six foreign currencies. Those currencies and index weights are as follows.

Bottom line, the rise in precious metal values is a warning sign that the U.S. dollar continues to lose its buying power and eventually, its relevance. A trip to your local grocery store will make this fact quickly apparent.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

Let's close today's edition with a Walt Whitman quote that was sent along by Greg Johnson. How true are the following words.

“After you have exhausted what there is in business, politics, conviviality, love, and so on—have found that none of these finally satisfy, or permanently wear—what remains? Nature remains; to bring out from their torpid recesses, the affinities of a man or woman with the open air, the trees, fields, the changes of seasons—the sun by day and the stars of heaven by night.”

I could not imagine being a urban dweller on a continuing basis. The gravitational pull of rural life and the back acreage grows stronger by the year...

Thank you for visiting. Be well!

 

 

 

Friday May 17, 2024

Newtown 1850-O PCGS MS64 CAC Half Heads into a Major Collection

and

Running Boar $5 Gold to Consider

 

Greetings on a warm southern Maine Friday morning and welcome to another Daily Blog edition. We appreciate the ongoing visits.

I'm in a particularly good mood after yesterday's annual physical (wellness) check. The appointment conclusion was that I'm in great physical and mental shape for my age with stellar blood pressure, weight, and all blood work parameters being "in spec". This outcome has taken several years to accomplish via the Keto eating lifestyle, daily exercise, and staying mentally focused on geopolitics, investing strategies, and of course, numismatics. Yes, I know essentially know nothing about modern contemporary culture, movies, and the sports world as the focus is elsewhere. I'm quite comfortable with this fact as the intrigues of global politics are much more stimulating to contemplate.

As a reward for the super check-up, the balance of the day was not spent in the GFRC office, but rather outdoors mowing the lawn and cleaning up after the barn shelving project. It was a beautiful spring day and the chance to spend time outdoors was priceless. The Raymond homestead landscaping is ready for summer visitors.

Onward to numismatics....

 

Newtown 1850-O PCGS MS64 CAC Half Heads into a Major Collection

Astute collectors are quickly absorbing the many premium Seated halves in the recent Newtown Collection release. Thursday brought the sale of the 1850-O PCGS MS64 CAC half to a well known GFRC client leaving a few remaining pieces.

I'm surprised that the GFRC-Gem rated 1846 6/Horizontal 6 PCGS AU55 CAC half as yet to find a new home. Frankly, I thought this would be one of the first lots to sell given its status as a major series variety and the sterling preservation and strike. Yes, the asking price is strong, but consistent with the overall quality and scarcity. Here are the images for that lot.

1846 6/Horizontal 6 PCGS AU55 CAC 50C - $5750

 

Running Boar $5 Gold to Consider

Thursday's Blog brought the mention of a newly arrived Running Boar $5 gold consignment. It did not take long for two First Right of Refusals to appear for the 1850 and 1906-D lots. Following is a quick office desktop image of the three lots. These will be loaded into the COIN database today and priced towards quick sales. For those who asked for first shot, your requests will be honored. Contact will be made once the offer prices are approved.

 

New For Purchase Lot Arrives

Early Thursday afternoon brought the arrival of a new "for purchase" lot. After screening the shipment contents, the following pieces will be heading to GFRC inventory if the client accepts my offer prices. In the past, we have always been able to reach terms therefore moving forward with some early marketing.

 

Global Financial News

Now that the S&P 500 has set a new all time record along with the Dow Jones break through the 40,000 mark, on an intra-day basis, traders took some light profits on Thursday. The S&P 500 closed at 5,297 and fractionally down a tad. It has been a great week for investors.

Spot gold and silver continue to drawn considerable attention as some hedge fund managers are now taking ETF positions. Gold is currently trading at $2389/oz and silver is at $29.68. If gold can break through the $2400 level and establish a foothold above that mark, then $2500 spot gold is certainly a possibility. This type of move would also propel silver above $30/oz.

The 10 Year bond yield continues to remain resilient at 4.40% along with the U.S. dollar strengthening to 104.8.

Morning market futures are dead flat at 7:45 AM ET.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today?

Today brings a balancing act between GFRC office time and the outdoors. There is little else to say.

Thanks again for the visit.

Be well!

 

 

 

Thursday May 16, 2024

Newtown Seated Half Dollar Release Continues to Find Traction

and

GFRC Does a Substantial Estes K-Kit Model Rocket Deal

 

Greetings and welcome to the Daily Blog on a Thursday morning. Thank you so much for the visit.

Unfortunately, today's ramblings must be brief as I have a 9:00 AM annual wellness (physical) appointment. This leaves little time to casually ramble along as was the case on Wednesday. Let's go with some brief topics of the day.

We open with the fact that my back acreage excavation buddy, Dave Wilkinson, is already on his way to a Portland hospital for his second knee replacement. This is an early morning operation with a one month recovery period. The Fortins sent well wishes last evening as Dave has become a great friend during the many years of developing the back acreage into what is presently enjoyed today.

Secondly, Wednesday brought the final posting of the Newtown Seated half dollar collection release to the 30 Day Price List along with incremental descriptions being added. During the afternoon hours, two of the Newtown halves were sold. The first was the Dick Osborn 1857-S half graded NGC MS61 followed by the 1873 No Arrows Closed 3 PCGS MS63 also being scooped up by a regular GFRC client.

Lastly, and under the numismatic radar screen, I've been working on a large Estes K-Kit model rocket deal with a Texas collector. The Estes K-Kits were produced starting in the early to mid 1960s and are prized collectibles for model rocket enthusiasts. These kits are rare if located in choice to gem unopened condition. Last evening brought the closing of the deal for the cream of my K-Kit collection with a sale value of slightly over $4000. Yes, we are dealing with a very thinly traded market, therefore the prices are minuscule as compared to rare coins. The proceeds will most likely fund a zero-turn mower replacement for the aging John Deer D140 lawn tractor. That machine has served me well for years and is now burning oil at an accelerating pace.

Speaking of Estes model rocket kits, I have at least 10 large plastic totes of Estes vintage kits ranging from 1965 through 2012 issue dates. These are all for sale with the only condition being a minimum sale of $500 per purchase due to the workload of plying the totes to locate individual kits along with pricing and shipping requirements. For those who might be interested, the kits are listed at the following link. Please look inside the Estes Kit Databases for a well defined history of Estes model rocket kits and the many production varieties.

https://www.seateddimevarieties.com/BAR/home.htm

Consignments continue to arrive. Wednesday brought a three piece $5 gold lot from the Running Boar Collection. All are CAC approved with the following dates and grades; 1850 PCGS EF45 CAC, 1895-S NGC AU58 CAC, and 1906-D PCGS MS63 CAC OGH. These lots will be promptly placed on the price list once there is sun for photography.

Coming next week is a Miata trip to the Augusta Maine area to pick up an 18 piece $10 Indian gold consignment. This is an AU55/AU58 lot with a number of better dates.

 

Global Financial News

April's CPI report came in cool at 0.3% and launched a rally day on Wall Street. Finally, investors believed that the light at the end of the tunnel for the U.S. inflation fight was clearly visible. Many believed that the meek inflation report would provide room for several Federal Reserve rate cuts before the end of 2024. The S&P 500 rose to a record 5,308 by end of day.

Most important is the fact that the 10 Year Treasury bond yield dropped to 4.34% along with the U.S. dollar decreasing to 104.4.

Gold and silver also rallied on the news with gold climbing to $2392 before cooling off to $2380/oz as the Blog is being composed. Silver gains were more impressive with a gain to $29.62/oz.

Morning market futures are forecasting a flat open which is also bullish after yesterday's substantial gains. Often times, the day after a strong rally will bring profit taking.

The wild card for the U.S. economy is energy costs. So far, WTI crude oil continues to trade within a tight $78-79/bbl range.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today?

Upon my return from the annual wellness check, the balance of the day will be spent in the GFRC office. There are a host of items to get done including Cumberland County image processing, loading the Grimjet Seated dimes into the COIN database, and continuing to clean up the 30 Day Price List by adding descriptions for unsold lots. Now that the barn shelving project along with dentist and doctor appointments are behind me, I can return to the GFRC business in a serious way.

Once gain, your ongoing patronage is sincerely appreciate. Thanks again for the ongoing visits.

Be well!

 

 

 

Wednesday May 15, 2024

Back in the GFRC Office

and

GFRC-Lite's Midlands Coin Club Show Report

 

Greetings on a mid-May Wednesday morning and welcome to the Daily Blog. As always, thank-you for visiting.

It really is difficult to believe that half of the month of May is already gone. Between sustaining the GFRC business, homestead projects, family visits, and health appointments, the days are flying by. Each day brings decision concerning personal and business priorities. Those that seek pro bono consulting or wishing to take me into the weeds on common date Seated dime die varieties are having a difficult time as there is no bandwidth for these requests.

As the top headline indicates, I am back working in the office today with only an annual physical to deal with tomorrow.

Let's recap the barn shelving project with two images. The past two days have been a classic case of the master and the apprentice. Pete Theberge is the unquestionable master as he has been building houses and working for LL Bean as their primary construction contractor for three decades. He retired late last years and was the first external contractor to be given a going away party at a local restaurant. Pete is a long time Lewiston resident and a friend of the Theriault family. Relationships are huge in smaller communities.

Pete had estimated 2+ days of work under the assumption that he would be working alone. With Gerry as the apprentice, we did the job in nine hours including lunch time. Yes, we hustled as time is precious for both of us. The end product speaks for itself. I will be able to easily add more shelving in the future as the building techniques are straightforward. Key is having the right power tools to cut material to size along with two bodies to pin heavy shelving units on the walls.

 

I'm most proud of the outcome as the extra storage space and work bench will be invaluable in the coming years. The Maine Solar power system operated like a charm with the 7.5KW/H batteries remaining full charged regardless of the power tool consumption. This solar system is a beast and could easily support an electric UTV in the coming months. Boys need their toys, right?

 

GFRC-Lite's Midlands Coin Club Show Report

HI Gerry,

I'm back from last week's Midlands Coin Club show that's held in Columbia SC. It's been pouring rain here in Winston Salem all day. If I check the radar on the Weather app I'm seeing blues, purples and yellows all moving from west to east.  Hmm, maybe my next super Morgan toner will be described as '"extreme storm weather radar toning?" 

To recap the show, Lite enjoyed a fast paced two days of bourse activity and travel. I left for the show early Friday morning, a quick 3 hr drive down I-85 and I-77 and I arrived at the Embassy Suites venue at the planned 90 minutes before the show doors opened to the public at 10AM.

Lite's table was situated immediately to the right of the show entrance, the 8' table accommodating two cases of certified coins and one case raw that 1 populate with 1 1/2" flips for 1C-25C and 2" flips for half dollars and dollars. 

I had made an estimate on the blog of 45-50 coins sold, the actual sales number came in at 36 coins. The good news is that my ASP was higher than expected, so total sales worked out quite well. I guess Nostradamus need not worry. I'll have to work on my show forecasting skills.

Ok, so what were the selling highlights? First, let's start with a very strong sales mix of 17 Certified vs 19 raw coin sales & then drill down. This breakout mostly explains the higher-than-expected ASP, as I previously saw a higher % of raw sales, which are typically lower priced. One particularly satisfying stat of note, 16 different consignors registered sales,10 of which with more than 1 coin sold.

Both of the certified cases received a good bit of attention but especially so the higher denomination case that housed the half dollars. Bust Halves and Classic 50C Commemoratives led the way this go round. I'm especially pleased with this showing as Lite loves the Classic Silver Commemorative category and believes collectors can still find good value in this series. Bust Halves were also a pleasant surprise coming off a sleepy Whitman showing.

On the raw side of the fence, Seated Dimes led the way with Early Copper chipping in to help the cause.

Let's now move on, as the Columbia show is in the books, and we drive towards the big Raleigh Money Expo which is held at the NC State fairgrounds June 20-23. 

To sustain the current sales momentum, the Lite inventory has been supplemented by a few new consignments highlighted by additions to the Classic commemoratives category. Additionally, I was able to hit the bourse for a few selective purchases at Midlands. I'll highlight just two coins that will soon be listed on the Lite website with more to soon follow.

1st, how about a 1924 PCGS MS64 Huguenot Commem? This coin shows a totally original skin, great luster and strong strike. One of my favorite commems, the reverse sail detail on the tall ship image is awesome. This Choice coin is offered at $200, 

Next, maybe my favorite show "get " is a 1926 Standing Liberty Quarter housed in an old, small ANACS soapbox holder. Men were men, and graders were graders back in the day, and I selected this coin for originality and sharpness of strike features, the shield rivets especially strong. This Choice Standing Liberty Quarter is offered at $225.

 Finally, and before I forget, Lite is well positioned with inventory heading into Raleigh, but the moment surely will not last. If considering divestment of coins that would fit the Lite portfolio in the $150-$350 range, please give me a call to discuss potential consignment. A few areas that TPG inventory is currently needed for include pre 1940 Walkers, Barbers of all denominations, 2CP, 3CS and Indian Cents.

Ok, I covered a lot of ground both recapping the Midlands show and looking forward.  Hoping all the blogamaniacs find continued collecting success!

Rich

 

Global Financial News

Where are we in terms of equity prices and the commodity sector?

Regardless of Federal Reserve inaction on interest rates, the S&P 500 has increased to 5,247 which is close to its all-time record high of 5,254 set on March 28.

Tuesday brought a U.S. producers price index (PPI) April report which came in hot at 0.5% on a month-on-month basis. Core PPI (without food and energy) was also up 0.5% in April. The expectation was 0.2%. Today brings the April CPI report at 8:30 AM which will undoubtedly influence the day's equity trading and the bond market.

The commodity sector remains strong with spot gold trending at $2366/oz while silver is quoting at $28.79/oz. The following Kitco article, by Neils Christensen, highlights the fact that gold price setting leadership has moved to the Shanghai Gold Exchange, a huge development in the gold market.

The gold market has been holding significant gains since the start of the year, but the momentum behind the bullish drive has dried up as investors once again focus on the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy.

The gold market has been consolidating around $2,350 an ounce for the last three weeks as the Federal Reserve signals a reluctance to start a new easing cycle with inflation stubbornly elevated.

However, one bank analyst said that U.S. monetary policy is becoming a secondary factor as Asian markets evolve from price-taking to price-setting.

In his latest commentary on the gold market, Bernard Dahdah, precious metals analyst at Natixis, said that Asian markets have seen a significant evolution since 2008.

Dahdah said that in 2001, the Chinese gold market became deregulated; however, it wasn’t until the Great Financial Crisis and concerns over U.S. debt that the central bank and Chinese consumers started looking at gold as an attractive asset.

Dahdah added that 2013 was an important year for Chinese gold demand.

“That year, China cemented itself as the market of last resort: whilst prices tumbled by 29% in the first six months of the year (on the back of a Western investor selloff of physically backed gold), Chinese consumers opportunistically bought a record 1,400 tonnes of the metal, setting a floor at $1,200/oz,” he said.

Since then, China’s influence has only grown. Other important milestones include 2014, when The Shanghai Gold Exchange International opened up for global investors, becoming the country’s international benchmark.

In 2016, the SGEI started pricing gold in renminbi and competing with New York and London as a price setter. Dahdah said the SGEI has now become the largest physical spot exchange in the world.

“We would argue that the Chinese gold market is now capable of not just being a market of last resort that purchases opportunistically at price dips but is now also capable of imposing broader price discovery on the entire market. We believe this was the case during this April’s price rally,” Dahdah said.

China’s growing influence in the global gold market isn’t surprising, as Dahdah noted the nation’s insatiable appetite for the precious metal. He explained that China is the world’s largest gold producer, accounting for more than 10% of global production.

Despite this production, he pointed out that the nation imported 1,480 tonnes of gold last year, a five-year high.

Looking at prices, Dahdah noted that at the start of April, gold premiums on the SHGEI reached a high of $85 above prices set in London.

The 10 Year U.S. bond yield has decreased slightly to 4.41% while the U.S. dollar has slipped to 104.9.

WTI crude oil is trading at $78/bbl.

Morning market futures are dead flat as traders await the April CPI report.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today

The first task of the day is firing up the shipping department. Afterwards, I will be posting a few more Newtown Seated halves and augmenting currently unsold lot with descriptions. Afterwards, the Grimjet Liberty Seated dime consignment needs to be photographed and loaded into the COIN system. Another for purchase lot, from a regular supplier, is also due to arrive today.

On the home front, the black ants are making their spring appearance in the sun room and in the GFRC office. The annual ritual of loading a back mounted 5 gallon sprayer with ant killer will be the day's outdoor task.

Oh, I must also quote a large early Estes K-Kit model rocket order as I'd like to turn these collectibles into cash.

Thank you so much for the daily visits and taking in the ongoing activities in a life. Be well!

 

 

 

 

Tuesday May 14, 2024

Wrapping Up Barn Shelving and Work Bench

 

Greetings and welcome to the Daily Blog on a wet Tuesday early morning. Thank you for checking in.

Today Blog edition will be very brief as Pete Theberge returns at 7:30 AM sharp to wrap up the barn shelving and work bench construction project.

Much was accomplished on Monday as both Pete and Gerry spent the day constructing rugged back shelving for the Johnny2 implements along with overhead shelving on the left wall. Today brings the completion of a work bench and addition overhead shelving on the right wall. Complicating matters is a dentist appointment during the afternoon hours. How I wish for a few boring days in a life where my time is not scheduled so tightly.

Here is an image taken of the progress at 5:00 last evening. Already, model rocket collection totes have been moved onto the left wall shelving.

 

On the numismatic front, there is a new gold $10 Indian consignment that has been committed. This is an 18 piece lot that is Maine based. Come early next week, I will be taking a drive in the Miata to retrieve this consignment.

Otherwise, orders continue to arrive and the shipping department remains active. Wednesday brings a full office day.

Thank you for checking in at the Daily Blog. I need to get in a shower and head down to the barn for Pete's arrival.

Be well!

 

 

 

Monday May 13, 2024

Barn Shelving Install on Monday and Tuesday

 

Greetings on a sunny Monday morning here in southern Maine. Welcome back to the Daily Blog.

Today's edition will be quite brief as Pete Theberge arrives at 7:30 AM to start the construction of the barn shelving project. Since the barn's completion, I've been looking forward to the addition of overhead shelving and a long work bench along with robust storage for Johnny2's implements. The next 48 hours brings this goal to reality.

For new Blog readers, Pete is the individual who built the barn just two years ago. Since that time, Pete has retired and is doing small jobs to supplement his social security payments. Luckily, we were able to schedule Pete during May for this job.

My role is that of Pete's helper during the next two days. Therefore, I will be out of the office during that time. Emails will be responded to after dinner time on both days. I've already staged much of the Newtown Seated half dollar ship aheads this morning and Diane will be taking over to ensure that the packages are ready for Doug the Mailman's pick-up this afternoon.

Spot gold is trading at $2345/oz during the early morning hours. Silver is at $28.10. U.S. equity markets are poised to open flat to slightly up by 0.2%.

The 10 Year U.S. bond yield is 4.48%.

This is all that can be shared as I much jump into the shower and get down to the barn for Pete's arrival.

Thank you for checking in at the Daily Blog.

Be well!

 

 

 

Sunday May 12, 2024

More Newtown Seated Half Dollar Releases Posted

and

Barn Shelving Install on Monday and Tuesday

 

Greetings on Mother's Day 20024 and welcome to the Daily Blog.

Today edition is quite brief as I need a day off from the many activities that are underway.

Saturday brought the posting of more Newtown Liberty Seated half dollar releases to the 30 Day Price List with incremental sales. In terms of outdoor work, we are slowly cleaning up the back acreage trails and repairing erosion points. Diane and I religiously walking to loops each day. The steep inclines provide a different walking experience as compared to the flat cement sidewalks in Venice. Climbing up the side of a hill at a brisk walking speed does bring a cardio workout. Unfortunately, the mild Maine winter has resulted in the wood ticks being out already. One tick did manage to go unattended on my back with a bite spot that was noted late yesterday. Welcome to living in the country and working in the woods.

The upcoming week is very busy with Pete Theberge arriving Monday for the barn shelving and work bench project. Today brings the complete emptying of the barn contents along with wrapping up the outlet wiring for the second barn power circuit. Please don't expect much in terms of Daily Blog content on both Monday and Tuesday as I will be working as Pete's assistant on the construction efforts. The early morning priority will be staging the shipping department prior to heading down to support Pete.

Adding to the week's activities are dental and annual "wellness" physical appointments. In today's information intensive world, a "wellness" check comes with a host of questionnaires about your personal life including depression, dementia, physical violence, alcohol and drug use screening. In the past, these matters were private with your doctor. Today, the powers to be wish to collect all this information that is outside of the core 20 minutes with the doctor.

At this point, I'd like to get a head start on outdoor activities rather than trying to create content. My fingers will appreciate the minimal typing across the next few days.

Thank you for stopping by. Be well!

 

 

 

Saturday May 11, 2024

Newtown Seated Half Dollar Release Currently Bats 0.920!

and

Congratulations to the Emerald Collection

 

Greetings on a cold but sunny southern Maine morning. Welcome to yet another Daily Blog edition.

Yes, the current Raymond temperature is a cool 40F. Those who farm in Maine have a well known rule of thumb for our northern weather. There is always a chance of frost until Memorial Day weekend so plant accordingly....

The past two days have been busy given the Newtown Collection's Seated half dollar release. What a fantastic lot with something for everyone. The decision to use the First Right of Refusal process has been challenging to properly administer towards ensuring that I don't double commit any coins. To ensure that did not happen, I've been working slowly and methodically through the FRoR emails in my Inbox while processing and posting images. My thanks go out to everyone for their patience as the process is executed. Having "Newtown FRoR" is the email subject lines was most helpful.

So far, thirteen Newtown lots have been posted to the 30 Day Price List with twelve of those sold. That is a 0.920 batting average for our top consignor. Remaining is the Dick Osburn 1857-S half graded NGC MS61 that needs a new home.

The beauty of the First Right of Refusal selling method, versus auction, is that loyal Daily Blog readers are rewarded with first shots at coins that they might not be able to secure at auction. At a GFRC Online Auctions, there are always those that appear in the last two minutes of bidding with their nuclear bids on popular lots. In the current Newtown situation, the high demand coins have gone to individuals who are steadfast Blog fans rather than having the deepest pockets. Newtown was agreeable to the First Right of Refusal approach and trusted my judgment to price his coins at what I believed they were competitively worth. Rather than waiting for several months for a GFRC auction, the Newtown coins are being turned into cash immediately.

As of this morning, the buyers of the twelve sold Newtown lots have been notified. If you were in the FRoR queue and find that your requested coin is on hold without my contact, then that coin has been sold to an earlier requester. I'm doing my best to respond to everyone who made a request but again, I will probably miss an email or two due to the volume and workload.

The Newtown release is far from over as there are still another thirteen coins to go! Those images are in process and will debut later today along with offer prices. Some have FRoRs too. We are moving forward as quickly as possible but in a controlled manner. So please stay tuned!

 

Congratulations to the Emerald Collection

Our special congratulations go out to the Emerald Collection as this individual truly stepped-up and acquired some marvelous Newtown lots. Following is a gallery display of his acquisitions.

Newtown Collection Sale - Emerald Collection Purchases!

1847/6 WB-9 CACG AU55 50C - The Finest Known - $22,000

   1855/54 PCGS AU58 CAC 50C - $3150                                           1860-S WB-1 PCGS MS62 CAC 50C - $5500

        

   1861-O W-8 PCGS MS62 CAC 50C - $3500                                           1877/6 PCGS EF45 CAC 50C - $5200          

        

 

What is Gerry Up To Today?

Hey, its the weekend right?

Today brings a balance between being on Johnny2 and repairing winter erosion on the back acreage trails along with more emphasis on the Newtown release. There will be continued responses to the final group of First Right of Refusals.

Please remember that GFRC is open for quality consignments. I would be pleased to hear your proposals.

And on that note, I'd like to wish everyone in the community a pleasant spring weekend. Let's not forget that tomorrow is Mother's Day.

Be well!

 

 

 

Friday May 10, 2024

Newtown Seated Half Dollar Collection Release is Priced

GFRC Coin Show Schedule Reminder

and

A Grimjet Collection Tease...

 

Greetings from southern Maine and welcome back to the Daily Blog on a Friday morning. Thank you for the visit.

The response to yesterday's Newtown Collection release was quite substantial with a host of First Right of Refusal (FRoR) emails pouring in during the morning hours. I've done my best to acknowledge every request and hope that I did not miss anyone. If I did, please accept my apology.

Thursday, in its entirety, was spent loading the Newtown lots into the COIN system followed by constructing a pricing proposal by mid-afternoon. Once that proposal was submitted to Newtown, his approval response arrived in the matter of an hour. At this point, I am ready to quote offer prices. However, regular images and descriptions must still be assembled. The challenge is with the imaging given the Maine weather conditions. On a positive note, a portion of the lot was purchased from GFRC which means the images are on file and in the Sales Archive along with prior descriptions.

At this point, I have everyone's FRoR emails in my Inbox and will begin to offer these lots when there are images available. This may take 24 hours or 72 hours depending on available sunshine.

By far, the most popular lots where the 1856 PCGS AU55 CAC OGH and the 1873-S PCGS VF35 CAC halves. I received at least six requests for each piece, maybe more as I lost count. For those who believe that you will be able to purchase these lots at the CAC guide, there will be disappointment. Newtown's cost basis is well about the guide given the low CAC approved populations. Secondly, when there is huge demand for a coin, on a FRoR basis, I judge this as being equivalent to active bidding for a lot at a GFRC Online Auction event. These considerations were employed when determining offer prices. Let's be clear on this point. There will be no bargains or easy "picks" on this Newtown release given the decision to go directly to the price list. Every coin has been priced on what I believe fair value is. Those that agree with my assessment will be the buyers.

 

GFRC Coin Show Schedule Reminder

The GFRC 2024 show schedule has been finalized and is ready to be published today. Following are the coin shows that GFRC has committed to attend through the January 2025 Winter FUN show.

Summer Baltimore Show, Baltimore, MD - June 13 - 15, 2024 - Booth TBA

Summer ANA, Chicago, IL - August 6 - 8, 2024 - Booth TBA

New Hampshire Coin Expo, Manchester, NH - October 24 - 26, 2024 - Booth 630

Fall Baltimore Show, Baltimore, MD - November 14 - 16, 2024 - Booth 818

Sarasota Coin Show, Sarasota, FL - December 4 - 7, 2024 - Booth by Entrance

Winter FUN Show, Orlando, FL - January 9 - 12, 2024 - Booth TBA

Each of these shows, other than the Manchester, and Sarasota events, will feature a combination of retail sales and auction lot previewing. Please stay close to the Blog during the June time frame as there will be a major auction lot consignment announcement. I have been working for years with certain clients to be the auction company of choice when their substantial Liberty Seated coinage sets are to released. Two huge sets have been committed and will be rolling out during the balance of 2024 with a targeted auction during early 2025. Of course, economic conditions, for the the balance of 2024, will also play a role for the release of these lifelong collections. The beauty of working with GFRC Online Auctions is the flexibility and low commission rates.

 

A Grimjet Collection Tease...

Tease is the operative word for the following Grimjet Collection display that is essentially 100% CAC approved and is truly noteworthy. Since being fully consumed with processing the Cumberland County Walking Liberty half dollar collection along with the new Newtown Liberty Seated half dollar release, this just arrived Grimjet Collection Seated dime release is quietly sitting in the insourcing queue. No decision has been made on whether we are taking this lot directly to the price list or will add to the Cumberland County walkers as an auction event. I'm currently leaning towards adding these to the next GFRC Online Auctions as such a great collector grade lot.

Again, there is a visual tease at the Daily Blog. Please do not make any First Right of Refusal requests as I must ignore these given the unknown sales and marketing campaign direction. Please feel free to click on the image to access a higher resolution version.

 

Global Financial News

Watch out overhead as gold and silver pricing has recovered its mojo as pricing levels pushed higher on Thursday and during the overnight hours. Spot gold is currently trading at $2373/oz with silver priced at $28.57. The 10 Year U.S. treasury bond yield has dropped slightly to 4.46% as a potential explanation but I'm not convinced of any correlation. The U.S. dollar is holding steady at 105.3.

The S&P 500 was also up by 0.50% on Thursday and starts today's trading at 5,214. Morning market futures are pointing to a 0.30% increase when trading resumes.

WTII crude oil pricing is trading at the $80/bbl level.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today?

The weather forecast is calling for overcast skies by 11:00 AM, with no chance for coin photography at that point, I'm planning to spend the afternoon working on the back acreage trails. Diane and I are walking the trails on daily basis with some overhead tree pruning and winter erosion corrections being necessary to better enjoy those daily jaunts across a fairly steep hillside.

The morning hours will find me in the GFRC office responding to the earlier Newtown FRoR emails.

It should be evident from the past few days of Blog posting that GFRC is being blessed with a host of premium consignments. I believe that clients continue to enjoy working with GFRC due to the personalized service and special marketing that only the Daily Blog can provide.

I'm currently soliciting incremental consignments that fall into the "premium" class of numismatics. Don't be bashful with a phone call or emai inquiry.

So ends a Friday Blog edition. Thank you so much for the ongoing readership and those potential purchases.

Be well!

 

 

 

Thursday May 9, 2024

Newtown Says "Let's Discount!"

and

A Consignment Wave is Underway...

 

Greetings and welcome to another Daily Blog edition. It is yet another cool and cloudy day here is southern Maine.

Yes, spring like temperatures appear to be elusive this early May as the daily highs are in the mid 50s through Sunday. Overnight, the wood stove saw some action. I'm currently looking at the 10 Day Weather Channel forecast and it is downright depressing, especially for the GFRC business. From Tuesday May 14 through Monday May 20, the forecast is consistently indicating clouds and showers. On a positive note, the cloudy conditions will be ideal for working outdoors on the back acreage trails as there is no chance of over heating.

Yesterday brought a disappointment is dealing with a fellow dealer in the Long Island New Year area. The sales person for this long time firm was aggressive about securing two gold coins from GFRC and pushed for a courtesy discount. That I did with a promise, from the buyer, that the company owner would follow-up with payment. That was last Friday. As of this morning, and after sending an invoice and multiple text message contacts to the sale person, it has been crickets. Therefore the coins are coming off hold and are free agents again. What is so difficult about being professional in this hobby and either responding with a pass or play on a deal? It seems that some individuals don't understand or believe that there is a need for professional courtesies with other dealers.

Moving on with other more pleasant thoughts of the day, let's remind everyone that Mother's Day is this coming Sunday. For those of you who still have your mothers, please take the time to do something special for Mom as she was there for you for a substantial portion of your life.

This next commentary falls under the category of when in the world will certain dealers ever learn to not leave their inventory unattended in a parked outside a restaurant immediately after leaving a coin show? Yesterday brought yet another report from Doug Davies and his Numismatic Crime Information Center. The title of the email was "Vehicle Burglary-Dealer-Major Currency Loss-After CSNS". The opening paragraph reads as follows:

The owner of Emporium Coin & Currency traveling home from the Central States Numismatic Society coin show was the victim of a vehicle burglary in Des Plaines, IL. The victim stopped at a restaurant and while inside suspects broke out the window to his vehicle and removed several bags containing a large inventory of currency.

For those familiar with the Rosemont IL area, Des Plaines is close by and a terrible idea to stop at a restaurant while leaving unattended inventory in a park vehicle. Whether a dealer or a collector, never, never stop at a restaurant to have a meal leaving your collectibles unattended in a car after a coin show. These smash and grab events are becoming commonplace as more dealers are being tailed after coins shows. Always carry your coins with you into the restaurant or rest area as inconvenient as it might be. There is a major difference in the law for smash and grab versus armed robbery.

 

Newtown Says "Let's Discount!"

Today's primary feature is a discounting event by the Newtown Collection. Our top consignor indicated that it is time to drop prices towards moving these ten coins to new homes. Please have a close look at the following display and hopefully, one or more pieces will strike someone's fancy. If interested, please email or call me to get a deal done.

 

Newtown Says "Let's Discount!"

      1828 O-106 R4+ PCGS AU53 50C - $1750                                       1844-O DD WB-22 PCGS VF35 50C - $2350   

        

        1858 PCGS MS64 50C - $1550                                                   1877-S PCGS MS65 CAC 50C - $2900    

        

1864-L S-6 PCGS MS64RB 1C - $975            1840-O F-108 PCGS AU50 10C - $1200            1890-S F-103 PCGS MS65 10C - $895

                

 1858-O WB-6 PCGS EF45 50C - $625              1858-O WB-7 PCGS AU53 50C - $400

         

 

A Consignment Wave is Underway...

Yesterday brought the arrival of the Grimjet Liberty Seated dime shipment along with a lightning fast one day transport of a fantastic release of Newtown Seated half dollar duplicates and special die varieties. Currently, the GFRC office went from having little if any consigned material to a wave of fresh arrivals.

Let's start the marketing campaign with a display of the Newtown Seated half dollar release. Please drop what you are doing and take a close look at the following 24 lots as there are serious offerings for the most advanced collectors in the community. What is the GFRC strategy for offering this Newtown release? After careful thought, I've decided to take these directly to the price list and have already provided three collectors of the series with first shot at the group. If made little sense to hold these back for two months as we move into the slower numismatic summer months. The imperative from Newtown is to work towards placing these lots into the "appropriate collections". Please note the importance of the 1847/6 CACG AU55 lot as the FINEST either with CAC Green bean or CACG holder.

A Superb Newtown Seated Half Dollar Collection Release - Click on Image for Higher Resolution Access

 

My job, at this point, is to promptly load this lot into the COIN system and settling the offer prices with Newtown. Individual coin photography, for price list loading, is an unknown giving the terrible Maine weather forecast.

Your job, as a passionate Seated half dollar collector, is to study this group and send in your First Right of Refusal requests. They will be honored, in the order received, if using "Newtown FRoR" in the email subject line. If not taking the time to properly entitled the email, there is a chance that I will not see your requests.

To be clear, there are three collectors who will have first shot at the above coins, followed by those who send their FRoR emails with a proper email subject line.

 

Global Financial News

We appear to be in a time frame where equities and commodities are trading flat. This was the case yesterday when the S&P 500 traded absolutely flat on the day while gold is also moving sideways. The only bright spot is silver which climbed to $27.65/oz.

Speaking of gold, it does appear that the yellow precious metal has been repriced to $2300 by those dark forces that common people do not understand. Interestingly, China is slowing down its gold bullion imports now that the price has reached $2300+. However, private Chinese citizen gold buying continues to increase. This Kitco article by Ernest Hoffman provides the details.

The People's Bank of China (PBoC) added to their bullion reserves for the 18th month in a row, but April also marked the second month in a row of dramatically lower quantities, suggesting that record-high prices may finally be souring the central bank on gold.

The PBOC bought 60,000 troy ounces of gold last month, far lower than the 160,000 ounces it purchased in March, and a far cry from February’s 390,000 ounces. March’s figure was the smallest since the central bank began its record run of purchases in November 2022, and April’s amount was 63% lower than that.

While market participants speculated that the low February numbers could have been impacted by the Lunar New Year holidays, which shuttered markets and stopped most business activities between Feb. 10-17, the March figures confirmed the downward trend in China’s sovereign purchases, and April’s decline was even more dramatic.

Still, many experts believe that the last 18 months represent a fundamental shift in the gold market away from the West and to the East, and to China in particular, and they don’t expect that overall trend to reverse any time soon.

Central bank buying has been a significant driver of gold’s price gains since the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022, and China has led the sovereign buying during that period.

The World Gold Council noted that central banks bought more gold in Q1 2024 than during any other first quarter on record. “Q1 saw no let-up in the pace of central bank gold buying,” the WGC wrote in their newly released Gold Demand Trends Q1 2024 report. “290t (net) was added to official holdings, only part of which is currently reflected in IMF data.”

China’s consumer market has also shown robust gold demand even as prices set new highs. According to the China Gold Association (CGA), the country’s gold consumption was 5.94% higher in the first quarter of 2024 than during the same period in 2023, which they attributed to surging demand among the citizenry for safe haven assets.

Chinese buyers purchased 308.91 metric tons of the precious metal in the first three months of the year. The CGA said gold bars and coins represented 34% of the total, as demand for these products increased by 26.77% percent to 106.32 tons in Q1.


Saying good bye to the venerable Chevy Malibu brand is the topic of this Seeking Alpha article.

After a 60-year run, General Motors is saying goodbye to the Chevy Malibu> to make room for more electric vehicles and hybrids. The company will end production of the vehicle in November, and invest $390M to retool its Kansas City plant to build the next generation of the Chevy Bolt EV and resume manufacturing of the Cadillac XT4. With the Malibu and Camaro gone, the Corvette will be the last remaining Chevy ICE left. Despite the Malibu's former glory as a NASCAR darling and 10M car sales worldwide since 1964, sales have tapered off in recent years, dropping 12.5% in Q1 2024.

For once, Seeking Alpha's morning market futures are published early and can be added to this segment.

In Asia, Japan -0.3%. Hong Kong +1.2%. China +0.8%. India -1.5%.

In Europe, at midday, London +0.4%. Paris +0.1%. Frankfurt +0.5%.

Futures at 7:00, Dow -0.2%. S&P -0.2%. NASDAQ -0.3%.

The 10 Year Treasury bond yield has increased to 4.51% while the U.S. is priced at 105.7.

WTI crude oil is a tad under $80/bbl.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today?

I will be working in the office for most of the day. Between loading the balance of the Cumberland County Walkers into the COIN system along with Newtown and Grimjet newly arrival consignments, there is plenty to keep me busy.

New purchase orders would be cherished and responded to quickly.

Thanks again for checking in at the Daily Blog. Missing a day could mean missing important opportunities....

Be well!

 

 

 

Wednesday May 8, 2024

When a Small Town Hall Becomes Onerous

and

GFRC-Lite Attending Columbia SC Show and More...

 

 

Greetings on a Wednesday morning and welcome to the Daily Blog. We are glad that you could find the time to visit.

Let's open this edition and discuss the first headline as many as wondering what precipitated this statement. Yesterday saw Phil Walter, from Maine Solar Solutions, visiting the homestead to discuss our planned Powerwall3 centric solar installation. Phil's visit was delayed due to several company morning meetings. Upon arrival, he sadly informed me that Maine Solar has decided to no longer conduct work in the town of Raymond as the permitting and oversight workload dictated by town management had become onerous. He went on further to state that Raymond is the only town in southern Maine to garner this reputation.

Talk about a let down to start Phil's visit....

My personality is to not surrender easily especially when faced with an out of control small town hall staff. Our neighbors, Rick and Sharon, have shared their stories of the burdensome (ridiculous) regulations and requirements emanating from Raymond town hall during their new home construction. I've made mention in the Blog of the new regulation mandating all residential construction to have a 300 gallon water tank as home fire hydrant along with sprinkler systems. Please remember that Raymond is mostly rural with no underground services. I also just learned, from Rick, that the long delay in the installation of their solar panels was due to the Raymond Fire Department mandating that one of their few officers must provide oversight for the installation. Scheduling issues between Maine Solar and the Fire Department were responsible for a protracted installation delay.

On a positive note, Phil and I proceeded with the appointment under the assumption that he will be able to convince his management team to support our installation. I promised to be the Maine Solar boots on the ground towards personally dealing with permitting matters since only a five minute drive to town hall.

My mental view of the solar system installation was consistent with Phil's proposal. The core is two Powerwall3 batteries and a Gateway controller installed in the basement utility room. There is sufficient room on the wall adjacent to the circuit breaker box and exactly opposite the outdoor Central Maine Power meter. The only issue was the number of solar panels that could fit on the southeastern facing roof. Phil recommended the new Silfab 500 watt panel with 11 easily fitting on the roof. With some extra effort to move one venting pipe, we could get to 12 panels or 6000 watts of peak generation on a sunny day. The two Powerwall3 batteries can store 27,000 watt/hours

The quoted price was below my budget by 16% which does not include tax rebates. When considering the tax rebates, the installation is a no-brainer and quite competitive with a larger Generic generator system. The core issue with a Generic, in a rural setting, is the placement of a large propane tank. The last thing I want near the homestead is an ugly above ground propane tank.

The long and the short is that Phil is returning to the office and promised to convince his management team to move forward with this project given that the client is a repeat customer and secondly, motivated to work with Maine Solar to deal with Raymond town hall matters. Furthermore, the installation is quite straightforward.

Moving onto GFRC numismatics....

The Grimjet Liberty Seated dime consignment is due to arrive today. Newtown is also ready to ship his 24 piece Seated half dollar lot valued at roughly $100,000. Top quality consignment reinforcements are on the way!

 

GFRC-Lite Attending Columbia SC Show and More...

Hi Gerry,

Greetings from North Carolina. I’ve been following your annual spring migration from Florida to Maine while now preparing for the upcoming Columbia, SC show that the Midlands Club hosts this Friday and Saturday May 10,11.

For the Columbia show, Lite will display 3 cases, 2 populated with certified coins and one raw. Lite's inventory will be quite strong with new inventory consignments received in many categories, but especially so for early copper and Liberty Seated material. I'll just briefly mention the Early Copper category, in which Lite has dramatically improved its current inventory, especially so in the Indian Cent series. How about key dates 1877 in an NGC AU58 holder or a 1908-S graded PCGS XF40? At smaller show venues it might be tough finding either coin in higher grades, Lite is pleased to have both in inventory this go round.

Last year was the 1st time that the Midlands show was attended, and I was very happy to expand Lite's southeast presence into the Palmetto state. A brief look back at last year's results showed 30 coins sold, a benchmark that should be exceeded. I'm predicting overall sales between 45-50 coins, although I'm not ready to predict the 
average price, product line or Graded/Raw sales mix.

The Midlands Coin Club show will be held at a Embassy Suites, the address and show hours can be found on the "Additional Info" page on the GFRC-Lite website. I plan on leaving about 4:30 AM on Friday, it's about a 3 hrs drive, that will give me 1 1/2 hrs to set up before doors open to the public. The venue had strong security with about 35-40 dealers. I also remember morning Krispy Kreme donuts and coffee served and dealers having a lunch takeout delivery option for Chick Fil A.

On a personal collecting note, I'd like to mention my interest in the 3 Cent Silver Series (3CS) and that I was finally able to add a suitable, well struck 1856 graded PCGS MS64 CAC to my collection. This acquisition completes a short but targeted date run from 1851-1862 including the 1862/1 major variety for the series. The 3CS series was issued from 1851-1872 with mintages dropping off precipitously beginning in 1863. I would like to add the low mintage 1863 (only 21,000 business strikes were minted) because of the Civil War date, but I'm quite happy with my collection as it currently stands. Of the 14 dates, my collection shows grades of MS62 (2), MS63 (2), MS64 (9), MS65(1). Eight are CAC stickered, with a collecting focus on strike, surface originality and eye appeal.

Within the 3CS series, the Type 2 with 3 Star lines was issued from 1854-1858. In 1854 2 outlines were added to the star, presumably to indicate a composition change from 75% to 90% silver and a weight change from .8 grams to .75 grams. Interestingly the lower weight change kept the amount of silver used the same while now matching the silver % of other silver coins in circulation. Seated Half Dime collectors will easily relate to how small the 3CS is, as the weight is about 50 grams or 40% less, now that's tiny!

So, with all that said, 1856 was the final date needed to complete my "short set". It's a fairly tough, but not impossible coin to find, the PCGS pop being 98 with CAC showing 16 in MS64. Yet, this coin had eluded me for years due to the weak obverse strike on the lower left portion of the star, and my quest to find a strongly struck example. My image shows a very strong strike for the date, but not quite full. Note the slight weakness in the lower left outer lines of the star. In hand, the strike is a bit fuller than the image, but not 100% so. As I had hunted for this coin for years, weak strike after weak strike was seen and subsequently passed on. When I finally had the opportunity to obtain this coin I immediately knew the strike was way above average, the CAC sticker helping me validate my opinion which manifested in my strong and successful bid. 

If I have one theme that I would like readers to take away, it's that of gaining knowledge and applying patience. Knowing that strike can widely vary by date is not something that can be easily gained without specialization in a series. If the collector gains this knowledge, he/she will have a great leg up in building a superior collection.

After I return from the show, I'll write a quick recap and list any new purchases and consignments that might be of interest.

Wishing all the blogamaniacs continued collecting success!

Rich

 

Global Financial News

Is the United States economy already in a recession? While having breakfast, I took in the following YouTube video from Danielle DiMartino Booth. Danielle previously worked for the Federal Reserve and is a data centric analyst. Her firm is ITM Trading. The following video is well worth the time if you enjoy viewing detailed graphs concerning the current state of unemployment and other important indices employed by ITM Trading for its ongoing economic research. Danielle is a frequent guest on the cable business channels. Her conclusion, based on the many monitored indices, is that the Federal Reserve will be late with interest rate cuts similar to the 2006-2007 period prior to the Great Recession. She believe that Jerome Powell will issue the first rate cut in September as the Federal Reserve must also service its second mandate of managing unemployment levels. The first mandate, of course, is inflation.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MQfUoA9mTdQ

Another equity and commodities trading day is upon us. The S&P 500 was up marginally on Tuesday to 5,188. Morning market futures are pointing to some opening selling at 0.15% down.

Spot gold is trading at $2315/oz while silver can be had at $27.19.

The 10 Year bond yield stands at 4.49% along with the U.S. dollar quoting at 105.5.

WTI crude oil as fallen to $77.50/bbl.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today?

Today brings and office day along with a quick drive into Windham to secure several Seated dimes from the bank box.

The entire Cumberland County Walking Liberty half dollar collection was photographed yesterday and moves into the the image processing department.

Shipping is light along with a few invoices to generate.

Other than the "CCC", Grimjet, and Newtown larger consignments, the regular flow of smaller consignments is minimal.

That is all she wrote on a Wednesday morning. Thank you for the ongoing visits.

Be well!

 

 

 

Tuesday May 7, 2024

A Sunny Maine Day, Then More Rain

and

A Small But Noteworthy Consignment Arrives

 

Greetings and welcome to the Daily Blog on a Tuesday morning. We are certainly pleased with the ongoing patronage of so many collectors and regular visitors.

Finally, southern Maine will enjoy an uninterrupted day of full sunshine. Yes, there will be a complete day of blue skies before the weather shifts back to ongoing clouds and on-and-off rains through the rest of the week. Welcome to spring time in Maine...

Following is a baseline image of the coastal horizon view from our back deck. The birches and populars are leading the way with light green budding while the maples are just beginning to exhibit early leafing colors. The mighty oaks are lagging the maples by about a week's time. Given the ongoing rains, the lawns have turned deep green. Yes, I will be on the small JD tractor mowing the lawn this afternoon.

Maine Spring Foliage Begins to Appear

 

Much occurred on Monday concerning the GFRC business and the homestead. Therefore a brief recap is in order.

First is the fact that GFRC will be attending the Summer ANA in Chicago with a monumental announcement forthcoming in the late June time frame. Our goal for the Chicago ANA is two-fold. First is the display of several huge collections that will be auctioned in early 2025. Second is regular GFRC retail selling and insourcing consignments. While I was completing the ANA bourse application, Diane was booking flights and deciding which hotel we would select for the stay. Moving forward, Diane and I will be the primary staffing for GFRC's presence at coin shows. Dan White has indicated his desire to phase out of the coin show circuit due to escalating age.

On the home front, Pete Theberge visited during the morning hours to review the barn shelving project. For longer term Blog readers, Pete is the builder of the barn. At this point, Pete is mostly retired and taking on smaller jobs. Come next Monday and Tuesday, Pete and Gerry will be working together to dress up the barn with several types of shelving and a long work bench. The required building materials were assessed on Monday morning with Pete placing the order into Hammond Lumber. We are on a tight schedule for securing material delivery. If we miss next week's Monday and Tuesday window, Pete is not available until the last week of May. Everyone should expect the GFRC office to be closed next Monday and Tuesday as I will be working as Pete's helper. On a separate note, this shelving construction project will be the first major test of the barn's solar power and battery capacity.

The consignment stream also restarted on Monday with the arrival of a two piece lot from a long term consignor. These are featured next. Today brings the shipment of the 30 piece Liberty Seated dime lot to the Maine office followed by the Newtown Seated halves in the next 48 hours or so.

Sadly, no one placed a bid on the gem 1902-O Barber quarter that was offered as a one day auction. This lot moves to the 30 Day Price List today. Whomever does purchase this piece will understand why it was placed at auction as a first offering step. This is a beautifully toned example and the only MS63+ certified at PCGS.

Today brings another busy day for sure. Phil Walter (Maine Solar Solutions) arrives late morning with a Powerwall3 battery centric solar system proposal that will take the homestead to a "net metering" status, and in the worse case, fully off-grid during an extended power loss event. I've already designed the system in my head and looking forward to seeing Phil's proposal. Solar system integration has improved significantly in the past two years leaving the number of roof mounted solar panels as the debatable question.

Outside of the Maine Solar visit, I'm planning to photograph the entire Cumberland County Collection (CCC) Walking Liberty half dollar set and will mow the lawn for the first time in 2024. Already, half of the CCC set has been loaded into the COIN system. Many of the lots were purchased from the Twin Lakes consignor during 2018 as a partial set of PCGS MS64 CAC dates. Once I have images to work with, the forthcoming auction will be announced along with a solicitation for supporting consignments.

 

A Noteworthy Consignment Arrives

Following are two lovely lots delivered by Doug the Mailman on Saturday. The 1825 O-111 Capped Bust half is unquestionably original with the perfect patina for CAC Grading. This piece reminds me of the beautifully toned silver crowns seen on display at the Shanghai Museum during my time in China. The offer price is above the CAC price guide but please check the GFRC Sales Archive for a realistic market assessment of fair value. This is clearly a $950 coin.

The second lot is a orange-gold toned 1835 HM-1 Capped Bust half with CAC approval. This visually pleasing early $5 gold piece should not last long on the price list as this series is always in demand for type.

A Noteworthy Consignment Arrives

        1825 O-111 CACG AU55 50C - $950                                          1835 HM-1 PCGS AU50 CAC G$5 - $2595  

        

 

An Early Estes Model Rocket Deal Underway

If I was not busy enough, a Texas collector of the early generation Estes K-kit model rockets contacted me last week with a want list. Since I was moving a huge model rocket kit inventory from the basement utility room to the barn, the timing was good to paw through several plastic totes towards filling this gentleman's want list. Following is an image of the kits being quoted today or tomorrow.

 

Global Financial News

Equity markets enjoyed a strong start to the week with the S&P 500 gaining 1.0% to 5,181. Jerome Powell's scripted news conference has pacified investors that no further interest rate increases are planned regardless of fiscal policies contributing to "sticky inflation". If Powell can't cut rates in an election year, at least he can assure everyone that rates will remains at current levels. Also supporting equity markets are the Magnificent 7 (Apple, Amazon, Google, Meta, Microsoft, Nvidia, and Telsa) Q1 earnings that continue to increase for these behemoth companies.

After yesterday's gains, morning market futures are dead flat.

The 10 Year U.S. Treasury bond yield continues to soften with a morning quote of 4.46%. The U.S dollar is flat at 105.1.

Spot gold is trading at $2316/oz while silver spot is at $27.27. Speaking of the precious metal, Kitco has published an article by Ernest Hoffman that announces a Goldman Sachs settlement of a 2014 lawsuit over platinum and palladium price fixing. What a surprise that a major U.S. bank is involved in the precious metal pricing complex. Here is the Kitco article.

Investment bank Goldman Sachs announced on Friday that it has reached an in-principle settlement agreement to resolve an outstanding class action lawsuit filed in 2014 related to the firm’s platinum and palladium trading.

Goldman was one of several defendants named in the lawsuit, which alleged they had conspired to manipulate a market benchmark for physical platinum and palladium prices.

The agreement is subject to final documentation and court approval, and the bank said that it had set aside reserves for its part of the settlement amount.

The price fixing lawsuit was initially filed nearly 10 years ago by Modern Settings LLC, a Florida-based manufacturer of jewelry and police badges. The filing accused units of Goldman, BASF, HSBC Holdings Plc and South Africa's Standard Bank Group Ltd of conspiring since 2007 to rig the twice-daily platinum and palladium benchmark ‘fixings’ and the prices of futures and options based on those rates.

The plaintiff's law firm, Labaton Sucharow, called it the first nationwide class action over alleged price-fixing of the metals and said that their client and other metals purchasers lost millions of dollars as a result of the scheme.

They accused the defendants of illegally sharing customer data, which they used to engage in ‘front-running’ of expected price moves, and also of manufacturing phantom ‘spoof’ orders.

Platinum and palladium are used in catalytic converters to curb vehicle emissions, and are also used in dentistry and jewelry.

When the allegations surfaced, the Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing unit of the London Metal Exchange (LME) announced that they would take charge of platinum and palladium price benchmarking going forward, and would use a new electronic platform. The lawsuit claimed these changes came too late for Modern Settings and other class members.

The benchmark system run by Goldman, BASF, HSBC and Standard was established in 1989.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

I hope that you've enjoyed this long Blog edition. There is much on my plate for today, therefore let's wrap up here.

Thanks again for the visit. Be well!

 

 

 

Monday May 6, 2024

A One Day GFRC Auction Sale

and

Grimjet Liberty Seated Dime Consignment Preview

 

Greetings from a cloud covered southern Maine and welcome to the Daily Blog. Your ongoing readership is much appreciated.

Why are there no early spring images from the back deck is a question being asked by several readers. The answer is quite straightforward in that the weather has not been supportive. The coastal images are taken on sunny days with a clear view of the horizon. Maine weather has been essentially cloudy since our return, and if there is a brief period of sunshine, I'm too focused on outdoor clean-up efforts to think of securing an image.

At the moment, the flowering plums are exhibiting their early crimson leaves and the forsythias are bright yellow. The heartier maples and oaks are still in their early stages of budding and releasing the summer of 2024 leaves. In another week, the current barren landscape will be much improved. Yes, I will secure an image of the coastal horizon this afternoon and the sun is predicted to make an appearance by early afternoon.

Much was accomplished this weekend in terms of property clean-up along with the utility (rocket) room being prepared for a battery centric solar system.

Station break... The chipmunks are already active in the front yard which means more early morning hunting with the Gamo air rifle. The first culprit of the season is hustling acorns into Diane's flower bed and needs to be dealt with. Some aspects of country living don't change.

 

A One Day GFRC Auction Sale

A gem and CAC approved 1902-O Barber quarter is currently available for bidding in the first GFRC one day auction sale. The auction opened last evening at 9:00 PM and closes today at the same time.

CAC population for the date stands at 46 total with 3 approved at the offered grade. Let's not forget that this lot is the sole MS63+ certified. CAC price guide is $1250 in MS63 and $1760 in MS64. Therefore, the reserve is realistic and fair.

As a reminder, following is this gem lot.

1902-O PCGS MS63+ CAC 25C - Reserved at $1225

 

If this one day auction format works, I will probably conduct more of these events for premiums coins that are due to start arriving shortly. The Florida to Maine transition has brought a consignment supply gap that will rectify itself in the coming days.

 

Grimjet Liberty Seated Dime Consignment Preview

Speaking of new consignments heading to the GFRC Maine office, the following Grimjet Collection lot is on its way. This is a marvelous circulated Liberty Seated dime lot with nearly all being CAC approved. A portion of these dime were purchased from GFRC and can be researched in the Sales Archive. The 1846 dime and the Civil War San Francisco dates will bring attention given their CAC green beans. Upon this lot's arrival, a decision will be made to take directly to the price list or hold back for a near term auction event. My initial thinking is to construct a near term auction specifically for these lots as the quantity is manageable.

Please keep checking the Blog for the latest on this noteworthy consignment and the forthcoming marketing and selling strategy.

Date Mint TPG Grade CAC Denom TPGCert
1838 P PCGS AU55 CAC 10C 537652.55/84121726
1839 P PCGS AU55 CAC 10C 4571.55/19068755
1841 O PCGS AU55 CAC 10C 4580.55/15750610
1844 P PCGS AU50 CAC 10C 4585.50/2289809
1845 O PCGS XF40 CAC 10C 4587.40/11144729
1846 P PCGS XF45 CAC 10C 4588.45/32980159
1847 P PCGS AU53 CAC 10C 4589.53/30447872
1850 P PCGS AU53 CAC 10C 4593.53/32211299
1851 P PCGS AU55 CAC 10C 4595.55/32750018
1856 P PCGS XF40 CAC 10C 4610.40/42088677
1856 O PCGS AU55 CAC 10C 4612.55/20333206
1858 S PCGS XF45 CAC 10C 4618.45/13133558
1860 S PCGS XF45 CAC 10C 4622.45/39469710
1863 S PCGS AU53 CAC 10C 4638.53/14536289
1864 S PCGS VF30   10C 4640.30/28637183
1865 S PCGS XF40 CAC 10C 4705.40/35694159
1866 S PCGS XF40 CAC 10C 4705.40/32014851
1868 P PCGS AU55 CAC 10C 4647.55/36240349
1869 S PCGS XF40 CAC 10C 4650.40/27416528
1870 P PCGS AU58 CAC 10C 4651.58/42113774
1870 S PCGS AU58   10C 4652.58/36484122
1871 S PCGS AU50 CAC 10C 4655.50/27364021
1873 P PCGS AU50 CAC 10C 4665.50/29550954
1874 P PCGS AU58 CAC 10C 4668.58/30433837
1874 S PCGS XF40 CAC 10C 4670.40/38405588
1877 CC PCGS AU50 CAC 10C 4683.50/39898012
1879 P PCGS XF45 CAC 10C 4687.45/18540831
1884 S PCGS AU58 CAC 10C 4693.58/16063581
1886 P PCGS AU53 CAC 10C 4696.53/30531932
1890 S PCGS XF45 CAC 10C 4705.45/38743944

 

Global Financial News

Another financial week is upon us with the S&P 500 having recovered to 5,128 at the end of Friday's trading. Jerome Powell has told the markets that there will be no interest rate increases during his FOMC report out. This calmed investors and traders with the 10 U.S. Treasury bond yield dropping to 4.48%, a significant step in calming fears that bond yields would climb to 5.0%. The problem remains that of the Treasury department and their need to constantly refinance the U.S. deficit. The Federal Reserve has the monetary control mandate but does not directly control what our debt holders are demanding for T-bill yields.

The U.S. dollar is trending at 105 to start the day after peaking at 106+ on April 30th.

Spot gold and silver are starting the week on an upbeat note. The current gold quote is $2321/oz with silver also climbing to $27.11. There is no question that we are in a consolidation phase for both metals after recent substantial gains. The following summary by Kitco's Neils Christensen is a an excellent of recent economic news and how investors are reacting to higher gold prices.

The U.S. labor market has defied all expectations in 2024, but sentiment has started to shift as five months of consecutive out performance come to an end.

Heading into the weekend, markets continue to digest the disappointing nonfarm payrolls numbers. The U.S. economy created 175,000 jobs last month, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The monthly figure missed expectations as economists were looking for job gains of 238,000.

At the same time, the unemployment rate increased, and wages didn’t rise as much as expected.

This was initially good news for the gold market, and prices briefly popped; however, in a fatigued market, many traders used the rally to sell. The gold market has managed to hold support above $2,300 an ounce, but it is ending the week with a roughly 1% loss.

After its massive $400+ rally, the gold market continues to consolidate and trend lower as sentiment normalizes. The focus again turns to the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy and interest rates.

Ahead of Friday’s employment number, the Federal Reserve poured cold water on expectations that it would start its easing cycle this summer. The central bank left interest rates unchanged and noted a lack of progress in bringing inflation down to its 2% target.

The latest employment data will provide the Federal Reserve with a sense that the labor market is cooling, easing inflation pressures, but it won’t prompt them to act anytime soon. This will limit gold’s gains in the near term.

However, this consolidation period is not bad; a reset in the market will allow investors to establish tactical positions without having to chase the market.

While gold prices have room to fall lower as the Fed maintains its restrictive monetary policy, the market won’t completely collapse. The U.S. central bank may not be dovish, but it certainly isn’t hawkish.

After the decision, Powell made it very clear multiple times during his press conference that the Federal Reserve is not looking to raise interest rates.

"I think it's unlikely that the next policy rate move will be a hike. I'd say it's unlikely," Powell said during his press conference.

Analysts note that this puts a cap on bond yields and a floor under gold.

At the same time, the factors that drove gold prices to record highs despite the Federal Reserve’s current stance still remain in play. In particular, central banks are expected to maintain their voracious appetite for gold.

The World Gold Council released its first-quarter Gold Demand Trends report and said the central bank bought 290 tonnes of gold in the first three months of the year, the strongest start on record.

“Gold has proven to be a very powerful diversifier, and that is one of the key reasons that central banks themselves cite us as the reason for holding it,” WGC Director of Global Research Juan Carlos Artigas told Kitco News in an interview.

Many major banks have dismissed gold’s current correction and continue to see higher prices this year. Goldman Sachs has dismissed a higher Fed funds rate as they see prices rallying to $2,700 by the end of the year.

“We're seeing a surge in demand from emerging market central banks and from Asian retail investors,” said Nicholas Snowdon, Head of Metals Research at Goldman, in a commentary published ahead of the U.S. central bank’s decision. “We think these are long-term dynamics that will keep a firm bid under gold. So even if rates do stay high, we expect to see continued bullish momentum in the gold price.”

Surging U.S. inventories are cited as being responsible for crude oil dropping below $80/bbl. The morning quote stands at close to $79.

Morning market futures are pointing to a 0.35% gain for equities once trading opens.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today

Pete Theberge has pulled in his Tuesday appointment to this morning at 9:00 AM. We will be down at the barn and planning the shelving construction strategy during the current month. Afterwards, the shipping department will kick in.

The balance of the day's activities will be pending the arrival of Mr. Sunshine and the ability to secure numismatic images.

I wish there was more to share at this point, but there is a need to secure a shower and prepare for Pete's arrival.

Thanks again for dropping in at the Daily Blog. Be well!

 

 

 

 

Sunday May 5, 2024

Let's Try a One Day GFRC Auction - Gem 1902-O Barber Quarter

 

Greeting from the Maine homestead and welcome to the Daily Blog on a Sunday morning. Thank you for checking in.

Whether it is a gem numismatic item or the homestead's front landscaping, eye appeal is the name of the game. Being back in the GFRC office and overlooking a freshly cleaned landscape is quite rewarding on a Sunday morning.

Let's set the stage for yesterday's workload. Since the Fall 2023 Baltimore show was scheduled for a week before the Fortin's Florida transition, a decision was made to attend the Baltimore show and leave directly to Florida after the event. The earlier than normal Maine departure resulted in the mighty oaks dropping their leaves after our departure. You guess it... As part of yesterday's front yard cleaning, those oak leaves were everywhere to be found and having collected mostly within and under shrubs, throughout the new rip-rap spillway, and along the homestead foundation. As the day moved along, I lost count of the number of cart loads of leaves that were transported to the new composting area. The numerous smaller broken branches were also collected and broken into sizes ideal as wood stove kindling. After Gerry's general clean-up, Diane became involved and meticulously removed the remaining oak leaves that has amassed deep within the shrubs. I must say that the front landscaping looks pristine this morning with my mind being at ease.

As much as was accomplished on Saturday, there is still more to do today. The side lawn between the Fortin and Dodson properties is covered with pine needles and cones that will need to be cleared. Afterwards, the emphasis shifts to the basement utility room (the model rocket room) with another round of carefully packing complete rockets and kits in newly acquired plastic totes from Lowes. This room must be sufficiently cleared out for a realistic conversation with Maine Solar Solutions, on Tuesday, for the placement of the Powerwall3 batteries along with other system components.

Our neighbors Rick and Sharon invited us over for a tour of their finished new home. It is indeed an impressive structure with three levels of living space that have been nicely decorated. The difference between 1985 and 2023 construction techniques and code requirements were quite notable when Rick provide a tour of the utilities section of the home. Since their new drilled well is performing no better than the existing in terms of recovery rate, their water supply system has been duplicated for each well along with a controller that supports two pressurized holding tanks. Their 300 gallon water reserve tank (an internal fire hydrant) is the latest code mandate from an over zealous Raymond fire department. This band is also requiring that solar panel roof installation can only be done with a Raymond fire department representative onsite during the installation. The scheduling requirements were onerous for the Dodsons and I'm probably looking at the same for the Fortin project.

 

Let's Try a One Day GFRC Auction - Gem 1902-O Barber Quarter

During the past ten days, GFRC has conducted a trade with a client that is actively upgrading his Barber quarter collection. As part of the deal, the following gem 1902-O quarter was taken in trade. This is a luscious example with steely-frosted radiance that showcases creamy aquamarine and golden toning hues. The icing on the cake is that MS63+ certified grade along with CAC approved. This lot is pop 1 at the MS63+ level.

Let's take advantage of the GFRC auction application and try a one day auction to allow everyone a fair chance at securing this gem quarter. The auction is scheduled to open at 9:00 PM this evening and will close on Monday at 9:00 PM. The usual GFRC bidding rules apply to this one day event.

1902-O PCGS MS63+ CAC 25C - Reserved at $1225

 

Gem Eye Appeal, Steely-Frosted Luster, Vibrant Cartwheels, Fully Struck A gem original 1902-O Barber quarter that presents superb eye appeal along with being the sole MS63+ example certified by PCGS. GFRC images accurately illustrate the light aquamarine and copper-gold hues that float over the underlying steely-frosted luster. Under a bright light, the radiance is consistent with the assigned grade along with vibrant cartwheels being enjoyed. Overall strike is also complete. Let's try a one day GFRC auction to enable a fair chance of the community to access this special offering. The auction opens on Sunday May 5 at 9:00 PM and will close 24 hours later on Monday. Good luck to those who wish to add a superb Barber quarter to their holdings. The reserve has been set at the PCGS price guide. Housed in PCGS Gen 6.1 (2020-2024) holder with CAC approval.

 

What is Gerry Up to Today?

Since being a Sunday, my attention will be aimed at homestead matters while occasionally monitoring emails and text message for potential orders.

The clean-up of the basement utility room is today's imperative.

Thank you again for the ongoing patronage. Blog content will be improving during the coming week with a special GFRC-Lite edition on Thursday.

Be well!

 

 

 

 

Saturday May 4, 2024

A Yard Work Choice.....

 

Greeting on a Saturday morning. Today's Daily Blog edition will be brief as I'm planning to head outdoors early to continue yard work that was started on Friday afternoon.

Clouds and rain continue to dominate the Maine weather landscape. The first full day of sunshine is forecasted for Tuesday, therefore a large scale photography session is planned for that day. In the meantime, the focus for the next 48 hours is clearing the landscape of leaves and broken branches and moving the model rocket collection from the basement to the barn attic.

So that readers don't walk away empty handed for today's visit, following is a Seth Godin piece on the topic of choices. It seems like today brings a person choice to downplay the GFRC business in lieu of working outdoors. Presenting a tidy property to those who visit, and for my personal piece of mind, is more important "choice" than an extending rambling session in the Blog or loading the price list with yet more coins.

 

Seth Godin Blogpost - The other choices

The intentional, noticed choices are obvious. “Vanilla or chocolate?”

But most of the choices we live with are unseen. They’re expensive, challenging and invisible.

When we plan an event with an outdoor component, we’re choosing to be anxious about the weather in the week leading up to the big day.

When we buy something with a credit card, we’re choosing the long-term cost of paying the ongoing debt.

When we stick with a deadend job instead of quitting today, tomorrow’s angst was a choice.

These invisible choices are all around us, often hidden by forces that would rather we didn’t think about them. And it’s usually easier to simply look the other way.

But they’re still choices.

 

Thank you for the visit. Be well!

 

 

 

Friday May 3, 2024

Stolen Liberty Seated Quarter Collection Has Been Recovered

"CCC" Walking Liberty Halves Preview - Part 1

and

Preview of Hallet Racing School - The SRF Racers

 

Greeting and welcome to the Daily Blog on a Friday morning. Thank-you so much for stopping by.

Finally, sunshine has returned to southern Maine though clouds are still making their best attempt to linger. One of today's first tasks is photographing a gem 1902-O PCGS MS63+ CAC Barber quarter that was recently taken in trade. The lot will be posted during the afternoon hour if I can secure several minutes of sun. Next will be the Cumberland County Collection's (CCC) Walking Liberty half dollars to enable the start of image processing.

Thursday brought a blood extraction appointment followed by a shopping spree at Lowe's for storage totes, premixed chain saw fuel, and ant spray. We are talking quantity purchases here to stock up the barn. The totes were placed into immediately use as the afternoon was spent clearing the basement "rocket room" in preparations for the Tesla Powerwall3 based solar system installation. Phil Walter, from Maine Solar, arrives next Tuesday with a system configuration proposal and I'd like to have the basement installation area cleared sufficient for a productive assessment of how/where the batteries will be mounted.

On the numismatic front, GFRC did a three piece Liberty Seated dollar deal with a new client and secondly, is making progress on a larger deal involving CAC approved $2.5 gold. The regular retail business has been quiet during and after our Maine transition. Hopefully, this business angle will pick up come the weekend. Yes, GFRC is not attending the Central States show as the timing is bad given our just completed Maine transition and the workload associated with kicking off multiple contractor projects.

 

Stolen Liberty Seated Quarter Collection Has Been Recovered

During the overnight hours, our Mountain View Collection consignor sent along a positive update concerning the theft of his San Francisco Seated quarter collection. Following is the announcement that nearly all of his coins have been recovered.

You may have already seen some news, but I wanted to provide a happier update.

All but two of the Seated Liberty quarters have been recovered thanks to the efforts of a dealer contacted via the network. I had also made a mistake in my original list, since I sent it while traveling and could not check my inventory at the time; the 1856-S F15 and 1873-S F15 were not actually among the lot that was stolen.

Amazingly, the thieves did not crack out the coins, and they did not seem to have a sense of their value. The two unrecovered Seated coins are the 1855-S and 1875-S. They are low-value and replaceable enough; I am so lucky to have recovered the others.

I would have never dreamed that this was possible, and I sincerely thank everyone involved.

All I can say is that this is great news and we are pleased to know of the positive outcome.

 

"CCC" Walking Liberty Halves Preview - Part 1

Today brings the first "teaser" for the forthcoming Cumberland County Collection's Walking Liberty half dollar set auction sale. When viewing the following image, please remember that this set has been under construction for years with overall eye appeal and choice surfaces being the imperative. The heart of the "CCC" set are the initial dates from 1916 through 1920 along with the 1921-D. The entire set is CAC approved which is a wise decision on the part of our clients. Please look carefully as nearly 40% of the lots, in this image, are graded AU58. The current demand for CAC approved AU58 is quite intense in all series due to set registries.

 

Preview of Hallet Racing School - The SRF Racers

Though October 1 and 2 may be months away, the idea of attending racing school is still as exciting as when first proposed by the Sooner Collection (Blake Gibb).

Blake visited the Hallet Racing Shop yesterday to purchase several tires for his race car and sent along several images of the Hallet SRF training racers being prepared for another racing class session. If looking carefully at the image, you will note that each student's name is labeled on the side of their training racer. My application has been submitted and accepted for the October 1 and 2 sessions. The new and great news is that Blake will also be attending the Hallet racing school with me. Yes, I will be on the track with a seasoned pro like Blake. This should be a wild time. Isn't it amazing how the comradarie of numismatics leads to other notable pursuits? For those who are just catching up with the Blog, the SFR racers are equipped with a 1.9L Ford engine. The driver's cage must be adjusted to fit the size of each student, especially in my case of being 6'2".

 

 

Global Financial News

The S&P 500 saw volatility on Thursday but did manage to close up by 0.9% to 5,064. One of the main drivers was Apple. Seeking Alpha shares the following commentary for a notable jump in Apple's valuation.

Apple shares jumped 6% AH to $183.46/share on Thursday as the tech giant's Q2 results were better than expected despite iPhone fears in China. Sales weakness was also seen in categories including the iPad, Mac, and Wearables, but investors cheered its updated capital return plan that added a record $110B to its buyback program and raised its quarterly dividend by 4% to $0.25 per share. "We view Apple’s continued employment of generous share buybacks as a critical tool for the stock in weathering the near-term headwinds facing its underlying fundamental outlook," said Investing Group Leader Livy Investment Research.

Today brings April's nonfarm payroll report with more speculation on where the Federal Reserve is heading with interest rates. Let's again check in with Seeking Alpha for their coverage of this topic.

The domestic labor market remains tight, with April's nonfarm payrolls report expected to show that more than 200K jobs were added to the U.S. economy for the fourth straight month. The unemployment rate is also forecast to remain at 3.8%, resulting in the 27th consecutive month that joblessness has stayed under 4% and marking the longest such stretch since the 1960s. It's a peculiar dynamic, as interest rates have remained relatively high over much of the past two years, and conventional thinking has suggested that this would have made some dent in the job market by now.

Are rates high enough? Jay Powell says they are and has telegraphed that the Fed's next move will be down and not up. That's despite inflation remaining sticky around the 3% level and persistent price pressures in the first quarter of the year. Those forces have also led many investors to consider wage growth to be the most important indicator in today's NFP report, which will be released at 8:30 AM ET.

Average hourly earnings likely rose 0.3% M/M in April, unchanged from March. On a Y/Y basis, a 4.0% increase is expected (compared with 4.1% in the previous month), but higher-than-expected wage increases may fan the fears of resurgent inflation. The labor force participation rate, which measures the share of the working-age population employed or seeking employment, is also anticipated to stay unchanged at 62.7%.

Morning market futures are suggesting incremental buying in the equities market when trading resumes in a few hours.

In Asia, Japan closed. Hong Kong +1.5%. China closed. India -1%.

In Europe, at midday, London +0.4%. Paris +0.6%. Frankfurt +0.4%.

Futures at 7:00, Dow +0.8%. S&P +0.4%. NASDAQ +0.6%.

Most important is the 10 Year U.S. Treasury bond yield receding to 4.58% along with the U.S. dollar moving down slightly to 105.2.

Spot gold is working hard to hold the $2300/oz level. The Kitco tracking of real time quotes indicates a price of $2298 while silver is selling at $26.48/oz.

WTI crude oil has dropped to $79.25/bbl.

 

What is Gerry Up To Today?

The response to this segment's headline is that of watching for the sun and staying busy otherwise on a host of other homestead project. As the Blog is being composed, the cloud cover has returned. Our local WCSH weatherman has promised partial sunshine this afternoon and I will certainly be ready for numismatic photography. While waiting for the sun to appear, the front landscaping needs special attention to clear out all the smaller broken branches as a first step. This wood will be cut down to size and stockpiled as kindling for the late 2024 heating season. Afterwards, left over oak leaves must be raked to beautify the property entrance. Once dried, the winter road sand must also be brushed and removed. Welcome to traditional Maine spring clean-up.

Thank you so much for the ongoing patronage, whether checking in at the Daily Blog, or making a numismatic purchase.

Be well!

 

 

 

 

Thursday May 2, 2024

An Amazing Walking Liberty Half Dollar Collection Arrives

and

Quito Collection - Price Reduction Showcase

 

Greeting from the land of rain and clouds! Welcome to the Daily Blog on a Thursday morning.

The past 24 hours were fully consumed with both GFRC business activities and cleaning the homestead. Dave Wallace rescheduled his 8:30 AM appointment to 3:00 PM and brought me up to date on the latest software app for quoting roofing jobs. He now uses a "roof scan" app that employs a Google overhead satellite image of our homestead which then automatically calculates the dimensions and total roofing area. Dave charges a flat fee per square foot of roofing area for the replacement. Diane chose a Moire Black roofing shingle design which is in stock at our local supply company. Life is good on the homestead project front.

Wallace Roofing has grown substantially in size during the past several years as he has a monopoly on the local Gray, Raymond, Windham area and is extending work to the Maine coastal communities of Yarmouth, Cumberland Foreside, and Cape Elizabeth. Though he currently has a backlog of 100+ jobs, he promised to fit us in in the near term since we are a repeat client. From an extended conversation with Dave Wallace, I learned that he is friends with Dave Wilkinson. We are so fortunate to have established strong relationships with top local contractors.

 

An Amazing Walking Liberty Half Dollar Collection Arrives

The other news of the day is the arrival of a truly special Walking Liberty half dollar collection courtesy of the husband and wife collecting team known as the Cumberland County Collection. It is one thing to review a set on paper (or Excel spreadsheet) but another thing to view the individual coins upon arrival. Such was the case yesterday afternoon. Let me be clear here. The "CCC" Walker set is downright awesome with tons of eye appeal. There are several gold CAC lots including an early Doily holder along with many PCGS old green holders. This collection is entirely CAC approved and will draw considerable attention once featured as the primary anchor collection for the next GFRC Online Auction event.

Here is a quick snapshot of the four PCGS blue boxes and a few samplings of the great forthcoming auction lots. More images will follow in the coming days.

 

Quito Collection - Price Reduction Showcase

As mentioned in Wednesday's Blog, our Quito friend has decided it is time to liquidate his remaining Liberty Seated quarter holdings along with a few other premium lots. Yesterday brought the relisting of the Quito lots to the 30 Day Price List with 10% reductions. Already, the 1861 II/II quarter and the 1893 Columbian half are on the hold. The balance, as showcased next, are immediately available for purchase. I'm running out of time this morning due to an 8:30 AM blood work appointment in Windham, therefore the discussion of these marvelous quarters must be concluded at this point. I'm certain that there will be subsequent discussions concerning their limited CAC approval populations. My suggestion is to not delay a purchase decision as the group has been posted to Collectors Corner at reduced levels. Lay-a-ways are fine.

 

Great Quito Collection Offerings - Price Reduction Showcase

1852 Briggs 1-A PCGS MS66 CAC 25C - $22,500

  1840 Drapery Briggs 1-A PCGS MS63 25C - $4950                                1849-O Briggs 1-A PCGS F15 CAC 25C - $5125    

        

        1854-O Briggs 1-B PCGS MS64 25C - $3150                                1875-CC Briggs 1-A PCGS MS63 CAC 25C - $8875   

        

                1877 PCGS MS66 CAC 25C - $2925                                    1877-CC Briggs 3-C PCGS MS65 CAC 25C - $3015    

        

          1877-S PCGS MS65 CAC 25C - $2250                                       1880 Briggs 1-A PCGS MS67 CAC 25C - $7200   

        

  1888-S PCGS MS66+ CAC 25C - $8550                                           1893 PCGS MS66+ CAC 50C - HOLD    

        

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

Please accept my apology for the lack of a Global Financial News segment today, again due to an early blood work appointment. This is a "fasting" blood extraction and I don't do well without a hearty breakfast, thus the early morning scheduling.

I will be back in the office by 10:00 AM and will be loading the balance of the Scenic Lakeview Peace dollars to the 30 Day Price List along with placing the Cumberland County Walkers into the COIN system. Your purchase orders and consignment proposals are most welcomed. Over the next few weeks, a date will be decided upon for the next GFRC Online Auctions and a formal call for incremental consignments. During the next few days, I am expecting the delivery of the Grimjet Liberty Seated dime lot that will certainly enhance this event.

Thank you so much for visiting with me at the Daily Blog. Be well!

 

 

 

Wednesday May 1, 2024

Ain't No Sunshine in Maine

and

Announcing Quito Collection Sale - Immediate 10% Reduction

 

Greeting and welcome to the Daily Blog on the first day of May 2024. Thank you so much for returning for another round of GFRC ramblings.

Unfortunately, today's edition must be brief as Dave Wallace (Wallace Roofing) arrives at 8:30 AM to quote our roofing replacement project. I'd like to get a shower in before this important meeting.

Let's recap what happened on Tuesday in and out of the GFRC office.

First is the fact that we are caught up on GFRC shipping after working diligently throughout the morning hours. Second is coordinating with multiple consignors to enable their substantial Maine office shipments. The amazing Cumberland County Collection Walking Liberty half dollar in now in transit and arrives to the office today. Shipping instructions have been provided to Grimjet for his CAC approved 30 piece Liberty Seated dime lot and to Newtown for his duplicate Seated half dollars. There are also smaller shipments that are being coordinated.

Concerning the homestead projects, my buddy Dave Wilkinson was incredibly prompt and brought six truckloads of material throughout the day. He appeared at 9:00 AM with the first load of crushed stone and spent 20 minutes catching up on our lives and my plans for the back acreage "park". Dave's left knee is bone on bone and will be replace in just two week. After the meeting, Dave spent the balance of the day transporting sufficient 1.5" crushed stone, rip-rap stone, and fill for several days of Johnny2 effort in burying the burn pit and fixing minor washouts within the back acreage trails. Pete Theberge, who built our barn, has scheduled next Tuesday morning to scope out the shelving construction project. Months of planning, while in Florida, are reaping immediate benefits as our stable of contractors are gravitating to the homestead promptly upon our return.

Let's close today's preamble with a really cool event at the pond. After Tuesday's grilled dinner, I took a walk down to the pond with the goal of scooping off all of the green slime from the water's surface. The overhead clouds were thick leading to an early dusk. As I'm clearing the remaining algae, two large owls appeared in the overhead trees and started hooting up a storm as if warning other birds in the area that a foreign being was located in their habitat. The strength of their calls seem to reverberate through the leafless landscape. Then came another surprise. A large crow appears and swoops over my head with a shrill call. The moment was PRICELESS for someone who enjoys the solitude of the woods and being so close to nature.

 

Ain't No Sunshine in Maine

When living in Florida, the Sunshine State, one forgets how precious sunshine can be. This fact became immediately apparent once back in Maine as the weather forecast is predicting cloudy conditions for today along with rain on Thursday followed by more overcast through Sunday. GFRC numismatic photography will be delayed until early next week for incoming lots.

 

Announcing Quito Collection Sale - Immediate 10% Reduction

The past 48 hours brought several discussion with the Quito Collection consignor. Our friend has a passion for a host of collectibles and wishes to liquidate his current numismatic holdings towards moving monies into a different collectible genre. In respect to our client, I will not disclose where his capital is being relocated. Bottom line, I've been asked to structure a sale of his existing GFRC consigned inventory. All Quito lots are immediately available at a 10% discount with certain lots seeing a 15% reduction.

Up next is a quick copy/paste of the Quito Collection inventory in the COIN system with TPG serial numbers in the rightmost column. Please feel free to review these table listings and then match with those on the price list. Again, all lots are immediately discounted 10% on a first come, first serve basis. This is a important opportunity for passionate collectors of the Liberty Seated quarter series as there are a host of Mint State dates with CAC approval. Come tomorrow's Blog edition, I will present a showcase gallery of unsold lots with their revised prices.

Date Mint HL_Var Agency Grade CAC Denom Type TPGCert Variety
1840   With Drapery PCGS 63   25C Seated 82907272 Briggs 1-A
1841 O   PCGS 62   25C Seated 4655847 Briggs 3-D
1849 O   PCGS 15 CAC 25C Seated 30006308  
1852     PCGS 66 CAC 25C Seated 9462318 Briggs 1-A
1854 O With Arrows PCGS 64   25C Seated 43203617 Briggs 1-B
1861     NGC 64 CAC 25C Seated 365653004 II/II
1875 CC   PCGS 63 CAC 25C Seated 24931074 Briggs 1-A
1877 CC   PCGS 65 CAC 25C Seated 81248269 Briggs 3-C
1877 S S/Horizontal S PCGS 63 CAC 25C Seated 25591429 Briggs 4-D
1877     PCGS 66 CAC 25C Seated 43502582  
1880     PCGS 67 CAC 25C Seated 25281856 Briggs 1-A
1888 S   PCGS MS66+ CAC 25C Seated 43160480  
1844     PCGS 61   50C Seated 43000313 WB-12
1893     PCGS MS66+ CAC 50C Early Commems 34371442  
1893     PCGS 61 CAC 50C Early Commems 6316700  

 

Global Financial News

Tuesday brought a miserable day for every investment class. There is a growing concern that inflation is not being tamed and that the Federal Reserve may change course and move towards another interest rate increase. Adding to the negativity was the liquidation of First Republic Bank, the first major bank failure of 2024. Following is the Seeking Alpha perspective on what drove yesterday's sell-off. Note the speculation that the Fed will terminate its Quantitative Tightening (QT) efforts as a first step.

Federal Reserve officials have been saying that the path to achieving 2% inflation would be a bumpy one. Indeed. Inflation has come in hotter than desired for the first three months of 2024, meaning that "higher for longer" will continue to be priced in by investors. As such, don't expect any change when the FOMC announces its monetary policy decision later today, and the expectation for a June rate cut, once the predominant view among market participants, also looks out of reach.

What it means: Policy will likely remain steady for the sixth and seventh straight Fed meeting - with the central bank holding the federal funds rate target range at 5.25% to 5.5%. In fact, over half of WSB subscribers don't see any rate cuts in 2024, according to the most recent Survey Monday. The sentiment follows comments from Fed Chair Jay Powell earlier this month, which outlined that the Fed's restrictive policy needed more time to work as the labor market remains strong and disinflationary dynamics have stalled.

U.S. stocks ended lower on the last day of April, dragged down by some disappointing earnings reports and economic data. Market participants were also being cautious a day ahead of the FOMC's latest monetary policy decision. Since January, Fed officials have said they want to see more evidence that inflation is on a sustainable path to reach the central bank's goal of 2% before they reduce rates, and so far, they haven't received that evidence.

The balance sheet: There will also be a focus on the Federal Reserve's plans to slow quantitative tightening during Powell's afternoon presser. After the last FOMC meeting, Powell said the policymakers expected to reduce the rate of its balance sheet runoff "fairly soon," which was backed up in the FOMC minutes released three weeks later. On average, securities have runoff at a rate of around $75B per month, less than its current cap of $95B per month, with the Fed's total asset portfolio recently declining to $7.4T from about $9T in June 2022.

Spot gold has fallen to $2290/oz while silver is well down to $26.44.

The 10 Year bond yield has increased slightly to 4.68% and the U.S. dollar is back up to 106.3.

For once, I can publish the Seeking Alpha morning market futures. Please note that May Day is celebrated in many part of the globe outside of the U.S. Domestic futures are pointing to more losses in the equity markets.

In Asia, Japan -0.3%. Hong Kong closed. China closed. India closed.

In Europe, at midday, London flat. Paris closed. Frankfurt closed.

Futures at 7:00, Dow -0.3%. S&P -0.5%. NASDAQ -0.8%.

 

Wrapping Up The Blog

Yes, I will be in/out of the office the entire day and will be motoring emails for orders and other client correspondences.

Thank you so much for visiting with me daily. Be well!