We are writing this from our table at the American Numismatic Association's Worlds Fair of Money looking at a relatively busy bourse floor. Many of the largest wholesale dealers in the country have already been conducting robust business in the days leading up to the public opening of the show, and reports from most have been positive. Heading in to the traditionally busy fall season dealers are actively seeking fresh inventory. The main auction sessions begin this evening, and it will be interesting to gauge their strength, as auction activity recently has been mild. The release of a special Chinese Panda medal which commemorates the 125th anniversary of the American Numismatic Association generated a lot of excitement, with individuals lining up to purchase an example. There were 2,000 struck in silver one ounce, 125 struck in gold one ounce, and 125 struck in silver twelve

One dealer told us that retail buying was stronger than expected, with the belief that collectors feel prices are attractive buys at current levels. On the other hand, it is clear that many solid coins have been taken off the market in the past two years and have gone into long term holdings. This has created somewhat of a temporary shortage of coins for dealers to buy. Fortunately, there are always old time collections out there lurking waiting to come to market.

The Heritage U.S. coins auction has thus far garnered $18.5 million, including their noted Platinum night session. 17 lots reached the six figure mark, with the top mark going to the ex:Partrick 1792 Birch cent pattern, graded MS61 by NGC which hammered for $517,000. This was a respectable performance, as this same coin brought $564,000 in a more frothy market. Usually, when an esoteric item such as this
comes to market in this close of a time span there is a large loss realized. Overall, auction activity for both Heritage and Stacks Bowers is below previous Summer ANA.