Most dealers will agree that Morgan dollars are a backbone of the rare coin business on a weekly basis. As a result, the health of that segment can be a measure of the overall market. Also, the Morgan dollar market is not as sensitive to the precious metals market, which has not performed well recently.

The following is an analysis of public auction Morgan dollar transactions over the past month. In the past 31 days, there have been 1,285 certified coins sold for a total of $1,232,846, for an average of $960 per coin. 304 of the coins were in NGC holders and 982 were in PCGS holders. Of course, many more silver dollars have sold in coin shops, at shows, on eBay, and other venues.

PERFORMANCE MATTERS

Looking at the prices realized of this group, about 40 lots sold below prior Bluesheet levels, the results of which you can see reflected in this issue. The biggest drops were for coins in the MS66 grade, which isn’t necessarily surprising because it is a tricky grade. When buyers feel the coin is more of a 65+ rather than a 66, the results can come in low. Conversely, when buyers feel the coin has a shot to be upgraded to a 67, the realized prices are reflected thanks to the large pricing spread.

Of the remaining dollars sold, 625 of them fell in between Bluesheet and Greysheet bid: that is, higher than the Bluesheet price but lower than the Greysheet indications. The remaining 598 coins sold above their Greysheet levels.

Comparing the total dollar amount sold against the total Greysheet bid of the corresponding coins, we find that the prices realized were 4% higher than Greysheet bid.

When comparing Bluesheet bids, the NGC coins, in total, sold for 67% greater than Bluesheet bid while the PCGS coins sold for 51% greater than Bluesheet bid.

EMPIRICAL EVIDENCE OF A HEALTHY MARKET

A couple of conclusions can be drawn from this data sample: first, it is clear that the sight-seen bid levels posted by the market makers in this series are accurate to the market. This is evidenced by the close 4% spread between what the coins actually sold for versus their bid levels.

Second, the spreads allow astute dealers to buy dollars at levels which should sell well at retail after a fair markup. Overall it is fair to say that while the market is not on fire, it is more than stable.