The Whitman Baltimore show, as expected, has generated a good volume of new price data to analyze and process, and our initial findings are reflected in this week’s Bluesheet. Silver and gold classic commems were soft in the Stacks Bowers auction held in conjunction with the show. The weakness was primarily in the dated silver commems of the Booker T. Washington and Washington/Carver types. It is clear that the buyers of these coins are extremely selective, regardless of certified grade. The coins must be well struck, free of even small distracting marks, and attractively toned for realizations to be strong. Gold commems suffered across the board, as market support for non-CAC coins just is not present at the moment. Morgan dollars were mostly positive, and Bluesheet values for many dates continue to have a tighter spread to their Greysheet prices. This signals strength that the middle of the market is solidifying. GSA dollars in particular were well represented in the Stacks Bowers auction, with many high grade (MS66 & MS67) coins crossing the block. Some of the populations are deceptively low in this series. For instance, Lot #17357 was an 1882-CC GSA dollar graded NGC MS66+. While one of the common Carson City dates, NGC has graded only 16 coins as MS67 versus 480 in MS66, making this plus graded coin desirable, and it realized a healthy $5,405. An attractively toned 1883-CC GSA graded MS66H brought home $2,585, more than double Bluesheet bid.
Gold has cooled off over the past week of trading, and as a result generic gold type has softened. Most affected seem to be both Liberty head and Indian $10 pieces, as the bids on these coins have fluctuated quite a bit over the past few weeks. Silver is threatening the $15 level, as it has not been below this price since early February. Premiums above melt for lower mint state and “slider” double eagles have also come down. Now that the reaction to Federal Reserve actions has subsided, stocks have been on a run, propelling the Dow Jones Industrial Average well past 17,500 points, taking buyers away from precious metals.