Report on Heritage Platinum Night

Posted on August 12, 2010 by

Holy Sh*t! What an auction. One night, 746 lots, $22,372,528!!!!!!!

Overall prices were very strong, and prices for rarities and ultra high grades were super strong. There’s no recession in the rare coin market!

Dealers at the auction (there were a lot of dealers there, including me) had a tough time buying. The book and internet bidding was strong, and there were a lot of collectors in the audience. I looked at every lot and there were a lot of coins I wanted to buy. I was really getting skunked until the gold section started. I wanted to buy the 1793 Chain cent in AU55, the Wreath cent in AU53…no luck. I wanted to buy the 1796 quarter in MS65…no go. I wanted to buy a lot of the Barber halves from Dr. Duckor’s incredible set and was only able to buy two of the less expensive ones. I’m a dealer, so I’m somewhat price conscious, but I’m not a cheap buyer. I’ll pay up for a great coin. But I was in a pretty bad mood until I was able to sneak in and buy a few of the early $5 gold pieces.

The highlight of the sale was the Dr. Duckor set of Barber half dollars, the finest ever assembled…and the prices were mind-boogling. The whole set…a set of Barber half dollars mind you…brought over $2,000,000! We can understand (sort of) the super key date 1904-S in MS67 at $138,000, but how about a 1905 at $132,500! It’s was PCGS Secure MS68+, the only 68+ Barber half of any date, but that’s a big price. Go to the Heritage website and check out the prices…1894 MS67+ $46,000…1895-O MS67 $51,750…1899 MS67 $34,500…1900-O MS66 $43,125…1900-S MS67 $57,500…1901-O MS67+ $63,250…1901-S MS67+ $86,250…1903-O MS67 $46,000…1904 MS67+ $51,750 and on and on.

The Duckor set of Barber halves took thirty years to build, but the results tell us a few things. Whenever people come to me for advise on what to do in coins I tell them three things. First, buy the coins you like, not what someone tells you to buy. Second, HAVE FUN WITH YOUR COINS! But there’s a financial aspect to this and the third thing I say is build a set. The people I’ve seen do the best are those that build sets over time as opposed to just making random purchases. And it doesn’t have to be a set of expensive coins…you can do Roosevelt dimes or Ike dollars. And it doesn’t have to be ga-ga grades. You want a real challenge? Try putting a set of Barber halves together in Fine or Very Fine condition. But what Dr. Duckor did is the real way to do it. Pick a coin series or series you really like and build a set. Take your time and do it right.

Heritage Platinum night is always a big event. I don’t attend many auctions in person, I usually bid online, but the two auctions I never miss are the Heritage ANA Platinum Night and the Heritage FUN show Platinum Night. When I go to an auction I go to buy coins, and the Heritage Platinum Nights are always loaded with great coins. I’m not a big seller at auction, but I did have two duplicates from my $10 Liberty set in the Platinum Night aucion last night and I was very pleased with the results. So congratulations to Heritage for one truly incredible auction night!

A few more results to think about…

NE Shilling AU50 $416,875

1796 quarter MS65 $322,000

1916 Standing quarter MS67FH $149,500

1817/4 Half VF20 $184,000

1944 Half MS68 $109,250…read it again, not a typo…1944 Walker $109,000!

We obviously have some work to do on the PCGS Price Guide.

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Comments (1)


  1. Steven Duckor says:

    David, the sale of my Barber Half collection was really a great event! The prices obtained were above my expectations. My theme for years has been one, to buy the very best you can and extended to buy it! two, hold on to your coins for years , three continue to upgrade as coins become available and fourth buy the coin & the holder. My entire collection of 20th Century Gold and Barbers (dime, quarters and halves) are ALL PCGS! Thanks David for your kind words and friendship over the last thirty

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