Author Topic: MODERN CHINESE MEDALS - Is this market in collapse?  (Read 31460 times)

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Offline bonke

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MODERN CHINESE MEDALS - Is this market in collapse?
« on: May 13, 2012, 12:33:18 PM »
modern Chinese medals - Is this market in collapse?

I collect modern Chinese medals (along with modern Chinese coins and stamps).  On May 11th, a 1985 silver (1 oz) 94th ANA medal sold on Ebay for $2193.99 (NGC PF68UC).  This is the silver medal with "The Great Wall" shown in mirror image on the medal.  Planned mintage was 500 and actual mintage is unknown, but estimated to be around 160.  Different varieties?  Who knows?  I do not think anyone has studied enough examples of this medal to know.  Still, a mintage of 160 +/- should make this quite collectible.  NGC has graded 15 with 1-67, 7-68 & 7-69.

During the last year or so, I have seen one of these medals sell on Ebay for $500 (Buy It Now) (raw) and at $6900 (PF69UC).  I purchased a raw one from Majestic Rarities at the Fun Show for $5000 (and had it graded at NGC PF69UC).  I have seen Panda America list one (raw) on Ebay for various prices (and I do not know if it ever sold).

My question.  Whether we look at the 1985 ANA medal or any other modern Chinese medal, are the prices of these medals dropping lower and lower, and is this market still collasping?  Generally, I would say this is true.  There are exceptions such as the 1987 5 oz gold God of Longevity.  The price of this medal is not collasping.  Why?  None are for sale.  In other cases, the prices have dropped because the seller is unwilling to do so to complete a sale.  So, the item remains listed at a Buy It Now price which is too high for the present marketplace.

I welcome you comments and discussion.

Mark Bonke  


Offline bonke

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Re: MODERN CHINESE MEDALS - Is this market in collapse?
« Reply #1 on: May 13, 2012, 12:49:01 PM »
Corrections

I had trouble spelling "collapse" in two places.

I said "In other cases, the prices have dropped because . . ."  I meant to say "In other cases, the prices have NOT dropped because . . ."

If I know how to edit my prior submission, I would do so.

Mark Bonke

Offline bonke

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Re: MODERN CHINESE MEDALS - Is this market in collapse?
« Reply #2 on: May 13, 2012, 02:06:35 PM »
I am surprised.

I thought the coin forum members would challenge my premise.  I thought people would tell me about particular medals which they are collecting and how the prices for these particular medals are stable or rising.

As a collector, the initial response to my question is promising.  In 2012, I may be able to collect all of the modern Chinese medals I want for my collection without troublesome or bothersome competing bidders.  Imagine, a 12oz gold God of Longevity for spot plus $10.  Maybe, this will be in my future.  Maybe, the seller on Ebay who has been trying to get $64,900 month after month will finally decide that my very low bids have been reasonable.

Mark Bonke

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Re: MODERN CHINESE MEDALS - Is this market in collapse?
« Reply #3 on: May 13, 2012, 02:33:20 PM »
Collapse? Overall there seems to have been a pullback, with some medals affected more than others.  Notably more so with silver medals, like you note, the larger gold medals have not been put on sale.
I think the reasons for this is understandable: despite numbers on the economy being manipulated upwards to release to the masses, there is still pressure downward from deflationary forces.  Many collectors income has been pressured downwards, and small businessman have put off purchasing collectibles if instead they need the money to keep business going.  There are a lot of reasons, despite the occasional Hail Mary prices being paid for one-of-a-kind iconic art works -The -Scream- by the very wealthy or syndicates.

Its the working upper middle class that is now getting squeezed, and are putting off purchases for now, so prices of niche collectibles like medals, and especially silver medals, seem to be dropping.  If things get worse, the Fed will have no choice but to stimulate with QENEXT, and that will eventually get the collectible market going again.

So yes, its a buying opportunity!  Let's help the weak hands with their fiat needs!


PS- I was curious, and afterwards Googled " QENEXT" - nothing.... so you saw it here first everyone.... ;)
« Last Edit: May 13, 2012, 02:43:47 PM by Underbidder »

Offline pandamonium

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Re: MODERN CHINESE MEDALS - Is this market in collapse?
« Reply #4 on: May 13, 2012, 02:52:29 PM »
I think most medals are holding their own.  All of these are silver.  The 1985 Xingiang Autonomy 5oz raw 1400 mintage has moved up to $900 to $1000.  One raw sold recently for about $700 but the seller stated it had some issues.  The Xingiang 5oz PF 68 (highest grade) is about $1400 + and one sold for $1775.  The 1oz Xinjiang 10Y keeps going up in price.  The 1986 ANA 5oz silver panda 2000 mint is $1500 PF 69 (highest grade)and around $800 to $900 for a PF 68.  Several 68 and lower grades for sale but prices are not dropping.  The 1987 5 oz silver pandas ANA and Long Beach 2000 mint are priced raw $600 to $800.  PF 69 (highest grade) are about $1,100? Several for sale.  The 1987 5oz Hong Kong 2000 mint, which is rare in the US, was last seen at $2000.  The 1988 Hong Kong 5oz dragons and pandas 1000 mint have not been seen for sale in awhile.  Last price was about $2500 raw so maybe $3000 now?  The 1988 5oz Munich w/ 1500 mint $1800 raw and PF 68 sold $1400.  The 1987 5oz Vault protector has gone up a little to $1000+ raw.  The 1989 3.3 oz God of Wealth 2430 mint and the 1991 3.3 oz silver panda anniversary 2000 mint are the only two medals that are slow selling and have dropped a bit on price.  Medals may be second class in China but due to low mintage and fair price for old rare silver, how can anyone pass on these?  In the near future there are just not enough coins to go around to all the buyers, so these low mintage medals have got to have a huge upside at some point.  The 1987 3.3 oz God of Longevity and 1988 Hong Kong dragons/pandas may lead the way to medal price increase.  (The 1990 year of Horse 50 Y is also rising in price)  I think the big silver medals are starting a slow incline up in price.  So which is best for the price.......that opinion is for another day.........

Offline fractalfate

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Re: MODERN CHINESE MEDALS - Is this market in collapse?
« Reply #5 on: May 13, 2012, 04:16:23 PM »
I agree that the medals have seen significant price weakness over the past several months. The gold 1oz panda medals seem to have been particularly hard hit. I personally greatly enjoy collecting medals as they (typically) have great designs and share the fundamental positive of relatively low mintage/population numbers. Probably the most significant headwind for medals has been, and will continue to be, the smaller collector base--not as many buyers are willing to pay premium prices for precious metals without fiat denominations on them. Why that is is open for debate, but it's reality cannot be denied. Also, I feel there is some credence to the thought that medals may be safer targets for conterfeiting, and therefore there may be more potential for the unwary collector to be ripped off. It only takes one experience like that to wipe the desire to collect medals out of your mouth.

Offline adamc4

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Re: MODERN CHINESE MEDALS - Is this market in collapse?
« Reply #6 on: May 13, 2012, 04:29:51 PM »
Let's look at some actual prices.

1985 The 94th ANA Annual Convention Commemorative Silver Medal Great Wall - Like Bonke said, this coin has gone down. I know someone who is in a PF69 coin well over $5000. It would probably bring ~$3500 or so now. I've never owned one.
1987 San Francisco International Coin Exposition Commemorative Gold Medal - Hit a high of $3000 in PF69, and $2400 raw. And there was a PF68 that auctioned off for $3000 last August by Stacks. PF69 coins are now worth $2300 and raw coins are worth under $2000.    
1987 New Orleans International Investors Conference Gold Commemorative Medal - Behaves just like the San Francisco coin so read above. A PF69 actually only went for $2175 last night. I sold a San Francisco in 69 a few weeks ago for $2400 and doubt I could do the same again. A raw coin in great condition went for $2000 in March in Shanghai.
1987 The 16th New York International Coin Exposition Gold Medal - Rarer than the mintage figure would lead you to believe. I was glad to see a coin actually auctioned off, and it brought $2850. I have no idea what they went for earlier, but people were asking $4000+ for raw/68 coins.
1988 The 1st Hong Kong Coin Exposition Commemorative Gold Medal - Hit a high of $10,000 in PF69. A raw coin went for $8300 last December in Hong Kong. I would say current fair market value for a raw coin is $6500 and $8500 for a PF69.
1988 The 97th ANA Annual Convention Commemorative Gold Medal - I know two people who are in this coin north of $4500 in PF69. Clark sold at least two for ~$3300. I bought one at $3200 and sold it a week later for $3800. A PF68 just auctioned off for $2850. I thought my sale of $3800 was a bit optimistic and would put the current fair market value for a PF69 at $3500. Whenever I say "current fair market value", that's the price at which I am extremely confident I can sell it for. Hence, I am 99% sure I could move another Cincinnati coin in PF69 at $3500, but $3800 is a stretch to me.
1988 New Orleans International Investors Conference Commemorative Gold Medal - I sold a PF68 for $2300 in December of last year. In the spring of 2011 coins in PF68 were an easy $2500. A PF68 was auctioned off by Stacks for $2540 in April.
1988 Munich International Coin Fair Commemorative Gold Medal - I sold a PF68 for $3000 last December. A PF68 brought $2130 in April in Shanghai, and a raw coin brought $2621 in May in Shanghai at auction. A raw coin went for $3000 in Hong Kong in December. A PF67 brought $2100 last month on eBay. A number of Munich coins came up for sale from Stacks in April. A PF69 brought $3300 and coins in 68 sold for ~$2600. If we blast back a year ago, 68 coins were worth $3000 and 69 coins were worth $4000.
1988 Basel International Coin Week Commemorative Gold Medal - Jim perfectly timed the sale of Pt coins in PF69 last fall. If I remember correctly, he sold them between $8000 and $9000. A raw Pt coin brought $7800 at Stacks last August. A raw Pt coin brought $6000 in December in Hong Kong. I sold a Pt in PF69 for $5700 in December (that was a horrible auction). I also sold an Au in PF68 for ~$5500 in January if I remember correctly. A Pt in PF66 brought $3900 in April at Stacks. A raw Au coin in ~64-66 condition brought $3100 a few weeks ago in Shanghai. A raw Pt in great condition went for $5100 in March in Shanghai. I now consider Pt coins worth $5000 in raw/68 and worth $5750 in PF69, with Au coins being worth $5500 in raw/68 and $6200 or so in PF69.
1989 The 2nd Hong Kong Coin Exposition Commemorative Gold Medal - I remember when Peter wrote about this coin and the price spiked a bit, reaching $2800 last summer for coins in PF69. A PF69 brought $2500 in March in Shanghai, then another PF69 only went for $2000 in late April in Shanghai. A PF68 went for $1300 in May in Shanghai. A PF69 got one bid at $2300 in May on eBay.
1989-1995 Munich International Coin Fair Commemorative Gold Medal - A number of coins, both raw and graded, have come up for sale recently in Shanghai. On average, coins in raw condition have been bringing $1300 and coins in PF68 have been bringing $1800 or so. The 1/2 Oz. gold Munich coins in raw condition used to bring $2300 and some coins in PF69 went for close to $3000 less than a year ago.
1990 The 19th Zurich International Coin Exposition Commemorative Gold Medal - The Zurich has always been the most interesting medal to me. A raw coin went for $8900 in December in Hong Kong. Another raw coin brought $8400 in Shanghai in December. Two raw coins were auctioned off last August by Stacks, one went for $7800 and the other went for $9600. There has been a lack of sales this year for Zurich coins, but I sold a raw coin a month ago for $6500.
1990-1997 Munich International Coin Fair Commemorative Silver Medal - The silver Munich medals have also gone down. I sold a number of coins in both PF68 and PF69 in January, getting $700 even for the PF68 coins and getting $900 for the PF69 coins. Now, silver Munich coins seem to be consistently going for $550 or so. Last spring $1000 was the norm for raw/68 and $1200 or so was the going price for coins in PF69.

I don't know much about the larger silver medals or the bimetal coins. And I'm not even going to mention the God of War & Wealth coins or the Pagodas. Oh, and the 97 Munich 12 Oz. went from $43,000 to $15,000. To sum up, here are 52-week ranges for some popular medals:

1985 The 94th ANA Annual Convention Commemorative Silver Medal Great Wall - $6900 for a PF69 to $2200 for a PF68
1987 San Francisco International Coin Exposition Commemorative Gold Medal -  $3000 for a PF69 to $2400 for a PF69 20   
1987 New Orleans International Investors Conference Gold Commemorative Medal - $3000 for a PF69 to $2175 for a PF69 28
1988 The 1st Hong Kong Coin Exposition Commemorative Gold Medal - $10,000 for a PF69 to... who knows, but most likely under $9000
1988 The 97th ANA Annual Convention Commemorative Gold Medal - $4500 for a PF69 to $3300 for a PF69 (Clark was low at $3300, $3500 is a more fair current price) 10
1988 New Orleans International Investors Conference Commemorative Gold Medal - The coin has held its value over the last twelve months at $2500 for a PF68 0
1988 Munich International Coin Fair Commemorative Gold Medal - $3000 for a PF68 to $2130 for a PF68 29
1988 Basel International Coin Week Commemorative Gold Medal - $7800 for a raw Pt to $5100 for a raw Pt 35
1989 The 2nd Hong Kong Coin Exposition Commemorative Gold Medal - $2800 for a PF69 to ~$2150 for a PF69 24
1989-1995 Munich International Coin Fair Commemorative Gold Medal - $2300 for raw coins to $1300 for raw coins 45
1990 The 19th Zurich International Coin Exposition Commemorative Gold Medal - $9600 for a raw coin to $6500 for a raw coin 33
1990-1997 Munich International Coin Fair Commemorative Silver Medal - $1000 for raw coins to $550 for raw coins 45

Different coins perform at different times. There's no magic answer for why prices behave the way they do. Medals have dropped, key date gold Pandas and 70 coins have done great.

Also, just for fun, here's a possible scenario: You bought a medal near the top of the market. On average, all of the above coins are down 25%. Let's say your coin was worth $3000 when you bought it and worth roughly $2250 now. You fail to sell it privately and have to resort to eBay, like most non-dealers do. Your auction goes great and the winning bid is $2250. After eBay (9%) and Paypal (3%) fees of $270, you're left with $1980. A 25% paper loss turns into a 34% loss after the selling process.
« Last Edit: May 13, 2012, 04:40:45 PM by adamc4 »

Offline exchange

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Re: MODERN CHINESE MEDALS - Is this market in collapse?
« Reply #7 on: May 13, 2012, 04:37:39 PM »
I was always iffy and still am when it comes to medals. I only buy medals officially issued by the PRC, my only exception is the 1993 Ghenghis Khan medal. That's just me, as I feel more comfortable knowing that. The few medals I have were purchased within the last year.
I don't have many, paid roughly an average price of $125 per silver medal. Most of them I just don't see for sale so I would not know how they are doing, also I do not often look for them which may be the reason why I don't see them, however my downside is limited to spot (that is what collapsing means to me).

These are my medals. Nothing really sexy about them, however they met my criteria.

1996 The Centenary of the Birth of Mao Ze Min silver medal, 1oz - mintage 10,000
1993 Ghenghis Khan silver medal, 1oz.  - mintage 5000
1994 Mei Lanfang silver medal set, 1oz each medal - mintage 2000
1994 Construction Achievement of China Special Economic Zone silver medals set, 1oz each medal - mintage 4500
1987 to 1989 gold god medals set of five, 1\4oz each medal - mintage 2000


exchange
« Last Edit: May 13, 2012, 04:45:01 PM by exchange »

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Re: MODERN CHINESE MEDALS - Is this market in collapse?
« Reply #8 on: May 13, 2012, 04:43:18 PM »
Nice summary.

I had been following the category and had ballparked about a ten to fifteen percent decline average, some more, some less.

Its a smaller market, and as as been noted, is more dependant on getting consistent bids from a small group of collectors/ investors to hold it up and move it forward. If the bids get scarcer, even slightly, prices drop as the few sellers who need to sell, establish the new lower price.

I think those with "extra" cash / dry powder can pick up bargains if sellers need to liquidate.

Offline adamc4

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Re: MODERN CHINESE MEDALS - Is this market in collapse?
« Reply #9 on: May 13, 2012, 05:13:59 PM »
It looks like a 88 HK Expo sold for $9250 in PF69, which was a surprise to me. That's a strong price for this coin and the seller should be happy.

Also, I accidentally left some numbers I was working with in my original post. Woops

Offline pandamonium

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Re: MODERN CHINESE MEDALS - Is this market in collapse?
« Reply #10 on: May 13, 2012, 05:37:11 PM »
Lets not forget the usual articles about the upcoming coin shortage. Konajim had a recent post here, the Pricepedia mentioned the river of coins headed back to China.  Many others have mentioned it.  Maybe no one believes it until it hits our market.  Low supply means all Chinese coins will see a price increase.  Prices should bounce right back to their former highs.  How can it not happen?........

Offline bonke

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Re: MODERN CHINESE MEDALS - Is this market in collapse?
« Reply #11 on: May 13, 2012, 06:59:53 PM »
Wow!  Adam, you have the best information.

I just "get a feeling" about the market.  My analysis is so simplistic or rudimentary that it is embarassing.     

As an example, I previewed the 1984 3.3oz silver medal in Kowloon in early April.  It was a wonderful example of a well-known silver medal with a planned mintage of 200 and an estimated actual mintage of 68 (split between proof and matte).  Champion Auctions was calling for an opening bid of $6000 (plus commission).  No one bid.  The item was passed.  Yes, it was raw.  Still, it looked wonderful.  Quite collectible!  There may have been a reserve above this $6000 opening bid.  We will never know.  This is a medal which was sold in prior Hong Kong auctions for large sums.

Often, my "feelings" about the market are not correct.  Recently, I made an offer for a 1988 1oz gold first Hong Kong coin expo medal.  My offer was instantly rejected as inappropriate.  Obviously, for this medal from this seller, I did not have a good feel for the market.  If I remember correctly, the seller was asking $8800 and it sold for $9250.  I was offering a small fraction of this amount. 

The mysteries of the marketplace.  Why will a buyer pay $9250 for a medal with a mintage of 500 and not make an opening bid of $6000 on a medal with an estimated mintage of 68 (between two varieties)?  Maybe, the former is gold and the latter is silver?  A mystery to me.

NGC has recently started authenticating, grading and slabbing many new modern Chinese medals.  One dealer is the dominant person, working with NGC to get these medals authenticated and into the marketplace.  It is a wonderful time for collectors.  I am pleased to be one. 

Mark Bonke   

 

Offline Obsidian

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Re: MODERN CHINESE MEDALS - Is this market in collapse?
« Reply #12 on: May 13, 2012, 07:14:29 PM »
The mysteries of the marketplace.  Why will a buyer pay $9250 for a medal with a mintage of 500 and not make an opening bid of $6000 on a medal with an estimated mintage of 68 (between two varieties)?  Maybe, the former is gold and the latter is silver?  A mystery to me.



I think the answer is popularity.  The 88 HK expo has always been a very popular medal. It has a very unique look and celebrates both the dragon and panda all on one coin.  Just like people will pay high prices for higher mintage coins then medals.  When it comes to medals, the 88 HK expo is one of the most "popular".  The other reason is likely that it is gold, not silver, as you mentioned.  Silver seems to have fallen out of favor a bit.  Partly I think because Chinese coins seem to have more problems with haze, milk spots, whatever you want to call it.


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Re: MODERN CHINESE MEDALS - Is this market in collapse?
« Reply #13 on: May 13, 2012, 07:27:47 PM »
We'll see in a few minutes:  there is ending soon on ebay a gold 1988 New Orleans medal, raw, some spots in OMP.  These have a mintage of only 1500 and have been holding steady up to now as Adam wrote.
After having only a single bid, there are now two and its at just $2,125. A decent price, considering.

Offline pandaccumulator

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Re: MODERN CHINESE MEDALS - Is this market in collapse?
« Reply #14 on: May 13, 2012, 08:25:54 PM »
Nice summary Adamc4. Not only medas, I have seen 30-40% price drop on key date silver panda, such as 83-85. Any comments on the key date gold proof panda, such as 1995, 1996 gold proof panda? I remember last summer, a 1998 1 oz gold panda MS69 LD was auctioned over $6k on ebay, this month, two auctions with starting price $5400 by the same seller were ended without a single bid, both coins MS69(one NGC, one PCGS).