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August 31st, 2014: CRO’s ‘August by the Numbers’


Right before the exciting start of another school year here in New England, it is, yes, time for another installment of CRO’s ‘August by the Numbers’ in which we highlight the month numerically starting right now:

Only one: Shows attended this month, though of course it was the Big Kahuna, the Grand Daddy of Them All, the World’s Fair of Money held in, once again, Rosemont, IL.

Thousand and thousands: People we saw lined up early in the morning every day of said show to buy those wonderful new gold Kennedys from the mint, including plenty of people who seemingly brought their entire extended family (and their neighbors, and their neighbors’ friends) with them.

1652: Date on the pair of fabulous, original, uncirculated Pine Tree Shillings we sold there in one fell numismatic swoop.

60-Something: Grading submissions we made during the month.

At most 20%: Grading results which came back at a level at least as high as we expected.

½ and 1: Denominations of the two totally cool, wicked high grade Chilean Volcano minors we bought at the thoroughly satisfying Lissner sale:

Less than a minute: Time that passed between CRO buying the 1735 Mexico 8 Reales later at that same auction and someone expressing interest in buying it from us. That happens from time to time (though it used to be a much more common occurrence in the old days when all of the bidders were all actually present in the room and could simply look around to see who bought what, as opposed to now when many of the participants are at home in their pajamas anonymously bidding on their computers).

10%: Mark up on the aforementioned lot.

€25,600: Total price of coins we bought in Europe during the month from all different sources.

$56: Least expensive coin bought we bought in August (on eBay, by impulse, really early in the morning).

$93,500: Most expensive coin we bought this month (privately, also by impulse, right before dinner).

2 out of 4: Number of trades for coins in our inventory proposed by collectors that we consummated during the month, which is a little less than we usually do.

($1,000): Money lost on a coin we received in a previous trade, could not sell and ended up consigning to Heritage. Oh well.

23: New people who signed up for the Early Bird in August.

4:. Number of them who ordered a coin from the very next list (though unfortunately 2 of them ordered the same one, and only the first one got it).

A little more than 27%: Early Bird coins in total sold from said list, which is a little better than our average through the years.

2: Intact collections acquired during the month, one of which contained a big pile of circulated Portrait 8 Reales from various mints that we really aren’t sure what to do with and will likely end up listing on Ebay individually.

Half a Dozen: Reasons we could think of not to buy the aforementioned deal before doing it anyway. Why? Because despite our experience, due diligence and best efforts to identify what to buy at what price, we never really know where our profits will come from in this business, or which will turn out to be good deals. So we pretty much have to buy (almost) everything and sort it out later.