World Coins

NYINC world coin auctions total nearly $40 million

In its final year at the Waldorf-Astoria, the New York International Numismatic Convention in 2017 continued to serve as the center of international numismatics to kick off a new year.

The convention — held for its 45th time — served as the home to auctions garnering nearly $39 million. Leading the way was Heritage Auctions’ sale, totaling $15,658,469. Classical Numismatic Group’s auctions realized $11,292,580. 

Totals for the convention’s several other auctions follow:

The New York Sale, which featured the Brody Collection of Jewish coins; ancient and world coins; Russian coins, orders and medals: realized $4,794,169, including an 18 percent buyer’s fee. 

Stack’s Bowers Galleries: $5,605,383, including a 17.5 percent buyer’s fee.

Kolbe-Fanning Numismatic Literature: an estimated $165,000 hammer price.

Spink: an estimated $1,411,00, including buyer’s fees.

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The approximate sales total from the eight days of auctions is $38,926,601 U.S., with a final and updated tally yet to be confirmed.

The top lot of the auctions was the prototype issue, dated Year 1 (A.D. 66 to 67), silver shekel struck during the Jewish War.

The coin is in Extremely Fine condition and toned, according to CNG. It hammered for $600,000 in the firm’s auction (the buyer’s fee ranges from 19 to 21 percent, depending on bidding and payment method). 

This is one of three known examples of a prototype for the shekel of the first year of the Jewish War, beginning May 66 (or a bit later), and it is therefore the first coin type of the renowned Jewish War shekels and half shekels.

The highest price for a multicoin lot was the $376,000 hammer price for the 1839 Great Britain Una and the Lion Proof set. 

The star of the 15-coin set is, of course, the big gold coin with William Wyon’s classic design depicting the young Queen Victoria as Una, a fictional character, leading the Lion, a symbol of the nation of England. 

The £5 coin is graded Proof 63 Ultra Cameo by Numismatic Guaranty Corporation, which graded all of the coins in the set. 

The set realized $376,000, including the 17.5 percent buyer’s fee.

While auctions dominate the show’s landscape, its bourse remains an ever-active scene from Thursday through Sunday.

A few tables were empty or missing, but several other tables featured dealers who might usually still have been at the Florida United Numismatists show, but for the first time in several years FUN did not conflict with the NYINC in 2017 (the next five shows will not conflict, either).

Kevin Foley, bourse chairman of the NYINC, told Coin World that attendance for 2017 included 150 early birds or professional preview attendees, who paid $125 each to scout the floor for deals before the show opened to the public.

Total public attendance reached 1,507, and an additional 326 industry officials were registered with booths, for a total of 1,983 attendees.

The show will move beginning in 2018 to the Grand Hyatt near Grand Central Terminal, a move that allows the bourse to be located in one setting, instead of multiple rooms on the Waldorf’s 18th floor.

According to Foley, all but three 2017 boothholders renewed and paid in full for the 2018 show.

“It’s very consistent with past shows where we seem to run at 95 percent renewal rate,” he said. “That seems to indicate how well the dealers did more than any self-serving propaganda that I can give you.” 

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