World Coins

Canada’s 2014 Superman coins sell out from Royal Canadian Mint

In no surprise, four new coins from Canada celebrating Superman have taken flight in the secondary market like, well, the superhero himself.

Public sales of the coins began Aug. 29, eight days after the Royal Canadian Mint began sales Aug. 21 to preferred customers (members of its Master Club). 

The 2014 release of four Superman coins, compared to seven in 2013, anticipated strong customer interest. 

The Royal Canadian Mint did not confirm how quickly each of the four 2014 coins achieved sellout status, but all four are no longer available through the RCM, and distributors’ offerings are also limited.

Though Gatewest Coins only offers one of the coins individually, Talisman Coins continues to offer all four of the 2014 coins individually. Both dealers’ prices are higher than issue price, because of increased market interest.

One of the two big winners, so far, is the half-ounce silver $10 coin showing the cover of Action Comics No. 1,  which showcased the first appearance of Superman.

The coin is trading for about $100 to $110 U.S., compared to its $69.95 Canadian issue price, meaning it is already selling for 140 percent or more of issue price.

The relative affordability of this coin (it was the least expensive in the 2014 release) and its significance in showing the first appearance of Superman appear to be factors underpinning the coin's popularity.

Gold coin sales strong

The other big winner, at least for the moment, is the Proof .5833 fine gold $100 coin, which is realizing about $1,200 to $1,300 U.S. in various online auction and dealer sales venues. That compares to the $750.95 Canadian issue price.

The sellout was no surprise, either, given the market strength for the 2013 Superman gold $75 coin, which is now a $1,500 coin, settling from the peak of about $2,500 shortly after it was released; the coin had an issue price of $750 Canadian. 

An example of the 2013 coin sold through on Aug. 23 realized $1,500, and the buyer has left positive feedback for the transaction, indicating the transaction is likely to be legitimate. Another example sold Sept. 4 for a reported $2,000, but feedback has not yet been left. 

Whether the September price was more affected by the release of the 2014 coins or by the No. 22 serialized certificate of authenticity accompanying the coin cannot be determined. Going forward, collectors may want to watch whether the 2014 release refreshes interest in the earlier coins. 

Coins aren’t the only winners

The coins aren’t the only items whose value is being affected in the secondary market. 

Comic book seller Mike Kohon, who provided Coin World an image of an issue of The Adventures of Superman No. 596 comic book, the subject of the 2014 gold coin, said that values in online auctions for that comic book have skyrocketed since sales of the 2014 coins began. 

After offering a Near Mint example for months for 99 cents plus $3.49 shipping, or $4.48 total, he sold an example for $28.15, shipped, inside Canada. Other sellers are realizing between $10 to $20 each for the comic, he said.

“This is interesting because comics’ values rarely shoot up for non-story related reasons,” Kohon wrote, in an email to Coin World.

“Usually if there’s a jump in value, it’s because an obscure, briefly mentioned character from long ago suddenly reappears and becomes the arch villain.”

“We now know what happens when hobbies collide,” wrote Kohon.

A similar increase in price due to the coin series is not likely to be generated for Action Comics No. 1, however, since that comic is already worth a hefty sum.

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