April 1, 2009 | Vol. 9 Number 7
Collectors Club Price Guide Pop Report CoinFacts Auction Prices Realized Set Registry
Looking at the Bright Side of Numismatics
By Jaime Hernandez, eCollector Editor

Currently, there are few places people can look to when it comes to their money and keeping it afloat against inflation. Stocks, retirement plans, the housing market and most major commodities have declined in price substantially in the past year.

We are seeing things in the economy we have never seen before. For example, from the very start, credit card companies have competed for our business. Well, recently American Express, one of the largest, was offering some of its customers $300 to just go away! Of course, that is if the customer paid their entire debt to American Express in full.

Despite this economic climate, one thing doing quite nicely is the hidden gem of numismatics. In the past year, many coins have gone up in price substantially. If you look at the PCGS Price Guide in the past three months, approximately 35,000 coins have moved up in price compared to only about 8,000 losers.

So, it's definitely great to be involved in a hobby which is fun and at the same time has performed very well compared to most other major U.S. markets. And for a further look at the bright side of numismatics, read Jon Garner's article below and enjoy our new video. Note today's date first!
eCollector Subscribers: WIN a Free Coin!
(For eCollector Subscribers only)

In each issue of eCollector, we randomly draw a name from our subscribers.

The winner in this issue will receive a 2009 William Henry Harrison PR Dollar in a special PCGS holder indicating eCollector issue #11. Check the next issue to see if you won. Good luck!

Last week's winner of the 2009 $1 Australian Koala was Lee Smith of Buford, Georgia. Congratulations, Lee!

View list of all past winners.

Offer good while supplies last, and may be altered or cancelled by PCGS at any time.

Inside PCGS
By Jon Garner

Hall to Replace Scioscia as Angels Manager

In a stunning move, the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim announced that Manager Mike Scioscia will be taking a leave of absence for the entire 2009 season. Scioscia claims to be going on a scouting assignment in his homeland of Italy, but insiders say he is more interested in finding authentic Italian food than he is in finding Italian baseball prospects. He will be replaced for the 2009 season by PCGS Founder and veteran baseball coach David Hall.

"This is a dream come true," said Hall. "I have no doubt there will be a seamless transition, and with the veteran leadership we have, the Angels will contend for the World Series title this year and for years to come."

"Guarded optimism" seems to be the reaction of most Angel players and fans.

PCGS Becomes Official Grading Service of the U.S. Mint

When PCGS became the first grading service to grade and holder a new 2009 $20 Ultra High Relief Gold Coin, officials at the United States Mint were duly impressed. PCGS President Don Willis recently negotiated an exclusive 5-year agreement with Mint officials, and as a result, PCGS will grade and encapsulate all coins produced by the Mint over the next five years.

"We may have to hire a few more graders and expand our facilities a bit to accommodate the increased demand, but since we've graded over 17 million coins to date, why not?" asked Willis.

PCGS Offers New Counterfeit Grading Service

While the recent proliferation of counterfeit coins is alarming to many in the hobby, PCGS looks at the bright side. To further increase participation in the popular PCGS Set RegistrySM, PCGS is now accepting counterfeit coins for grading, as long as they are specified for inclusion in the Set Registry.

BJ Searls, Set Registry Manager, has created three new categories for counterfeit coins:
  • Most obvious counterfeits
  • Least obvious counterfeits
  • Chinese counterfeits of U.S. coins
"We are pleased to offer collectors who have been burned by counterfeiters an opportunity to make the best of a bad situation, and be able to compare coins and stories with others in the same boat," said Searls.

It is doubtful, however, that there will ever be a Set Registry Hall of Fame category for counterfeit coins.

PCGS Customer Service Offers New "Value-Added" Service

PCGS is justifiably proud of its Customer Service organization, and the caring attitude of our representatives. To add even greater value to the PCGS experience, Customer Service now offers foot rubs with any order over $1,000. This offer is just another example of PCGS' willingness to go the extra mile for our customers. Watch the video!

Collectors Universe Introduces Wine Grading Service

In an effort to diversify the company's product portfolio to include even more collectors, Collectors Universe will add wine grading and authentication starting June 1, 2009, pending the company's ability to "slab" the wine bottles. The new wine graders will actually be veteran wine tasters. Productivity among the wine graders is expected to be greater in the morning hours than after the lunch hour. For quality control purposes, the wine grading room has been declared off limits to PCGS Customer Service reps.

A "typical" day for
PCGS Customer Service

Watch video!
PCGS Launches Price Guide for Territorial Coins

What is my Territorial coin worth? Well, if you would have asked this question ten years ago, two years ago or even last week, we would have said good luck in finding pricing information or anyone who can assist you. The reason? Very few experts keep track of the Territorial coin market.

In response, PCGS Founder David Hall and several other numismatic experts in Territorial coins have all worked together and compiled the ultimate Price Guide for Territorial Coins!

Collectors and dealers will now be able to view the most current, approximate retail prices for most Territorial coins. And since the PCGS Price Guide keeps track of the biggest gainers and losers in the coin market, Territorial coins which move up or down in price will be easy to track, along with the percentage of price movement. Read More...

The Unique Isabella Quarter Dollar

Reprinted with permission from "Commemorative Coins of the United States: A Complete Encyclopedia" by Q. David Bowers.

In January 1893, well after the Columbian half dollar was a reality, Mrs. Potter Palmer, well-known Chicago socialite, patron of the arts, and grande dame of the Exposition,[i] suggested to the Appropriations Committee of the House of Representatives that $10,000 of the money earmarked for the Board of Lady Managers of the World's Columbian Exposition be given in the form of a special issue of souvenir (as they were called) quarter dollars. This was translated into a law approved March 3, 1893, which stated that the production of these quarters would not exceed 40,000 and that the pieces would be of standard weight and fineness. Like the Columbian half dollars, the quarters would be made from metal taken from uncurrent silver coins held by the Treasury Department.

The Board of Lady Managers had been formed at the insistence of Susan B. Anthony, who had determined that women should be adequately represented in the administration of the Exposition. Interestingly, there was also a Board of Gentlemen Managers, but this did not get much publicity, as it was taken for granted. The Board of Lady Managers took complete charge of the quarter dollar project and stated that the coins were to have female motifs.   Read More...
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