News & Views


Buyers can afford to be choosy.


It is a fact that there has been a lot of coin material come onto the market via auction over the past twelve months. 

But from our perspective, 99 per cent of it has been completely unremarkable and the quality sub-standard.

The prices have also been very unremarkable which is as you would expect. And many items have in fact remained unsold.

1813 Holey Dollar

That Coinworks has not been active participants at auction over the past few years simply reflects the calibre of the material on offer.

This is an industry that is driven by quality. Now while some may suggest that the subdued prices make it a buyer’s market, buying something just because it is ‘cheap’ does not necessarily make an item a sound investment purchase.

If a coin is down on quality or defective it will always be so and its price growth will always be subject to the vagaries of the market.

Recognising genuine quality is an important part of the buying process.  Evaluating a rare coin and assessing its potential requires experience and knowledge and is not garnered by amateurs analysing photos on the internet. Sighting coins ‘in the flesh’ by an experienced professional is in our opinion the only way to go.

As a case in point, a philatelic company in Adelaide blitzed the media in July with an offering of four Adelaide Pounds, including one Cracked Die.

We had the coins flown over for personal viewing and rejected all on sight. In our view, the quality was below what you would expect at the price being asked.

The Cracked Die was unremarkable, dull and lifeless, and therefore expensive at its pre-auction estimate. The first Type II, we believe, had been tampered with and had gilt surfaces. The second and third Type IIs were so well circulated that we were not interested at any price.

The flood of inferior material that has come onto the market over the past twelve months has in our opinion skewed people’s perception of the Australian rare coin market.

And distorted people’s view of its price structure. We took a panicky call from a client who had seen the prices realised on the pre-decimal proofs offered at ACA’s Auction in Melbourne. The very poor prices reflected the quality.

We viewed the entire auction and did not place a bid.

Coinworks has enjoyed solid sales this financial year, the common thread linking all of the sold items, their history and quality.

Notably:

  • 1813 Holey Dollar Uncirculated $455,000
  • 1910 Proof Sovereign FDC $115,000
  • 1852 Adelaide Pound Choice Uncirculated $170,000
  • 1858 Sydney Mint Half Sovereign $165,000
  • 1956 Perth Mint Proof Penny $20,000
  • 1789 Clay Medallion $175,000
  • 1919 Type 4 Square Penny $145,000

True rarities are genuinely hard to find and it can be years before a top quality or extremely rare piece becomes available.

There are a number of pieces on our web site today that are advantageously priced and once sold simply cannot be replaced at the price they are being offered.

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Suite 17, 210 Toorak Road South Yarra 3141
PO Box 1060 Hawksburn Victoria Australia 3142

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