THE BRITISH INDIA COIN MARKET AND CHINESE COIN DEMAND PARALLELS – PART ONE

*I originally wrote this on October 26th 2013 2:40 PM. The writing never had the proper flow, I never made time to revise it, and I’m not really a writer. However, it’s been revised and chronologically much better than before with less mistakes as well. Just a few cut and pastes here and there with a few minute rewrites and it’s all fixed for now. Part Two I have posted as well, and it remains intact as I had originally written. I took my time with the second part, and both parts now harmoniously compliment each other in my eyes. A trip down coin memory lane can be experienced as I did many years ago. Thanks for reading my thoughts if you choose.

Enjoy-

Sincerely,

Sanjay

 

Tails from the Crank-

Christmas Eve 12/24/2010 I made a deal buying Chinese slabbed coins with someone on ebay, and out of this sale blossomed a so called “friendship” in the coming weeks/months. We continued to bounce ideas off of each other, observed the market closely, I always stuck to my “no reserve” strategy 99.9% of the time, and he had his “buy it now”/”best offer”. When you are in need of money like me all the time you try to sell what you can as quickly as you can to keep the cycle going. Unless of course you have money then time is on your side. Usually time is against me.

Demand was insatiable-

For Chinese coins around this time, my new buddy was a constant cheerleader about the prices infinitely rising, and was pumping prices like a kid pumping his new spare tire on his bike that went flat. In a hurry to replace his tire, and start peddling again. Seriously. This guy would sell your ass out in a New York Minute to save his own. Anyways, he had sold inventory to me when he thought prices would peak, they kept going, and he is now starting to accept my views/speculative thoughts about continued rising prices.

1949 Singkiang Dollar

Now being a strictly by the numbers guy, I translate data to confirm price action, and what price action I see forms a rising trend. At least to me this is what I conclude, and I happen to guess correctly. I’ve been monitoring some type of pricing or another since the age of 8….Yes 8 years old since 1979, and I still can’t get it right most of the time.

The prices kept rising higher and higher every week for almost 40 consecutive weeks, primarily on eBay, and even to me it’s puzzling but I go with the flow. My new found “friend” has assured me the prices in the future will surely continue to exponentially compound forever. Sound familiar to anyone that follows the British India market?

We (me and my confidant) had an opportunity to sell coins in the month June 2011 to a prospective buyer who I refer to as “X”. This buyer believes in the future of the Chinese coin market, to him it looks really bright, and will continue. During this time I had offered a coin to his close family friend who I refer to as “Z”, and the deal never transpired. But it wasn’t a completely dead deal. My friend mentioned he met “X”, he will be selling him some Chinese coins, and wanted to know if I wanted to sell my “so and so coin”. I mentioned that I had offered the coin to “Z”, and waiting for a response. He says, “F#CK Z”! His statement reminded me of a scene from the movie TRADING PLACES where the Duke Brothers have lost all their money to Dan Akyoyd and Eddie Murphy. One of stock exchange representative says, “Mortimer, your brother doesn’t look well.” (The guy looks like he’s having a heart attack in the movie)”…..Mortimer say’s with great excitement, and anger, “F#CK HIM”! This is the same selfish behavior I see erupt from my trading friend, and his close family friend is not so close to him when it comes to MONEY!

In April/May 2011 he took an interest in the India market because I had mentioned how I thought it was undervalued. We made a deal on an auction as he asked me “Will you be bidding on this gold coin or do you have any interest in it so we don’t run each other up.” I never looked at it, and casually said “no.” I mentioned I had another few lots I had my eyes on. When the guy went to the coin viewing in person he viewed 2 lots for me which I appreciated. What else would one homeboy do for another? We don’t want to “run each other up”, hence our so called “auction alliance”. These auction alliances never work by the way.

August 2011 there is a major/massive auction set to auction Chinese coins which will give us more data about the market : The Wa She Wong Collection Part Two in Hong Kong. I always need data to keep my thoughts at bay or to readjust my forecasts. Since forecasts are ever changing as frequently as the weather at times. After three hours of monitoring auction prices I realized the prices have peaked, and they are going to go down. Quickly. But on the surface it looked like a slight pullback, but my brain says something different. I conveyed my thoughts to the head cheerleader, my newfound buddy, he vehemently denied any fissures in the foundation of building a skyscraper to Mars, and living next to the Martians. I don’t argue, and keep my thoughts to myself. Why? I’m a numbers guy, and the numbers don’t lie they generally reveal the real deal. Plus he just dropped “big money” on Chinese coins to secure a deal which two weeks ago which he planned on selling in 3-7 months.

He has to believe his decision was correct. Even if it wasn’t as that’s part of the risk process. Damage control has to be implemented, and you cut your losses as quickly as possible as a trader. September, he missed one major Indian coin auction, and he knew of the “Yashoda Singh Collection” only because I brought it up, and deep down he knows the Chinese market he has been pumping is starting to quickly erode.

Kiangnan Dollar

We chatted a bit about the lots in the Singh Collection, a day before the auction he calls me, and asks me questions in a hasty manner. “What do you think about this, what is the potential, and what is the scarcity.” I revealed a few of my price points to him about a few lots which was one of the dumbest things I did. More dumbness will follow in the coming years though. Without mistakes I cannot succeed- how could I distinguish success from failure? I want to make more mistakes but just less of them at crucial times.

Now keep in mind that the Chinese coin market is in free fall, and he/we sold this guy (buyer “X”) a bunch of Chinese coins by chance at the height of the market. Out of the total dollar value of the sale my coin was about 30% or so, and remainder of the 70% were coins that my acquaintance had sold to this dude. That sale took place in June 2011, and was no small amount of money. Did we do anything wrong? No. It was a sale, and there was a demand that was fulfilled. In hindsight this guy got completely screwed as he bought at the absolute height of the market. It happen. Happen to my a year or two later. Lol!

I’m not certain how much my acquaintance had pumped the Chinese coin market to buyer “X”. The unknown is still the unknown, and forecasts are forecasts. They are never a sure thing. But now the Chinese coin market is going straight down at its peak from June, it is now September, and more damage will come. The rising sun is about to reach the horizon once again, and this time on the way down though. Not up.

Buyer X had lots of money to burn according to my acquaintance, and he is not so happy I suspect 4 months later when the prices have fallen 30% by the month of September. Who would be, and I never told him to buy my coin. I gave him a firm price, and he paid up. Now on the other end of the sale I don’t know whether the sale was hyped up or not by my buddy. I suspect it probably was because my acquaintance thinks he is a know all speculator, and at times I think the along the same lines.

But he is much more prouder than I am, and I call it like I see it. You have to believe in your ideas because belief is the only thing someone cannot take away from man. But there comes a time when ego starts driving that chariot, you got to get back in the drivers seat, un lodge ego from taking over the journey, and put ego in check, and throw it in the passenger’s seat.

Here is what I think happen : For “my buddy” to get back in the good graces of “X” he has to give him something. Essentially make him feel that part of his money has been replenished or “recovered”. Now I suspect I have been the “fall guy” for this guy losing his shirt somewhat. My acquaintance probably blamed me, and maybe mentioned: “I have been relying on that guys data, and I know a way you can get even with him. There is huge sale of Indian coin coming up in England, and I know the guy knows his prices (which is a budgeted forecast). You can get even with him, and I know he knows India. This is your opportunity to get even with him.” What he ended up doing to this guy is screwing him over again because he was blindly buying coins with no knowledge of what he was buying.

I recall a second phone call with him, right before the Yashoda Singh Collection auction at Baldwin’s of London I had with this man who was formerly known as “my friend”, anyways, he spoke very quickly, and was in a hurry. Remember to be wary of anyone who is a fast/slick talker. This is what the country folk here say where I live in Bridgeville, PA or was it from the movie “Doc Hollywood” starring Michael J. Fox where the girl he’s chasing says something to the effect that “I can spot you city slickers a mile away.”

So my buddy goes right into a conversation immediately about “What has potential in India, what should I paying for this and that, how scarce are two annas, and what would you pay for this?” Are these scarce, how rare are these. “X” is buying India heavily. There is BIG MONEY chasing INDIA now.” I thought to myself, “Hmmm. I guess he discounted all the money I have put into the market, which according to his statement is peanuts, and what he says is really amusing to me.

Indo Chin Opium Money 1943-1944

He must have overlooked the : “Shah Alam II, AH 1173-1221; 1759-1806 A.D. 10 Rupees, Hijri, AH 1185, year 6. AR 115.6g, 45mm. Struck at Surat, in the name of the Mughal Emperor Shah ‘Alam II” which sold for almost $200,000 That coin sale was 9 months prior, I guess that was “small money”, and I wonder if he was planning on spending $200,000.01 which would qualify as “BIGGER MONEY”…..haha….I casually revealed my bids, lots, thoughts, and some of the trading ideas I was planning on implementing at the Baldwin’s auction. We have had numerous conversations about coin trading ideas, our communication was an open freeway of information between me, and him. What do I have to fear? He is my buddy.

WRONG!

Note to self : Never share your trading ideas with anybody-

Keep that shit to yourself-

Mysteriously during the September Baldwin’s auction I was outbid on all of the lots I was planning to buy. Some dude from the United States was in the room buying up all kinds of coins. Blindly outbidding almost everyone in the room. I realize that my so called buddy probably conveyed most of my trading ideas to “X”, and sold me out. What a swine. I distance myself from now my former acquaintance or we drift apart. Whatever you want to call it. Things won’t be the same as before, and that’s life.

Anyways, he has bigger problem on his hands, as he’s invested a chunk of change in the Chinese coin market which is eroding as I had mentioned. He also is trying to get me to invest in a so called “pool or tranche” investment to buy coins in an upcoming auction/catalog (that is off the radar, and does not as much exposure as some of the other major auction houses according to him), and we can flip it for “Millions”!!!!!Basically it’s an opportunity to make some money that he wants to share with me, and I suspect he’s looking to share this same generosity with with his childhood friend, remember “Z” and his newly found friend “X”.  Don’t forget about himself as an investor either, but why is he being so generous, and sharing all this information?

To keep the market at high prices so he can liquidate all of his stock and be out.

I listen, and play along. But I have no inkling of investing a single penny with Slick Rick. Wouldn’t you know it that “X” is considering investing, and so is his family friend “Z”. Remember that he needs to go to the next hot market or growing market, and employ the same strategies within the India coin market. First though he must liquidate his Chinese coin holdings, and his strategies remind me of the movie Boiler Room.

I still stick to my guns, tell him my money is tied up, and I can’t invest. I recall in September 2011 sometime he is asking me what do with his most recent acquisition of Chinese coins he bought in August at the ANA. He’s uncertain as what to do. I mentioned he should “split up the coins in two auctions.” Half in December 2011, and half in April 2012. “The April auction has more exposure, money, and is in Hong Kong” he mentions to me. Not sure what he ended up doing but I think he may have elected to sell all the coins in April. Which was the wrong move in hindsight.

One time I had an auction for a Chinese Copper coin on eBay in December of 2011, and he told me he would be bidding. It was nothing special but it made me wonder : Why is he bidding? The prices are on the way down week by week, and this copper coin is nothing special. It’s a variety but nothing that special. I don’t know much about Chinese coins, but have attempted to study price action in general for many years, it’s ever changing, and never set.

I only had one thought from a speculative standpoint. He is supporting the prices for this copper coin to keep the bullish illusion fresh on eBay, and it’s in his best interest to keep prices high. But that’s got to be really hard to do on the way down, and you would need an exorbitant sum of money to sustain the market. Now ebay, which is a smaller coin auction venue in the grand scheme of things it’s easier to support or manipulate prices. His major Chinese coin auction is slated for April 2012, and he would have to keep these buying charades up for many months. Which must be a lot of work, and he might have to eat a coin or two at times. But he is working a classic pump and dump as prudently as he can to cover his ass.

Kiangnan Dollar Reverse

The April 2012 Hong Kong auction shows the market what I had been thinking from August 2011 after The Wa She Wong Chinese sale : The “Specter of falling prices” rears it’s ugly head throughout the entire auction, and roils prices. This trend will continue for a few more months until it finally bottoms for the Chinese coin market. I had actually stopped monitoring that particular market in September of 2011.

I learned a lot from my former buddy but our friendship is soon slipped back to the “acquaintance” phase quickly and it happens with competitors quite often. I have unique identity as a competitor, and for someone to replicate what I do is identically is difficult. Everybody has got their own style like a fingerprint, and if you succeed. People will try to mock what you do, and then mock you. Kind of fucked up eh? That’s Life-

To be fair : Do I view my competition? What businessperson wouldn’t? I do, but I go about my business my way, and see more what I’m doing in my competitors work than what I take away from them. In a way it’s a great compliment, and a nuisance at the same time. Guess you can’t always have it your way like Burger King.

KRS ONE says, “you got to have style, learn to be original, and everybody is gonna wanna dis’ you.”  dis’ = disrespect-

When I view my competition, and I see them copying my style. What do I have to fear? Myself? Possibly.

Back to my friend who is now my acquaintance and slipping to lower levels in my eyes. Remember that deal we had in June 2011 with “X” that we did well with our coins in a deal he brokered. He did sell my coin, which I thanked him and I asked, “Are you all taken care of with price.” Essentially meaning did he carve out a commission for himself the sale.

His reply, “Yeah, and I’ll have to cut the paypal fees out from the sale.”

My reply, “Sure”

I’m happy, and he’s happy. We both handled our business, and made some money in an illiquid market.

But there is an underlying problem in the Chinese coin market that arises after the fourth massive Hong Kong Wa She Wong sale in April 2012. The prices are eroding day by day, and there were prices that crossed that nobody has seen on the downside before. Some items went for ridiculous prices and coins with the most liquidity are starting are dropping. Quickly. Which is the beginning of a free fall in the market from what I saw.

image

 

When prices rise 8x-10x in a short span of time, jumping of a cliff is destined to be the only path to travel as a speculator, and that is what happen. Tulip Mania, Elliot Wave Theory, South Sea Bubble, and there are many other examples that point to past compressed price explosions. Who is to blame for these behaviors? Nobody. It’s a marketplace, and that’s how it works. Perception can be construed in many ways especially if you are not the person monitoring the situation closely.

Now in May/June 2012 my friend who is not my friend is quietly playing a role in boosting the British India coin market artificially in a small trading arena : eBay. But it will take him much longer then he anticipates to artificially boost the prices as I have blocked him from my auctions for over a year. In addition I have blocked 7 other people he knows in order to shield my client base from his monkey business. Essentially I won’t let him run up a common coin (1841 TWO ANNAS) in high grade (MS65) to create an illusion that prices are rising. I could care less, and want the market to flow naturally as it should. I tried as long as I could. But who am I to what is fair?

TO BE CONTINUED

PART TWO (AFTERMATH): BRITSH INDIA COIN MARKET AND CHINESE COIN DEMAND PARALLELS

*Originally drafted on August 27th 2014 4:21 PM. Thanks for reading my thoughts if you do, and this includes mistakes and all.

Enjoy-

Sincerely,

Sanjay-

 

So where did I leave off. Oh yeah-

P A R T 2
——————————————

My descriptions on eBay never forced anyone to buy anything. Ever. How could I? My auctions were almost all generally no reserve, started at a penny, and the market controls the price. How did I control the price? By selling British India Coins for a little over two sequential years? By blocking people that were artificially boosting prices I suspected, and not allowing them to bid? My eBay “me” page clearly described “illiquid markets”, and when my risk decisions go bad I have the luxury of blaming one guy : me-

In spite of all the above information, risks of trading, and characteristics of risk that can be read almost anywhere on the internet. I was recently told by one collector on one occasion (and another time as well) that I was responsible for the downturn in the British India Coin market acorrding to someone he spoke with. Who : lost money. Tomorrow I will be crashing Nasdaq, and the S&P so please buy puts. Short the market! I’ve never heard more ridiculous talk about anything, and I think the crap is funny.

This guy blamed me for losing quite a tidy sum of money. But then again I had warned someone else about listening to someone in their teens for speculative advice. Because I wasn’t that specific teen myself but was a young man in his late 20’s giving speculative advice, and it ended in absolute disaster. Maybe another guy, and his cohort also blamed me as well. Which I think is very amusing. Blame me for all of your problems as well.

These buyers never thought ahead that since there was swooning interest, rising prices, that more coins wouldn’t come into the marketplace, and the David Fore Collections would siphon massive amounts of money from everyone’s pocketbooks. Not only did I describe this scenario in Part One above, but had given my thoughts about prices. I always mentioned these remarks in subtle ways. Because it is my responsibility to know what I project, and others should make their own projections.

Now remember the guy I described above in Part One that I suspected manipulated the Chinese coin market? Wonder if he had a hand in this market? Wonder if he employed the same strategies to create a mini massive boom, and bust cycle within the British India Coin market. There was a buyer that I had blocked in addition to his 7+ cronies he used to employ these strategies above? Whenever I mentioned this to anybody there was only one guy that ever believed me.

The rest just thought I was crackers, crazy, but some of those guys sided with his logic, and they paid dearly. Because he was “educated”, I was not, and boy that guy sure did give them an education. Maybe some of those folks can pray to the heavens, the man upstairs, whoever that may be for anyone, that the prices will come back to what they paid or greater, and they can sell.

Coin Show Bins
Coin Show Bins

I guess what many didn’t realize at the time is that if I did let this person propel the market higher. The downturn would have been much worse than now or the losses would have been much greater, and sure I would have had greater profits. Has anybody seen the Chinese coin prices lately for common coins? OH MY MAN UPSTAIRS…..On top of that it wasn’t fair to my consumer base. I could give a damn less about who else ran their business their way, but I would not allow manipulation in my eBay auctions. I did everything in my power to keep prices at bay without his greedy hand going into the cookie jar.

Sooner or later “manipulato” got people to join him in his quest to boost prices, and essentially derailed my vision of fair competition. It was easy for him to recruit people. He only needed one person that didn’t like me, for the record I don’t give a damn who likes me, and then it would snowball into two separate camps. I always remember a line from a song, “If you were to govern or rule a certain industry. Right now this whole room would be in misery.”

image
Pridmore Ticket
1893 India Half Rupee Pridmore Pedigree

I never ruled or governed anything, but I planned much better than my competition. Which was nonexistent at the time because there was no market at all almost on ebay. I took the risk, and it worked out. But it could have blown up in my face dearly, and I would have suffered heavy losses. Think anyone would have tried to friend me then or ask me for advice? Hell no-

sooner or later I was at a point where I gave no information to anybody. Not that I was privy to information before anybody, but they were my thoughts, from my experiences, data points, research, and I work for no one. Be that my trading ideas were right or wrong didn’t matter me, and I presented data available to everybody as well in the past for risk buying decision. Luck does have to prevail as well quite often, and speculation is ever changing. I did freely share information in the the first year of trading coins. But that came back to haunt me in the future.

Note to self : there are no friends in competition for money, and competing for the best of anything in life. Second place means you lose. But that’s how life works, and I know I paid dearly many times financially. It’s tuition guys, for a lifelong education that never stops, and now I trust nobody. Nor do I communicate with anybody on a frequent basis as I once did.

My last eBay sale was 2013 or September. Matter of fact is was September, and a regular client tried to scam me. Because I blocked him, and he was colluding with others to manipulate prices. Probably with the same guy that I suspected colluding a year earlier. He won an auction under a newly created eBay username, and paid immediately. What the moron failed to do is put a street address into the eBay side of the user name. This went on for a few days, of course eBay sided with me, and case closed after some correspondence.

Someone with all the time on their hands, and no brains formulated this brilliant scheme. Which backfired, and I laughed so hard when he forgot to put the street address into his genius plan. He must have been practicing theses strategies from Homer Simpson “DOH” for many years as the negative feedback was removed, and good riddance of two headaches at once.

What was even crazier is the guy that was using another guy to do his dirty work was a regular buyer from me. I stopped selling to him because I suspected he was communicating with someone that I thought was trying to milk information from me indirectly, and more specifically the guy who had been trying to manipulate the market. Call me paranoid. Many did. But I was right. It took some time for my thoughts to transpire, but he eventually choose poorly as his puppeteers. He was their “chumcho” or danced as they said. But this is a young guy trying to make some cash, and money is blinding. Especially if you need some-

That last sale was the last straw for me, and I decided to close up shop on ebay. I sold British India and Republic coins for almost 24-27 months. It was time for me to go as I didn’t need these headaches anymore. I needed a break from one person telling me “to die” over and over,people getting pissed because I would not share my supply with them, reveal sources, multiple people accusing me of fixing prices, the drama, the drama between two cousins, and it all got old. I thought : really? Is this what this is about? I had every intention of returning to ebay, but sided against it, and soon it will be almost exactly one year. I don’t have time to babysit.

The final coin I sold for $200+ I donated the money to a charity via eBay. Here is the description I had written :

“Dear Malala,

I can’t end an auction on November 10th 2013 because i’ll be in India, and can end an auction on September 8th in your spirit. It’s a month or so before your one year anniversary homegirl that the United Nations declared November 10th as “Malala Day”. I’m leaving my home on September 12th to travel near London, and that was the place of your recovery that took place last year. I’m requesting the person who wins this auction to please pay immediately as I’m not going to be here to ship the item after the 11th of September. “0” bidders are NOT welcome, and those that are blocked are not welcome either. Respect my terms. Please visit this auction more than once you “Toning Freaks” and “Nons” to show your support to Malala as the “hit counter” at the bottom of the page will increase every time you or anybody you tell revisits this auction. This auction I encourage bidders to bid it to the moon!

So anyways, I hope your recovery has been well, and It’s almost time for “Malala Day” again. We should have had this day probably from the beginning of time. But it’s easy to be one of my friends Hindsight Harry or Hindsight Henry. Both of these names are in my phone of my friends that always say “could have should have would have”, and I do the same thing at times. It’s really f&$kin sad that your life had almost been taken away from your family, and all of us throughout the world who never knew you. Even though I didn’t know anything about you,  I heard there was an attempt on your life, I teared up, two different times, and read more about you. I read about how your father was a great influence in shaping your values, and how you wanted to be a Dr.

It pissed me off so much what those people did to you that I wanted to do the same thing to them as they had done to you in my mind, and that wouldn’t be right. Nor am I like them at all. If I was I would be like them “Latifah” HomeGirl which in Arabic means “delicate” and “very kind”. I can’t believe how selfish people can/could be when they can’t have their way. But you, a brave young soul/girl that is a fraction of their age combated unfairness with her unselfish convictions, and did it with wisdom. Non Violent Educational Awareness. You know there were a couple of other sages that professed the same principles as you Malala. Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. come to mind. “Mahatma” which means “great soul” is a title which he bestowed on you as well. How do I know this? I was sitting with him while he was spinning cotton on his Charkha at Sabarmati Ashram in Ahmedabad in my imagination, he told me to tell you that his soul shines on you, and he still lives through you in the conscience world.

I CAN believe how you stood up to inequality as wisdom sometimes isn’t measured in age. Yet should be measured by “The Content of His/Her Character” like Dr. King once said before he was assassinated. You stood up to those bullies who are bullies for no reason, and here cometh the long overdue change for ya’ll. Don’t worry about them, and I know you don’t/never did. They are a bunch of “haters” that drink “HATERADE” for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I hope you become whatever your educational heart desires, what a great stance you have taken for the women of your country, and humanity in general. Maybe the government of Syria could learn to be strong and not oppress the weak like Hammurabi stated in his code. You touched my soul homegirl. I’m gonna put my money where my mouth is homegirl. I’m gonna donate 100% of the proceeds of this coin/auction to EQUALITY NOW in New York. I can’t get the funds to you directly, but in spirit i’ll get the money to a place that believes in the following:

“Equality Now works to end violence and discrimination against women and girls around the world through the mobilization of public pressure. Issues of concern to Equality Now include: rape, domestic violence, reproductive rights, trafficking, female genital mutilation, political participation and gender discrimination.”

Malala. Keep spreading that positiveness with the one thing as you have from the beginning: awareness/education

Someday Malala I’m gonna do something as brave/great as you, i’m gonna strive to do it, and thanks for inspiring me. I’ll never forget you, and neither will this world. Good thing you didn’t end up a martyr like Martin, like Mohandas, the world needs more Malalas here today, and going forward. You be that Dr. you wanna be homegirl, and Dr. King is smiling at you as well Malala. My imagination played chess with him yesterday, he checkmated me in 23 moves, and he told me that he is proud of you Malala. Thanks for inspiring all of us, I’m starting to tear up again, and I gotta go.

Sincerely,

Sanjay”

1938 Rupee Reverse

What I could never grasp was how a single 1938 MS 65 Rupee sold for $3000 at Steven Album’s auction. At that point I suspected the market had peaked. But then again that’s how a market functions, fluctuates, and there were literally two guys pumping the hell out of that date. Could it be the puppet, and his master? “Anything is possible.” His favorite saying I mean someone’s saying. Anyways. In addition to : 1911, 1921, and 1922 in not such high grades. They were common in certain grades, but not so common in gem grades at the time.

To show what a good sport I was I unblocked two guys that had tried to manipulate the market in the first place. Why? Because the market couldn’t climb any further, and I knew the price action made no sense to them. But they bought very lightly, and sold common coins when they could for big money by really screwing anyone they could. The “chumcho” was buying 1918 India Gold Sovereigns from one guy, and had to have taken a bath if he held the for a long period. His money supply as a trader was waning, it does take large bankroll to trade coins most of the time, and the market was slowly declining.

With people losing interest, and prices slumping. We were about to enter the third part of the David Fore sale. Everybody was waiting for business strikes, and needless to say the line up was quite disappointing. Most of my purchases were made in the first sale as I thought Original PROOF coins offered great potential for the future. Patterns I stayed away from because they have a very limited market, that’s what my data said, and they have lost some value as well but you never know with thin markets. Restrikes have gotten absolutely buried, and one collector told me there were thousands of them back in 2012. He was right as I sold most my restrikes in the fall of 2012.

Once the Fore auctions were over it seemed that the prices were ready to stabilize. But too much supply had entered the marketplace, and there would be a slew of coins on eBay from one seller which probably spooked many buyers from absorbing more coins. Many may have said to themselves : Why are there 2 William RS 1/2 Rupee’s for sale in two weeks? It really was crazy what was available in a two week period, but that’s how a collectables market functions. The supply is as random as the price swings. Nobody really knows what will show up at any given time, and what will happen.

1947 Lahore Rupee and other denominations

Nowadays I still buy and sell coins. Indian coins are not as active as they once were for a number of reasons. The BSE or Indian Stock Market has been rising from many years of depressed levels, and new political hope. Hence many speculators lost interest or dumped coin holdings. It’s absolutely evident in the Republic India Proof set market where prices took a major hit. Next came a slow erosion of Victoria and George 5th Rupees. George 5th may have taken the worst beating, and sure someone could do an analysis. But then again that’s how a market functions, and what goes up must come down.

As a speculator there are less opportunities or value in British India as I see it today than before. It’s less liquid for certain, unless something is really rare. I still find value from time to time but have added very little in comparison to my holdings as compared in the past. On a side note, Randy Weir did sell his 1911 India Proof set. I saw it in his case at the beginning of the Chicago ANA, and mid way through. It was gone, and it was sold-

Happy whatever you do with coins-