Proxiblog Books Available on Kindle

Click book covers to place order

Online Coin Auctioneering:
for dealers, estate and eBay sellers

cover_coinauctioneering

Online Coin Auctioneering is intended for eBayers who sell coins and for estate auctioneers considering or already selling on a portal such as AuctionZip, iCollector or Proxibid. Much of the advice also pertains to online coin dealer auctions. Selling coins online is complex, but knowing the basics will get you started in a rewarding hobby or side business. Moreover, online selling is safer than vending at a local antiques mall or coin show where you can lose your entire inventory from theft or other calamity. Better still, you can sell online from the privacy of your home and enjoy the process of contributing to the world’s greatest hobby.


Basic Coin Design


cover1

Michael Bugeja, columnist for Coin World and reporter for Coin Update News, shares results of a comprehensive study of all U.S. Mint circulating coinage, identifying the placement and artistic effect of dates, denominations, legends, mottoes, symbols and other devices. The result is a startlingly helpful analysis of basic design questions, such as “How to Tell Heads from Tails” (difficult on some coins) or “Why the Morgan dollar is the most popular collected coin.” The book has two sections, one devoted to the study and the other a detailed discussion of basic design elements, such as the privy mark or the three-sided canvas of a coin (obverse, reverse, edge). Learn coin design from a top numismatic writer and enjoy the hobby of collecting from an entirely different and enlightened perspective.


Announcement and Thank-You to our Viewers

thanks


Proxiblog has been posting now for almost four years on a daily weekday basis, explaining numismatics to newcomers to the portal and advocating for best practices. It has been a labor of love with more than 750 posts and thousands of coin photos and screenshots. In recent months, however, we have been noticing that we are repeating the same best practices–low buyer’s premium, sharp photographs, reasonable shipping, etc.–and bemoaning the same bad practices, ranging from fake California gold to outrageous estimates of value. We think our job has been done.

We also believe we made a positive impact on Proxibid. As such, we will cease daily weekday and only publish occasionally thereafter.

This month our rankings list in the left sidebar represents our “All-Time Favorite Auctions,” those that have been included in our top 20 throughout much of our existence.

We are truly grateful for the thousands of viewers and followers worldwide. We deeply appreciate auction companies that have donated to our scholarship fund. If you feel we have made an impact on your business or have advanced numismatics and the hobby, we ask that you make a contribution by clicking here.

You can also order any of our books on coin design and online auctioneering. Both are available on Amazon Kindle. Online Coin Auctioneering is intended for eBayers who sell coins and for estate auctioneers considering or already selling on a portal such as AuctionZip, iCollector or Proxibid. Basic Coin Design analyzes every coin minted by the US Government, in terms of design characteristics and appeal.

If you enjoy our posts about the hobby, remember you can still access content on Coin Update News (Coingrader Capsule) and Coin World (Home Hobbyist).

Finally, we appreciate Proxibid, especially is excellent customer service division–best in the online business–and hope we have helped enhance its quality control and brand of trust.

Thank you and happy bidding and auctioneering!

Proxiblog is an independent entity with no connection to the auction portal Proxibid. Our intent is to uphold basic numismatic standards as established by the American Numismatic Association and the National Auctioneer Association and to ensure a pleasurable bidding experience not only on Proxibid but also on similar portals such as iCollector and AuctionZip.

New House Vastly Overestimates Coin Values

outrageous2

We continue to see new houses on Proxibid believe they can guess at or exaggerate coin values in lot descriptions. This one, however, must believe in the hyped values, because he opens with a bid between 50-100% more than retail value of the coins.


Retail value of a 1923 Peace Dollar is $52, not $300-$400 with an opening bid pegged at $100 (inflated more with a 19% buyer’s premium). If a person won this lot on opening bid, the overpayment would tally $67 (without shipping).

Here’s a screenshot of the PCGS retail value for this exact coin:

outrageous4

The auction house also exaggerates worth of an NGC-holdered coins, as in this screenshot:

outrageous

Here’s another screenshot of this exact coin with the retail value set by NGC, the company that graded this particular coin:

outrageous1

As we continue to state, auctioneers who sell coins need to know how to cite value. PCGS values are high because its standards are among the most rigorous in the industry. NGC, also considered a top-tier company with high standards, commands premiums for its coins. However, its standards differ from those of PCGS, so it is also inappropriate to cite PCGS values for NGC coins.

ANACS and ICG are second-tier, mostly reliable grading companies. You should cite Red Book prices for them.

Here are the URLS:

As we have written in past posts, if you spot gross inaccuracies like the one above, report them to Proxibid and ask the company to alter the Unified User Agreement “4.4 Marketing and Accuracy of Materials” (OUR RECOMMENDATION IN ALL CAPS):

    Seller shall not knowingly misrepresent any items. VALUES OF ITEMS SHOULD BE BASED ON VALID APPRAISALS OR VERIFIABLE DATA. All catalog descriptions must accurately describe the items for sale, and all photos must be original. If Seller uses stock photos, Seller must disclose so in the catalog description as well as in the Special Terms of Sale for the auction.

Until Proxibid cracks down on these practices, as eBay has done, bidders will suffer, and so eventually will the reputation of auction houses that persist in these questionable practices.

Proxiblog is an independent entity with no connection to the auction portal Proxibid. Our intent is to uphold basic numismatic standards as established by the American Numismatic Association and the National Auctioneer Association and to ensure a pleasurable bidding experience not only on Proxibid but also on similar portals such as iCollector and AuctionZip.

Boos & Booyahs: Best & Bad Auctioneer Lot Descriptions

It’s important to be in sync with the Proxibid technology to showcase your photos, hone your lot descriptions, and highlight your consignments for top bids on the leading portal! In the latest installment, Proxiblog laments bad auctioneer lot descriptions and praises the best in recent auctions. (Be sure to click pictures to expand and view lot descriptions below.)


bidalot_box

Booyah BidAlot Auction! for noting that this U.S. Mint product box is damaged, lacking a cover. Depending on the product, such as a GSA Dollar Box, these items also have value.


cleaningnotnoted

Boo! to this auction house for neglecting to note the harsh cleaning on a purported deep mirror prooflike Morgan dollar. The photo is subpar and does not show luster. No coin is as beautiful as a DMPL Morgan and none has ugly when cleaned, as scratches mar the mirror surface, as probably the case here–assuming, of course, that this is a DMPL coin.


fake_gold

Boo! to this auction company for insisting on selling counterfeit and replica California fractional gold. Beware of these fake California gold products that have plagued the hobby since the 19th century. If you see a bear on the reverse without a dollar or fraction of a dollar designation, it is a fake.


goldflake_boo

Boo! to this unnamed auction house that sells vials of gold flake. The gold, if it is gold, is atomic level thin (one of the properties of gold is its malleability). If you run an acid test on the flake, it will dissolve. You are buying a vial of glitter not hardly worth anything except as decoration.


hyped

Boo! to this auction house for hyping bottom-tier and self-slabbed coins as worth gazillions of dollars, or $28,000 in this case, for an 1882-O that is not MS67 but most probably MS62-63, with bag marks readily visible even on the thumbnail photo. This auction house continually hypes these lots using PCGS values, another gross infraction.


northernillinois_wheelmarks

Booyah Northern Illinois Coin! for noting damage, in this case, a wheelmark. This type of damage is often overlooked in the description. That’s not the case here.


PVC Damage

Boo! to this auction house for not noting PVC Damage. That’s the green slime that happens with a coin reacts with an old plastic flip.


rims_silvertown

Booyah SilverTowne Auction! for noting rim damage on its coins. Would that more houses did the same!


RJ_books

Booyah RJ’s Auction! for a detailed list of coins in the descriptions, documented by visual evidence in clear, expandable photographs. A detailed description is always necessary when selling a set of coins, including any missing key dates. All of that is done here.


starcoins_cleaning

Booyah Star Coin and Currency! noting cleaning, so difficult to tell on a gold coin and almost always omitted from the description by a vast number of houses. Cleaning greatly devalues gold, by the way, and is especially important to note and also to depict in a sharp photo, as Star Coin does here.


Viewers can point us to other candidates for our “Boos & Booyahs!” series. Just leave a comment but follow our rules–all in good fun as a way to inspire accurate lot descriptions on Proxibid. Tomorrow we will showcase the best lot descriptions. Stay tuned!


Proxiblog is an independent entity with no connection to the auction portal Proxibid. Our intent is to uphold basic numismatic standards as established by the American Numismatic Association and the National Auctioneer Association and to ensure a pleasurable bidding experience not only on Proxibid but also on similar portals such as iCollector and AuctionZip.

Proxiblog is sponsored by …

Capitol Coin Auction


capitol

Check out Capitol Coin Auction’s upcoming auction slated Saturday, Oct. 25, on Proxibid. This is one of the finest Capitol auctions in recent memory. We’re bidding on multiple lots that have wide appeal.

Capitol Auctions, located in Evansville, Indiana, specializes in coin auctions. The company has more than 35 years’ experience in collecting, investing, and grading rare coins. Moreover, Capitol has numismatic quality photographs and accurate lot descriptions so that seller and bidder are informed transparently about value. Because Capitol relies in part on estate consignments, each Proxibid auction is an event, with top-quality silver and gold coins open for bidding.

Proxiblog has won lots from Capitol for the past three years, and its service is quick and professional. Raw coins purchased from Capitol, accurately described as grade-worthy, typically holder for us at PCGS. That said, bidding is always keen because of the desirability of the lots as well as the legwork that the company does for consignors, ensuring an audience and adding to the excitement online or onsite.

In addition to sharp photos and concise lot descriptions, Capitol publishes a catalog showcasing coins and informs bidders via an extensive mailing list. For large consignments, Capitol advertises in national periodicals like Coin World and Numismatic News.

Finally, Capitol Auctions is committed to providing a safe auction experience for buyers and sellers. It has a comprehensive privacy policy and its employees are trained to honor safeguard measures and the importance of confidentiality of personal information.

We thank Brad Lisembee and Capitol Coin Auctions for sponsoring Proxiblog’s scholarship fund to help ease student debt and create the next generation of auction-house bidders! If you would like to sponsor a week’s worth of Proxiblog, email mjbugeja@yahoo.com

Know Your Key Dates

grammarfolks

We marvel at this auction house that lists so many lots as “rare key date,” wondering what would happen if he actually listed a rare key date. Well, he did. And the language suffered for it.


“Very Fine Very Rare Key Date,” read the lot descriptions for common Type I Buffalo Nickels in low condition, worth only about $25-$50 each on a good day. Then came the 1913-S Type II, a real key date. And the description? “Very Fine Very Rarest Key Date!”

The lot description should have read: “VF Key Date.”

No need to use “rare” with “key date.” All key dates are rare.

Better still, spend some time describing condition, including acid-treated Buffalo nickels, if appropriate.

The more you hype, the less buyers with numismatic experience will trust your events.

Proxiblog is an independent entity with no connection to the auction portal Proxibid. Our intent is to uphold basic numismatic standards as established by the American Numismatic Association and the National Auctioneer Association and to ensure a pleasurable bidding experience not only on Proxibid but also on similar portals such as iCollector and AuctionZip.

Grading Nostalgia Connection

Nostalgia

We will run occasional grading checks on Proxibid auctions so you can see how we bid based on condition. These coins are from Nostalgia Connection’s Oct. 21 session. We grade on PCGS standards as found on Photograde, admittedly more conservative than grading of most auctioneers but still the standard in numismatics. Click pictures below to expand.

We call a coin:

    1945-S

    “Very Fine” if will grade at NGC or PCGS at the VF30-35 level. We agree with this grade, but always look at the reverse photo to check if the 1945-S has the scarcer “mico S” mint mark. You can learn more about that by clicking here.


    1905_rimdingAU_agreed

    “Almost Uncirculated” if will grade at NGC or PCGS at the AU50-58 level. We agree with this grade, AU50, and appreciate that the seller has noted the rim-ding flaw in the description.


    1909_fine

    Fine” if it would grade between F12-15 at a major holdering company. Once more, we agree with this grade, though the coin is a bit scruffy and might merit a Very Good 10.


    1915_VG_agreed_reverse

    VERY GOOD if it would grade VG7-10 range on the Sheldon scale. We always check the reverse for buffalo nickels, and the seller includes that for our analysis. We agree.


    1942_UNC_noreversephoto

    Uncirculated” if it grades Unc. 60-63. (Unc. 64 is choice uncirculated, Unc. 65-66 gem, Unc.67 super gem). The auctioneer calls this MS64, but we can’t judge beyond uncirculated, especially since in this one case the reverse photo is missing.


    1902_agree

    Extra Fine” if it grades EF40-48 range. The coin is damaged, and the auctioneer notes that as polished. We see polishing and environmental or chemical damage.


    Generally, in our subjective but nonetheless expert opinion, we feel Nostalgia Connection is accurate to PCGS standards in almost all of its lots. This stands in contrast to several auction houses on Proxibid, many of which do not mention flaws. Nostalgia Connection has a reasonable 15% buyer’s premium, ships within two days and uses Auction Payment Network. We’re impressed!

    We hope to see better consignments in the future. Photos can be clearer to show luster, and again should not be taken on a slant, however sight.

    As noted, grading is in part subjective, and is difficult to do via online photographs. Our designations are based on how we bid and why. Thus, the overall grade on Nostalgia Connection’s grading based on our criteria: A.

    Proxiblog is an independent entity with no connection to the auction portal Proxibid. Our intent is to uphold basic numismatic standards as established by the American Numismatic Association and the National Auctioneer Association and to ensure a pleasurable bidding experience not only on Proxibid but also on similar portals such as iCollector and AuctionZip.