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About CaptBrian

  • Boards Title
    If I just sell the car, I can up my bid...

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  • Occupation
    Retired collector
  • Hobbies
    Numismatics,Travel,Photog, Foreign Languages, Investing & Economics...Astronomy, Horology,
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  1. Best of luck in your retirement. It took me a long time to get used to it. I would say between 7 to 9 seconds. I did many things during my pre-retirement time, and one thing I did was start collecting early. It's fun, and likely there are coin clubs very near you. I have 3 closeby and that makes it fun. I noticed you don't have a 1907 St. G, High relief, wire rim. It's the belle of my ball. Good luck and have fun Capt Brian
  2. Canadian border guards stop coin returns. A friend of ours in Canada needs our help. Every time he sends a coin for grading from Canada to Sarasota, the border guards give him so much grief in proving the coin he is receiving back is the one he sent. It is creating so much trouble, he no longer sends coins for verification. I think this should be clarified and there must be a method so that this friend of ours can send coins to NGC without problem. Does anyone know what do to? Capt. Brian To see old comments for this Journal entry, click here. New comments can be added below.
  3. CaptBrian


    Go for the gold (and silver) COIN COLLEGE. TANGIBLE, DIVERSIFIED, PROTECTION GO FOR THE GOLD (& SILVER*) With all the contrasting investments available, how does one settle on a particular component of available choices? Some of the choices may be physical bullion, being that coins, bars or even a paper investment. There are also many paper investments such as ETF's, stock in mining companies, futures (like a farmer or speculator) and so on. Rare coins, both raw and more. There are many benefits of precious metal for retirement and fun. The thing to do is to determining lastly, the best time to get happily involved. Beginning gold collectors should look first to gold bullion - especially gold bullion coins minted by a recognized national mint. Gold American Eagles are the #1 most popular gold bullion coins in the world. The 22 Karat Gold American Eagles sell at the prevailing price of gold bullion plus small manufacturing and distribution costs. The next most popular gold bullion coins are produced by: Canada (24K Maple Leaf ), Austria (24K Philharmonic), and South Africa (22K Krugerrand. There are other countries producing similar coins but with a lot of counterfeiting going on globally, stick to the known coins for now. Once you settle on a dealer or source of your investments, then his integrity should be enough. American Eagles are easy to buy and sell at most coin and precious metals dealers and are welcome in major investment markets worldwide. Many buyers demand the high degree of liquidity and lower dealer buy-sell spreads that American Eagles offer. COMPARING YOUR PHYSICAL GOLD OPTIONS Jewelry is the customary Old Worlds medium for a family's primary savings. However, jewelry is seldom pure ( 24karat) gold, usually starting with 14 karat. Bullion bars & coins are internationally recognized forms of pure gold or near pure (22 karat) gold in concentrated form. The bullion dealer or national mint is your guarantee of authenticity. The disadvantage is little possibility of gains or losses much greater than bullion prices unless a low mintage bullion coin becomes popular later and developed a collector premium. Numismatic coins are the concentrated forms of wealth - so that more value can be saved in smaller space. Over time, quality numismatic coins generally grow faster than bullion in price. According to a recent 30 year study by Penn State economics professor Raymond Lombra. A basket of 3000 rare coins called the PCGS 3000 index, far outperformed gold bullion during the 1970 to 2013 time frame. Rare Coins play a major role in diversication of ones gold collection. Comparing Your PAPER GOLD OPTIONS Let's start with: Futures Contracts are traded on the commodity exchange (COMEX)(NYMEX) for about five hours each business day. The gold contract is for 100 troy ounces, quoted in dollars. Exchange Traded Funds (ETF) contain an amount of bullion equal to the shifts in demand for fund shares. Shares trade at one-tenth the price of bullion ( i.e. $160 per share if gold is at $1,600). the transactions are quick and secure, but you hold no actual gold, Make sure ETF actually has the Physical Gold. Gold Shares trade like any other stock, based on investment demand vs. the supply of shares. With specific gold shares, investors must examine the management and deposits with an eye toward fraud or overstatement, as happened with Bre-X shares. Some mining companies hedge their gold, defeating the purpose of protecting from golds rise. In general, gold mines rise when gold bullion rises, since gold mining leverages gains in gold price, but that is not always the case. When gold rose rapidly in 2008, gold shares did not follow, declining 70% in six months. In recent years, gold shares have continued to decline, even though gold has risen for 12 straight years. In another column, we will discuss, 'How to find a coin dealer you can trust'. Dealers or Financial competitors who bad mouth the coin market or other dealers typically have many deficiencies themselves. When bad mouthing is present say what they say in Missouri "show me" to both competitors for your business. Give both dealers a chance to provide a response and proof of memberships,awards, accreditations and service. In most cases, the "bad mouthing" dealers or financial competitors are seriously deficient in credibility or their accusations are seriously mis-characterized, outdated orblatantly false. *The text would also apply to silver coins. FYI (Au is the symbol for Gold and Ag is for silver) PM is the short form for Precious Metals In my next journal, I will go over looking at the economy and U.S.Dollar values looking at things like real inflation and how it drives or hurts the precious metal price, the base of our coin investments and collection values. Stay tuned. Capt. Brian
  4. Absolutely no umbrage here. My article was to warn, and yours helps. Brian
  5. Absolutely fantastic! I am searching for several coins and I know how daunting it can be. This year my one foray into the SE was truncated by my wife deciding to get apendicitis in North Carolina just as I began a search in that area for a Bechtel mint goldie. Great going Brian
  6. Counterfeit hides in many guises As most of you know, I do a lot of trading and running around the country and world looking for that elusive billion dollar coin. Usually I buy something and am lucky to get my money back not to mention expenses. Unfortunately or fortunately, whatever your bent is, I was long ago bitten by the gold bug. Starting about 1988 I began collecting silver and gold when I could get them and on the path strewn with potholes and landmines I am, I believe ahead of the game. The other day I came across a hoard of 8 coins and was able to buy them for a little over gold price. Some, right at melt value. Sometimes I can even get them for 10% or so under gold price. And since the purchase, I watched gold sink further to a 6 year low, where silver is so far under water I have not got a description to metaphor it yet. ANYWAY, I bought some nice looking coins and planned to send them off for grading. I like to have raw gold coins graded for two reasons: 1) To be sure they are real. and 2) To hopefully find that one that is worth billions and billions. I do not know if it is the collector factor, the greed factor, or the ego factor that keeps me on the trail of the holy grail of coins but sometimes it leads me to the brink of the pit. For a while there (after buying another counterfeit coin) I swore off buying raw coins forever. (or at least until the next coin show) So, this time, a trusted fellow calls me and has 8 coins. So I hop in the trusty time machine and go to his locale. The coins look great. So I bought all 8 for $3200. Two real hopefuls were $1 and $3 goldies that looked GREAT! I got a couple of Indians and a couple of Liberty heads,a St. Gaudens $20, and three others rather generic looking libs and Indians. Using the grading book used by ANA and well respected, I sat there and inspected the coins as best as I could and determined they were okay and bought the mini-hoard. At the first coin show, the picture blurred as two dealers picked out 4 of the 8 to be counterfeit or not real. Then I marked the flips as questionable and again, let two other dealers go over them and they okayed some and culled some. No real agreement. One dealer said, not enough detail on this one and tossed it aside. Another and another came by and after the show I stopped at several coin shops and again, no agreement on good or bad coins. Some dealers offered to buy them at nice profits.... Well, I did not want them to be calling me or the cops for selling bad stuff, so I kept them to let NGC figure it out. Well, today the box came back. (I knew results as they were posted to me well before receipt of the coins. You know the drill. SO... look at the picture, and you see the pain.. One of then seven submitted was real, the rest were marked not genuine. GASP! One other, the St. G was real and sold for $1100.00. This leaves me 6 to hopefully break even. The one that did grade was a nice coin worth about $950 or so, the 1890 $10 Liberty, so not all was lost. I can make up about $200 to $500 depending on whether I sell it wholesale to a dealer, or retail to a coin buff. Well, this is the reason I refuse to pay much over melt value. I can ascertain that they are gold, and the content thereof so if the worse happens, as it did this time, I can at least recover my costs minus the dice roll for the $30 each for grading and mail. Oh well. I am going to try to sell these at shows this month to bail out my friend who also got snared when he bought these, and they will be sold with a copy of the report from NGC and the guarantee that the gold content is what it is. Failing that, I will take them back to where I got them, and get a refund. So, here is what you need to do when purchasing raw coins: 1) Weigh coins and be sure of proper weight. That will insure at LEAST it is gold and you can get melt anytime. 2) Be sure you know your seller and that he will take them back if found to be bogus. This means, you and your supplier must trust each other. There are many devious ways to cheat. 3) Take a picture with a digital camera so that coins returned as bogus can be identified without question. 4) Know your buyer, and guarantee him that you will repurchase them within 30 days for any reason, or anytime if found to be counterfeit. Be sure you have a digital picture so buyer cannot replace your good coin with a bad one similar in grade. There are so many counterfeit coins, if you do any kind of searching at all, you WILL come across them. With proper precautions, you can save your reputation, and your wallet. I could write volumes about this subject, but suffice for now to remind you all to be vigilant to your purchases and sales. Happy searching Brian To see old comments for this Journal entry, click here. New comments can be added below.
  7. I have received many awards from NGC. Every one I bragged about, every one I love to show off at coin shows. (Isn't that what coin shows are for?) I will continue to use every tool in my bag to enhance my collection as some of my journals show. BUT B U T !!! Every single one of my awards were like having a baby you did not plan for. Usually those are the best. I have not won much during my life, which is about as generic as all the rest of the folks I know. I will never be president, nor will I be made a deacon or pope. I will never be made the Man of the hour nor be 'roasted' as it were. So, when a new baby arrives in the mail, like my coin awards or the writers award, it is like a gift from God. I cherish my accomplishments and try to share them with others. It isn't a brag if its fact. So, my fine new friend. I urge you to bask in whatever light you can shine upon yourself. Life's accomplishments are far too few to hide any under a basket. As long as you got those 'awards' fair and square. why hide your light? . Go for it. Now if it would make you feel better, I have some 'president' coins. If you would share them with me what you need, if I have them, they are yours at no cost. Hows that? Your new friend Capt Brian.
  8. Free money for coins. IRS happy too Coin collectors gather round. Hear ye, hear ye, hear ye!. I know, the biggest issue facing us today is how to get money for our collections without stripping our household budget to the bone, leave the Christmas fund alone, the college fund where it can grow and so on and so forth. I retired three years or so ago, and have found that two things loom in my mind that I want to do. One: To travel and two: to grow my coin collection to the highest attainable level in my power. But there was a tremendous conflict. How can I do both without scouring the bottom of the barrel to accomplish same? Well, the answer came to me at a tax meeting a few years ago with my tax man as I was planning my retirement. I asked him how i could travel to the far flung corners of the world in my quest of travel, and keep looking in odd places for my coins? He didn't know the answer so he dusted off his long forgotten volumes of IRS lore and same up with the simple answer. The IRS does not look at your hobby the same as a business so you do have to be careful if you are looking for deductions from the expenses involved with your quest for coins. Or any other hobby for that matter IF you decide to make money from your hobby. If you plan to make a profit, you should claim your profits as those things is how our country runs its business. You know, making aircraft carriers and paying the IRS agents etc. and so on and so forth. You would not want them to run up a deficit would you? Of course not. So, here is how you do it. Keep a simple log, ledger, or even like I do, on an electronic medium like quicken. I like that the best as it is easy to make reports and makes my tax paying easy. I also keep every scrap of paper. Guess what? At coin shows many do not make receipts available nor do they want to. So, a simple note of what you paid or got paid for an item will suffice to the fellow or lady whom inspects your taxes. By the way, that is called an audit if you did not know. Yup, no matter what, you probably do not believe or even know how much you actually spend on collecting coins. Some folks go at it with much greater fervor than others. Take me for instance. I make forays to a number of states JUST for the express purpose of finding coins. The quest is a lot of the fun of collecting for me. Call it the hunt if you like. Some big game hunters just like the hunt and when they corner the game, they actually lift a loaded rifle or bow and arrow, draw back and get set, ready and let the beast amble off into the woods. My lovely wife Helen and I did that in Ranthambore National Wildlife Refuge in India. Went out in the jungle the day before the big hunt, the guide showed us how to hunt a tiger. We listened, watched and went back to the camp. The next day, Helen went first, she did all the right things, got a tigeress in her sights, pulled the trigger and got off a wonderful shot, just right and took the best picture of a stalking tiger you ever saw. It took most of the day. The next day, it was my turn, and I did pretty good, but never got close enough to get off a shot. With our camera of course. It is the same with looking for coins, for me, it is the hunt. I love probing the back roads of America for that elusive long lost rare coin. You remember, of course, our truncated journey to the Carolinas looking for a Bechtel mint coin earlier this year when Helen got the tummy thing. She is still recovering. I will need to check out just how much of the costs of her stay in the hospital and my motels will be deductible against coin profits this year. Perhaps all if I read the letter of the law correctly. So, here is the bottom line: You may deduct all expenses in buying a coin. Postage, coin show costs, fuel, motels and so on. Now here is the catch, rub, rules and so on. Of course, I am not a tax man, so do not tell the IRS that I said so. Always check with your rule book, it may be different than mine. ANY coin related expense is deductible against the profit you made selling it. ANY costs not directly related to buying coins will NOT be deducted from your coin profit. Let us say you are going to your Aunt Tillie and her Annual Graduation Week for Elephant Training School, 2000 miles away from your house. On the way you hear of a coin show a bit off your intended track. The costs per mile, any extras you have to pay to get to the show or coin, even if you do not make a purchase is deductible against your profits for the year. The main trip to your aunts home is NOT deductible. ONLY the extras you encountered. This is why you need to carry a notebook so your deviation can be recorded and deducted. Now here is the rub. If your year showed a loss and your quests netted you more expenses looking for coins than you made in profits, too bad pilgrim. You have to eat those losses. You cannot deduct more than you made. Its the same with lottery or gambling debts. You can deduct from winnings ONLY. So, no win, no losses accepted by IRS. Sorry, but they make the rules. Don't wanna play, then don't make money. You can ONLY deduct as much as you made AND NO MORE! That should be quite simple huh? Oh, within my understanding, you cannot move losses forward like you do with stock and other investments. Sorry again. :^( Now up til this year, I have simply estimated profits and losses. Last year, due to extreme trading and investing, much more than selling, I know I did not have a net profit for 2014 and said so on the form, and the IRS accepted my estimate. This year, my guy says not so fast. This year he wants an itemized list well reported or there may be an investigation by the collection agency we all know so well. So, I have been dutifully keeping all receipts and am now in the tedious task of entering them in my quicken ledger. I now wish I was more fastidious during the year as I had no idea how much I would be involved with coins. This got insane. At this writing I have NO idea how many coins came and went. It was like a metro station as coins were traded in an out in big numbers. Frinstance, this month I bought 400 coins just for resale to get money for my main quest of one of a kinders and raries. Are those words"? I hope so, cause I am leavin them in there. haha Which leads me to the main theme of this journal. MONEY! Yup, if you want to find a way to get free money for buying coins for your keepsies, then buy and trade other coins with your stash money, college funds etc. Then just use the profits for coins to keep. That is what I am doing. ONE THING! Before you go and do a lot of speculating with your hard earned and needed savings, be sure you have a coin sold before you buy it, or be durned sure you got it at a sub retail price. DO NOT speculate with savings. This is NOT what I am saying. There are myriad ways nowadays to find out what is a great price and what you can resell an item for. Do not get sucked in because you are on the hunt. Keep the emotion out of it until you find a keeper, then you are using profit money and you are not reselling it so if you over pay a bit, its not so important. To see old comments for this Journal entry, click here. New comments can be added below.
  9. Not yet. But I may be selling a set of MOY signature silver eagles. MS70 Burnished or regular. got about 2oo of them at a special sale the other day Got 100 burnished and 100 regular