NumisMedia Market Report: MS 65 Saints Offer a Golden Opportunity

Posted on 3/14/2011

Since the beginning of 2005, gold has soared upward from just over $400 an ounce to the $1,400 mark. At one point it reached a high of $1,430 during inter-day trading. As the price of gold has increased by $1,000 per ounce, it is interesting to note how $20 Saints have fared over the same timeframe.

The Saint Gaudens is perhaps the most sought after gold coin the U.S. Mint has ever produced. As such, dealers, collectors, and investors are always looking for the very best quality for their money. We selected the MS 65 grade because of its superior quality and affordability. The following chart shows prices of common date $20 Saints in MS 65 from July 2005 to the current date.

In July 2005 the MS 65 Saint had an FMV of $1,300 while gold was listed at $432. Common MS 65 Saints were trading at just $868 over the price of bullion. That is a premium of over 300%. The MS 60 showed an FMV of only $600, just $168 above the spot price. This indicates a premium of 139%. Two years later the MS 65 listed FMV at $1,490 while gold was $651. The difference this time was $839, or a premium of 229%. The MS 60 was then listed at $820 or $169 over spot gold, a premium of 126%.

Below is a comparison of the Fair Market Value for MS 60 and MS 65 common $20 Saints, along with the price of gold bullion for selected months.

Date FMV MS 60 Saint FMV MS 65 Saint Gold Spot
July 2005 $600 $1,300 $432
January 2006 $710 $1,640 $513
July 2006 $830 $1,680 $614
January 2007 $810 $1,510 $632
July 2007 $820 $1,490 $651
January 2008 $1,110 $1,700 $834
July 2008 $1,140 $1,770 $930
January 2009 $1,310 $1,840 $870
July 2009 $1,480 $2,340 $935
January 2010 $1,650 $2,850 $1,088
July 2010 $1,680 $2,340 $1,244
January 2011 $1,810 $2,520 $1,406

The actual high point for MS 65 Saints was reached in December 2009 when the FMV rose to $3,120. Spot gold was listed at $1,190 at that time. The premium was 262%; quite a markup over the actual gold content. These higher premiums were a result of our downward spiraling economy as investors jumped into the coin market. The demand for all gold products was extremely high and supplies became somewhat thin. In November 2010, gold reached its all-time high of $1,421 and MS 65 Saints were trading at an FMV of $2,700. The premium was only 190%, which seems like a bargain compared to a year earlier when gold was $230 less. The best possible explanation for this anomaly is that there were so many buyers for common gold coins that the high grade MS 65 Saints were being ignored. The majority of buyers were looking for coins that had the lowest premiums, such as the Modern Eagles, Buffalo Gold and Modern $5 and $10 gold coins.

The current FMV for $20 Saints is $2,550 in MS 65 and gold is at $1,414 (at time of printing), which makes the premium 180%. Further, the FMV for MS 60 Saints is currently $1,840. Many dealers and investors feel the $710 difference is minimal for the opportunity to own a coin that is superior in every way and will move simultaneously with the value of gold.

This article is a guest article written by:

The thoughts and opinions in the piece are those of their author and are not necessarily the thoughts of the Certified Collectibles Group.

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