The October Torex Auction occurred during the gloomiest week of the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression. Despite these adverse circumstances, the Canadian Coinoisseur managed to set a new high record for Torex prices realized, with over $1.4 million in sales.
The sell-through rate was off from my previous auction where a record 83% of the lots were sold at an average of 86.1% of catalogue. This time he sold 75.5% of the lots sold at an average of 76.1% of the catalogue value, bringing the results back to the 75% to 80% range of the past few years.
An analysis of the results shows that the Canadian numismatic market continues to be strong for nice material. Condition-rare pieces, those with great eye appeal and other choice items sold at very strong prices, while the more ordinary material either failed to sell or sold for relatively low prices. More than 200 of the lots sold above their catalogue estimates, and nearly 350 lots sold for more than 90% of catalogue value.
Among the outstanding results were high-grade George VI Small Cents, where a 1948 A To Denticle in ICCS and PCGS MS-65 Red sold for over four times catalogue at $2,640, a 1946 in PCGS MS-66 Red brought $4,200, also over four times catalogue, a 1937 in PCGS MS-66 Red achieved more than double catalogue at $1,680 and a 1944 in PCGS MS-66 Red sold for nearly double catalogue at $6,600. Other notable Small Cent results were a 1927 in ICCS MS-64 Red which sold for $1,680, a 1934 in PCGS MS-66 Red that brought $2,640 and a 1954 No Shoulder Fold in PCGS PL-67 Red that went at $3,120.
Among the Canadian Large Cents, an 1859 Wide 9 Over 8, Coinage Alignment grading VF-EF polished sold for nearly double estimate at $1,840. However, it appears that prices for high-end Large Cents have pulled back from the record high of previous auctions. Better prices were still being paid for near full red pieces, but those ICCS pieces that are less than 90% drew less attention. For example, an 1887 in ICCS MS-64 Red described as about 95% red brought 107% of catalogue at $1,495, while one described as about 85% red brought only $805. A 1920 in ICCS MS-65 Red described as about 95% red brought 99% of catalogue at $1,725, while one described as about 85% red brought only 62% of catalogue.
Other notable results in Large Cents were an 1892
Obverse 4 in ICCS and PCGS MS-65 Red that brought $2,640, an 1859 Narrow 9 in
ICCS MS-65 Red that realized $2,990, an 1891 Large Date Obverse 2 in ICCS MS-65
that sold for $3,738 and an 1895 in ICCS MS-66 Red that brought $7,800.
Of note among the Five Cents Silver were an 1899 in ICCS MS-65, which sold for slightly over catalogue at $2,070, a 1908 Large 8 in ICCS MS-64, which brought 25% over catalogue at $3,120, an 1898 in ICCS MS-64, which realized $2,530 and a 1921 in ICCS F-15, which sold for $5,750.
Among the Nickels, the George VI and early
George VI and
Notable among the earlier Twenty-Five Cents pieces were a 1902H in ICCS and PCGS MS-66, which sold for $5,700, a 1908 in ICCS MS-64 that brought $1,840, a 1910 in ICCS MS-65 that achieved $4,600 and a 1921 in ICCS MS-62, which brought $2,070.
With the Fifty Cents pieces, it was again the George VI and Elizabeth pieces that sold the most strongly. ICCS MS-65 examples of the 1941, 1944 Near 4, 1944 Far 4, 1945 Near 4, 1950 Design in 0 ICCS MS-65, 1952 and 1954 all sold for more than catalogue, with the 1945 achieving $3,600. A 1949 Hoof Over 9 in ICCS MS-64 brought more than double catalogue at $5,700, a 1967 Flip Strike ICCS MS-64 went at $3,360 and a Choice Uncirculated example of the 2000P in its case of issue sold at $4,025.
Of note among the earlier Fifty Cents pieces are
an 1870 No LCW in ICCS EF-40, which brought $5,700, a 1913 in ICCS MS-65, which
sold for $21,850, a 1916 in ICCS MS-64, which went for $5,175, a 1917 in ICCS
MS-65, which achieved $4,888 and a 1934 NGC MS-67, which brought $6,900.
Silver Dollars continued their recent trend and
sold strongly. A 1948 in ICCS MS-64 sold for more than 20% above catalogue at
$8,050, while one in ICCS MS-63 was also more than 20% above catalogue at
$4,313. A 1945 in ICCS MS-64 sold over catalogue at $2,530, a 1950 Arnprior in
ICCS MS-65 brought $2,400 and a 1952 No Waterlines in ICCS MS-65 went at $1,920.
An indication of the continuing demand for high-grade Elizabeth pieces was shown by a 1960 in ICCS MS-65, which sold for 96% of catalogue at $1,920, a 1963 in ICCS MS-65, which brought almost 150% of catalogue with its price of $2,040, a 1965 Type 1 in ICCS MS-65 Heavy Cameo that went at full catalogue of $1,200, a 1965 Type 5 ICCS MS-65 Cameo that brought $3,600 and a 1966 Small Beads in ICCS MS-63, which achieved $4,200.
The auction catalogue was arranged so that paper money was the final category to be sold, so at on Saturday night, as the final lots of Silver Dollars were being hammered down, the room began to fill with paper money bidders. The bidding started out aggressively and remained that way until the final lot. The first lot brought 90% of catalogue, the next lot, a 1935 Barclays Bank Five Dollars in PMG Extremely fine 40 with Exceptional Paper Quality, brought 199% of catalogue at $2,185, and so it continued, bringing the average prices realized for the paper money category to 107% of catalogue.
Other notable results among the Chartered Bank Notes were a 1905 Dominion Bank Five Dollars in PMG Extremely Fine 45, which brought 173% of catalogue at $4,313, a Canadian Bank of Commerce 1935 Twenty Dollars in PMG Gem Uncirculated 66 with Exceptional Paper Quality, which sold for 180% of catalogue at $2,160 and a Bank of Prince Edward Island 1877 One Dollar in PMG Gem Uncirculated 65 with Exceptional Paper Quality went for 159% of catalogue at $2,070.
Among the early Government Notes, noteworthy are
a 1920 Newfoundland One Dollar, Renouf-Brownrig in PMG Choice Uncirculated 64,
which sold for 25% above catalogue at $4,888, a 1912 Five Dollars No Seal,
DC-21c in PMG Gem Uncirculated 65 with Exceptional Paper Quality, which brought
95% of catalogue at $5,980, a 1912 Five Dollars Seal Only DC-21g in PMG Choice
Uncirculated 64 with Exceptional Paper Quality, which went at 97% of catalogue
at $6,325 and a 1923 One Dollar DC-25n in PMG Gem Uncirculated 66 with
Exceptional Paper Quality, which achieved more than 70% above catalogue with its
$1,495 selling price.
The strength continued through the Bank of Canada series, with outstanding results, such as a 1935 Twenty Dollars English, Small Seal in PMG Gem Uncirculated 65 with Exceptional Paper Quality bringing $23,000, over 160% of catalogue, a 1935 Fifty Dollars English in PMG Choice About Uncirculated 58 with Exceptional Paper Quality going for more than catalogue at $13,800, a 1935 One Thousand Dollars English in PMG Gem Uncirculated 65 with Exceptional Paper Quality selling over catalogue at $21,850 and a 1937 One Thousand Dollars Osborne-Towers in PMG Gem Uncirculated 66 with Exceptional Paper Quality achieving more than 140% of catalogue at $24,150.
The strong bidding continued through the Replacement Notes, with a 1954 One Dollar Devil's Face Replacement Beattie-Coyne in PMG Choice Uncirculated 64 with Exceptional Paper Quality bringing over 120% of catalogue at $6,900, a 1954 Twenty Dollars Devil's Face Replacement Beattie-Coyne in PMG Gem Uncirculated 66 with Exceptional Paper Quality selling at more than 120% of catalogue at $16,100 and a 1954 Twenty Dollars Replacement Beattie-Rasminsky *V/E in PMG Choice Uncirculated 64 with Exceptional Paper Quality going for well over catalogue at $3,738.
The sale concluded with Special Serial Numbers, with the Solids ranging from 86% to 208% of catalogue, such as the 1954 Ten Dollars C/V3333333 in PMG Gem Uncirculated 66 with Exceptional Paper Quality that brought $2,185 and the 1973 One Dollar IT8888888 in PMG Gem Uncirculated 66 with Exceptional Paper Quality that sold at $1,725. The last two lots were the 1969 Twenty Dollars Serial Number WS0000001 in PMG Gem Uncirculated 66 with Exceptional Paper Quality that sold at $2,588, 157% of catalogue and the 1991 Twenty Dollars Serial Number EWO0000001 in PMG Gem Uncirculated 66 with Exceptional Paper Quality that brought 134% of catalogue at $2,070.
It was a great honour to receive such wonderful numismatic treasures to catalogue and sell on behalf of their consignors. To achieve for them these record prices in a time of such economic uncertainty, gives me huge pleasure. To see such strong results gives me confidence in the strength of the Canadian numismatic market.As many of you are aware, for the past couple of years, this auction has been planned as my last one. I continue to shake-down, outfit and prepare my new sailboat to sail off over the horizon. To have had this auction as my final one before I head out gives me a great satisfaction and tempts me to do more auctions in the future. Who knows, after a few years of checking-out the dragons at the corners of the charts, I might just come back and do another auction.
#345 Unit 101
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