It’s Worth What?

I am sure most of you have seen the story by now about the “Bit Maple Leaf” and how it was stolen from the Bode Museum in Berlin. If not summary = gold coin weighing 220+ lbs. stolen. Market value ~$4 Million. Shocking!

However what I find the most fascinating how so many of my non-coin friends and acquaintances have commented to me about the story. The approach me with “I saw something about a coin”.  I am sure that the mass global media coverage of the heist, is a large part of that.  For me, I was shocked by the brazenness of the criminals. For my friends, that a coin can be that big or worth that much.

But it’s Gold

I just smile and have responded to most comments how a coin of “normal” size and weights can be worth more. It usually goes like this

Me: Well the most expensive coin ever sold is not even gold

Them: WHAT?

Me: Yeah it’s a US dollar coin made of silver and copper.

Them: Really, how much is it worth?

Me: Well it sold at auction for over $10 million

Them: (staring at me……for a long time)

Me: Yep….

They get that a coin made of gold is “worth” a lot, but a coin that is just a coin….  Sometimes I am convinced people are astounded you can make money buying and selling coins (if they only knew….)! Tell them about a Liberty Head Nickel being worth about as much as the big Maple Leaf, and you will get a lot of “what???? Nickel, like 5 cents”…..

So although I feel horrible for the Bode, and to be honest impressed with the daring and well-done caper of the thieves, it is also nice to be able to share come coin facts with the non-coin people world.  ……and I am sure someone somewhere is in a bit of trouble, as that insurance payout is going to be painful.

Have a great weekend!