The Stacks Bowers and Ponterio Hong Kong Auction Exceeds $2 Million

Author: Stack's Bowers Galleries / April 12, 2016

SANTA ANA, CA. (April 12, 2016) — Stack’s Bowers and Ponterio is pleased to announce the results of their April 2016 Hong Kong sale of Chinese and Asian Coins, Currency and Medals.  This sale produced solid results, with over $2 million realized at the close. (All prices realized include the standard buyer’s premium).

Bidders did not hesitate before setting off the fireworks. Within the first hour two Li Yuan Hung Dollars, L&M-43 and L&M-44, rocketed past all expectations to close at $20,315 and $26,290 respectively. The pair of "with hat" varieties were both high grade original examples. Combined, they realized more than double their high estimates.

As always, the April sale brought exciting fresh material to market.  Few offerings in any sale can generate the type of collector enthusiasm that was attracted by lots 80077 through 80084. These lots comprised six different Pattern Junk Dollars, produced at mints around the world, including Rome, Osaka, London, Philadelphia and Vienna.  Each coin displayed a different portrait of Sun Yat-sen, with variations of the junk reverse. Collectively, these lots garnered over $200,000 with several individual coins approaching $50,000 each.

The set was a reminder of how rarity, outstanding preservation and high collector demand can combine to propel results. The same phenomenon held true with lot 80196, a very rare pattern 3 Mace 6-1/2 Candareens "reversed pattern" from Kwangtung.  The price realized of $52,580 beat high estimate by more than $15,000 after heated competition saw no fewer than nine live bids near the close.

Leading off the medal section, was lot 80283, an extremely rare Qing Dynasty gold merit medal issued by Li Hung Chang and illustrated as the plate coin in Gongqing Li. Finishing toward the high end of estimate, the piece realized $35,850. A few minutes later, lot 80291 stunned bidders and spectators alike, realizing $47,800 on a $20,000 to $30,000 estimate. The Tientsin Tutung Yamen Gold Medal had nearly perfect enamel, and is possibly the finest surviving example of the type in gold.

Included among the wide array of modern Chinese issues was a key date 1995 Panda 50 Yuan. Grading Choice Brilliant Uncirculated, the piece saw keen interest that pushed the final price to $21,510 or about a third above high estimate.  High demand was seen in many of the Lunar Series coins, with lot 80352 providing convincing evidence of market strength. The 1984 Year of The Rat 150 Yuan graded PCGS Proof-68 closed at $14,340 or more than 50% above high estimate.

The sale continued to World Coins, with several museum quality pieces bringing solid results. In the case of lot 81033, the term "museum quality" was quite literal, as the piece was once part of the Melbourne Mint Museum collection. The 1935 Hong Kong 10 Cent piece was the finest graded at NGC by a three-point margin, and hammered at $5,975, toward the high end of estimate.  Also notable was lot 81078 from Mongolia, a 1999 Lunar Series 50,000 Tugriks, which closed above high estimate at $8,365. Serial numbered "1" from an emission of 99 pieces, the piece represented an opportunity to acquire a unique coin. 

Paper money collectors competed for a wide array of banknotes. Highlights included lot 82011, a 1909 Bank of China 1 Dollar, Pick-16a, which coasted to $10,755 and lot 82021, a grouping of 200 Central Bank of China 10 to 50 Cents notes, which realized $8,365.  Far and away the highlight of the paper money session (and the highest price paid in the entire April Hong Kong sale) was lot 82050, a People’s Bank of China 10 Yuan, dated 1953, Pick-870. The note realized a staggering $68,712.50 much to the delight of the consignor, reinforcing the importance of quality as the piece was graded full gem.

The Internet-only sessions achieved solid results to close out the sale, with the coin session in particular exceeding high estimate by a comfortable margin, and with a better than 90% sell through rate.

Overall, for both bidders and consignors the recent Hong Kong sale was a resounding success.  For those considering consignment to a future Stack’s Bowers sale, the firm is currently accepting consignments for the August 2016 Hong Kong Sale as well as the August 2016 ANA World’s Fair of Money sale.  Consignment specialists can be reached at 949-253-0916 or via email at


About Stack’s Bowers Galleries

Stack’s Bowers Galleries conducts live, Internet and specialized auctions of rare U.S. and world coins and currency and ancient coins, as well as direct sales through retail and wholesale channels. The company’s 80-year legacy includes the cataloging and sale of many of the most valuable United States coin and currency collections to ever cross an auction block — The D. Brent Pogue Collection, The John J. Ford, Jr. Collection, The Louis E. Eliasberg, Sr. Collection, The Harry W. Bass, Jr. Collection, The Norweb Collection, The Cardinal Collection and The Battle Born Collection — to name just a few. World coin and currency collections include The Louis E. Eliasberg, Sr. Collection of World Gold Coins, The Kroisos Collection, The Alicia and Sidney Belzberg Collection, The Wa She Wong Collection, The Guia Collection, The Thos. H. Law Collection, and The Robert O. Ebert Collection.

Topping off this amazing numismatic history is the inclusion of the world record for the highest price ever realized at auction for a rare coin, the 1794 Flowing Hair Silver Dollar graded Specimen-66 (PCGS) that realized over $10 million, part of their sale of the famed Cardinal Collection. The company is headquartered in Santa Ana, California, with offices in New York, Wolfeboro, Hong Kong, and Paris. Stack’s Bowers Galleries is an Official Auctioneer for several important numismatic conventions, including American Numismatic Association events, the New York International Numismatic Convention, the Professional Numismatists Guild New York Invitational, the Whitman Coin & Collectibles Spring, Summer and Winter Expos, and its April, August and December Hong Kong Auctions.


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