Showing posts with label philippine coin. Show all posts
Showing posts with label philippine coin. Show all posts

Philippine Bullion Report: Gold pass $900, Silver overtakes $12


Price of precious metals leap as investors shift their gears toward tangible investments. Gold climb to $900 while silver make it to the $12 mark as major currencies particularly the sterling dive in one of its lowest level against the dollar. The Russian ruble lost 40% of its value, while massive job cuts have been declared in a record as soon as President Obama took office.

The world economy was hit by a massive wave of job cuts on Monday with companies announcing plans to lay off tens of thousands of workers as US President Barack Obama warned of a crisis that could become "dramatically worse."

East West Bank have announce that it bought the local subsidiary of AIG, Philam Savings Bank, while report that pre-need firms are in jittery waters as more firms as expected to default on claims.

Meanwhile, the electronic and manufacturing industry announced that it would lay off around 40, 000 workers this year due to the slowing demand on consumer electronics and tech gadgets. Intel already declared that it would shut their plant located in Cavite, as well as other plants located in Malaysia as the effect of the global financial crisis deepens in the local economy.

Despite the PHISIX rise and the peso's better performance against the dollar, the Philippine economy has witnessed the threat of the global financial crisis to the local economy.


Dutch electronics giant Philips and banking group ING announced job cuts totaling 13,000 worldwide.

The announcements by the two Dutch companies came ahead of confirmation that Europe's second-biggest steelmaker, Indian-owned Corus, said it would cut more than 3,500 jobs around the world, most of them in Britain.

Philips said it would eliminate 6,000 jobs to cope with the global slowdown, which had pushed its results into the red and eroded sales.

The company said it suffered a net loss of 186 million euros (242 million dollars) for 2008 after a fourth-quarter loss of 1.47 billion euros, largely owing to an adjusted valuation of its Lumileds diode light unit.

For 2008, sales were down 1.5 percent to 26.39 billion euros.

French banking giant BNP Paribas was also caught up in the maelstrom, announcing a fourth quarter loss of 1.4 billion euros, its first time in the red for some 10 years. It expected a 2008 net profit of three billion euros, compared with a net profit of 7.8 billion euros the previous year.

However, shares in British bank Barclays, which has been hit by the crisis, surged by 75 percent after the group said it expected pre-tax profit for 2008 to exceed 5.3 billion pounds (5.6 billion euros, 7.1 billion dollars) despite writedowns of eight billion pounds.

In Britain unions were due to meet Corus management during the day Monday.

But workers arriving early Monday were gloomy about their prospects. "People feel gutted. I have already had to take a 10 percent pay cut," said 45-year-old Douglas Mayhill, a worker at a Corus plant in Port Talbot, southern Wales.

"I was told on Friday I have a choice -- either accept a 10 percent pay cut or take redundancy -- that is no choice."

The US Congress was meanwhile due to begin debate this week on Obama's 825-billion-dollar stimulus bill designed to haul the US economy out of a paralyzing recession.

In his first presidential radio address at the weekend, Obama raised the specter of double-digit unemployment, a massive erosion of family incomes and an entire generation losing its potential if Congress did not act on the stimulus bill. -AP


Meanwhile, some investors flock at local coin shops trying to seal some deals on bullion coins before the precious metals hit another rally. Last year, Citigroup made a prediction that Gold will hit a record of $2000 this year despite its downward performance.

"The price of silver and gold at the black market is very low, but supply is very scarce. Some of them have been either ordered in advance or have been reserved by their buyers so only few reach the open market or shops," a local coin buyer explained.

1945 Commonwealth 50 Centavos Struck in Lead

1945 Fifty Centavos Struck in Lead

Among the controversial dates of the United States and Philippine coinage, 1944 and 1945 are two of the years that became one of the exciting periods of Philippine numismatic history. First, these are the years the second world war. The United States had concentrated its resources to the production of war machines, which became known as the U.S. War Effort. One of the policies implemented by the U.S. government was the discontinuation of the used of nickel and copper vital for the production of ammunition in the United States which had resulted to the one year 1943 One Penny zinc coated steel and the series of Jefferson Wartime nickels that are actually made out of silver.

During that same year, the Philippines was under the rule of the Japanese Empire. The Philippines had plunged into a monetary crisis after the Japanese paper money did not make an impact to sustain the local economy, which had resulted into a massive inflation. Though the U.S. government had produced coins for the Philippines during that two consecutive years. These coins were never released into circulation and remained in the hoard of the Commonwealth government due to the ongoing conflict.

Early numismatists were thrilled to start their numismatic adventures when the war ended due to the diversity in the Philippine monetary system during the time of war. The relaxation of the flow of military information brought several discoveries into the numismatic world. The public became suddenly aware that there existed Guerilla scripts or war scripts, tradesmen token, the Commonwealth government coins, among others. Yet, the sudden break out of hoards overpowered the enthusiasm of the numismatic adventurers. The once known scarce materials were overflowing and surprisingly, most are in excellent conditions. Average Commonwealth 1944 and 1945 issued coins were either in mint state or in an almost uncirculated condition, making collectors too confident in judging that there was not a need for further exploration.

The Law of “Supply and Demand” kicked in later in the 90’s when the Internet made a tremendous impact in the flow of information and communication. Collectors had realized that the supply of coins was dwindling and soon they were rushing to dig the once neglected hoards and hunt for varieties. The numismatic world was surprise to find that 1944 and 45 brought several varieties and some of them are rare, that they can be lined-up with the Philippine’s rarest coins.

Among those famous varieties were the “Bar over 9” or the 1945 Fifty Centavos variety were a piece of metal bar can be seen on the top of the number 9 on the date of the coin, the 1945 Ten Centavos double date, the D over S or Denver over San Francisco on mint mark, and others. Recently, through this site, several trial strikes were introduced to the numismatic world. That included the 1944 One Centavo struck in white metal alloy instead of the normal copper planchet.

Now, as an additional piece to our collection, this site is proud to introduce the 1945 Fifty Centavos Trial Strike struck in lead. Similar pieces of this type of coin already surfaced in the past and most of them dated 1944. Collectors tagged them as contemporary counterfeits since the coin conditions were poor and appeared to be crudely struck. Nobody contested the finding until superbly struck coins of same material surfaced just recently. These coins have sharp details though some of the details like the caption embedded on the scroll below the shield was not as clear but still identifiable probably because the metal’s reaction with its environment. The coin’s surface is not bubbly but smooth, and the legends are sharp and are not deformed which only implies that the coins were struck and not cast as most contemporary counterfeiters did during that time.

Surprisingly this is not the only trial strike that has been reported in the past. Other numismatists have also brought the information that there exist die trials in copper and brass. And as the old time saying goes "Happy hunting!"

Austria witnesses New Gold Rush

Austrian Philharmonic Gold Coins

The financial crisis is prompting people to look for safer forms of investment than stocks and shares.

The interest in gold coins is so great that many of the world's major mints are struggling to keep up with demand, including the Austrian Mint, which produces the Vienna Philharmonic - one of the best-selling bullion coins worldwide.

Sales of Vienna Philharmonic gold coins have gone up by more than 230% since last year.

Kerry Tattersall, the director of marketing at the mint, says production has gone into overdrive.

"We are running at present something like three shifts on all of the machines, on the presses, producing both gold and the silver bullion coins.

"We've actually got delays in delivering orders in silver. With gold, we are just about keeping pace, but it is a bit of a struggle."

In September alone, the mint sold 100,000 ounces in gold coins - in normal times it would take three to four months to sell that much.

Mr Tattersall says people are looking for security.

"We are seeing a lot of panic buying at the moment. People are losing confidence in the economy - whether that is justified or unjustified is a matter of opinion. But we are seeing a lot of people looking for a safe haven."

King's ransom

In the mint, chunks of gold are melted down in a fiery furnace. Then a stream of molten metal is formed into a thin strip of gold, out of which the blank coins are cut. Later the blanks are struck with the design of violins and musical instruments.

The Austrian mint, in the heart of Vienna, was founded more than 800 years ago to make coins out of the silver ransom paid for King Richard the Lionheart, who was taken prisoner in Austria on his way home from the Crusades.

It is a sign of the importance people have attached to precious metals over the centuries.

But there is no such thing as a completely safe investment.

Gold, like all commodities, is vulnerable to fluctuations in price.

Prices tumbled in 1999 when Gordon Brown announced a decision to sell off some of the Bank of England's gold reserves.

Robert Stoeffele, an analyst at Austria's Erste Bank, says until recently there was less interest in gold as an investment.

"We forgot the appeal of gold in the last 28 years because we had a bear market in gold. But within the last few years we have seen a huge fundamental bull market for gold.

"Gold is like a thermometer for the financial markets. I'd say we've got fever," he said.

Life savings

But rising demand for gold is not just a phenomenon of global finance.

Ordinary Austrians, shocked by the precipitous falls in their own stock market - which was suspended this week for the first time ever - are also looking for a more solid store of wealth.

The shop at the Austrian Mint usually specialises in selling collectors' coins. But these days, a number of customers are buying bullion there - in bulk.

I saw one middle-aged couple handing over thousands of euros in cash, in exchange for dozens of 1oz Vienna Philharmonic gold coins.

A little later, a Viennese pensioner took a thick wad of 500-euro notes out of her handbag, and gave it to the sales assistant. He sold her a large gold bar, which looked as though it weighed a kilo.

"I have taken one piece of gold," she told me.

"You see, I am old, and I have earned money all my life and now I have the money in the bank and I am afraid of the financial situation, that it will disappear. Gold is safe, I think."

-Courtesy of BBC UK

Gold Glitters for Small-scale Miners

The glitter of gold is driving Benguet’s small-scale miners into the bowels of the earth. And as long as the rocks glow with ore, the miners will be there, working on the dark, dank and dangerous tunnels, with their chisels and hammers.

Not even the recent death of six miners, who were trapped along with 10 others inside an abandoned tunnel in Itogon town, will slow down the miners.

It is their lifeblood, according to officials of the Benguet Federation of Small-Scale Miners (BFSSM), who say that the province now has more than 20,000 small-scale miners spread in tunnels in eight of 13 towns – Itogon, Tuba, Mankayan, Tublay, Kabayan, Bokod, Atok and Bakun.

But most of them are not registered with the Provincial Mining Regulatory Board, which is required under the People’s Small-Scale Mining Act of 1991 (Republic Act No. 7076).

That’s why, says Itogon Mayor Mario Godio, the town could not formally push gold production as its “One Town One Product” with the Department of Trade and Industry since the program needed the registration of product participants.

“The miners feel that the law is a burden to them,” Godio says.

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Unexplainable Error, Explained Part 2: Triple Date & Triple Denomination

1, 5, and 10 centavos (Triple Denomination & Triple Dated)

I already featured a unique 10 centavos ERROR in a previous article on this site. It’s a combination of impossible sequence of error that a simple explanation cannot be satisfied by the coin itself. On this issue, the same kind of sequence of errors again appeared in the 5-centavos denomination. It appears that the coin was first struck in 1966 and then the following year of 1967. Surprisingly, the coin was struck using only both reverses, the first one came from the regular issue from the last REPUBLIC coin dating 1966, and the second one from the 1967 of the first PILIPINO series.

Yet the oddities doesn’t stop there, it appears that the 1966 reverse came from a 10 centavo denomination considering the diameter of the legend, while the second reverse from the 1967 came from the regular 5-centavo issue considering otherwise the diameter of the legend which is almost the same in proportion with the 10 centavo denomination from the REPUBLIC issue. Then, there is the planchet to add further confusion which is by measurement seem small for the two dies simply because it was from a 1 centavo denomination host coin therefore, making the coin a triple denomination (10 centavos, 5 centavos, and 1 centavo), a mule where both reverses came from two different values (10 centavos and 5 centavos), two tailed since both are made-up of two reverses, multiple struck, off-planchet since the normal planchet for the 10 centavos is copper-nickel while brass for the 5-centavos, off-center, and the dies rotated.

But by far, only half of the scrutiny was reached since the coin again was struck for the third time in 1983 as the first issue for the FLORA AND FAUNA series was inaugurated. So, it only means that the coin is otherwise triple dated (1966, 1967, and 1983). Amazingly, those dates are historical since it was either the beginning of change or the end of an era for a coin design, perspective, and regime thereby making this coin by far the only documented triple denomination coin and triple dated coin in the history of Philippine numismatic and possibly in the world of numismatic itself.

Unexplainable Errors Explained Part 1: 1918-S 50 Centavos Bronze

1918-S FIFTY CENTAVOS struck in bronze planchet

It was a year ago when I encountered a 1918 Twenty Centavos US-Philippine coin struck in brass which I found just lying in a dealers hoard of ordinary dated coins. The coin was in FINE condition but the details on the shield were enough for me to conclude that such was an error. I asked the dealer how much the coin was but to my surprised he told me that I could have it for free since it’s a counterfeit coin based on his opinion. He even compared it to the ordinary coin of the same date by putting both on top of the weighing scale and it did show the difference. The brass coin weighs more than its contemporary about .5 gram on the digital scale.

I never contested the dealer’s opinion since he would have changed his mind if I insinuated that that was really an error coin. The crucial thing about collecting error coins is the coin’s condition because there were so many forgers and counterfeiters that a slight variation in the coin may turned out as a clue for felony.

Though I was glad that I got the coin, proving that it was an error coin was an enigma. I tried convincing everybody that such was an error but I got no positive answers in return since there were neither reference nor material that would support my conclusion. Not until I found the 1918 San Francisco Mint 50 Centavos which is struck in bronze, that I finally solved the puzzle.

This is one of the most amazing error that I acquired recently, a 1918 US-Philippine 50 centavos struck in bronze planchet and in an uncirculated condition. The coin’s weight is more than a gram than normal and with solid details, it is easy to identify that the metal is harder than silver.

Since the minting of Philippine coins was moved to MANILA in 1920, possibilities that there were die trials made prior to that is now conclusive. Other varieties which were suspected before as counterfeits such as a 1919 San Franciso Mint LEAD 50 Centavos sold by Cookie Jar Collectibles a few years ago may now be re-studied and perhaps may be re-classified as authentic.

The Manila Mint is otherwise notorious for doing trial strikes since most of the Mint’s employees were not as expert as their American counterparts. Sometimes they made samples or made dry runs before proceeding full productions. Such topic will be tackled later but for now, I am happy to share with you the latest discovery in Philippine numismatic.