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Out of Darkness Thoughts of Lincoln Rolls
April 06, 2010

It was a small triumph to get into work this morning. The power went out last night in the Village of Iola. It is still out. It certainly is no fun shaving in the dark.

The funny thing is we made it through the winter without the least disruption and other than a little bit of rain (without either thunder or lightning) there is no weather event to blame the situation on.

Once I got into the office, I found it to be functioning on back-up power so I can get my blog posted.

Before all the adrenaline kicked in this morning when I discovered the alarm clock had stopped in the middle of the night and it was later than I expected, I had been thinking about the April 8 opening date for sales of two-roll sets of the new Union Shield Lincoln cents.

The price is the same as it was last year for the Lincoln Bicentennial coins, $8.95 for an uncirculated roll of “P” mint coin and an uncirculated roll of “D” mint coins sold together.

Then, of course, the $4.95 shipping charge must be added.

This offering, I think, would have been much more warmly received in January when I was getting word of the first cents being found in Puerto Rico.

Now we are into the fourth month of the year and I am getting reports of the Union Shield cent being found in the usual way in circulation. Perhaps that means the economy is indeed recovering and banks are getting supplies of new coins.

In any event, I would expect demand for the new cent to be lower than demand for the 2009 issues. Everybody knows there is only one design this year, so there is not quite the same sense of urgency to get the design before it disappears. There is still the first year of issue impulse, but how strong is that after last year's four designs?

How good is this forecast of lower collector demand for 2010 cent rolls? Well, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking in the dark today. That should tell you something.

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About the Author
David C. Harper has been a coin collector since 1963. He joined the Krause Publications editorial staff in 1978 and is currently editor of Numismatic News and World Coin News. He also edits two books annually, North American Coins & Prices and Coin Digest. He is the author of the Class of '63 column that runs each week in Numismatic News. His first bylined numismatic article appeared in the June 1971 issue of Coins Magazine and his various Krause Publications assignments included a stint as editor of the magazine 1980-1983. Harper received a bachelor of science degree from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh in 1977. He had a double major of journalism and economics.

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