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On My Way to Phoenix
March 06, 2008

With silver up nearly a buck yesterday and approaching $21 an ounce in value, it should be interesting to see what the effect might be on bourse activity at the American Numismatic Association National Money Show in Phoenix.

As you have probably guessed, I am en route to the show. If the airlines and weather allow, I am due to reach my destination about lunch time. Dealers set up starting at 3 p.m. in the afternoon.

In addition to seeing what goes on at the bourse, one of my main purposes will be to cover the ANA board meetings. The good news for me in terms of time spent is that the public meeting lasts just three hours. The bad news is that those three hours are at 3-6 p.m. tomorrow. This will keep me off the bourse floor then.

The board has a heavy agenda, including the adoption of the annual budge in public session. In the many private meeting hours, the board was spending all day Wednesday interviewing candidates for the position of executive director. More executive session hours are scheduled for today as well and there will be a town hall meeting Saturday night.

Who will want to help straighten out the budget and work to get the ANA out of deficit in future years? That is a key question for the board. This task is daunting enough, but the various lawsuits overhanging the organization make budget projections very difficult if not impossible.

The only recourse is massive layoffs or dipping further into the endowment fund. The latter is the likely outcome, and I will be there to watch the public portion of the decision-making process.

Any guesses as to just how big the ANA deficit will be?

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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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