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The card market has absolutely exploded!!!


Dumars2001
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Is anybody a card collector here? If you thought that video game collecting was hot, the sports card market has reached a whole other level of craziness right now! 2 Jordan fleer gem mint rookie PSA 10's just sold for $738,000 (you could have bought one for around $30,000 about a year ago)the other day. Almost every older player's card has blown up to astronomical (5 figures, 6 figures and even 7 figures prices) prices right now. Of course, newer players (Luka, Zion, Lemelo, etc.) are also unreal at the moment. Anyways, just want to see if there are any card collectors here and if anybody has gotten into it lately, because it unreal at the moment, cards are quadrupling in prices on a weekly basis, sometimes even on a daily basis.

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Member · Posted

When we say "vintage", what era are we now talking about?  Does this yet include the 80s and 90s when, you know, most of us were kids?

Like everyone else my age, I collected ball cards.  Of all my friends, I was the only one who cared about condition, often immediately boxed every single card, I refused to touch anything but the side, and when dealing in the school yard, I'd never trade for a poor condition card and called my friends out if they didn't touch only the sides of the card with their grimy fingers.  Yes, at 8 years old, I was already a condition nerd.

So, with that said, my collection of many thousands of cards are basically all mint or better.  I ask because I know that 99.5% of these are worthless. That's why huge lots go for sale (or use to a year ago) for pennies on the original dollar.

However, is it yet worth going through that stuff?  I'll admit I mostly had the common stuff. Topps, Donruss, Fleer and some Upper Deck. None of the super-premium stuff.  I think I have less than 50 Beckett cards in my entire collection.

I doubt I have anything worth thousands of bucks, but if there's something in there possibly worth $100-200, it might be time to see if my childhood "investment" is ready to pay off.  Lol.  Probably not.

Edited by RH
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8 minutes ago, RH said:

When we say "vintage", what era are we now talking about?  Does this yet include the 80s and 90s when, you know, most of us were kids?

Like everyone else my age,  collected ball cards.  Of all my friends, I was the only one who cared about condition, often immediately boxed every single card, I refused to touch anything but the side, and when dealing in the school yard, I'd never trade for a poor condition card and called my friends out if they didn't touch only the sides of the card with their grimy fingers.  Yes, at 8 years old, I was already a condition nerd.

So, with that said, my collection of many thousands of cards are basically all mint or better.  I ask because I know that 99.5% of these are worthless. That's why huge lots go for sale (or use to a year ago) for pennies on the original dollar.

However, is it yet worth going through that stuff?  I'll admit I mostly had the common stuff. Topps, Donruss, Fleer and some Upper Deck. None of the super-premium stuff.  I think I have less than 50 Beckett cards in my entire collection.

I doubt I have anything worth thousands of bucks, but if there's something in there possibly worth $100-200, it might be time to see if my childhood "investment" is ready to pay off.  Lol.  Probably not.

Short answer- no.   But unopened boxes from that era are starting to command better prices as people are trying to get PSA 10 gradable rookie cards, and that's not going to happen from something that was opened 30 years ago no matter how well you took care of your stuff.

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19 minutes ago, captmorgandrinker said:

Short answer- no.   But unopened boxes from that era are starting to command better prices as people are trying to get PSA 10 gradable rookie cards, and that's not going to happen from something that was opened 30 years ago no matter how well you took care of your stuff.

Well "our" generation of cards had a couple of layers to the market, where I suspect "most kids" were buying the shitty 25 cent red wax packs of Diamond (or whatever they were called) or the yellow wax packs of Topps -- but if you really wanted to go all out you could spend something crazy like $1.50 or $2 on a pack of "premium" cards from one of the other brands (Pinnacle? is that right?).

Maybe I'm off in my guess, but I'd assume that some of those ended up "more collectible" than others, by being a less flooded market.

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We know that comic book collectors started to come into the video game hobby and that raised video game collecting's profile up big time, but from what I am reading, big time Wall Street guys, hedge fund guys (Steve Cohen), professional athletes (Kevin Durant, Greek Freak, etc), rappers, celebrities (Mark Wahlberg), basically very wealthy people to the oridinary Joe  have jumped into card collecting and this has caused this unreal massive spike across the board in card collecting. 

I really hope this is Tulip Mania all over again but it has been going on for about a year now, with record sales happening basically every day with just about every semi-popular player's card. Just nuts now, where little Mikey can't even buy a pack of basketball cards, because as soon as they are put on the shelves, they are bought up and sold for 5x times more on Ebay! And things do sell extremely fast and often!

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The comics nerds prices are nuts. A 13 year old Star Wars Clone Wars book is $1000. The Magic nerds prices are nuts. Revised Underground Seas are $1000. Revised! The sports card nerd prices are nuts. Luka Doncic has a $300,000 card and he's been in the NBA for 3 years.

I don't know what the jocks and comic shop nerds did after high school, but I guess it worked out better than whatever computer jobs all the video game nerds got.

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40 minutes ago, arch_8ngel said:

Well "our" generation of cards had a couple of layers to the market, where I suspect "most kids" were buying the shitty 25 cent red wax packs of Diamond (or whatever they were called) or the yellow wax packs of Topps -- but if you really wanted to go all out you could spend something crazy like $1.50 or $2 on a pack of "premium" cards from one of the other brands (Pinnacle? is that right?).

Maybe I'm off in my guess, but I'd assume that some of those ended up "more collectible" than others, by being a less flooded market.

Even Upper Deck from that era is largely worthless now, so the "premium" cards weren't really spared since they pumped those out by the forest-load too.

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20 minutes ago, DefaultGen said:

 The Magic nerds prices are nuts. Revised Underground Seas are $1000. Revised! 

...

I don't know what the jocks and comic shop nerds did after high school, but I guess it worked out better than whatever computer jobs all the video game nerds got.

I'm going to plug my ears and pretend I didn't read that first part 😛

To the latter -- you should look up the "levels" site to see what west coast software developers earn. If their hobby is card collecting, or video game collecting, or whatever, and they're willing to spend on it... they have most people thoroughly outgunned.  And I doubt it takes very much participation at that level to distort the demand-side of the equation.  (and that's before you get into the early adopter crypto folks that believe it will go up at insane rates forever, so they potentially spend a little more freely than you or I would against our more traditional investment portfolios)

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6 minutes ago, captmorgandrinker said:

Even Upper Deck from that era is largely worthless now, so the "premium" cards weren't really spared since they pumped those out by the forest-load too.

I'll plead total ignorance of trends (or production numbers) on that stuff 😛  I just remember being a kid and "economizing" by buying 8 packs of the waxy red cards rather than 1 pack of Pinnacle or Upper Deck.  (and I didn't even like sports/baseball -- buying baseball cards was just what you did as a kid back then 😛 -- had a lot more fun with the transition to MTG and other CCGs of that era)

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Member · Posted

The bigger question I have is where is all of this money coming from. It's not an understatement to say there's been an explosion in funds coming into collecting.

This past year has been tough for many. I lost my job in March last year. I'm a contractor so I:m use to it, but it took me 5 months to get a job (rather than the typical 2-4 weeks) and I had to accept a cut in pay.

I know people got "COVID bucks" but those free $600-2400 checks can't fuel all of this, plus much of this was starting before COVID.

I'm just curious. What happened in the last two years or so to make people want to throw BIG numbers at collectibles, especially the new collectors?

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Just now, RH said:

The bigger question I have is where is all of this money coming from. It's not an understatement to say there's been an explosion in funds coming into collecting.

This past year has been tough for many. I lost my job in March last year. I'm a contractor so I:m use to it, but it took me 5 months to get a job (rather than the typical 2-4 weeks) and I had to accept a cut in pay.

I know people got "COVID bucks" but those free $600-2400 checks can't fuel all of this, plus much of this was starting before COVID.

I'm just curious. What happened in the last two years or so to make people want to throw BIG numbers at collectibles, especially the new collectors?

Look up those "levels" I mentioned earlier for west coast tech employees.

They have a fairly strong culture out there of frowning on more typical displays of wealth that previous generations would have associated with those income levels.

So it doesn't surprise me for that money to funnel into something else like collectibles.

 

People making big tech salaries are the ones that kept their jobs this entire time AND couldn't spend that money traveling AND saw a huge net worth boost from this past year's ongoing tech stock boom.

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Here are  just a few examples of what I am talking about and the even bigger sales are happening on auction houses. Basically cards are gold right now. if you look at the dates of these sales, almost all of of them are happening right now and they continue to go up in price with literally each passing day/auction, because I have been following the sales lately. An Anthony Davis card sold at Goldin auctions 5 days ago for over a million dollars.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/2003-Topps-Chrome-Refractor-LeBron-James-ROOKIE-RC-111-BGS-10-PRISTINE-/402602109294?hash=item5dbcf4a96e%3Ag%3AZ~0AAOSw~kFf0-4s&nma=true&si=mdOX%2BnMVPOWLIXF1d8vkNA2fV34%3D&orig_cvip=true&nordt=true&rt=nc&_trksid=p2047675.l2557

 

https://www.ebay.com/itm/2003-Topps-Chrome-Xfractor-LeBron-James-ROOKIE-RC-220-111-PSA-9-MINT-/143924479136?hash=item21829144a0%3Ag%3AE8gAAOSw8BpgCdFK&nma=true&si=mdOX%2BnMVPOWLIXF1d8vkNA2fV34%3D&orig_cvip=true&nordt=true&rt=nc&_trksid=p2047675.l2557

 

https://www.ebay.com/itm/1996-Topps-Chrome-Refractor-Kobe-Bryant-ROOKIE-RC-138-PSA-10-GEM-MINT/224334544542?hash=item343b617e9e:g:sF4AAOSw7ctgFn-K

https://www.ebay.com/itm/1986-Fleer-Basketball-Michael-Jordan-ROOKIE-RC-57-BGS-9-5-GEM-MINT/224191757810?hash=item3432debdf2:g:avYAAOSwoWBgDGqp

 

https://www.ebay.com/itm/1981-Topps-Football-Joe-Montana-ROOKIE-RC-216-PSA-10-GEM-MINT-PWCC-A-/224328586755?hash=item343b069603%3Ag%3ANegAAOSw8BpgD2b0&nma=true&si=mdOX%2BnMVPOWLIXF1d8vkNA2fV34%3D&orig_cvip=true&nordt=true&rt=nc&_trksid=p2047675.l2557

https://www.ebay.com/itm/1980-Topps-Larry-Bird-Magic-Johnson-RC-Rookie-Julius-Erving-HOF-PSA-9-MBA-GOLD/373320241454?hash=item56eb9ed12e:g:qDgAAOSw~apfpEss

 

https://www.ebay.com/itm/2000-Playoff-Contenders-Tom-Brady-ROOKIE-RC-AUTO-144-PSA-10-GEM-MINT-/143919299871?hash=item2182423d1f%3Ag%3Ao8EAAOSwS0JgAjkP&nma=true&si=mdOX%2BnMVPOWLIXF1d8vkNA2fV34%3D&orig_cvip=true&nordt=true&rt=nc&_trksid=p2047675.l2557

 

https://www.ebay.com/itm/2017-National-Treasures-Green-Patrick-Mahomes-II-ROOKIE-RC-PATCH-AUTO-15-PSA-9-/402647485655?hash=item5dbfa90cd7%3Ag%3AJXYAAOSw0IhgAkKD&nma=true&si=mdOX%2BnMVPOWLIXF1d8vkNA2fV34%3D&orig_cvip=true&nordt=true&rt=nc&_trksid=p2047675.l2557

Edited by Dumars2001
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