Earlier this month on July 10th at Bruneau & Co. Auctioneers we hosted our Spring Comic, Trading Card, and Toy auction with record setting results. The bidding action was non-stop the entire time with over 10,000 registered bidders between live, absentee, and online participants. When scrolling through the results and comparing them to most recent realized prices over 50 comics had sold for a new market record. The comic market is hotter than ever before, and books that once sold for $100, $50, or even $25 dollars can sell for hundreds if not thousands. We ask ourselves why, but the reasoning is really clear when you think about it.
COVID-19 was a horrible, tragic happening that I can not wait to see completely behind us. It destroyed a lot of lives. However, it also brought the biggest economic boom to the collectible comic industry I have ever seen. People were bored at home with nothing to do. You couldn’t go out to eat, the movies, or vacation; and Marvel was dominating the streaming service land. People who now had additional expendable income were looking for something, and a large population found interest in comics. The short is that the pandemic created an exponential increase in demand while supply stayed the same. The beauty is even though we are returning to normal life, the collecting bug is a hard one to shake. Additionally, once you’re invested in a market, it’s in your best interest to see that market flourish. The collecting must go on! But let’s look at some numbers to show you what I’m talking about.
It may not have been the most expensive book of the day, but the greatest percentage increase in value was lot 79: Amazing Spider-Man Annual #1 (1964) graded a 6.5. The day of the auction market average was $1,920.00 based on 7 transactions with the last one approximately 3 weeks earlier. That day our copy hammered down for $3,800.00 when it crossed the auction block. That’s a 97% gain in less than a month! There are not too many antiques or collectibles with that kind of selling potential. If you are at home reading this and looking down at a pile of comics, you have always wanted to move. It’s a good time, you don’t want to be at the other side of the peak when values start to slump. You need to strike while the iron is hot. The important thing to remember is a comic collection needs to be properly managed to maximize your return. You do not want to sell yourself short, especially by selling them outright. Comics need to be pressed, graded, and advertised properly. Your best bet is to always work with an auction house on consignment. That way it’s a team effort instead of a one-way street.
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