Calculating when to go after your comic Holy Grail is not an easy task. I’m using my anxiety rocks and I’m only writing about the topic. I’m not actually pursuing my Holy Grail comic, cough, Amazing Spider-Man #129, 9.6+, cough! Let’s look at what some experts are saying. They might be able to sift through the tea leaves for us and help us plan to capture our holy grail comic!
Monitor CGC’s Market Outlook
Following news releases from CGC is a great place to start. ANY market is going to have trends and slabbed comics is no different. Even the hardest to find, most precious key comic, is going to dip enough to where you can get it a little cheaper than its Fair Market Value. CGC’s most recent market analysis release, published on September 24, came in the form of a letter from Chairman, Mark Salzberg. Salzberg addresses the current strength in the graded market place, “I believe that as much as the pandemic acted as a reset button for our society, it also served as a gas pedal, accelerating a change in priorities that would have been a much longer time coming.” He adds later in his letter, “With greater accessibility, safety and confidence comes increased and broad-based interest. This interest has brought massive numbers of collectors, dealers, and investors into the collectibles markets, transforming our industry almost overnight in the midst of a global crisis.” Translation: The internet has created a huge selling factory of graded collectibles and NOW is the time to sell!
What Advice Do Auction Houses Have?
Many of the popular auction houses with a reputation for selling graded comic books are reporting significant increases in bid activity and record-breaking prices. So, can your comic Holy Grail finally be had today? Consignment Director at ComicLink, Jason Crosby, thinks one strategy might help you get there! “As far as selling goes, I think the best advice I can give for collectors when selling is to trade up. Sell a big batch of items you’ve accumulated over time to upgrade to items you will covet even more. I’ve helped some collectors build insane collections this way. You can use the sales credit in our auction to buy something else in our auction without even sending money sometimes. Some [Collectors] will sell a batch of 100 CGC books to buy a big key book, or they will sell two keys to buy a high-grade example of a key.” Translation: With the proper strategy you can attain your holy grail comic in this marketplace!
Is Now the Time?
So, is now the time to try to obtain a Holy Grail comic? It depends, in my opinion, on what your holy grail comic is. I love Matt Baker’s work. If a Phantom Lady in any condition comes along, it doesn’t matter how hot the market is doing, I think I have to go for it. For now, I’ll settle on a mid-grade, first printing, Classic Comics #32 as my Matt Baker showcase comic. Do I go for Amazing Spider-Man #129? I don’t think so. I’m nostalgic. I tend to buy most of my graded comics at comic conventions. I like browsing, holding it in my hands, negotiating, moving from table to table to see what is available. When I buy my Holy Grail comic, I want it immediately, drive it home in my car, enjoy a bottle of wine and spend the afternoon placing it on my wall. Besides, the focus should be on maximizing sales in this market place. Accumulate equity in order to make the kind of purchase where you can buy an Amazing Spider-Man #129 and get a Phantom Lady too!