Has Uncanny X-Men #120 Overcorrected?

by Don

011223E-1024x536 Has Uncanny X-Men #120 Overcorrected?The past year has been awful for comic book investors. In 2021, we witnessed a boom in comic book values that we may never see again. Not surprisingly, that bubble burst in 2022. That is not necessarily a bad thing, as this crash may have created buying opportunities. One opportunity to consider is Uncanny X-Men #120, which contains the first appearance of Alpha Flight in cameo.

I’ve written about this book before. This is a rare situation where a first appearance in cameo actually sells a little better than the first full appearance (Uncanny X-Men #121). I actually prefer Uncanny X-Men #121, but the market wants what it wants.

Before the comic boom, this book’s ROI was 7.5% annually.

Screenshot-2023-01-07-at-10.29.08-PM-199x300 Has Uncanny X-Men #120 Overcorrected?

For a ten-year period, a CGC 9.8 copy of Uncanny X-Men #120 steadily climbed in value. Specifically, back in 2005, a CGC 9.2 copy (top 44%) sold for $59. Fifteen years later, in mid-2020, another 9.2 sold for $175. During that time, this book’s value increased by roughly 7.5% annually over that fifteen year period. That is a solid ROI.

Then, of course, the comic boom happened. In June of 2021, a 9.2 sold for an all-time high of $656. The value was being driven up, in part, by rumors that Wolverine would first appear in the MCU as a member of Alpha Flight.

Since reaching that peak, this book has dropped like a rock. Just two months ago, this book sold for $163 during an auction on eBay, an approximate 75% drop from its all-time high set just 16 months before. That’s a remarkable drop for a solid Bronze Age key issue.

Some CGC 9.2s are now selling at prices that are lower than sales in 2020.

Although I don’t believe this book is worth $656, it is worth considering if this key issue has overcorrected. This sale is lower than what this same book was selling for in 2020. Back then, it was selling in the $175 to $200 range. If the comic boom hadn’t happened, and this book continued producing a 7.5% annual return just as it had for the previous fifteen years, this book should be worth around $215 today. When you consider this book is now underperforming its historical ROI, then I think a strong argument could be made that it has overcorrected.

Personally, I think this is a good time to buy, especially if you can purchase this book at a value that is lower than its mid-2020 prices. No one can know for sure, but I think once the economy and the comic book market have settled down, this book will readjust again, according to its historical trend lines. This is a solid book with roughly 3,000 CGC blue labels. In addition, we haven’t yet seen Alpha Flight in the MCU. If and when they do appear, this book’s value might receive a shot in the arm and create a selling opportunity in the not-too-distant future.

What do you think? Has Uncanny X-Men #120 overcorrected? Is this a good time to purchase a copy? Please let us know your thoughts in the comments section below!

000080221A_Posters_2-Footer Has Uncanny X-Men #120 Overcorrected?*Any perceived investment advice is that of the freelance blogger and does not represent advice on behalf of GoCollect.

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T La Ross January 24, 2023 - 5:14 pm

No. It is not a good time to purchase a copy.
In June of 2020 there were 200 CGC 9.0s on the census. Now there are there 359.
The year long delay of CGC grading coupled with the massive influx of speculative buying drove prices way beyond what they ever should have been. Supply was unable to meet demand due to the grading delay. Now that there is no grading delays, copy after copy keep getting added to the census and going to the market to be sold which keeps lowering prices. 56 9.0 copies alone have been added since June of 2022. That’s about 8 per month in just 9.0. If 8 new keep copies keep getting added per month to the market, prices are going to continue moving downward until they stop getting added.
IMO the rarity of bronze age books like this one were significantly overestimated during the pandemic which caused prices to go sky high. The grading delays only help reinforce this false over-estimation. Look at 9.8s for X-Men #120 as well. In June of 2020, there was 75 on the census. Now there’s 109. That’s over 25% more in under 2 years. Good luck to anyone that paid peak prices for a lot of these books during the boom cuz.

bronzeagedj January 26, 2023 - 2:31 am

I am cautious but optimistic about this book, Alpha Flight is underappreciated.
But I would be careful how much stock you put into 1 or 2 sales that may prove to be outliers. The 90 day avg. on 9.2 is $191. Oddly enough the 90 avg. on 9.0 is $194. And then the 90 day on 9.4 jumps up to $331. For whatever reason the 9.2 is valued slightly less than the 9.0. You see these sorts of short term anomalies when averages are based on relatively few sales. Is it a good time to pick up? Maybe. I agree with your overall thesis (7.5% annual gain) and believe this a good hold over the long term. However, the poster above (T LA Ross) makes a great point about supply and CGC backlog. It could very well be that prices continue to decline for a while, maybe even several years, as the market absorbs extra supply. That’s a macro condition that not many people are talking about..yet.

intralect4681 January 27, 2023 - 1:06 pm

The grade counts more than ever. I don’t buy 9.0 – so when you see that 200 census went to 359, that should highlight that 9.8 is the way to go.

Some love for 9.6, and maybe some books better than 9.2 (since that is near-mint) but after that, why even have the book slabbed. What are you really preserving or authenticating at that point? Unless we are talking older or very rare books.


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