Coins are Beating Stocks

LOS ANGELES – A significant portion of Gene Sherman’s wealth comes from old money, some that even dates back to the Roman era.

That’s the advantage of coin collecting. You can pursue a hobby and get a start on building a fortune.

These days, that fortune is sparkling brightly.

With general shakiness in the economy, some investors are bullish on coins because they are tangible assets that are not as susceptible to the same market pressures as stocks and bonds. The value of precious metals is up, an indication that the value of coins is on the rise. The CU3000 Rare Coin Index, meanwhile, has handily outperformed the stock market since the peak of the dot com bubble five years ago.

The index, which measures the value of the 3,000 most actively traded coins, has increased about 20 percent over the past five years, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has dropped more than 5 percent and the Standard & Poor’s 500 index has declined at least 20 percent during the same period.

So is it time to dust off that old penny collection and get serious?

Opinions are divided.

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