“The history of money is the history of civilization.” -Alexander Del Mar
Anyone who becomes interested in gold coins whether as a numismatist-collector or as an investor, will find that a fair amount of study and reading is involved. As was pointed out in the first chapter, successful investment in gold coins requires at least a general knowledge of numismatics and, as with any other serious investment program, a working knowledge of economics and finance. Bernard Baruch, the great speculator-financier and adviser to presidents, recommended the reading of economic history, and particularly the study of the great financial delusions of the past, to all who would succeed at any sort of investment or speculation. It is common enough advice, that anyone who proposes to employ any significant amount of money in the stock market had better be prepared to spend at least one hour a day in study and research— and I assure the reader that a great deal more time than that is involved if one is really serious about making the stock market a consistently profitable venture. How much time the gold-coin collector-investor should spend in study and research will depend probably on the extent of his collection and the amount of money involved. It will not be arbi- trarily fixed by this writer; the ancient lure of gold and the fascination of rare coins will draw whoever possesses them willingly enough into the study of their nature and meaning. As for understanding contemporary economic trends, which admittedly shift and evolve with bewildering complexity, reading the financial press is helpful. The Wall Street Journal of course is the daily paper devoted exclusively to finance and always well worth reading. However, if one hasn’t the time or the inclination to read the Journal every day, a conscientious review of a good financial weekly is recommended. Barrons is one of the best-known weekly news- papers devoted to investment and finance and its news coverage of national and international developments affecting gold and silver is excellent.