Year of the Horse proof gallops ahead at Spink's Chinese gold coins auction

Last weekend, January 22-23, Spink held a remarkable series of auctions in Hong Kong covering a variety of types of collectibles.

Stamp collectors and investors will have been most interested in the piece described as the 'crown jewel' of Hong Kong stamp collections, the 96c bistre block of four which sold for a record $821,000.

Their straightforwardly titled Banknotes and Coins of Hong Kong auction had several highly collectable banknotes, and three particularly impressive gold coins including two proof coins in exemplary condition.

Concentrating on the coins for the moment: There were two gold proof coins issued for collectors, celebrating the Chinese year of the snake (1989) and horse (1990). With a face value of 1,000 Yuan, they are in the same style as 10,000 Yuan coins we've seen recently at Heritage.

Chinese gold coin year of the snake 1989 proof
Chinese gold coin year of the snake 1989 proof

These remain in sealed vinyl packets in their black lacquer boxes of issue, and hence are still in brilliant condition. The former, of which there were just 200 struck were listed at HK$230,000 to HK$280,000 (up to US$36,000) whilst the latter (500 struck) appeared at HK$200,000-250,000.

Intriguingly, although both exceeded their listings, it was the somewhat less rare coin which dominated with the Year of the Snake coin achieving HK$320,000 (US$41,000) but the Year of the Horse coin galloping ahead to HK$350,000 (US$45,000).

It's difficult to be certain why this is. Perhaps it's just a matter of bidders setting themselves the task of winning one or the other as an investment, and therefore bidding more strongly against competition for the second coin in the sale.

Chinese gold coin year of the horse
Chinese year of the horse gold coin

Olivier Stocker, Group Chairman & CEO of Spink, commented after the sale: "This fantastic result demonstrates the enormous strength of the collectables markets in Hong and China.

"With over 20 years of auctioneering experience in Hong Kong, Spink look forward to increasing the number of auctions in Hong Kong for the future in order to better serve our growing clientele in Asia."


Join our readers in over 200 countries around the world - sign up for your free weekly Collectibles Newsletter today 

Featured products

Elvis Presley Authentic Strand of Hair
Elvis Presley Authentic Strand of Hair
Sale price£399
In stock
Fidel Castro signed certificateFidel Castro Signed Certificate
Fidel Castro signed certificate
Sale price£2,995
In stock
King Henry VIII Autographed DocumentKing Henry VIII Autographed Document
King Henry VIII Autographed Document
Sale price£55,000
In stock