What is An Olympic Gold Medal Actually Worth?


A silver medal in taking pictures from the 1900 Olympics in Paris just lately bought for a mere $1,283.

Then there was a bronze medal from the 1956 Winter Games in Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy, that fetched $three,750.

But it was a first-place silver medal from the primary fashionable Olympics in Athens in 1896 — there have been no gold medals then — that commanded six figures on the eve of this 12 months’s Games. It bought for $180,111, in keeping with RR Auction, the Boston-based public sale home that dealt with all three gross sales.

Even although their sentimental worth could also be priceless to the athletes who put on them round their necks, Olympic medals are discovering their method to pawn outlets and public sale blocks from the rostrum, the place collectors are scooping them up like uncommon cash, comedian books and different sports activities artifacts like baseball playing cards.

“It’s a niche collectible,” Bobby Livingston, an government vice chairman of RR Auction, which brokered the sale of the three medals and 18 others on July 22, stated on Sunday. “The ones that have come to market in recent years, there isn’t a glut of them.”

That works out to be about $800 in gold and silver in those medals, Philip Newman, a founding partner and managing director of Metals Focus, a London-based research firm, said on Sunday.

“If you’re winning, I think the value is probably irrelevant,” Mr. Newman said. “I’d be surprised if anyone thought they were pure gold.”

The silver medals awarded at the Tokyo Games are made from pure silver and weigh 550 grams, which works out to about $450, according to Mr. Newman, who said that bronze medals would be worth significantly less. They contain red brass, which is 95 percent copper and 5 percent zinc.

Each medal comes with a wood case and features the five Olympic rings, the official name of the games and Nike, the Greek goddess of victory, on them, a requirement of the I.O.C.

Some collectors will gladly settle for bronze, Mr. Livingston said.

“They’re still Olympic medals,” he said. “Third place is still pretty darned good. As a collector, you can start with bronze if you don’t have a lot of money.”



Source link Nytimes.com

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