Stacks Bowers Ponterio sells over $1 Million in Rare Far Eastern Paper Money

The recent Stacks Bowers Ponterio August 2013 Hong Kong Auction featured an impressive 667 lot currency only auction session which was held Wednesday, August 21st at the Mira Hong Kong. The morning session drew a sizable audience as the selection included a significant amount of highly rare notes from various far eastern issuers. World Banknote sales tallying over a million dollars are quite scarce in this market and tend to create a strong buzz. The sale commenced with 445 lots of rare Chinese Banknotes followed by 83 lots of Hong Kong paper, with the remaining being from other countries. Spirited bidding took this paper money only session to an impressive $1,095,888 final realization.

Chinese paper money was highlighted by several rare offerings, with a highly rare Central Bank of Manchukuo P-J146 One Thousand Yuan bringing $22,705 as lot 52188. Later issue People’s Republic of China notes from the 1953 and 1956 issues continued to see strong action with a run of six consecutive 1956 Five Yuan notes bringing $11,950 as lot 52137. A prized 1912 Bank of China Chefoo branch One Yuan note that fetched $20,315 cemented early Republic notes.

Notes of Hong Kong also displayed strong results with the most important offering being a rare National Bank of China Limited Five Dollar note with a rare 19th century date of 1894. The note, in a large format and printed by Waterlow and Sons, realized $17,925 in a PMG Choice Fine 15 Net grade. A quartet of high denomination notes was the focal point of the remaining issuers with a rare Malaya KGVI $1,000 note in issued form garnering a $22,705 realization. The three others were all specimen pieces from Malaya and British Borneo featuring striking portrait vignettes of QEII. The first, a $1,000 P-6s note was sold for $20,315. A pair of $10,000 Specimen notes of the same series was offered in the next two lots. The first of the super high denomination duo was an as intended color specimen note in a deep green hue and very large format and saw strong action before finally selling for $35,850. A color trial of the same design in a deep red ink, saw strong interest and realized $31,070.

The sale certainly showed many areas of strength in the World Paper Money market for far eastern issuers and attested to the demand for quality material. This world banknote auction combined with our week prior ANA World Currency offering combined for the sale of an incredible $1,871,634 in rare world currency, a total seldom achieved for this small niche in the numismatic market.

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