Comics, Collectibles, and Coping with Calamity
How are your summer goals shaping up? If you’re planning on diving into the attic to sort through some clutter, keep a look out for some treasures.
Rare collectibles can provide an entertaining form of alternative “investment,” and might seem particularly intriguing when markets are wobblier than Aunt Gertrude’s jello salad. Comic books can sell for millions of dollars, for example, depending on their rarity and condition. Recently, a copy of Detective Comics #27 (the first appearance of Batman, recently returned to cinemas) listed with bids at $1 million.
While you may not be into comic books, items like artwork, antiques, or baseball cards, can hold surprising monetary value, but collectibles can be affected by a number of factors, including liquidity. Here are some sensible steps to take with such items, if you have them.
Educate Yourself. Books and price guides are a good place to start, as well as a good old-fashioned Google search.
Ensure Insurance. A professional appraisal can help ensure your item’s value is protected in cases of calamity or theft.
Consult Experts. Values can change depending on conditions and scarcity. Shop owners and other collectors can provide context.
Protect Valuables. Some types of items may require special storage or materials to preserve their condition.
Maybe you want to sort through your treasures with a loved one or write down the stories of how you came to own them. Whether you’re looking to sell or hold onto your valuable items, the point is to have fun and enjoy what you have.
The Week on Wall Street
In a holiday-shortened trading week, stocks rallied despite mixed economic data and vacillating energy prices and bond yields.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average increased 0.77%, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 rose 1.94%. The Nasdaq Composite index picked up 4.56% for the week. The MSCI EAFE index, which tracks developed overseas stock markets, edged 0.46% higher.1,2,3
Stocks Move Higher
In advance of Friday’s much-anticipated employment report, stocks enjoyed successive daily gains despite ongoing concerns about a recession. Recession fears were supported by an inversion in the yield curve and updated second-quarter Gross Domestic Product projections indicating the economy is ready to contract.
Technology shares were the week’s big winners as investors appear to have turned to companies with earnings growth potential during a weakening economic environment. Stocks bounced along the flatline following the strong jobs report on Friday to close out a positive week.
Employment's Mixed Signal
One of the holes in the "imminent-recession" narrative has been the labor market's strength. Historically, recessions have been preceded by or concurrently with a weakening jobs market.
Friday's employment report reflected a job market that continues to belie Wall Street's recession fears. Employers added 372,000 jobs in June, a number that was above economists' estimates of 250,000. Wage gains were robust (+5.1% year-over-year), though still below the inflation rate. The unemployment rate was unchanged at 3.6%.4