Here are some additional items in the media this week that may be of interest. -Editor
Sports Card Doctoring and Conservation
We recently discussed the fine line between coin doctoring and conservation. The topic is also rampant in the world of sports card collecting.
Here's an excerpt from a June 14, 2019 New York Times article. See the complete article for more. Interesting parallels for numismatics.
A scandal in the world of baseball card collecting threatens to undermine the value of a long-established card grading system, has put into
question the legitimacy of a prominent marketplace and has raised concerns that some collectors overpaid for expensive cards.
Millions of dollars' worth of cards are at stake as collectors question purchases and wonder whom they can trust.
The controversy centers on the authenticity of sports cards. To verify their condition, cards are sent to a grading company, which scores them on
a scale of 1 to 10. Grading sets the value of the cards and is considered a prerequisite for selling them on an auction platform like eBay.
Cards in pristine condition are highly valued by collectors and can fetch thousands of dollars more than similar cards with scuffs or worn edges.
Sellers can improve the appearance of a card by trimming its edges or removing residue, but collectors believe any alterations make a card less
authentic, and cards that are known to have been doctored are often worth considerably less.
And card alteration can lead to federal fraud charges, which happened in 2013 when a seller admitted to trimming a Honus Wagner card, one of the
most valuable baseball cards in the world.
To read the complete article, see:
Retouching the Mona Lisa Is Restoration, but a Mickey
Mantle? Collectors Cry Fraud (https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/14/your-money/sports-card-alteration-fraud.html)
To read the earlier E-Sylum articles, see:
ON NUMISMATIC DOCTORING AND CONSERVATION
MORE ON NUMISMATIC DOCTORING AND CONSERVATION
The Clearing House Upgrade
One numismatic sideline is the collecting of checks. Their use has been fading for years but they haven't quite disappeared in the U.S. like
they have in many countries around the world. The clearinghouse system for managing check payments has been around for over a century, but it's
in the midst of an overhaul. -Editor
The way we move money around in the U.S. is slow by global standards. Write someone a check or send them an ACH transfer through your bank, and it
can take well over a day for the cash to show up in the recipient's bank account.
While that might not be a big deal when you're paying your roommate for rent, small businesses have to factor that delay into their everyday
Part of the problem: running a small business often means having to rely on some pretty ancient forms of payment.
Payments have to be cleared by clearinghouses to make sure the transactions are secure and legitimate. For ACH transfers, that job is done by the
Federal Reserve and The Clearing House, a company that processes $2 trillion worth of transfers per day.
But The Clearing House is now pushing a new service, called Real-Time Payments, where transactions clear instantly, on any day and at any
To read the complete article, see:
Moving money around is a glacial process. That could change.
Wayne Homren, Editor
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