Covering the Spread: All the Shine

Welcome back comic book investors! I hope everyone had a great Halloween, but now it’s back to business as usual.  We spend a lot of time in these articles talking about key issues.  It makes sense because if you’re looking for something to invest in, those will always have value.  This week we’ll still be talking about key issues but not like we usually do.  This week I want to talk about reprints.

Reprints have been treated poorly in the collector community for years.  I’m here to tell you that’s a bad idea.  There are many reprints that end up being very valuable.  There is also a huge market for signature series reprints.  An Amazing Fantasy 15 Marvel Milestone Edition CGC 9.4 signed by Stan Lee just went for $950 last month!  Yet these kinds of books litter back issue bins because people perceive them as nothing but reading material.

This week I’m going to look at a few specific reprints as investments to highlight just how valuable they can become.  When a key issue becomes valuable enough to be out of reach for most collectors, a lot of people will flock to later printings so that they don’t feel like their missing out. Case in point:

New Mutants 87 2nd Print

For a short time I worked at a comic book shop.  I used to pull this book out of random bins constantly.  There are plenty out there but most copies I see are not in the best shape, because as I mentioned before, they were considered the reading copy.  So what does the value of this book look like now?

Without Pressing:

Average Raw Price 3.37
10 Copies 33.68
Shipping Fees (EST) 100
Grading Fees (EST) 180
Selling Fees 42.38
Total Costs 356.06


9.8 Av Price 9.6 Av Price 9.4 Av Price 9.2 Av Price
72.38 35.17 36.84 26.19
2 Copies 3 Copies 4 Copies 1 Copy Total Value
144.76 105.51 147.36 26.19 423.82

Well like I said most people don’t really care about their raw copies of this book.  Most can be had for under $5 even in high grade.  That said the graded values are all over the place.  In April (in full movie hype mode) several 9.8 copies sold for over $100.

More recently there have been auctions ending as low as $22.50.  However buy it now copies still sell consistently around $70 which is our mean price.  If you do grade some copies of this book and have 9.4 copies to sell auctions can end in disaster.  Multiple 9.4 auctions have ended at 9.99, so I highly recommend buy it now for those.

At any rate with these numbers we have an upfront investment of $313.68 (I think that’s a record for least expensive?) and profits of $67.75.  That’s a modest spread of +6.77 and an ROI of 22%.  Not incredible numbers but interesting for sure.

I would say the best plan of action for this would be to pre-screen everything for 9.8, but you’d need a lot of copies.  Also I won’t cover pressing here because with the initial cost of these books it’s not worthwhile.

Amazing Spider-Man 101 2nd Print

With the announcement of the movie starring Jared Leto prices for the original have gone through the roof!  Personally I take every Sony movie announcement with a grain of salt but a lot of people seem excited by this.  This “2nd print” was released 21 years after the original meaning it should be much more plentiful in high grade.  So what does the value look like?

Well this is an interesting case.  I think the market would be excited to absorb these but they really aren’t out there.  88 copies have been graded across all grades.  There was a burst of sales recently for 9.8 copies starting at $100 and getting up to $175 by mid October.  The lowest price currently listed on eBay is for $225.  Yet raw copies are still available around $20 on eBay.  I think these are a very interesting investment.

Amazing Spider-Man 361 2nd Print

Yes there are even more foil 2nd prints from 1992.  This one is a 2nd printing of the first appearance of Carnage.  This is one that I think has gotten respect a little longer than the other two because Venom/Carnage fans have always been ravenous.  The first printing of this book has also exploded in price recently so how about the 2nd print?

Without Pressing:

Average Raw Price 37.16
10 Copies 371.57
Shipping Fees (EST) 100
Grading Fees (EST) 180
Selling Fees 112.38
Total Costs 763.95


9.8 Av Price 9.6 Av Price 9.4 Av Price 9.2 Av Price
199.08 111.08 76.76 85.33
2 Copies 3 Copies 4 Copies 1 Copy Total Value
398.16 333.24 307.04 85.33 1123.77

Well we would have an upfront investment of $771.58 and profits of $359.82.  That is a spread of +35.98 and an ROI of 46%.  Not bad for 2nd print!  With how much money Venom made at the box office I think this has a lot of room for growth in the future too!

With Pressing:

Average Raw Price 37.16
10 Copies 371.58
Shipping Fees (EST) 100
Grading Fees (EST) 180
Pressing Fees (EST) 120
Selling Fees 130.62
Total Costs 902.19


9.8 Av Price 9.6 Av Price 9.4 Av Price
199.08 111.08 76.76
3 Copies 5 Copies 2 Copies Total Value:
597.24 555.40 153.52 1306.16

With pressing our initial investment goes up to $771.57 and our profits will go to $403.97.  That’s a spread of +40.40 and an ROI of 52%!  Those are some great returns but I am curious how well pressing works on books with foil covers.  Anyone out there who presses let me know in the comments!

Wrap Up

Well everyone that’s all I have for this week!  I have I have changed at least a few people’s minds about how to treat reprints.   Plus hopefully I’ve helped some of you make a little money!  As always I want to thank the wonderful Comic Spec Guide for all of our pricing data.  Get out there and pull some reprints out of bins and I will see you all next week!

The post Covering the Spread: All the Shine appeared first on Comic Book Speculation and Investing.

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