It is possible to obtain certified coins below national retail value. This has to do with buying in volume from the large discount exchanges that supply other dealers and institutional investors. The individual investor in rare gold coins typically does not buy in sufficient volume to obtain certified coins below national retail value. But, the investor can deal with a reputable rare gold coin dealer who can pass on the savings obtained with large, discount purchases.
There are two factors in buying rare gold coins where dealing with a larger, well-connected dealer helps. The first is getting better pricing on certified coins. The second is finding the right rare gold coin. A competent, professional dealer can find the largest portion of rare coins in various grades and for competitive prices. An investor does not need to deal with a small coin dealer who will only sell the items that they have in stock. Dealing with a well connected professional gives the investor access to the entire national certified rare coin market at better pricing than is available from the small coin shop.
Of course, extremely rare gold coins can be hard to find because they are, in fact rare. Many of the most unique American gold coins are in large collections and seldom come up for sale. However, a nationally connected dealer will more likely be able to help in this situation.
Being able to obtain certified coins below national retail value adds to the eventual profit when selling the same coins. The PCGS Mint State Gold Coin Index has risen from $1,000 to over $100,000 between 1970 and 2010. This is a measure of how well investment grade certified gold coins can do when held for longer periods of time. However, the profit from investing in certified gold coins is better for the investor who pays less than the national retail price at the point of purchase.
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