Undervalued #48: More CGC 9.8 Newsstand to Invest In

If you have read my latest sales report on copper age 9.8, you will know that this category of comics is heating up. In addition, here is one recent sale that also showed the potential of this niche market:

Personally, I am very happy with this trend. It allows someone like me who grew up in the 90s to finally invest in books that can appreciate in value significantly.

In the past, I have voiced concerns about copper age investing and said that newsstands might be the solution. This was what I wrote in 2017

Me in 2017

Newsstands: When things are common, collectors tend to find variants that are harder to find. In Bronze age, we have the 30 and 35 cents variants. In Copper, especially late copper, newsstand editions are starting to see some interest.

If you are look at Spawn #1 for example, the prices between a newsstand 9.8 vs a normal edition is quite big. So, I make it a point to buy newsstand editions whenever I can for Copper books in the early 90s. In the 80s, newsstand editions are still common.

The mistake I made was not focusing on 9.8 newsstand. As a result, I neglected the 80s newsstand as non 9.8 copies are plentiful.

However, looking at the supply situation now, even 80s 9.8 newsstand are hard to come by, especially the mid to late 80s.

Supply drying up?

While this trend is positive, it also created a problem of increasing buying pressure since everyone now knows its potential. In fact, the supply of 9.8 newsstand is reducing as I see copies being sold at an increasing pace.

Even high print run keys books such as X-Men Vol 2, #4 (First Omega Red), Uncanny X-Men #282 (First Bishop), and New Mutants #14 (First Magik) are seeing significant premiums for newsstands. Below is a screenshot showing the first 2.

(Editor’s note: I regret not fulling the trigger on the #282. Bishop is a fan favorite character and this book is only going to appreciate more in value once he is in the MCU)

If you want to get in on this trend, here are some picks that are still affordable ($300+ and below) and less talked about. (No promises after this article is published though!)

X Factor #5 9.8 Newsstand

Date of Publication: 1986
Copies on Ebay: 2

Key strengths of this book
1. Cameo appearance of Apocalyse

2. First appearance of Stinger and Timeshadow

 

As of this writing, there are 2 copies of this book sitting down $200. There are 2 perspectives we can use to see why this book is undervalued.

The first is to examine the newsstand premium. If you looked at the above screenshots, the premium on those books is at least 200-300% above what the direct edition is selling for.

In the case of X-Factor #5, the 9.8 direct editions are selling around $100. This means that the premium on its newsstand premium is less than 100%. From this perspective, it seems undervalued to me.

The second way is to compare X-Factor #5 with #6.

IssueX-Factor #5X-Factor #6Differences
Direct 9.8USD 100USD 3003X
Newsstand 9.8USD 150USD 6004X
Links above are to Ebay. If you buy something, I will get a commission from Ebay as part of its affiliate program. If you want to support my research, using my links to buy from Ebay will be the best way.

The table shows that for direct editions, the difference between X-Factor #5 and #6 is around 3 times.

However, when it comes to newsstand, the gap is widen to 4X. This means the market has not fully appreciated the 9.8 newsstand for X-Factor #5 yet.

X Factor #1 9.8 Newsstand

Date of Publication: 1986
Copies on Ebay: 1

Key strengths of this book
1. First appearance of X-Factor

 

A lot of attention has been paid to X-Force and hence New Mutants #100. In contrast, hardly anyone talks about X-Factor.

However, X-Factor has been equally important to the history of the X-Men and has accumulated many issues under its belt. The group made their first appearance in this book, which has been under the radar.

Currently, there is one copy sitting on Ebay with a $300+ price tag. This is not an undervalued price as it has a premium of 300% over what regular 9.8 editions are selling for. If you are buying at this price, you are essentially betting that the newsstand 9.8 market will continue to rise.

It is not the most cheap book to buy but the fact that only 1 copy is being listed should tell you about its scarcity.

Alpha Flight #1 9.8 Newsstand

Date of Publication: 1983
Copies of Ebay: 1

Key strengths of this book
1. First appearance of Puck and Marrina

2. First debut issue of Alpha Flight

 

Alpha Flight books have been getting some attention recent rumors surfaced about their involvement in the MCU. In particularly, X-Men #120 and #121 have been seeing increases in prices.

Below is the tweet that started the rumor in June 2020:

Alpha Flight #1 rides on this same trend.

At first, my gut feeling is that newsstand 9.8s might be common for this book, like Amazing Spider-Man #361. To my surprise, this isn’t the case as both sold and active listings are not littered with newsstands 9.8s.

Currently, there is only one newsstand 9.8 copy on auction right now, with the starting bid of $210. This price isn’t too far from direct editions market price of $150. As such, it is pretty undervalued as the newsstand premium isn’t too high.

Magik #1 9.8 Newsstand

Date of Publication: 1983
Copies on Ebay: 4

Key strengths of this book
1. First solo series for Magik

 

Magik is breaking out to be a fan favorite among the New Mutants team. Unfortunately, her first appearance is a mess, with no clear winner emerging.

Due to the above, a better investment might be Magik #1, which is her first solo series. This is a more clear cut book in terms of its importance to the Magik character.

Among the 9.8 newsstand listed here, this is the most common, with 4 copies available as of this writing. Newsstand premium for this book is almost non existent or very small. This indicates that the market is currently undervaluing this book.

Conclusion

The rise of 9.8 newsstand prices makes copper age investing interesting again. I will continue to look for opportunities in this area and update readers whenever I found good books to invest in.

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