An unrestored copy of Action Comics #1 is going on auction today at Comic Connect. It's CGC graded a 6.0 and expected to bring $400,000.00. To be honest, I think it might sell for much more than that.
I'm lucky to afford my weekly fix of comic books but it's exciting to know there are copies of Action Comics #1 still out there.
"One bidder wanted to trade his Ferrari for the comic book," as part of an under-the-table deal, Fishler joked. But he said the auction will remain public. "I couldn't see myself trading in my Toyota Prius" -- even for a $375,000 car.
Why is this comic book so unique?
"Of the 100 existing copies, 80 percent have been restored, but people want an untouched copy," Fishler said. The book is listed in "fine" condition, a six on the 10-point rating scale.
Co-created by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, the comic book first appeared on newsstands for 10 cents a copy in June 1938.
Nearly 12 years later, a young boy on the West Coast found himself in a secondhand book store, where he persuaded his dad to loan him 35 cents to buy the comic book.
Until 1966, the owner forgot about the book, which was hidden in his mother's basement. Since then, he's been holding onto it, hoping to see it increase in value, Fishler said. He has not been disappointed.
"There has been a lot of interest shown on the book in the collectibles market," said Fishler, who predicted the comic book will sell for about $400,000. But, he added, no minimum price has been set for the auction, so "whatever it sells for, it sells for.
"I've known Action Comics to sell for around $750,000," comic book sales associate Bill Peterson said. "I don't have any intention on making a bid, but I know people who don't mind dropping several thousand for a classic comic."
The comic book marked the first appearances of Lois Lane, Giovanni "John" Zatara and, of course, Superman. The book is in high demand because "there was no such thing as a superhero before Superman. It spawned everything that came after -- like Batman and Spider-Man," Fishler said.
Even during the current economic downturn, Fishler expects the book to do well.Those who can afford to bid, he said, "would ordinarily put money into the stock market. But that's a shaky proposition." These days, the comic book may even be a better investment than putting money into a CD or a bond, Fishler speculated.