Who says NFTs are dead? Former 45th President of the United States Donald J Trump had a major announcement the other day. What was it? He is releasing NFT trading cards of himself throughout his career. The cards depict him as a superhero and he compares them to a more exciting version of baseball cards. Each token costs $99 and each purchase also gives the buyer a chance to play golf with Trump at Mar-A-Lago.
While buyers of the NFT have made a quick flip profit, the overall floor price is down significantly. However, the NFTs have sold out at the source, netting Trump close to $4.5 million. (45,000 NFTs x $99). Sources say that this has nothing to do with his run for the White House in 2024, rather the profits are all going in his personal pockets.
The art and collectibles market is definitely a lagging indicator of overall market sentiment. The Paul Allen collection broke many records as the former Microsoft co-founder’s estate unloaded a number of masterpieces. However, many of the speculative artists from the past two years have failed to reach their low estimates.
Bad Timing or Bad Assets
The most telling sale of the economy is the recent sale of Aaron Judge’s 62nd home run ball. The lucky fan that caught the ball was offered $3 million but decided to put the ball up for auction where it garnered $1.5 million (after fees). To put this into perspective Mark McGwire’s 70th home run ball was sold for $3 million and Barry Bonds 73rd home run ball was sold for a little bit over $500k both to comic book creator Todd McFarlane. Granted both of these balls will have asterisks next to them given the performance enhancement drug scandal of Major League Baseball during the late 90s.
The comic book market is wavering slightly with some of the high flying Silver Age comics coming back to Earth. (The rare Golden Age books are still holding up.) The sports card market is also coming back down as is the non sports card market (think Pokemon).
The interesting thing about the Trump cards is that there are no benefits associated with them. These are strictly “art” or as Trump calls them “like a baseball card.” Outside of the raffle for the golf opportunity, the cards have no utility like the Bored Apes where a community has formed. Does this mean that digital art is coming back? We don’t think so. It appears that a bunch of speculators have bought up the cards at a relatively low price ($99) hoping to simply double their funds (which they have done).
That being said, with pandemic money gone, cheap low interest money gone, stock market gains money gone, and cryptocurrency gains gone, it seems like those with some dry powder on the sidelines might be able to pick up some cheap collectibles and art from those that need the liquidity. The Paul Allen sale might be the last time in a while we see some really special pieces come to the market as most of these owners will probably hold and wait for a more opportune time.
In the meantime, we can fill ourselves with old school NFTs of former president Trump in copy protected images for less than a hundred bucks. What do you think of the collectibles market? Are you a buyer? Is this the bottom or are we in store for some more difficult times? Is there a correlation between NFTs, art, and collectibles or are some markets more resilient than others? Drop us a note and let us know what you are seeing!