New £20 notes with serial numbers as low as 000010 will be auctioned off next month, and could sell for as much as £10,000, This is Money can reveal.
The Bank of England is hosting a charity sell-off of the new notes featuring artist JMW Turner, which will be run by London auction house Spink.
The auction catalogue, provided to This is Money, reveals 140 lots of more than 200 notes, including ones with ultra-low serial numbers and an entire sheet of 45 £20 notes beginning with CC, will go under the hammer at 5pm on 8 April 2020.
The ultra-low-numbered £20 note ending 10 is for sale at the auction on 8 April. It has a guide price of between £3,000 and £4,000
The first lot, and likely the most in-demand, is the £20 with serial number AA01 000010.
The lowest-numbered note to be put on sale, Spink estimates it to sell between £3,000 and £4,000.
However, it is likely to sell for more than that and potentially as much as £10,000.
At the last charity auction to be held by the Bank of England, when the new Jane Austen £10 note came out in 2017, a new polymer £10 with the same serial number was given a guide price of £2,000 to £3,000, but it smashed that and sold for an enormous £7,200.
This was 2.4 times the maximum estimated guide price, and if the new £20 followed the same pattern it would sell for £9,600. This would be a mammoth 480 times face value.
As well as 000010, other low numbered notes up for auction include 000011 with a guide price of £2,000 to £3,000.
Then number 13 has an estimate of £1,500 to £2,000 and 19 and 20, both of which have a guide price of £1,000 to £1,500.
A £10 Austen note with the serial number AA01 000011 sold for £5,200.
In total more than 200 banknotes featuring JMW Turner will be auctioned off for charity, including ones with very low serial numbers, like these two ending 11 and 13
The Bank also previously auctioned off the new £5 notes featuring Winston Churchill in 2016, with the lowest numbered note, AA01 000017, selling for £4,150.
Together, both auctions raised nearly half a million pounds for charity.
Altogether, 88 notes with serial numbers of between AA01 000010 and AA01 000100 will be auctioned off.
Ones numbered below this usually head to prominent people. For instance, the Queen is likely to have been given note AA01 000001.
One of the lots is a sheet of 45 banknotes, though these begin with CC, not AA
Lucky number eight
As well as the ultra-low-numbered ones, also drawing interest are notes involving the serial number ‘8’.
This is likely because this is considered the luckiest number in Chinese culture, with Spink telling This is Money that ‘the serial numbers with number eight are very popular among our clients, therefore they are likely to be sold at a higher hammer price.’
According to the catalogue, serial number AA01 000088 has a guide price of £2,000 to £2,500, compared to the guide price of £1,200 to £1,800 for three notes ending 89, 90 and 91.
Meanwhile, lot 104, described as ‘an ‘auspicious’ 888′, is estimated to sell for between £1,500 and £2,500. These are likely to smash their estimates.
Notes with the number 8 are deemed to be more valuable, likely because it is the luckiest Chinese number. This banknote ending 88 is predicted to sell for £700 more than the three banknotes which follow it
It’s STILL worth checking AA01 notes in your change…
The thought of paying thousands of pounds for a £20 note is probably out of the equation for most.
However, it is still worth checking your notes to see if you have an AA01 note.
A check on online marketplace eBay shows an appetite for the new £20 notes.
One new polymer £20 with serial number AA01 647545 currently has 11 bids and sits at £85, with two days left of auction, while one ending 647513 is selling for £127 after 11 bids. That auction has three days left to run.
This is Money previously speculated on which notes may prove to be valuable, including ones with serial numbers denoting events from Turner’s life, such as 1775, 1799 and 1805, the year he painted The Fighting Temeraire, the painting which appears on the £20 note.
I’ve tried my luck at both auctions
‘The original £5 note auction came as both a gamble and untapped money making opportunity after the popularity of those polymer notes went wild,’ says Jesse McClure.
The star of television shows Storage Hunters and British Treasure, American Gold said he was intrigued by the auction. ‘I researched, I bid and it paid off handsomely.’
He paid £1,200 for a £5 note with serial number AA01 000020 and says he sold it shortly afterwards for a tidy profit.
Jesse McClure: Real fans of banknotes and world coins could take advantage of economic uncertainty
‘The second auction, for £10 notes, felt more like observing a ‘second-chance’ offering.
‘It felt like coming too late to the game, where everyone in the know was trying to buy-in, which in turn flooded the market, and over-payment in final bids turned into a majority loss for those looking to make a quick buck.
‘This time around with the £20 note auction? With so much uncertainty in the world right now, this may be the perfect time for ‘true collectors’ to get in on the action.
‘With the coronavirus still progressing and the economy going into a more than likely bear market, it may very well eliminate and keep home the quick-flip folks (such as myself) and allow real fans of banknotes and world coins to come in and find a unique item for their personal collections.’
‘How will this pan out? We’ll soon find out.’
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