PSA has had an outstanding reputation in the card community, holding a standard higher than any of its competition. So it's a little disappointing when a company that we've loved for so many years starts to up the prices out of the blue.
Last Saturday night I decided to start a new submission to PSA. As I was scrolling through the PSA services and prices page I noticed a major price change in the "Ultra Modern Card" category. I thought I was reading the wrong category but I wasn't, $15 per card!
I was shocked and didn't understand why, I know the hobby has been booming the past couple of months but a price spike like that is crazy! 100+ submissions are $12 per card, $1,200 per every 100 cards! $1,485 per 99 cards, that is a lot of money for card grading.
Ironically, I received an email this morning from Steve Sloan, the President of PSA. He provided me with a chart explaining why the prices have increased so much. The chart shows that submissions have quintupled because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Photo uploaded from PSA
Steve Sloan states,
"The impact of COVID-19 on the hobby is clear; the pandemic has resulted in more time for collectors to submit collectibles to PSA for authentication and grading. To manage this ongoing growth, PSA continues to aggressively hire new employees. Already in June, we’ve added 25 more full-time employees to our core Operations staff in addition to a dozen-plus temporary hires (each of whom could eventually be converted to full time)...As a result, we have temporarily increased the pricing on Ultra-Modern cards within the Value category to better reflect the current market demand for this service."
As bothered as I am with the temporary price increase, I can't blame Steve, what other options does he have? He needs to hire more graders, resulting in higher payroll thus leading to an increase in price.
Card and memorabilia collecting is called a hobby but as the population increases and social media reach expands, it becomes more of a trend, temporarily though.
To all of us loyal collectors, lets ride this wave out, wait for the storm to settle and things will be back to regular shortly. This can be a time for us to profit larger than any other time in history.
Let the trend collectors pay the high prices, they will soon be wanting any kind of return on their investment, even if it means selling for way less than asking price. That's when we come and swoop up all of the trend collectors cards!