Eighteen thousand dollars was paid for an unusual set of Australian pennies – including the rare 1930 version – at Leski Auctions Stamps, Coins & Postal History December auction in Melbourne.
The 1930 penny is always a keenly sought after treasure, as it was never meant to be placed into circulation after the 1930s Great Depression, in which more than one million Australian workers were tossed out of work, began to bite worldwide.
However, this did not prevent the Melbourne Mint (responsible for minting the coins of that era) from offering them as souvenirs to tourists who took part in organised tours of the premises.
Apparently, visitors would exchange one of their own pennies for a 1930 version which they were able to mint themselves.
Another strong attraction was four Canberra opening stamp die proofs which each sold for $12,000 to the same buyer.