By Kristina Houck
A coin collector since he was a child, Peter Kevorkian began purchasing ads in coin publications when he was just 12 years old. As the owner of La Jolla-based United Coin and Precious Metals, he now buys and sells gold, silver and platinum bullion, coins and jewelry.
“At a very young age, I started searching pocket change and it never stopped,” Kevorkian said. “I’ve pretty much always done this in some form or another.”
A strong believer in investing in gold and other precious metals, Kevorkian views the global debasement of currency as a sign for investors to take advantage of the buying opportunities in precious metals.
“Gold has done very well over the past 12 years largely because the United States and other central banks around the world keep printing money,” Kevorkian said. “Every time they print more money, they debase the dollar, or whatever the currency might be. When that happens, you generally make the value of gold go up.”
Kevorkian sees metals as a long-term investment and a hedge against uncertainty. And he follows his own advice. In fact, he financed most of his college education by selling high-grade silver dollars he purchased in the 1970s.
“We had a bull market in this industry in 1980, and by 1982, I had cashed out,” said Kevorkian, who earned a finance degree at Northern Illinois University. “It was my first real taste of putting in money.
Pretty much everything I got went into it, and I did really, really well. It went up in multiples. In some cases, many multiples.”
Originally from Chicago and now living in East County San Diego, Kevorkian, continues to collect coins and invest in precious metals. A framed photo of his most prized collection — 24 rare half dollars minted from 1892 to 1950 and in the “ultimate condition” — is on display in his store. He recently sold the collection for $675,000.
“I spent $500 on a frame because I was that proud of it,” Kevorkian said. “That would be like if somebody had a collection of Corvettes from 1953 through 1980, but not just any Corvettes. These would be pristine, one owner Corvettes with low mileage and original matching serial numbers. … I’m kind of sad it’s gone. To be honest, I wish I had the coins back.”
With a passion for collecting and more than 30 years experience in investment and collector-grade numismatic material, Kevorkian opened United Coin and Precious Metals in April 2012. He is proud to carry a large inventory of products, provide education and offer transparent pricing, with the value of gold, silver and platinum listed and continually updated on his website.
“I teach people about the products and what they’re doing,” Kevorkian said. “I welcome them.”
Located at 950 Silverado St. in La Jolla, United Coin and Precious Metals is open from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, and closed Sunday.
For more information, call 858-412-6462 or visit unitedcpm.com.