Original Superman comic sells for record $3.2 million

Buying comic books as an investment
Buying comic books as an investment

For comic book collectors, it's the Holy Grail.

A pristine copy of Action Comics #1 -- which introduced Superman for the first time -- sold on eBay (EBAY) for $3,207,852, a record. When it originally hit newsstands in 1938, the comic sold for 10 cents.

While eBay did not disclose the winning bidder, Metropolis/ComicConnect, an online auctioneer, said that it is buying the comic.

"The idea of passing it by was not going to happen," said Stephen Fishler, CEO of Metropolis/ComicConnect.

Fishler explained that his company had previously held the record for selling the most expensive comic book ever: $2.16 million in 2011 for another high grade Action Comics #1.

The seller was Darren Adams, who runs Pristine Comics near Seattle. "I'm proud to have owned the most valuable comic book in the world," he said.

In a video on Pristine's website, Adams explained how the comic was bought at a newsstand in 1938 by a man from West Virginia who kept it in a cedar chest. The high-altitude location, and the cool, dry, dark environment kept the comic in nearly perfect condition.

The book was eventually discovered in the 1970s and sold to a prominent dealer, who resold it to Adams.

The Superman comic is graded a 9 on a scale from 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest, according to comic book grading company Certified Guaranty.

According to the news release, a portion of the proceeds from the auction will be donated to the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation.

Reeve starred as the iconic Man of Steel is a series of movies before a horse-riding accident left him paralyzed in 1995. He started his foundation to promote research to help people with spinal-cord injuries. Reeve died in 2004.

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