The United States Mint has closed out the month of January, publishing strong sales figures for its precious metals bullion coins.
American Eagle Silver Bullion Coin demand hit a record pace. Interest in American Eagle Gold Bullion Coins was elevated, reaching the top ten in all-time January sales. The numbers are more than interesting considering several factors, including New York gold prices falling 1.1 percent in January and silver prices plunging 3.9 percent.
Silver Eagle sales tallied up to an amazing 3,592,500, making it the best January ever for the one ounce silver coins. In comparison, only two months in the history of the program have ever seen numbers topping the 3 million mark. The most recent was March of last year with 3,132,000. The all-time leading month is December 1986 at 3,696,000 — the first full month in which the coins were available under the new American Eagle Bullion program.
Silver Eagle Bullion Coin Sales: January (1986-2010)
While the Silver Eagle bullion did not achieve the topmost ranking across all months, the numbers are astonishing. January sales actually bested the entire year of 1996 when buyers scooped up just 3,466,000.
Gold Eagles enjoyed solid demand as well, with 85,000 sold last month to rank as the seventh best January ever.
Gold Eagle Bullion Coin Sales: January (1986-2010)
There were several factors that played into last month’s eagle sales. As mentioned earlier, falling bullion prices certainly influenced investors’ decisions. The timing of the 2010-dated coin releases must be considered as well.
With demand at such high levels last year (it was the third best year for Gold Eagles and the top year for Silver Eagles), the US Mint inventory of bullion coin blanks was stunted, with several resulting suspensions and a policy of rationed or limited buying options implemented.
The Mint struck 2009-dated coins well into December as a result of low supplies. (Current year bullion coin production normally stops in November to ramp-up the inventory of newly dated coins for a first of the year release.) The delayed January 19 launch of the 2010-dated eagles shortened and complicated the month’s sales cycle.
2009-dated Silver Eagles actually sold out a week before the 2010s were issued, leaving an entire week of unavailability. On the flip side, the Mint had an inventory of 51,000 of the 2009-dated Gold Eagles still on hand, which meant buyers had to buy a number of those too, if they wanted 2010s.
Still, pent-up demand was obvious, and resulted in the following sales for the 2010-eagles on their January 19 launch day:
30,500 of the 2010 Gold Eagles were purchased, as well as 18,500 of the 2009s.
- Demand for the 2010 Silver Eagles was most apparent. Sales exploded as buyers quickly grabbed 2,480,000 within the first 48 hours. In that short time, the Mint sold over 8.6 percent of the total it had in all of 2009. With a week still left in the month, sales had already topped 3 million and recorded their best ever January.
For more information on this year’s bullion coins, to include specifications and design details, visit the coin information pages:
The Mint does not sell its bullion coins directly to the public. Instead, it works with a small number of authorized purchasers who in turn sell the coins to precious metal providers, investors, dealers and collectors. These coins do not have a mint mark, unlike their numismatic proof and uncirculated counterparts struck specifically for collectors.