eBay Halts American Silver Eagle 25th Anniversary Set Auctions

by Darrin Lee Unser on November 4, 2011 · 36 comments

2011 American Silver Eagles - Bullion, Proof and Uncirculated

The bullion, proof and uncirculated coins (shown above) are three of the five coins that will be packaged within the American Silver Eagle 25th Anniversary Set.

The online auction site eBay has added yet another interesting twist to the short but intriguing story of the American Silver Eagle 25th Anniversary Set released last Thursday, October 27. Apparently, the site has chosen to place restrictions on listings of the anniversary set, leading to numerous cancellations of current auctions.

A recent visit to eBay found slightly over two dozen of the sets available which immediately indicates a change from just a few days ago. When secondary market values of the sets were recently evaluated, the site had well over a hundred listed.

As of this writing, the only sets showing on the site are recent additions leading one to speculate that eBay is indeed removing listings of the sets on a routine basis. A new policy has been discussed in length on several online forums with some sellers posting an eBay e-mail they received about the sets, a copy of which is shown below:

Because the 2011 25TH SILVER EAGLE ANNIVERSARY SET is in such high demand, requirements have been put in place for 2011 25TH SILVER EAGLE ANNIVERSARY SET sales. It has been reported that the MINT sold out of these within 5 hours. We understand that some sellers on eBay could have potentially placed their order in time, however we request that these coins are not listed unless they are in the physical possession of the seller. The strict requirement of not listing the item until you have it in your possession also applies to sellers with confirmed orders. Please wait until the Anniversary set is in your physical possession before listing it for sale.

We also suggest the following:

– The listing needs to include a unique photo of the item or items, and your User ID needs to be clearly shown in the picture (watermarks will not be accepted).

– To ensure buyer protection, PayPal needs to be the only accepted form of payment.

We understand that you may not have known about these requirements. However, please note that future violations may result in a range of actions, including listing cancellation, limits on account privileges, account suspension, forfeiture of eBay fees on canceled listings, and loss of PowerSeller status.

Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.


eBay Trust & Safety team

As shown in the above notice, eBay is requiring that sellers be in physical possession of an American Silver Eagle 25th Anniversary Set before they can be posted on the auction site. This will likely not occur until mid-month as the United States Mint has indicated that the sets will not be shipping until that point at the earliest.

In addition, once in a seller’s possession, eBay suggests that the sellers post a unique photo of the set they are listing which should include the User ID of the seller. Finally, as a protection to potential buyers, eBay is requiring that PayPal be used for payment.

Aside from eBay sellers, this turn of events is undoubtedly affecting many potential customers looking to insure they are able to add the American Silver Eagle 25th Anniversary Set to their own collections after the Mint declared a sell-out of the product. That sell-out was indicated within five hours of their launch with the Mint indicating at that point it had already received enough orders to account for the entire available mintage of 100,000 sets. A formal sell-out was declared the next morning after the Mint had registered numerous orders from a waiting list that will be used if previous orders are cancelled.

In related news, on Thursday, the United States Mint sent out an e-mail notice to customers saying they were undertaking a review on how the set was brought to the market. The review was set in motion, said the Mint, in order to "better serve all of our customers in the future."

{ 36 comments… read them below or add one }

Richard November 4, 2011 at 7:40 am

ebay got this one right on.my hope is that no buyers or sellers get burned.good luck,and take care of busuness

GREGORY MONTENEGRO November 4, 2011 at 1:41 pm

People will just go to Craiglist then….Also, the paypal will ensure they get even more sellers fees on these as they know for SURE they will sell. Wonder if they are doing this to really protest buyers!!

James November 4, 2011 at 11:21 pm

I don’t know, but I do have 5 sets coming, and they are For Sale……

A&L Futures November 5, 2011 at 8:37 am

I was unaware of eBay’s move (eBay Halts American Silver Eagle 25th Anniversary Set Auctions), until I came across this article (thanks CoinNews). Yet, if you look to eBay…”these sets are still available.” As a matter of fact, one set is currently in the $800.00 range and unless eBay removes this listing in the next few hours, it will sell.

Although I applaud eBay for the steps it took, I fear that this will only fuel the frenzy to acquire these 25th Anniversary Silver Sets elsewhere. I believe Gregory is correct in saying that, “People will just go to Craigslist.”

No matter where/whom we turn to consider this. How do we really know if these “confirmed” orders we’re all seeing/buying are those on the Wait List or perhaps one of the lucky few placed within the first few hours of sale?

FINAL THOUGHT: When you consider that a raw 1995-W Proof Silver Eagle (mintage 30,000) sells for $1,800 – $2,300, it’s safe to assume that the two unique coins in this set (mintage 100,000) will sell for considerable premiums in the not-so-distant future. This is assuming that the U.S. Mint does not intend to release future Silver Eagles at this level. Based on the letter I received from the U.S. Mint, it’s doubtful that they’ll make this mistake again.

Then again, they too are in the business of making money, and they made millions on this deal. Go Government!

Stuart Wheeler November 5, 2011 at 4:45 pm

I don’t know what the percentage of the population here is 55 and over; however, I’m old enough to recall first hand when JFK was killed in 1963 and a couple of months later, the Kennedy memorial coin was released and still is in production here in 2011. The point of this being, times were less frantic and far less complicated half a century ago. In 1965, 1966 and 1967, the only numismatic products that were allocated to collectors were the sole and ONLY offerings of Special Mint Sets. Just that one offering in each of those 3 years. All they were concerned about in 1965-67 was the striking of coinage used in everyday transactions with no mint marks or 90% silver contained therein. Today, the United States Mint is more or less the corner coin shop on Main Street as you cross the railroad tracks at Elm Street. With 4 facilities striking coins, only Philadelphia and Denver strike coins for circulation. San Francisco and West Point cater only to numismatists and investors of precious metal products. And even then, Philly and Denver caters to the collecting public part time. I believe the United States Mint should get out of the coin store business altogether and and only produce coinage for daily transactions only like they did in 1792. And, that’s my view.

Rob November 5, 2011 at 6:23 pm

Ebay got rid of Mr rebates and other programs so I could save some money, just hate them now.

The Coin Keeper November 6, 2011 at 12:12 am

I’ve noticed a few sellers on ebay with photoshopped pics to try and make it look as if they have the set in hand. Ridiculous.

Eric Godiers November 6, 2011 at 3:55 am

I’m relatively new to Numismatics (I started with the state quarters program) and ebay. I felt that this would be an interesting and rewarding hobby for me and my children to become involved in. In the short time I’m been involved with the hobby, I’ve seen greed, corruption, and politics adversely affect the overall innocence of the hobby. Again, as with so many other things affecting our everyday lives, politics and greed have corrupted a relatively innocent pastime that I had hoped to introduce my children to. This once great country is adversely affected in every aspect, even something as innocent as a hobby, by those who are greedy and care for nothing and no one except themselves. I’m going to sell my small collection (at a fair price) to protest my disgust and disappointment at what I thought was a relatively benign form of recreation. I will call the US mint tomorrow and inform them of my general disappointment in regards to the inadequate handling of the most recent situation. There is no way that you can convince me that the Mint had no inkling of the impending situatuion that was created by them (unless, God help us, they are really that ignorant). I humbly request that those who are unhappy with the way things were handled do the same. Peace, and hopefully we can somehow force a change of simple logic upon those who are supposed to represent our interests.

alvaro November 6, 2011 at 5:38 am

I hope this flippers wont be able to sell the sets, will that be funny, it will fall in their asses, they will be force to sell them to their local coin shop for melt value to try to get some money back. what if the mint mints more, lol the flippers gonna be mad as hell, i guess your local coin shop flipper.

Clair Hardesty November 6, 2011 at 9:36 am

Sellers are trying hard to circumvent the EBay ban. Listings keep going up and keeps pulling them down. This from a listing from yesterday “Buy these fast! eBay is pulling these listings down rapidly. Don’t wait until more sellers jump in a few weeks from now. Will they be at $1000/set by then?” the seller has the balls to tell you to buy fast before his/her listing gets yanked be it was posted in violation of EBay policy!

I see nothing wrong with the mint producing numismatic and bullion products. Both make a profit and put money into the treasury. I do think that we should charge more than we do for the bullion coins. Now sold in the tens of millions of ounces of silver and a million or more ounces of gold each year, the bullion program typically returns less profit than the numismatic program even though the latter is way smaller in terms of volume. The truth about the Kennedy half dollar is that it has always been produced for collectors, almost exclusively. Demand was so strong that the 1964 90% silver coin was actually minted until April of 1966, even though production of the 40% silver coin had started in early 1965. It has been many tears since the half dollar was minted for circulation at all. It is now minted at a level of a few million a year and sold exclusively through the mint website and mint retail counters.

Skip Goez November 6, 2011 at 2:47 pm

I called the Mint—–I waited and waited——–finally got the bum’s rush when I was informed on the telephone that even the waiting list was N.A.——Hey!—- Mint!——make another much larger batch——have the U.S. military make ten less rockets and use that enormous amount of revenue to make more of sets available for we the people that want that collection——Skip Goez

Clair Hardesty November 6, 2011 at 3:28 pm

If by N.A. you mean not available, it is established and published mint policy not to provide any information about who is on a waiting list or where on such a list you might be. This is in large part due to the nature of the list itself. Since many of the orders that were taken before the waiting list was initiated may ultimately be voided for one reason or another and because orders on the waiting list may suffer the same fate, it is simply not appropriate to tell someone that they are on it or where they might be with respect to others. We know there is a waiting list and we know approximately when it started. Even the mint won’t have a definitive answer as to whether or not you might get a set until all sets are shipped and the return period expires.

DR November 7, 2011 at 12:07 am

eBay is both loved and hated. Sometimes by the same person at the same time. I have watched auctions and carefully read the specs. Did anyone else observe that ONE silver anniversary set at times sold for a similar amount as FIVE sets? Some buyers and sellers are going to be mighty angry when they figure out they were on the wrong side of a trade. eBay figured it had to “Do something.”

figurehead November 7, 2011 at 7:34 am

Remember all you E-bay people !! The mint will confirm someones order, but will not charge the credit card untill the coins are shipped ( Nov 18 or later) if that card can”t pay for the set the buyer is denied !! I would rather deal face to face with a coin dealer when the sets are released. My point is if you buy them on E-bay and are later denied you may have a possible nightmare dealing with PayPal to credit your E-bay account .

James November 7, 2011 at 11:10 am

Someone from the Kradashians emailed me wanting to know if I would trade a set of mine for a 20 Carat Ring. “I Said NOO Way”.
Supply & Demand…………..

James November 7, 2011 at 11:13 am

This is an easy one. It’s called Supply & Demand. Gives the Oil and Elec cos a break I guess.

James November 7, 2011 at 11:15 am

Damned HOARDERS………

Z November 7, 2011 at 12:42 pm

any news lately when the palladium american eagles will be released?

Victor November 7, 2011 at 8:55 pm

E-Bay has been accepting listings, with only the Mint’s sock photos used as a reference for some time. Case in point, $20 UHR Gold Eagle, Lincoln Coin and Chronicles and don’t forget the Oz Quarters that only a few sellers could get for distribution. Finally, a crackdown on those whom would sell on a prayer that they can get some from others to fill their orders. I ordered the 20th Anniversary Gold set from a reputable dealer, who stated he had it in stock. I bought it, received my confirmation and later was told that their supplier didn’t come through. I didn’t go for that! I bought it, they accepted my money and I wanted my coins. We settled on my original price, and $250.00 in free coins, to keep me as a customer. I know they had to spend more, for the second set, than I had paid, but they offered it, when they didn’t actually have it in their possession. By the way, I used the $250, for another roll of ASE at $13.50 a coin.

Pete November 7, 2011 at 8:56 pm

This is all news to me. I was searching for any news on the set when I came across this site. Thanks for the insight — I appreciate all info and comments.

Dave November 8, 2011 at 8:12 am

All sellers on E-bay care about is feedback.

bubba November 8, 2011 at 2:19 pm

This is probably a good thing. I could see where sellers could abuse a system where they sell something they don’t have yet and get paid for it and they have 30 days to deliver the item or refund the money. Ebay says that
people have to use PayPal which is owned by them. This seems like an antitrust issue. Ebay is trying to make things safer, but maybe they go too far in dictating what and how people can sell. The concern that I have is that Ebay makes policies that appease large sellers and giving them advantages. It is one thing to have policies to protect people and it is quite another to have policies that just serve to harass certain sellers in the name of security. The question I have is exactly what is Ebay? At one time they were just a marketplace for buyers and sellers. Now it seems they are acting like judge. Sellers pay all of the fees and yet it seems all of Ebays policies seem to favor the buyers. Sellers can’t give negative feedback to buyers as an example. It seems like their policies can serve to discriminate. It is kind of like a search engine only showing paying advertisers in search results. It is rigged. Ebay has a lot of power as it has become them main marketplace for a lot of people. I think there should be some lawyers looking at antitrust issues and possibly a class action lawsuit to find out the true reasoning behind their policies.

gary a November 8, 2011 at 8:12 pm

i’m just wondering i received a letter from the us mint to confirm my web order, did everyone else get a letter too??? i’ve order from the us mint before and this is the first time i get a letter to confirm order.

j. bach November 8, 2011 at 8:40 pm

because of the 25th. mess I will sell my silver eagles, and am done with coin collecting and the mint.

James November 9, 2011 at 12:17 am

To: Gary A, If you received a conf # you most likely got in on time to get your coins. It should also show when or about the shipping date will be.
Hope This Helps.
As far as some of the frustrated persons are going to sell there Collections at cost, (because they are mad at the Mint) you can shoot me an emai with descriptions, Variety, amount you have, and for what cost. I may be interested in buying them, provided they are stiill in the original boxes and untampered with.
You can reach me @ J3_Dog@yahoo.com

figurehead November 9, 2011 at 5:41 am

I saw one set on e bay this morning ,a 1986-2011 set(PIC OF A BOX WITH CHEATLANCER STAMPED ACROSS IT) that was an auction for the 25th anniversery set by a person called cheatlancer, who has expidite shipping on Nov 28th LOL !! You people wanna deal with this kind of foolishness ?? more power to ya.

Laurence J. Ramos November 9, 2011 at 7:42 am

My 5 pc 25th anniversary eagle sets shipped today. If you are lucky enough to get sets Don’t open the box. If you do you will ruin 3 of the 5 coins. I hope all these people ordering sets on Ebay realize that an opened set of 5 coins kills off 3 coins of the 5 pc set. My sets will go directly to NGC for grading. I am a silver eagle fanatic. I need to add this to my registered set.

figurehead November 9, 2011 at 12:35 pm

Thanks Ramos !!!! Just got my order processed today ( waiting on tracking #) My card didn’t approve and order was on “hold” the 1st time, but I got in touch with CC company and raised my limit. Everyone who ordered a set(s) needs to check US Mint webpage today !!!! Your solid gold Laurence !!!!!

charlie November 10, 2011 at 9:24 am

just got my 25 anni. american eagles. wow they are beautiful

Robert November 10, 2011 at 10:06 am

Just got my set 2 days ago. About this “Don’t open the box”… The package came in a big 14″ x 14” square shipping box. The contents were are collectors box with sleeve, no shrink wrap or anything. The hard box slides out of the sleeve, and the hard box opens… Each coin is in a sealed see-through plastic coin holder. I can’t see how anyone could tell if you opened your box to look. Of course I didn’t open any of the clear plastic coin holders. Maybe that’s what people are talking about. Anyone know anything about this?

bubba November 10, 2011 at 10:54 am

You have send to grading company in unopened shipping box to get 25th Anniversary set on the label. If you don’t care about that, then opening the box is ok. You already opened the box, so you don’t need to worry about it.

James November 10, 2011 at 11:25 am

I’m expecting (5) Sets. Going to sell them completely unopened. I don’t do Ebay. J3_Dog@yahoo.com

bubba November 10, 2011 at 1:10 pm

If you send an unopened box of coins to the grading company, how do you know you will get the same coins back? Send me your gold and I will tell you how much it is worth. 🙂

Pete November 10, 2011 at 5:38 pm

You would think that the US Mint would send a disclaimer to all confirmed buyers that opening the box could result is a lower coin rating etc…This is totally new to me and never heard or read this info anywhere…

James219 November 11, 2011 at 7:51 am

FYI: An unopened box WITH the 25th anv. 5pc set(s) is what the third party (grading service) wants IF you want the ‘special’ label they put on it. That is the ‘shipping’ box you get with the 5pc SAE box(es) within.

I was not going to submit mine but after thinking about my OWN personal collection of Eagles I would like a set of 70’s and sell off the rest. (Or trade a set of 69’s for an unopened set) 🙂

synoptic12 November 24, 2011 at 2:46 pm

+++ Too many stipulations and addendums are included, and added, by E-Bay. However, to each his own. Some have concerns, valid concerns, that if they send any coin(s) or set(s) in, “How do you know your getting the same back”. That is truly a very good question. Most will not, but photograde comes into play here, prior to shipping, which no one can perform, seeing that you cannot open the box. We shall leave it to the many to decide. We grade not our coins, nor do we recommend any to do such. As we have said, to each his own. The bottom line, “Money”, no other way to get around that aspect. The true collector does not grade their coins, rather leaving ‘shelf’ appeal to translate the return in the future. There have been set examples in the past where, we believe the Jefferson nickels were “hot”, and many ran to the grading services. As they say, “Where are they now”? If you consider the cost, exhorbitant cost, equate the value, as opposed to the profit, by delivering your gold or silver to a coin service, there may not be much of a difference; as opposed to selling ‘raw’. There are those whom are set on PF 70, as they have this imprinted in their mind as being the “pinnacle” of a coins success. The scale is a variable scale which could tilt in either direction by one point. in this respect, you could receive a PF 69, or PF 70. There is no guarantee when you ship your “gems” to any grading service. There is more than meets the eye at this point, and we hope the many can read between the lines. If you seek to make a dollar, by all means, send in your “gems”. When all is said and done, the dollar will disappear rapidly, whereas the mainline profit will go to, guess who?

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