Gold Hits 4-Month Low; US Mint Silver Eagle Sales Spike

by on October 6, 2016 · 10 comments

US Dollars and Gold Bullion Bars

Precious metals futures registered declines ranging from 1.1% for platinum to 2% for silver

Gold futures extended their losing streak on Thursday to five straight sessions, and closed at a four-month low.

Gold for December delivery fell $15.60, or 1.2%, to settle at $1,253 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. The settlement is the lowest since June 7 when gold ended at $1,247 an ounce. A stronger U.S. dollar was attributed to the declines.

"Traders and investors are now awaiting Friday’s U.S. jobs report from the Labor Department, which is arguably the most important economic report of the month," Jim Wyckoff, a senior analyst at Kitco Metals Inc., said in a report.

"An upbeat U.S. jobs report Friday would strongly bolster the case for the Federal Reserve raising interest rates yet this year. However, a miss to the downside on non-farm payrolls would be just what the precious metals bulls need to stop their bleeding," Wyckoff added.

Gold futures ranged from a low of $1,251.80 to a high of $1,271.60. They are off 4.8% for the week so far.

Lower for a fourth day in a row, silver for December delivery shed 35 cents, or 2%, to settle at $17.345 an ounce. The close is the lowest since June 22 when the precious metal closed at $17.312 an ounce.

Silver futures traded between $17.14 and $17.88. They lost 0.5% in the previous session, sank 5.8% on Tuesday, and gave back 1.8% on Monday. Their week-to-date loss stands at 9.7%.

In rounding out precious metals futures trading:

  • January platinum declined $10.30, or 1.1%, to $966.30 an ounce, ranging from $965 to $986.80.

  • Palladium for December delivery fell $9.45, or 1.4%, to $666.15 an ounce, trading between $661.50 and $683.85.

London Precious Metals Prices

In comparing earlier fixed London bullion prices from Wednesday PM to Thursday PM:

  • Gold declined $14.90, or 1.2%, to $1,254.50 an ounce.
  • Silver slipped 4 cents, or 0.2%, to $17.76 an ounce.

LBMA platinum and palladium prices are available on the LBMA’s website with a delay of midnight.

US Mint Bullion Coin Sales in 2016

U.S. Mint bullion sales registered gains on Thursday that total 4,000 ounces in gold coins and 325,000 ounces in silver coins. Bullion coin demand is elevated this week, especially for Silver Eagles.

Silver coin sales at a combined 1.36 million ounces since Monday are already the highest for a week since the one starting Jan. 11 — when the Mint introduced 2016-dated American Silver Eagles and sold 4 million of them. That said, the Mint rationed orders of 2016 Silver Eagles from their release until July 18, limiting their sales to an average of about 1 million coins a week.

Below is a sales breakdown of U.S. Mint bullion products with columns listing the number of bullion coins sold during varying periods Products with an asterisk (*) are no longer available.

US Mint Bullion Sales (# of coins)
Thursday Sales Wednesday Sales Last Week This Week / Oct Sept Sales 2016 Sales
$100 American Eagle 1 Oz Platinum Coins* 20,000
$50 American Eagle 1 Oz Gold Coins 3,000 11,000 24,000 22,500 79,000 587,500
$25 American Eagle 1/2 Oz Gold Coins 0 0 1,000 1,000 5,000 57,000
$10 American Eagle 1/4 Oz Gold Coins 2,000 0 6,000 2,000 16,000 118,000
$5 American Eagle 1/10 Oz Gold Coins 5,000 5,000 20,000 15,000 85,000 715,000
$50 American Buffalo 1 Oz Gold Coins 0 1,500 4,500 3,500 17,500 152,500
$1 American Eagle 1 Oz Silver Coins 325,000 500,000 370,000 1,355,000 1,675,000 31,930,500
2016 Shawnee 5 Oz Silver Coins* 105,000
2016 Cumberland Gap 5 Oz Silver Coins* 75,000
2016 Harpers Ferry 5 Oz Silver Coins 0 0 0 0 200 36,300
2016 Theodore Roosevelt 5 Oz Silver Coins 0 0 -500 1,000 2,000 30,500


{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Synoptic 12 October 6, 2016 at 4:17 pm

If gold continues to decline, and the U.S. Mint adjusts prices accordingly for the Walking Liberty (even though a ‘business’ strike), contingent upon the *mintage, I may purchase one. However, the U.S. Mint is in business to remain.

Seth Riesling October 7, 2016 at 2:00 am

Today’s (Friday Oct. 7) non-farm jobs report from the Dept. of Labor will greatly impact gold on the downside even more than already this week if the number comes in lower than expected. Will be interesting to see what happens!


KC&SO October 7, 2016 at 4:17 am

Product Schedule –

NOV 17: Walking Liberty 2016 Centennial Gold Coin
NOV 25: Limited Edition Silver Proof Set 2016
NOV 29: Congratulations Set 2016

Mammoth October 7, 2016 at 11:32 am

Seth – while gold did not exactly plunge following release of the milquetoast jobs report (smallest gain since May), we did drop below $1,250/oz.
Can’t help but wonder if the declining price of gold has anything to do with the timing of the release of the 1/2-oz Walker commemorative.

Synoptic 12 October 7, 2016 at 11:46 am

Gold may edge up slightly before the release of the Liberty on 11/17. however, we have rarely seen the U.S. Mint adjust prices to conform with spot. On a few occasions of silver (A.S.E.s) has the U.S. Mint lowered the price but never with gold that we are aware. Your point is well taken, whereby the U.S. Mint may have noticed a decrease in spot prices as to display a release date sooner rather than later (Never knowing what may occur). We estimated the value upon release (Standing liberty) at $825.00, whereas others calculated $925. The U.S. Mint should provide some relief here for once, to us collectors.

Seth Riesling October 7, 2016 at 2:34 pm

Synoptic 12 –

The U.S. Mint has a pricing grid for all its gold & platinum numismatic version coins (not its bullion version coins that they sell only to their 13 worldwide authorized purchasers) on its website & gives ranges based on London spot gold average for every week on Wednesdays the prices have gone down & up according to this pricing grid. They change prices up & down fairly often for gold coins. Last year they raised gold coin prices about 3 times & lowered gold coin prices about 5 times. It is a very fair pricing grid they stick to for their gold & platinum coins. But, they have no such pricing grid for their silver coins which is very unfair.


Synoptic 12 October 7, 2016 at 3:25 pm

Why should bullion be any different than uncirculated or proof relative to spot price ? Gold is gold as silver is silver. I really do not know what a ‘numismatic’ version relates to other than being struck more times to enhance the finish. This does not equate to the extra cost being added, nor are the artists fees. It just so happens that Great Britain’s £ is not performing well, as dropping against the American dollar.

If any consider the U.S. Mint’s so-called ‘pricing’ grid fair (gold), we are at a loss to comprehend the structure. Let’s face it, the U.S. Mint has stockpiles of gold, and silver being obtained at extremely low rates. This is not to say the U.S. Mint cannot profit, but to collect a return over and above what they paid is highway robbery. If one combines the spot with the associated cost, there can be little argument. This is strictly business, nothing more than business.

However, to bring an influx of people back; to a somewhat of expiring interest in numismatics, there should be relief provided “once in a blue moon”. The U.S. Mint would surely laugh at this approach.

Seth Riesling October 7, 2016 at 6:10 pm

Synoptic 12 –

The U S. Mint’s “bullion” coin program & “numismatic” coin program are totally different entities (as is its circulating coin program). By Federal law, the US Mint’s numismatic coin program has to operate at no cost to the US taxpayers.
The Mint purchases gold & platinum on a “replacement” basis on the worldwide precious metals market. If it sells 1,000 ounces one day, they purchase 1,000 ounces the next business day for example.
Their gold & platinum coin pricing grid has been in use for many years & is on their website for all to see, & you were not aware of it obviously from your earlier posting, so I understand your confusion on this particular matter.
If you don’t like what you call the “high” price of spot gold, simply don’t buy gold coins from the US Mint.
Silver is a whole other topic, as I stated since the US Mint has never had a pricing grid for its silver coins. They make a higher profit margin on their silver coins than on any other coins they sell for sure.
Also, the costs associated with Proof coin production is much higher than regular Uncirculated coins due to the many extra steps & costs involved in the Proof coinage production process. I hope you are aware of those expensive costs that they must pass on to customers who prefer Proof coins.

Happy collecting!


Mammoth October 7, 2016 at 6:42 pm

“However, to bring an influx of people back; to a somewhat of expiring interest in numismatics…”

Despite making a great effort to get my kid interested in numismatics, the only interest that I see right now among young people is an interest in handheld electronic devices. But I have not given up trying, and have broken out rolls of Mercury Dimes to help teach my little one math.

Synoptic 12 October 7, 2016 at 7:06 pm

You are absolutely correct, just discussing that same aspect yesterday. Good luck there. This generation is only concerned with the technology as you mention. Maybe, if we were part of this generation we may be the same way (unknown). We had music, the peace movement, concerts among many other endeavors centered upon life. The young are pretty sharp at the current stage of technology, as they appear unknowing of much anything else. They are not coordinated and they believe that everything encompasses those i-pads, phones androids or whatever else.

We believe that you can provide your children with the knowledge but it should be left for them to decide. If you push too much, they may lose interest altogether. From time to time you can remind the children of whatever you wish to implement as a path to follow but again, leave it to the young to determine the course. This principle is similar in all aspects, including sports. One must take interest or they’ll never be content. You should be aware of that. Teach them the foundation of life, that is the jewel which many bypass.

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