Despite their late Oct. 15 release date, 2009 American Gold Buffalo Bullion Coin sales have already topped those from 2008 and 2007.
The latest US Mint figures have the 2009-dated coins at 189,000. By comparison, the Mint has said 172,000 were sold in all of 2008 while 167,500 were purchased in 2007. The inaugural Buffalo 2006 launch year would appear to remain safe as the best ever — at least for now — with its 323,000 total.
[Editor’s update: On Friday, Dec. 4, the US Mint announced the end 2009 Buffalo Bullion Coin Sales, due to a depleted inventory.]
The pace has cooled compared to opening sales when 71,500 went during the first five days. However, the amount sold in either October or November is greater than any single month in 2008 or 2007, which highlights the demand for the one ounce, 24 karat gold coins.
With new record gold prices and the recent Mint suspension of the bullion 2009 American Gold Eagle Coins, demand for the Buffalos should only increase. Gold prices hit a fresh high of $1,217.30 an ounce in early Wednesday trading, surpassing the previous record that was just set on Tuesday. The yellow metal is up 37 percent this year.
The following table shows US Mint sales from 2006 to 2009:
American Buffalo Bullion Coin Sales: 2006 – 2009
|2006 Gold Buffalo||2007 Gold Buffalo||2008 Gold Buffalo||2009 Gold Buffalo|
*As reported by the US Mint as of Dec. 2, 2009.
The US Mint sells bullion gold coins for a small amount over the current spot price of gold, but only to authorized purchasers. The authorized purchasers in turn resell the coins to coin dealers, precious metal providers and/or directly to the public.
Both the obverse and reverse of the Buffalo coin is the same basic design that first appeared on the 1913 circulating nickel, commonly known by most as either the “Indian Head Nickel” or the “Buffalo Nickel.”
The obverse has a portrait of a Native American, said to be a composite of three Indian chiefs. Many have claimed to be one of those three models, but only two were ever verified by the artist James Earle Fraser; Cheyenne Chief Two Moons and Lakota Sioux Chief Iron Tail.
The reverse contains an image of an American buffalo, also known as a bison. It is believed by many to be modeled after the creature named “Black Diamond” who lived in the New York City Zoo.
The US Mint also offers a numismatic or collector 2009 American Buffalo Gold Proof Coin.