The US Mint ran out of one ounce 2009 American Gold Eagle coins last week which caused their temporary suspension, and now the fractional sizes that were just launched are either gone or being allocated following record one-day sales.
The demand for American Eagle coins is straining inventory, forcing the US Mint to send out another notice to its customers:
Due to strong demand, the "American Eagle Gold Tenth-Ounce Coin inventory was depleted. The inventory for the half-ounce and quarter-ounce coins remains very limited," the US Mint stated today in a memorandum to authorized purchasers. "We will offer the remaining half-ounce and quarter-ounce coins for sale via the United States Mint standard allocation process."
The US Mint released the Eagle Gold Bullion Coins in one-half ounce, one-quarter ounce, and one-tenth ounce weights on Thursday. On that single day, 345,000 coins were sold for a total of 58,000 ounces of gold. The following two tables list the latest 2008 and 2009 sales figures as provided by the US Mint:
Fractional 2009 American Eagle Bullion Coin Sales
|1 oz||1/2 oz||1/4 oz||1/10 oz|
*As reported by the US Mint on Dec. 3, 2009.
The Mint said it was producing additional inventory on available in house coin blank supplies, and expected to allocate all the coins, including the one ounce Gold Eagle, by mid-December.
In the same memo, the Mint said it would resume American Silver Eagle bullion sales on Monday. These silver coins were suspended along with the one ounce gold coins last week due to their inventory depletion.
Record gold prices has helped drive up the demand for gold bullion coins. On Thursday, the yellow metal hit yet another record of $1,227.50 an ounce in New York, marking a third straight day of all-time highs. Gold has closed at a fresh high for 20 trading days since Nov., and is up 38 percent this year.
American Eagle coins are not the only ones under pressure. The 24-karat bullion Buffalo coin inventory was depleted today as well. In a separate memorandum on Friday, authorized purchasers were told by the Mint of the end of 2009 Buffalo Bullion Coin sales.
"The United States Mint has depleted its inventory of 2009 American Buffalo One Ounce Gold Bullion Coins," the US Mint stated in a memorandum to authorized purchasers of the precious metal coins. "No additional inventory will be made available. As additional information becomes available regarding 2010-dated American Buffalo One Once Gold Bullion Coins, you will be notified."
Following their launch on Oct. 15, the selling pace was fierce. US Mint figures have the 2009-dated coins at 198,000. By comparison, the Mint has said 172,000 were sold in all of 2008 while 167,500 were purchased in 2007.
Gold prices began to retreat on Friday, with the yellow metal down nearly $50 and just under $1,160 an ounce as of this writing.