The 2009 Ultra High Relief (UHR) Double Eagle Gold coin was launched by the United States Mint on Jan. 22, 2009. It was the most talked about gold coin of the year.
The 24-karat, .9999 fine gold piece was digitally reproduced from Augustus Saint-Gaudens’ original ultra high relief 1907 Double Eagle. The modern versions equaled the beauty of the original strikes, and elicited buying action from those who could justify the expense.
Coin collectors were given until 3 PM ET on Dec. 31, 2009 to place an order for the one-year-only issue. How many were sold through 2009 is now known. A US Mint spokesperson confirmed on Tuesday that the final sales number is 115,178.
The UHR $20s were originally offered on January 22, 2009. They were white-hot in their first day, with a blazing 28,173 sold. What makes that number more astonishing is the fact that the Mint had a household order limit of one in place. And at the $1,189 price upon their introduction, representing a premium of over $300 above the melt value of the gold within each coin, the picture of demand becomes more impressive.
In less than a week following their release, another 13,491 coins had been purchased bringing the total to 41,664. The levels eventually cooled, as is typical with new offerings. Until coin order limits began to rise in the summer and were eventually lift, weekly sales increases were often seen in the 1,000 range.
The 115,178 tally is unaudited, which is the case for all US Mint provided weekly sales figures. Prior to UHRs going off sale, the latest Mint report had sales at 112,065 as of Dec. 27. The 3,113 or 2.8 percent increase through to Dec. 31 represents one of the best weeks for the gold coins despite being at their highest price of the year ($1,489.00).
Interestingly, the UHR has a smaller 27mm diameter, which makes it more than 50 percent thicker than modern US Mint gold coins.
For additional information on the coin and its history, visit the US Mint page at http://usmint.gov/mint_programs/ultrahigh/. More information, to include coin specifications and current eBay listings, is also available through the CoinNews information page: 2009 UHR $20 Gold Coin.