With the release of the 2010 Boy Scouts of America Centennial Silver Dollars only one day away (March 23, 2010), the United States Mint has started advertising their availability in mailed brochures, and the coins are already starting to appear in the secondary market on sites like eBay.
For the latter, auctions found on eBay are, of course, pre-selling the coins. No individual has them. Shipment notices indicate they will only be available to winning bidders after the coins are received from the United States Mint.
At this time, only a handful of sold auctions have featured the Boy Scouts Commemorative Coins. The first one premiered last month. However, since then, several more have been added, bringing the number of auctions to over the dozen mark.
Almost all sellers have used the Buy-It-Now format. Current low prices for the uncirculated to the proof range from between $42.99 and $48.99. Completed auctions have come in at $99 for the pair.
During the last few days, the highest asking price on eBay for a Scout coin looks to be $159.99 for a graded PF70 example.
In perspective, the US Mint’s introductory price is listed at $33.95 for the uncirculated and $39.95 for the proof, plus a $4.95 shipping and handling fee. Assuming inventories remain, prices will drop on April 21, 2010, at 5:00 p.m. ET to $35.95 and $43.95, respectively.
The Mint has in place a household order limit of 100 per option. With a total 350,000 mintage, there is buzz that the commemoratives will reach a sell-out, like the Lincoln Bicentennial Silver Dollars of last year which had a combined mintage of 500,000 across all silver product options. (See Lincoln Silver Dollars and Cent Rolls Sell Out.)
Presale activity is not unusual for a commemorative coin. Just last year many buyers were paying premiums of over $100 for the Lincoln Coin and Chronicles Set which had a limited mintage of 50,000. Their values since have mostly held up.
More recently, the American Veterans Disabled for Life Silver Dollar experienced limited interest on eBay prior to launch. Now, however, dozens are seen on eBay with most listed for a small premium over the Mint’s sale price. Graded MS70 samples, however, are routinely selling for well over $100.
On the advertising front, the Mint has sent out a 3-pane brochure marketing the new dollars. Collectors started receiving the mailing from the USPS late last week.
No new revelations in it are revealed that are not available directly from the Mint Web site (http://www.usmint.gov/) where the silver coins may be ordered when issued. The brochure provides a brief overview of the Boy Scouts of America — their anniversary, mission, Scout oath, and starts with the statement:
"Annually, Scouts and their leaders volunteer more than 35 million hours of service to their communities through more than 75,000 service projects, meeting a wide range of needs in the areas of flood, shelter, education and environmental conservation."
$10 surcharges from each coin sale are paid to the National Boy Scouts of America Foundation, which will make the funds available to local councils in the form of grants for the extension of Scouting in hard-to-serve areas.
In addition to coin collectors, Americans who support the Scouts will be interested in purchasing the coins, as will those who are or have been a Scout. The Boy Scouts of America is the largest youth organization in the United States, with 2.8 million youth members and 1.1 million adult leaders. There have been more than 111 million people who have participated in Scouting programs since 1910.
For additional information on each coin option, to include design images that did not make the final cut, also see: