The online auction site eBay has added yet another interesting twist to the short but intriguing story of the American Silver Eagle 25th Anniversary Set released last Thursday, October 27. Apparently, the site has chosen to place restrictions on listings of the anniversary set, leading to numerous cancellations of current auctions.
A recent visit to eBay found slightly over two dozen of the sets available which immediately indicates a change from just a few days ago. When secondary market values of the sets were recently evaluated, the site had well over a hundred listed.
As of this writing, the only sets showing on the site are recent additions leading one to speculate that eBay is indeed removing listings of the sets on a routine basis. A new policy has been discussed in length on several online forums with some sellers posting an eBay e-mail they received about the sets, a copy of which is shown below:
Because the 2011 25TH SILVER EAGLE ANNIVERSARY SET is in such high demand, requirements have been put in place for 2011 25TH SILVER EAGLE ANNIVERSARY SET sales. It has been reported that the MINT sold out of these within 5 hours. We understand that some sellers on eBay could have potentially placed their order in time, however we request that these coins are not listed unless they are in the physical possession of the seller. The strict requirement of not listing the item until you have it in your possession also applies to sellers with confirmed orders. Please wait until the Anniversary set is in your physical possession before listing it for sale.
We also suggest the following:
– The listing needs to include a unique photo of the item or items, and your User ID needs to be clearly shown in the picture (watermarks will not be accepted).
– To ensure buyer protection, PayPal needs to be the only accepted form of payment.
We understand that you may not have known about these requirements. However, please note that future violations may result in a range of actions, including listing cancellation, limits on account privileges, account suspension, forfeiture of eBay fees on canceled listings, and loss of PowerSeller status.
Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.
eBay Trust & Safety team
As shown in the above notice, eBay is requiring that sellers be in physical possession of an American Silver Eagle 25th Anniversary Set before they can be posted on the auction site. This will likely not occur until mid-month as the United States Mint has indicated that the sets will not be shipping until that point at the earliest.
In addition, once in a seller’s possession, eBay suggests that the sellers post a unique photo of the set they are listing which should include the User ID of the seller. Finally, as a protection to potential buyers, eBay is requiring that PayPal be used for payment.
Aside from eBay sellers, this turn of events is undoubtedly affecting many potential customers looking to insure they are able to add the American Silver Eagle 25th Anniversary Set to their own collections after the Mint declared a sell-out of the product. That sell-out was indicated within five hours of their launch with the Mint indicating at that point it had already received enough orders to account for the entire available mintage of 100,000 sets. A formal sell-out was declared the next morning after the Mint had registered numerous orders from a waiting list that will be used if previous orders are cancelled.
In related news, on Thursday, the United States Mint sent out an e-mail notice to customers saying they were undertaking a review on how the set was brought to the market. The review was set in motion, said the Mint, in order to "better serve all of our customers in the future."