U.S. Mint sales of America the Beautiful Five Ounce Silver Coins had been cooling. They received a jolt following the first 2012-dated release honoring El Yunque National Forest in Puerto Rico.
Produced in investment-grade bullion for investors and in uncirculated quality for coin collectors, both versions were recently issued by the U.S. Mint for El Yunque.
Debut Sales of Numismatic El Yunque Uncirculated Coin
Released on May 29, 2012, the collectible 2012-P El Yunque Silver Uncirculated Coin had debut sales of 6,514 through June 4, 2012. The level is slower than the 8,658 start for the previous coin depicting Chickasaw. Each was and remains priced at $204.95. But then there are contrasting differences from there.
The Chickasaw five ouncer launched February 9, 2012 after silver prices had come off recent lows and the London Silver Fix was at $33.80 an ounce. Supported by a short term rally in silver, Chickasaw’s opening sales actually outperformed the previous Vicksburg debut of 7,861 and fell just a few short of topping early sales of the coin before which honored Olympic National Park.
Conversely, silver prices were in the midst of a slump during El Yunque’s release with the London silver fixing at $28.25 an ounce.
In short, collectors do pay attention to silver and when it falls they tend to curb spending on collectible silver coins when their prices stay the same.
Debut Sales of Investment-grade El Yunque Bullion Coin
With the U.S. Mint beginning to take orders for the investment-grade 2012 El Yunque Silver Bullion Coin on May 21, 2012, sales by the close of the month reached 5,400.
This represents the slowest start in the five ounce bullion series. Although prices for these silver coins move up or down with the silver market, they had to compete with popular bullion American Silver Eagles which scored their best monthly sales total since January.
Differences between Bullion and Collector ATB Silver Coins
There are more similarities than differences between the Mint’s bullion and uncirculated five ounce coin line-ups. Both share the same 3.0 inch diameter, five ounce weight, 99.9% silver purity, and bear identical designs which match their companion America the Beautiful Quarter.
In key differences:
- Each is produced at the U.S. Mint facility in Philadelphia, but only collector uncirculated coins have the "P" mint mark.
- This year’s bullion coins will be minted to demand. Each collector version has a maximum mintage of 25,000.
- Bullion coins have a brilliant finish. Collector versions have an uncirculated finish.
- Bullion coins are sold to U.S. Mint distributors who then resell them for a bit over over the current price of silver. Collector coins are sold directly by the U.S. Mint to the public and carry significantly higher premiums.
For reference, below are sales of collector five ounce silver coins as of June 4, 2012. Those still for sale are available for public purchase straight from the U.S. Mint website (www.usmint.gov).
|US Mint Numismatic Sales – Five Ounce Silver Uncirculated Coins|
|2010-P Hot Springs National Park||27,000||Sold Out|
|2010-P Yellowstone National Park||27,000||Sold Out|
|2010-P Yosemite National Park||27,000||Sold Out|
|2010-P Grand Canyon National Park||26,019||Sold Out|
|2010-P Mount Hood National Park||26,928||Sold Out|
|2011-P Gettysburg National Military Park||21,835|
|2011-P Glacier National Park||18,362|
|2011-P Olympic National Park||16,016|
|2011-P Vicksburg National Military Park||16,052|
|2011-P Chickasaw National Recreation Area||14,266|
|2012-P El Yunque National Forest||6,514|
Below are U.S. Mint sales of the bullion silver coins as of June 5, 2012. These are available from U.S. Mint distributors, coin dealers and sellers of precious metals products.
|US Mint Bullion Sales – Five Ounce Silver Bullion Coins|
|2010 Hot Springs National Park||33,000||Sold Out|
|2010 Yellowstone National Park||33,000||Sold Out|
|2010 Yosemite National Park||33,000||Sold Out|
|2010 Grand Canyon National Park||33,000||Sold Out|
|2010 Mount Hood National Park||33,000||Sold Out|
|2011 Gettysburg National Military Park||126,700||Sold Out|
|2011 Glacier National Park||126,700||Sold Out|
|2011 Olympic National Park||85,200|
|2011 Vicksburg National Military Park||38,600|
|2011 Chickasaw National Recreation Area||28,900|
|2012 El Yunque National Forest||6,200|
Forthcoming 2012 America the Beautiful Five Ounce Silver Coins include those featuring designs depicting Chaco Culture National Historical Park, Acadia National Park, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, and Denali National Park.
Visit this site’s ATB coin series page for information on some of the past issues.
Interesting. I hadn’t heard that the collector version limits had been lowered from 35,00 to 25,000, after they initially started at 27,000. Regardless of silver prices, the Mint goofed again by raising mintage limits to 35,000 each. At least on some things they are willing to change their ways… In this case, it meant lowering the mintage limits for these ATB silver coins. Perhaps there’s hope yet for the US Mint. Think they’ll listen to the public’s outcry over the price of the new San Fran silver proof pair, selling for $150? (when silver is only $29 and change per… Read more »