Collectors can no longer look to the U.S. Mint to buy 2012-W Proof American Gold Eagle coins. The four-coin set sold out over the weekend, joining individually offered proofs that sold out months previously.
Released on April 19, 2012 in the four sizes of one-tenth ounce, one-quarter ounce, one-half ounce and one ounce and in a four-coin set that held them all, each of the 22-karat gold coins appear to have notched a new mintage low.
Figures published next week by the U.S. Mint may offer final totals for the proof Gold Eagles, but sales as of Feb. 11, 2013 are:
Sales of 2012 Proof American Gold Eagle Coins
|Product Totals||Total Coin Sales|
|1 oz ($50) Proof Coin||14,848||23,805|
|1/2 oz ($25) Proof Coin||3,962||12,919|
|1/4 oz ($10) Proof Coin||4,969||13,926|
|1/10 oz ($5) Proof Coin||11,680||20,637|
|4-Coin Proof Set||8,957||N/A|
Until 2012, the lowest coin mintages for the series of proof coins per size were:
- 2001-W $50 at 24,555
- 2008-W $25 at 22,602
- 2008-W $10 at 18,877
- 2008-W $5 at 28,116
Last year’s 2012-W Uncirculated American Gold Eagle coin also sold out at a new mintage low with sales of 6,118. The prior mintage low happened in 2011 at 8,822 coins.
Higher gold prices and resultantly higher prices for collector Gold Eagles have dimmed demand and cut production totals in recent years. The coins’ final mintages will end nowhere near possible maximums announced by the U.S. Mint when the proof American Eagle products launched.
Product and Mintage Limits for 2012 Proof American Gold Eagle Coins
|PRODUCT LIMIT||MINTAGE LIMIT||OPENING PRICES|
|1 oz ($50)||30,000||60,000||$1,935.00|
|1/2 oz ($25)||10,000||40,000||$981.00|
|1/4 oz ($10)||12,000||42,000||$503.00|
|1/10 oz ($5)||25,000||55,000||$215.50|
The first individual American Gold Eagle to sell out was the middle-sized half-ounce. That happened toward the end of November. Next was the quarter-ounce size in early January. Sellouts were called about two weeks later for the smallest tenth-ounce and largest one-ounce proof coins.
American Gold Eagle Premiums, Collector Proof and Bullion Coin Sales Differences
Proof Gold Eagles carry the "W" mint mark to denote their production at the West Point Mint. As collector coins, they are priced higher than companion bullion Gold Eagles that lack the mint mark and special finish. In general, premiums over the actual spot gold price for proof Gold Eagles range from 15% to 28%. Premiums for investment-grade bullion Gold Eagles often range from 3% to 15%. In both cases, smaller coins always have higher premiums.
January sales of bullion Gold Eagles were the highest for a month since July 2010. Sales across all sizes reached 150,000 troy ounces. On the flip side, sales over the entire life of the 2012-W Proof American Gold Eagle coins totaled 35,199 troy ounces.
Bullion and proof American Gold Eagle coins debuted in 1986. For both series, each size from small to large correspond to denominations of $5, $10, $25 and $50.