Gold Gains on Week, US Silver Bullion Coins Soaring in July

Gold, Bullion Coins and Money
Gold and silver notched strong weekly gains with the former up for a third week. Sales of U.S. Mint silver bullion coins are soaring in July.

Gold logged three down days this week, including Friday, yet still scored a 2.2% weekly gain. Silver tracked the yellow metal and advanced 1.6% from a week ago.

Gold for August delivery on Friday declined $7.30, or 0.6%, to $1,321.50 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. On Monday, the precious metal soared $43.10, or 3.3%, to notably strike its biggest daily increase since June 29, 2012. By the end of the week, gold’s gain in dollars shrunk to $28.60.

Investors are now looking ahead to the upcoming Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting and the U.S. jobs report for July. These topics were central points discussed in a Kitco News article along with its latest weekly gold survey.

"Out of 36 survey participants, 23 responded. Nine see prices up next week, six see prices down and eight see prices sideways or unchanged," noted Kitco News.

"For the short term, traders’ expectations hinge in part on whether they expect the FOMC and employment news to be bullish or bearish for the yellow metal… Others said they look for weakness since the recent price rise may have hit the targets of short-term traders…"

For a third straight week, gold trimmed a bit more from its loss so far this year. The precious metal is down $354.30, or 21.1%, since the end of 2012.

Silver, Platinum and Palladium Futures

PGM’s notched too many heavy daily declines for positive weekly traction. Loses stacked to 0.6% for platinum and 3.4% for palladium. In theirs and silver’s breakdowns on Friday:

  • Silver for September delivery tumbled 38.3 cents, or 1.9%, to close at $19.77 an ounce.

  • October platinum declined $25.10, or 1.7%, to settle at $1,422.80 an ounce.

  • Palladium for September delivery shed $16.75, or 2.3%, to finish at $724 an ounce.

In the quote of the week for silver:

"The basic influence on silver is the supply/demand relationship and there are potential issues for lower supply and higher demand at these lower price levels," MarketWatch on Friday quoted Michael Haynes, chief executive officer at online precious-metals dealer APMEX Inc.

"The fundamentals for silver are remarkable in that in an economic recovery, silver demand will rise … and when the economy is pulling back, the fear factor makes silver an attractive investment."

For this year so far, palladium remains on an island by itself with its 2.9% increase. Silver leads precious metals in percentage loss at 34.6%. Finally, platinum has fallen 7.8% since the end of last year.

London Fix Precious Metals

London precious metals fixings split on the last day of the week. When comparing London PM Fix prices between Thursday and Friday:

  • Gold added $5, or 0.4%, to $1,331 an ounce,
  • Silver rose 10 cents, or 0.5%, to $20.02 an ounce,
  • Platinum fell $15, or 1%, to $1,428 an ounce, and
  • Palladium lost $12, or 1.6%, to $731 an ounce

Only palladium ended lower on the week, down 1.6%. Silver was the biggest percentage gainer among precious metals, up 3.1% from a week ago. Gold followed at 2.7% and platinum brought up the rear with its modest 0.4% weekly pick-up.

US Bullion Coin Sales in July

In atypical fashion, United States Mint bullion sales advanced on just one day this week, according to the bureau’s website. Increases were published on Monday, which happened to be modest for gold coins and spectacular for silver coins — one of the best days this year. In the weekly bullion breakdowns:

  • Silver coins shot up 929,000 ounces compared to a very robust 898,500 ounces in the prior week. Splits were 925,000 ounces in American Silver Eagles and 4,000 ounces in America the Beautiful Five Ounce Silver Bullion Coins.

  • Gold coins climbed just 4,000 ounces, lower than the prior week’s already very modest 10,000 ounces. All sales came from 22-karat American Gold Eagles.

Since American Silver Eagles debuted in 1986, only four years have higher annual sales than the 28.5 million total reached in less than 7 months this year. When the Silver Eagles annual sales record happened in 2011 at 39,868,500, it took until August 29, 2011 for sales to top where they are now. At over 3.4 million so far this month, July 2013 already ranks as the best July and the thirteenth best month ever for the coins.

The following table offers daily, July and year-to-date bullion coin totals as published by the U.S. Mint on its website.

American Eagle and Buffalo Bullion Coin Sales
  Friday Sales Last Week Weekly Sales July Sales YTD Sales
$50 American Eagle Gold Bullion Coins 0 6,500 4,000 30,500 575,000
$25 American Eagle Gold Bullion Coins 0 0 0 4,000 47,000
$10 American Eagle Gold Bullion Coins 0 2,000 0 6,000 92,000
$5 American Eagle Gold Bullion Coins 0 10,000 0 25,000 440,000
$50 American Buffalo Gold Bullion Coins 0 2,000 0 13,500 175,000
White Mountain 5 oz. Silver Bullion Coins 0 1,100 0 2,900 29,900
Perry’s Victory 5 oz. Silver Bullion Coins 0 2,400 800 6,600 20,800
Great Basin 5 oz. Silver Bullion Coins 0 1,200 0 7,500 17,400
American Silver Eagle Bullion Coins 0 875,000 925,000 3,456,500 28,500,000


Figures above are in the number of coins sold, not in ounces.

US Silver Coin Melt Values in July and 2013

Melt values of silver coins are getting a bit of momentum in July, although they have plummeted for the year as a whole. The following grid offers melt values of older circulating U.S. coins that were produced with 90% silver. These silver coins, at least those that have little to no numismatic worth because they are too common or too worn, are the ones often sought for their silver values.

US Silver Coins Silver Coin Melt Values (12/31/2012) Silver Coin Melt Values (6/28/2013) Silver Coin Melt Values (7/26/2013) Net Change in July Net Change Year-To-Date
1942-1945 Jefferson Nickels $1.68 $1.06 $1.13 $0.07 -$0.56
1892-1916 Barber Dimes $2.17 $1.36 $1.45 $0.08 -$0.72
1916-1945 Mercury Dimes $2.17 $1.36 $1.45 $0.08 -$0.72
1946-1964 Roosevelt Dimes $2.17 $1.36 $1.45 $0.08 -$0.72
1892-1916 Barber Quarters $5.42 $3.41 $3.62 $0.21 -$1.80
1916-1930 Standing Liberty 25c $5.42 $3.41 $3.62 $0.21 -$1.80
1932-1964 Washington Quarters $5.42 $3.41 $3.62 $0.21 -$1.80
1892-1915 Barber Half Dollars $10.83 $6.82 $7.24 $0.42 -$3.59
1916-1947 Walking Liberty 50c $10.83 $6.82 $7.24 $0.42 -$3.59
1948-1963 Franklin 50c $10.83 $6.82 $7.24 $0.42 -$3.59
1964 Kennedy Half Dollars $10.83 $6.82 $7.24 $0.42 -$3.59
1965-1970 Kennedy Half Dollars $4.43 $2.79 $2.96 $0.17 -$1.47
1878-1921 Morgan Dollars $23.16 $14.59 $15.48 $0.90 -$7.68
1921-1935 Peace Dollars $23.16 $14.59 $15.48 $0.90 -$7.68
1971-1976 Silver Eisenhower $1s $9.47 $5.96 $6.33 $0.37 -$3.14
1986-2013 American Eagles $29.95 $18.86 $20.02 $1.16 -$9.93
2010-2013 ATB Silver Coins $149.75 $94.30 $100.10 $5.80 -$49.65


All coin melt values above are based on the London silver Fix prices at the end of 2012, June 28 and July 26. For reference, melt values of newer bullion silver coins are also provided.

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