US Mint Bullion Coins Jump in 2016 Sales Start; Metals Decline

Chest of Gold Eagle Bullion Coins
Precious metals declined on Monday. First-day sales of the U.S. Mint 2016-dated bullion coins took off.

Gold futures ended lower to start the new trading week, their second straight session loss after scoring five gains in a row.

Also on Monday, the United States Mint started accepting bullion orders for newly dated 2016 American Eagle gold and silver coins and 2016 American Buffalo gold coins.

In first breaking down precious metals prices, gold for February delivery shed $1.70, or 0.2%, to settle at $1,096.20 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. Gold prices ranged from a low of $1,095.60 to a high of $1,108.30.

"Gold prices ended the U.S. day session slightly down Monday, on a profit-taking and corrective technical pullback from recent gains that saw prices hit a two-month high late last week," Jim Wyckoff, a senior analyst at Kitco Metals Inc., said in a daily report. "The mild downside correction was not unexpected given the good advance in gold prices."

The precious metal rallied 3.6% last week, the biggest weekly gain since the one ended Aug. 21. Gold did slide 0.9% on Friday. On Thursday, gold settled above $1,100 an ounce and to its highest point since Nov. 3.

Lower for a second consecutive session after climbing for four straight, silver for March delivery shed a nickel, or 0.4%, to close at $13.866 an ounce. Silver prices traded between $13.83 and $14.08. They rose last week by 0.8%.

In rounding out the precious metals complex:

  • April platinum fell $32.40, or 3.7%, to $846.30 an ounce, ranging from $844.30 to $882.40.

  • Palladium for March delivery declined $19.30, or 3.9%, to $474.30 an ounce, trading between $473.05 and $496.55.

Last week, platinum fell 1.6% and palladium tumbled 12.2%.

London Precious Metals Prices

Earlier fixed London gold and silver prices declined. In comparing their levels from Friday PM to Monday PM:

  • Gold fell $1.10, or 0.1%, to $1,100.75 an ounce.
  • Silver fell 7 cents, or 0.5%, to $13.97 an ounce.

LBMA platinum and palladium prices are available on the LBMA’s website with a delay of midnight.

Last week, palladium fell 7.7% while the others logged gains of 3.7% for gold, 1.6% for silver and 0.2% for platinum.

US Mint Bullion Sales in 2016

United States Mint distributors on Monday spent a good deal of money in buying just released 2016-dated American Eagle and Buffalo bullion coins.

First-day sales of 2016 America Silver Eagles hit 2,756,500 coins. Earlier, the U.S. Mint said it allocated 4 million Silver Eagles for this week, which leaves 1,243,500 until more become available next Monday. The U.S. Mint is rationing Silver Eagle sales because of silver planchet shortages.

In comparison, last year’s 2015-dated American Silver Eagle reached 2,958,000 during its first day of sale on Jan. 12, 2015. The total reached 3,701,500 coins by week’s end. The one-ounce, .999 fine silver coins went on to score an annual sales record of 47 million before selling out on Dec. 15.

U.S. Mint gold sales totaled 81,000 ounces with splits of 60,000 ounces in 2016 American Gold Eagles and 21,000 ounces in 2016 American Gold Buffalo coins.

These totals top first-day sales of last year’s 2015-dated editions. Those launched on Jan. 5, 2015 and registered combined sales of 58,500 ounces with splits of 42,000 ounces in Gold Eagles and 16,500 ounces in Gold Buffalos.

The U.S. Mint still has a supply of 2015-dated Gold Buffalo and 1/2 ounce Gold Eagle coins. CoinNews is waiting to hear from the Mint on what will become of them.

Below is a sales breakdown of U.S. Mint bullion products with columns listing the number of bullion coins sold during varying periods. Products with an asterisk (*) have sold out.

US Mint Bullion Sales (# of coins)
Monday Last Week Dec Sales 2015 Sales 2016 Sales
$50 American Eagle 1 Oz Gold Coins 41,500 N/A N/A 626,500 41,500
$25 American Eagle 1/2 Oz Gold Coins 12,000 0 1,000 75,000 12,000
$10 American Eagle 1/4 Oz Gold Coins 22,000 N/A N/A 158,000 22,000
$5 American Eagle 1/10 Oz Gold Coins 70,000 N/A N/A 980,000 70,000
$50 American Buffalo 1 Oz Gold Coins 21,000 0 1,500 220,500 21,000
$1 American Eagle 1 Oz Silver Coins 2,756,500 N/A 2,333,500 47,000,000 2,756,500
2015 Homestead 5 Oz Silver Coins* N/A 35,000 N/A
2015 Kisatchie 5 Oz Silver Coins* 42,000
2015 Blue Ridge Parkway 5 Oz Silver Coins* 45,000
2015 Bombay Hook 5 Oz Silver Coins* 45,000
2015 Saratoga 5 Oz Silver Coins* N/A 9,200 45,000
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