2016-W $50 Proof American Buffalo Gold Coin Released


Ordering began today, March 31, for the 2016-W $50 Proof American Buffalo Gold Coin. Initial pricing has been set at $1,590, matching last year’s launching price that marked the lowest starting point since 2010.

2016-W Proof American Gold Buffalo and Case
2016-W Proof American Gold Buffalo and Case

Annually issued since 2006 and the first .9999 fine 24-karat gold coins ever struck by the United States Mint, the collector coins showcase James Earle Fraser’s classic designs for the Buffalo nickel.

Coin Designs and Specifications

This gold series has retained the same obverse and reverse artwork since its program debut. Appearing on the obverse or heads side is a right-facing profile portrait of a Native American. Inscriptions around the portrait include LIBERTY, 2016, F for the artist’s initial, and W to mark the coin’s production at the West Point Mint in New York.

2016-W Proof American Gold Buffalo, Obverse
Obverse side of coin

Reverses feature an American Buffalo, or bison, standing on a mound. Encircling inscriptions include UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, E PLURIBUS UNUM, IN GOD WE TRUST, the face value of $50, and the coin’s composition of 1 OZ. .9999 FINE GOLD.

2016-W Proof American Gold Buffalo, Reverse
Reverse side of coin

American Gold Buffalos have a diameter of 1.287 inches, a thickness of 0.116 inches and a weight of 1.000 troy ounce.

Sales of 2006-2015 Proof American Buffalo Gold Coins

The chart below lists initial pricing and final sales for each of the previous annually issued gold pieces.

Year Debut Price Final Sales
2015 (released on April 9) $1,590.00 16,592
2014 (released on May 8) $1,640.00 20,557
2013 (released on May 23) $1,790.00 18,594
2012 (released March 15) $1,960.00 19,715
2011 (released May 19) $1,760.00 28,683
2010 (released June 3) $1,510.00 49,263
2009 (released October 29) $1,360.00 49,306
2008 (released July 22) $1,199.95 18,863
2007 (released May 23) $825.95 58,998
2006 (released June 22) $800.00 246,26


Today’s pricing is subject to change based on the Mint’s price schedule for gold coins and the precious metals markets. The current price is based on a weekly average of LBMA gold that resides within the range of $1,200.00 to $1,249.99 an ounce.

Other collector versions have also been released in previous years, like the unique reverse proof American Gold Buffalo issued in 2013 to celebrate 100 years of the design. Also, the U.S. Mint issues annual bullion editions. Intended for investment, they lack the proof finish, do not have the ‘W’ mint mark, and they are sold through a network of bullion distributors. Right now, they are available for about $65 over their melt value. Their cumulative sales for 2016 are at 59,500.

Ordering Details, Mintages and Limits

Orders are being accepted for the 2016-W $50 Proof American Buffalo Gold Coin at the U.S. Mint’s online page for gold coins, located here. Customers can also place orders by calling 1-800-USA-MINT (872-6468). No mintage, product or household order limits apply.

The gold coin is displayed on an adjustable platform inside a matte-finish hardwood presentation case and ships with a certificate of authenticity.

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I cannot believe for the life of me, Being the 10th anniversary of the gold proof buffalo, That the U.S. Mint did not come up with something special for the 10th year anniversary. I will definitely PASS on this one. What a shame.

Seth Riesling

Joe#2 –

So true! And they did nothing special for this year’s 30th anniversary of the gold American Eagles either. A lost opportunity for increased sales.



I guess that’s what happens when there’s nobody in charge, just a seat warmer who only cares about keeping things running but not taking/owning responsibility.


“… just a seat warmer who only cares about keeping things running ..”

And even that is starting to wear thin … I don’t think he really cares … he just wants the money, the prestige …. he doesn’t seem to be even trying to learn the ins and outs of the Mint operations … maybe he is not capable of learning stuff like this .. he’s been there over a year this man is a joke …

Joe C.

To all,
Missed opportunities indeed. Why wasn’t there a commemorative for the Panama Canal?


The mint, proudly serving & licking HSN & such nimrod shyster big boy TV dealers since 2009……

Seth Riesling

That “seat warmer” Jeppson is an ex-Marine of 28 years (he retired from the reserves last year) & already has a significant beer belly. Go figure!



May Be US mean had a July 4th or Xmas Surprise ?

Christopher Williams




Yes. There will be surprises, one way or another.

Seth Riesling

New motto – “The U.S. Mint – Shocking Coin Collectors for Years.”



A type 2 Buffalo would have been good for the tenth year. The mint boss is probably is not aware of a type 2.

Seth Riesling

Joe –

Great idea! But Jeppson is clueless as you can tell from his lack of performance at the Mint.



Joe C. –
The Panama Canal probably would have been a good 100th anniversary coin. Congress has a law that says only 2 commemorative coins in a year and obviously the Baseball HOF and the Civil Rights 50th were deemed more important than the Panama Canal. Maybe they’ll do a 150th anniversary coin for the PC. I won’t be around to see it myself.

Joe C.

Strange law, but then that’s our gov’t. I won’t be around either. Anyway, they probably would have screwed up the design.


Probably why the USMint doesn’t have great designers. There’s little opportunity for somebody with great design ideas to express themselves, especially with mints like Perth and Ottawa competing for top coin designers. With the USMint under control of a do-nothing always bickering Congress which can’t even fathom the idea of not minting billions of pennies at a cost of more than 1 cent a piece it’s highly unlikely there will be any change to the status quo.