American Silver Eagle 2016 Annual Sales End at 37.7M


The United States Mint sold the last of the 2016-dated American Eagle silver bullion coins on Tuesday, Dec. 6. Their annual total ended at 37,701,500 coins, ranking 2016 as the fifth best sales year. U.S. Mint bullion distributors will now have to wait about a month for more since next year’s edition doesn’t launch until Jan. 9.

American Silver Eagles, bullion
Annual sales of 2016 American Silver Eagles ended just above 37.7 million coins. The U.S. Mint registered higher sales in only four other years — 2015; 2014; 2013; and 2011. The .999 fine silver bullion coin was introduced in 1986.

Silver Eagle sales ran at a record pace through the first five months of this year, slowed to a jog in June, and then walked in the summer months until picking up again in October.

2016 American Silver Eagle Sales by Month

January 5,954,500
February 4,782,000
March 4,106,000
April 4,072,000
May 4,498,500
June 2,837,500
July 1,370,000
August 1,280,000
September 1,675,000
October 3,825,000
November 3,061,000
December 240,000


Produced annually since 1986, the 1-ounce coins have logged their strongest sales in the last several years. Demand for them starting ticking higher in 2008 when orders reached over 19.5 million coins, nearly doubling those sold in 2007. Their sales peaked in 2016 at a record 47 million. This year’s tally ended 19.8% lower than the record.

Top American Silver Eagle Sales Years

Year Sales Total* Annual Sales Rank
2015 47,000,000 1
2014 44,006,000 2
2013 42,675,000 3
2011 39,868,500 4
2016 37,701,500 5
2010 34,662,500 6
2012 33,742,500 7
2009 28,766,500 8
2008 19,583,500 9


*These annual levels do not reflect true Silver Eagle demand since the U.S. Mint limited their sales because of silver planchet shortages. For example, this year’s coin was sold under the Mint’s allocation system from its release on Jan. 11 until rationing ended on July 18.

The U.S. Mint does not sell bullion coins directly to the public. Instead, they are sold through a network of authorized purchasers. AP’s, consisting of major coin and precious metals dealers, brokerage companies, and other participating financial intermediaries, pay the U.S. Mint $2 more than the spot value of each Silver Eagle they buy. Then they resell the coins at a markup to other dealers and the public.

Conversely, the U.S. Mint offers collector 2016 American Silver Eagles to anyone at The proof version is $53.95 and has sales of 491,255. The uncirculated version is $44.95 and has sales of 134,925. Unlike the bullion edition with its reeded edge, both collector coins feature a one-year-only edge that is smooth and has incused lettering of "30th ANNIVERSARY."

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Seth Riesling

For those outside the USA who may not buy these bullion version ASE coins, this article doesn’t state it, but these are $1 legal tender USA silver dollars containing 1 troy ounce of .9993 fine silver. There are only 13 worldwide US Mint bullion coin Authorized Purchasers who are allowed to purchase these bullion version $1 coins directly from the US Mint (9 in the USA, 1 in Japan, 2 in Germany & 1 in Luxembourg). Even though silver dropped from over $20 per ounce to below $17 per ounce this year, the demand was simply not there to reach… Read more »

Danny Morano

It’s because everyone wanted the Proof and Burnished with the lettered edges. I think last years min tag was overkill. Bullion 2015 Silver Eagles will be marketed at lower than average prices for years to come.


I agree, too many on the market means lower prices. No real demand in my opinion.