The pace of producing U.S. coins slowed for a third year in a row after peaking to a 14-year high, the latest manufacturing figures from the United States Mint show.
In 2018, production facilities in Philadelphia and Denver shipped over 13.1 billion coins to Federal Reserve Banks for distribution into the economy, marking decreases of 11.7% from the more than 14.8 billion coins made a year earlier and 18.1% from the over 16 billion coins struck in 2016.
Contrast the latest annual figure to 2015 when the U.S. Mint beefed up operations and hired more workers as demand for coinage ran higher for a sixth straight year and drove production above 17 billion coins. That said, the pace in 2018 was 269.9% quicker than in 2009 when U.S. coin production hit bottom at just over 3.5 billion coins.
Here is a summary of annual coin production totals in 2018 against 2017:
US Mint Annual Coin Production (2018 vs 2017)
|Year 2017||Year 2018||2018 Unit Gain / Loss||2018 % Gain / Loss|
|Native American $1||3,360,000||2,800,000||-560,000||-16.7%|
U.S. Mint facilities in Denver and Philadelphia manufacture all of America’s coins for commerce. Last year, the Denver Mint made 6,284,980,000 coins and the Philadelphia Mint made 6,840,434,000 coins.
Mintages of Kennedy half-dollars and Native American dollars are smaller than other coins because they are no longer produced for circulation — Federal Reserve Banks do not order them from the U.S. Mint. The two coins are now made only for numismatic products.
Mintages for the 2018 Kennedy half-dollar total 6.1 million from Denver and 4.8 million from Philadelphia for a combined 10.9 million coins — the most since 2001 and more than doubling those made in 2017. The prior year’s release ended with splits of 2.9 million from Denver and 1.8 million from Philadelphia for a combined 4.7 million coins.
Mintages for the 2018 Native American dollars total 1.4 million from Denver and 1.4 million from Philadelphia for a combined 2.8 million coins — down from the previous year’s release which ended with splits of 1.54 million from Denver and 1.82 million from Philadelphia for 3.36 million coins.
In unit totals and keeping with practice, 2018 Lincoln cents won among denominations with more than 7.8 billion made — even as it costs the U.S. Mint 1.82 cents to make and distribute each one. The 7.8 billion figure represents 59.5% of the 2018 production total.
This next table shows 2018 circulating coin mintages by production facility, denomination and design.
2018 Circulating Coin Production by Design
|Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore Quarter (MI)||182,600,000||186,714,000||369,314,000|
|Apostle Islands National Lakeshore Quarter (WI)||216,600,000||223,200,000||439,800,000|
|Voyageurs National Park Quarter (MN)||197,800,000||237,400,000||435,200,000|
|Cumberland Island National Seashore Quarter (GA)||151,600,000||138,000,000||289,600,000|
|Block Island National Wildlife Refuge Quarter (RI)||159,600,000||159,600,000||319,200,000|
|Native American $1 Coins||1,400,000||1,400,000||2,800,000|
Mintages of the U.S. Mint’s program of America the Beautiful Quarters® had grown stronger each year until 2016. The overall production of quarters slowed again in 2018 with a bit more than 1.85 billion million made, marking a 12.4% decline from 2017.
Annual quarter mintages since the start of the series include:
- 347 million in 2010,
- 391.2 million in 2011,
- 568 million in 2012,
- 1.455 billion in 2013,
- 1.58 billion in 2014,
- 2.99 billion in 2015,
- 2.35 billion in 2016,
- 2.11 billion in 2017, and
- 1.85 billion in 2018.
Five different quarter designs are issued each year. The America the Beautiful Quarters for 2018 include:
- 2018 Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore quarter for Michigan, released on Feb 5.
- 2018 Apostle Islands National Lakeshore quarter for Wisconsin, released on April 9.
- 2018 Voyageurs National Park quarter for Minnesota, released on June 11.
- 2018 Cumberland Island National Seashore quarter for Georgia, released on Aug. 27.
- 2018 Block Island National Wildlife Refuge quarter for Rhode Island, released on Nov. 13.
Block Island Quarter Mintages
Official mintages for Rhode Island’s Block Island National Wildlife Refuge quarters were reported for the first time this month, registering at 159.6 million from Denver and 159.6 million from Philadelphia for a combined 319.2 million.
Forty-five different quarter designs have been released from 2010 to 2018. The 2016 Harpers Ferry National Historical quarter for West Virginia remains the mintage leader by design at 858.63 million quarters.
The 2012 Chaco Culture National Historical Park quarter for New Mexico remains at the bottom of the production charts with a total mintage of 44 million. The scarcest America the Beautiful quarter dollar issue by production facility is the Denver Mint-struck 2012-D Acadia National Park quarter at 21.6 million. The ‘P’ and ‘D’ Chaco Culture quarters follow with each at 22 million.
The U.S. Mint has made more than 13.6 billion America the Beautiful Quarters since the series start in 2010. Each quarter honors a different national park or national site in the United States or its territories. Here is a breakdown of production totals by quarter design and coin production facility:
2010 – 2018 America the Beautiful Quarters Mintages
|2010 Hot Springs National Park||34,000,000||35,600,000||69,600,000|
|2010 Yellowstone National Park||34,800,000||33,600,000||68,400,000|
|2010 Yosemite National Park||34,800,000||35,200,000||70,000,000|
|2010 Grand Canyon National Park||35,400,000||34,800,000||70,200,000|
|2010 Mount Hood National Forest||34,400,000||34,400,000||68,800,000|
|2011 Gettysburg National Military Park||30,400,000||30,800,000||61,200,000|
|2011 Glacier National Park||31,200,000||30,400,000||61,600,000|
|2011 Olympic National Park||30,600,000||30,400,000||61,000,000|
|2011 Vicksburg National Military Park||33,400,000||30,800,000||64,200,000|
|2011 Chickasaw National Recreation Area||69,400,000||73,800,000||143,200,000|
|2012 El Yunque Quarter||25,000,000||25,800,000||50,800,000|
|2012 Chaco Culture Quarter||22,000,000||22,000,000||44,000,000|
|2012 Acadia Quarter||21,606,000||24,800,000||46,406,000|
|2012 Hawai’i Quarter||78,600,000||46,200,000||124,800,000|
|2012 Denali Quarter||166,600,000||135,400,000||302,000,000|
|2013 White Mountain Quarter||107,600,000||68,800,000||176,400,000|
|2013 Perry’s Victory Quarter||131,600,000||107,800,000||239,400,000|
|2013 Great Basin Quarter||141,400,000||122,400,000||263,800,000|
|2013 Fort McHenry Quarter||151,400,000||120,000,000||271,400,000|
|2013 Mount Rushmore Quarter||272,400,000||231,800,000||504,200,000|
|2014 Great Smoky Mountains Quarter||99,400,000||73,200,000||172,600,000|
|2014 Shenandoah National Park Quarter||197,800,000||112,800,000||310,600,000|
|2014 Arches National Park Quarter||251,400,000||214,200,000||465,600,000|
|2014 Great Sand Dunes Quarter||171,800,000||159,600,000||331,400,000|
|2014 Everglades National Park Quarter||142,400,000||157,601,200||300,001,200|
|2015 Homestead National Monument of America Quarter||248,600,000||214,400,000||463,000,000|
|2015 Kisatchie National Forest Quarter||379,600,000||397,200,000||776,800,000|
|2015 Blue Ridge Parkway Quarter||505,200,000||325,616,000||830,816,000|
|2015 Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge Quarter||206,400,000||275,000,000||481,400,000|
|2015 Saratoga National Historical Park Quarter||215,800,000||223,000,000||438,800,000|
|2016 Shawnee National Forest Quarter||151,800,000||155,600,000||307,400,000|
|2016 Cumberland Gap National Historical Park Quarter||223,200,000||215,400,000||438,600,000|
|2016 Harpers Ferry National Historical Park Quarter||424,000,000||434,630,000||858,630,000|
|2016 Theodore Roosevelt National Park Quarter||223,200,000||231,600,000||454,800,000|
|2016 Fort Moultrie Quarter||142,200,000||154,400,000||296,600,000|
|2017 Effigy Mounds National Monument Quarter||210,800,000||271,200,000||482,000,000|
|2017 Frederick Douglass National Historic Site Quarter||185,800,000||184,800,000||370,600,000|
|2017 Ozark National Scenic Riverways Quarter||200,000,000||203,000,000||403,000,000|
|2017 Ellis Island National Monument Quarter||254,000,000||234,000,000||488,000,000|
|2017 George Rogers Clark National Historical Park Quarter||180,800,000||191,600,000||372,400,000|
|2018 Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore Quarter (MI)||182,600,000||186,714,000||369,314,000|
|2018 Apostle Islands National Lakeshore Quarter (WI)||216,600,000||223,200,000||439,800,000|
|2018 Voyageurs National Park Quarter (MN)||197,800,000||237,400,000||435,200,000|
|2018 Cumberland Island National Seashore Quarter (GA)||151,600,000||138,000,000||289,600,000|
|2018 Block Island National Wildlife Refuge Quarter (RI)||159,600,000||159,600,000||319,200,000|
Coin Production in December 2017
December is almost always a weak coin production month as the U.S. Mint readies its tooling for the upcoming year’s coins. Some Decembers have actually come in at or near flat for production amounts. Last December logged in with 560.64 million coins, down 26.5% from December 2017. Compared to November, the level dropped 45.6%.
December 2017 to December 2018 Circulating Coin Production
|December 2018||560.64 M||13|
|November 2018||1,031.24 M||7|
|October 2018||1,382.18 M||3|
|September 2018||976.82 M||8|
|August 2018||831.56 M||11|
|July 2018||1,403.16 M||2|
|June 2018||1,198.34 M||5|
|May 2018||1,291.76 M||4|
|April 2018||878.74 M||10|
|March 2018||902.924 M||9|
|February 2018||1,066.51 M||6|
|January 2018||1,601.54 M||1|
|December 2017||762.86 M||12|
This last table shows coinage totals for December to include a negative adjustment for the 2018-D Native American dollar:
US Mint Circulating Coin Production in December 2018
|Kennedy Half Dollars||700,000||0||700,000|
|Native American $1s||-700,000||0||-700,000|
Coin production figures in this coin news article are based on data aggregated from the Mint’s webpage at: https://www.usmint.gov/about/production-sales-figures/circulating-coins-production.