Mint News Blog

News, Information, and Commentary on US Mint Products

Friday, November 30, 2007

How To Search for Coins on eBay- Advanced Search Tips

At the time of writing this post, there were over 127,000 items listed in the US Coins category on eBay. With such a large number of items, the chances are good that the coin you are looking for may be for sale. However, sometimes it is difficult to narrow your search results to find the specific selection of items which meet your interest.

In this post, I will outline some of the search features that I use to help me narrow down search results and find coins more effectively.

Category Search

One of the best ways to quickly narrow down your search results is to navigate to the most obvious category and then perform your search. This can allow you to make shorter queries and have your results pre-filtered by category.

Example: You want to find Susan B. Anthony Dollars graded PCGS MS65.

Navigate to the Susan B. Anthony category

Use the following search string: PCGS MS65

This will return all items from the Susan B. Anthony category that contain "PCGS" and "MS65"

Hint: Here is a list of eBay coin categories

Either/Or Searches

This type of search is used when you want to locate items that contain either one word or another. To use this function, place the keywords in parentheses, separated by commas with no spaces after the commas. You can use as many different words as you want within the parentheses.

Example: You want to find a 2007 Lincoln Cent certified by PCGS or NGC.

Use the following search string: 2007 Lincoln (pcgs,ngc)

This will return all items which contain "2007" and "Lincoln" and contain either "PCGS" or "NGC"

Negative Key Words

This type of search is used when you want to eliminate search results that contain a certain word or words. To use this function, use a minus sign directly before the negative key word. You can use as many different negative key words as you want.

Example: You are looking for a 1955 Double Die Lincoln Cent, but you don't want to see replicas or Poor Man's Double Dies in your results.

Use the following search string: 1955 Double Die -poor -replica

This will return all items which contain "1955" "double" and "die" and eliminate any results which contain "poor" or "replica"

Wild Card Search

This type of search is used when you want to find search results that contain a word that starts with a certain sequence of letters. To use this function, end a string of letters with an asterisk.

Example: You are looking for a 1971-S Eisenhower Dollar certified by PCGS, but you only want the Uncirculated (MS) version.

Use the following search string: 1971 S Eisenhower NGC MS*

This will return all items which contain "1971" "S" "Eisenhower" "NGC" and begin with "MS"

Exact Search

This type of search is used when you want to find an exact term. An easy example is "Lincoln Cent". This would only return items that have the exact phrase "Lincoln Cent" in the title in that exact order. This function is actually more useful to eliminate the fuzzy search that eBay automatically uses which returns both singular and plural terms. For example, when you include a word like "roll" in your search query, eBay automatically searches for the singular "roll" and plural "rolls". To bypass their fuzzy search, you can use exact search. To use this function, include the exact match word or phrase within quotes.

Example: You are looking for rolls of Lincoln Cents, but you are only interested in lots containing multiple rolls.

Use the following search string: Lincoln "rolls"

This will return items that contain "Lincoln" and the exact term "rolls" (eliminating the automatic fuzzy search for "roll")

Putting it all together

All of these search functions can be used in conjunction to quickly and easily narrow your search results.

Example: You are looking for the 2006 W Silver Eagle certified by PCGS or NGC, but you are only interested in the Uncirculated (MS) version and you do not want a coin from the 20th Anniversary Set.

Use the following search string: 2006 w silver eagle (pcgs,ngc) ms* -20th

This will return items which contain "2006" "W" "silver" "eagle" and either "PCGS" or "NGC" that start with "MS" and does not contain "20th"

Cool, right?

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

10th Anniversary Platinum Eagle Coin Set Announcement

The US Mint has just officially announced details of the 10th Anniversary Platinum Eagle Coin Set. Many collectors have been eagerly awaiting this set as a follow up to last year's popular 20th Anniversary Gold and Silver Eagle Sets.

The sets will contain two coins- one proof coin and one reverse proof coin. The proof coin will feature frosted raised elements over a mirrored background. The reverse proof coin will feature mirrored raised elements over a frosted background.

Both coins will contain 1/2 ounce of platinum and carry the "W" mint mark. This is the first time the Mint has offered a platinum coin with the reverse proof finish.

The price per set will be $1,949.95. Production will be limited to 30,000 sets. Coins will go on sale December 13, 2007 at 12:00 Noon ET. Orders are limited to one per household.

Probably the most notable thing about this release is the relatively high mintage. For comparison, last year's 20th Anniversary Gold Eagle Set was limited to 20,000 sets and took several days to sell out. Platinum Eagle offerings have always been relatively less popular than Gold Eagle offerings, so the higher mintage is odd.

In my opinion this higher mintage will curtail some of the more speculative buying that contributed to the sell outs for last year's sets. Without a sell out, price appreciation for the set will likely take a much more measured pace on the secondary markets. Bottom line, buy the set if you collect Platinum Eagles or will enjoy the reverse proof coin. Don't necessarily expect immediate price appreciation.
10th Anniversary Platinum Set Release Date


Tuesday, November 27, 2007

New Presidential Dollar Products Announced

The US Mint has just announced that several new Presidential Dollar related products will go on sale December 3, 2007.

The new products will include the following:
While there had been previous mention of the Individual Proof Coins, I don't believe the other products had been revealed. Pricing and ordering details have not been published.

It should be noted that all of the coins included in the new offerings are already available through other current products. For example, the Individual Proof Coins are available in the 2007 Proof Sets and the coins included in the Uncirculated Dollar Sets are avaialble in the 2007 Mint Sets.


Monday, November 26, 2007

Will Rising Gold Cause a Dolley Madison Sell Out?

The Dolley Madison First Spouse Gold Coin has now been on sale for one week at the US Mint. Unlike the first three issues of the First Spouse Series, Dolley Madison sales seem to be having trouble gaining momentum. I had explored some of the possible reasons in a previous post. There are a few upcoming factors which may spark increased interest in the coin.

The price of gold has risen sharply over the past week. When the coins first went on sale, the price of gold was roughly $775 per ounce. Today gold has risen to over $830 per ounce. Since the First Spouse coins contain one half ounce of gold, a large component of the value is based around the price of gold. If the price of gold continues to rise, the Dolley Madison coins will become a better relative value than when first released.

The ordering limit may be lifted. The US Mint is currently imposing an ordering limit of one coin per household. Each household is only allowed to order at maximum one uncirculated coin and one proof coin. This ordering limit is in effect for the first week of release, after which point the limit may be adjusted or removed. Around noon today, we should see if the ordering limit is adjusted.
Dolley Madison First Spouse Gold


Saturday, November 24, 2007

2008 Presidential Dollar Release Dates Announced

The US Mint recently announced the release dates for the 2008 Presidential Dollars. Next year will mark the second year of the series and include the next four Presidents. The published release dates are as follows:

  • James Monroe Dollar- release date February 14, 2008
  • John Quincy Adams Dollar- release date May 15, 2008
  • Andrew Jackson Dollar- release date August 14, 2008
  • Martin Van Buren Dollar- release dater November 13, 2008
View the full Presidential Dollar Release Dates schedule.


Thursday, November 22, 2007

2007-W American Silver Eagle Sold Out

The 2007-W American Silver Eagle is now sold out at the Mint. These are the Uncirculated Silver Eagles sold by the US Mint, which have been branded as a collectible version of the bullion coin. This version of the coin is struck on specially burnished blanks and carries the "W" mint mark. The sell out happened on Tuesday night.

Many are already predicting that prices for the coin will rise going into year end. The latest mintage statistics indicate 558,810 coins were sold. This compares to last year's final mintage figure of 496,200.

It should be noted that the distribution of the coins was very different this year. Last year 270,000 of the silver eagles were included in 20th Anniversary Sets, meaning only 276,200 were sold individually. This year, all of the coins were sold individually. This suggests that more of the demand for the individual coins has already been satisfied by the Mint sales.

The 2006-W Silver Eagles are now selling on ebay for around $80-$90. The 2007-W Silver Eagles can still be purchased for around $30-$35 for uncertified coins.

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Wednesday, November 21, 2007

10th Anniversary Platinum Eagle Set- Release Date

The Mint had previously revealed to CoinWorld that the highly anticipated 10th Anniversary Platinum Eagle Set was still on the schedule for this year. The release was expected in December, although an exact date had not been set.

Today Dave Harper on Numismaster confirmed that the release date for the set will be December 13.

As mentioned in my previous post, the 10th Anniversary Platinum Set will contain two half ounce platinum coins. One will be a proof version and one will be a reverse proof version.

Collectors have been eagerly awaiting the Reverse Proof Platinum Eagle after the immense popularity of last year's Reverse Proof Silver and Gold Eagles.

Pricing, mintages, and ordering limits still have not been revealed.
10th Anniversary Platinum Eagle Set may be released in December


Tuesday, November 20, 2007

2008 First Spouse Gold Coins Designs Released

The US Mint has released artist's renderings of the 2008 First Spouse Gold Coins. The coins for next year will feature the following:
  • Elizabeth Monroe
  • Louisa Adams
  • Andrew Jackson's Liberty
  • Martin Van Buren's Liberty
Since Andrew Jackson and Martin Van Buren did not have a spouse while serving as president, the coins feature designs used on coins circulating during their presidency. Andrew Jackson's Liberty features the Capped Bust, Lettered Edge Half Dollar. Martin Van Buren's Liberty features the Liberty Seated Dime.

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Monday, November 19, 2007

Dolley Madison First Spouse Gold- Still on Sale

The Dolley Madison First Spouse Gold Coins went on sale at the US Mint today at 12:00 Noon EST. As of writing this post at 9:00 PM EST, the coins are still available for sale. This is notable because the prior three issues of the First Spouse Coin Program had sold out within shorter time frames.

Because of the previous quick sell outs of the first three coins, there had been some discussion amongst coin collectors about whether the Dolley Madison coin would sell out just as quickly. Well, the debate has been settled, and the answer is unfortunately "no."

I had cited some of the obstacles making a sell out more difficult in a previous post. The Mint raised the offering prices for the coins to from $410.95 and $429.95 to $509.95 and $529.95 for the uncirculated and proof coins, respectively. I had suspected that the new prices may had been set based on a very high spot price of gold. After gold's recent pull back, the gold content price component may now be overpriced relative to prior issues. Besides this, the higher price levels may have also pushed the coins out of the spending limits of some collectors.

Another obstacle is the declining premiums for the coins on the secondary market. When the Martha Washington and Abigail Adams coins first sold out, the coins immediately appeared on ebay selling for hundreds of dollars above the Mint's price. These premiums have since declined to a level which may have driven off buyers looking to buy the coins simply to flip them on ebay.

As a third obstacle, the Mint has set an ordering limit of only one of each version of the coin per household. The ordering limit was five coins per version for the Washington and Adams coins, and helped the coins sell out more quickly.

Put together, these factors have cooled the demand for the First Spouse series. The coins may eventually sell out, but probably not today.
Pricing for Dolley Madison Coins
First Spouse Gold Coins


Little Rock Central High School Desegregation Commemorative- Only One Month Left

As mentioned in my last post, I wanted to take a look at this year's Commemorative coins. They are only expected to remain available for sale at the Mint until December 14, so this will be a last look for anyone contemplating adding these coins to their collection.

The second program for this year was the Little Rock Central High School Desegregation Commemorative. This coin commemorates the 50th anniversary of this landmark in desegregation of education. The program includes a silver dollar in proof or uncirculated versions.

The front of the silver dollar features the feet of students walking towards the school, escorted by a US soldier. There are nine stars to symbolize the Little Rock Nine. The reverse of the coin features Little Rock Central High School as it appeared in 1957.

The Proof and Uncirculated versions are available for sale at the Mint for $39.00 and $35.00, respectively. There is also a Coin & Medal Set available for $40.00 which includes the Uncirculated Silver Dollar and a bronze medal featuring the Little Rock Nine.

The program authorizes a maximum of 500,000 Silver Dollars to be produced. The maximum covers both versions of the coin, as well as the coins to be included in the American Legacy Collection and Coin & Medal Set. To date, approximately 113,092 proof coins and 69,568 uncirculated coins have been sold. This includes coins included in the separate sets.
Jamestown 400th Anniversary Commemorative


Friday, November 16, 2007

Jamestown 400th Anniversary Commemorative- Only One Month Left

With all of the recent attention to new Mint offerings like the Burnished Gold, Silver, Platinum Eagle coins and First Spouse coins, its easy to overlook the regular Commemorative coins. A post from Dave Harper on Buzz reminded me of this year's two Commemorative coin programs.

His post indicates that coins from the current two programs will only remain available until December 14. I will use the next two posts to take a look at this year's Commemorative series while they are still available from the Mint.

The first program for this year was the Jamestown 400th Anniversary Commemorative. Jamestown was the first permanent English settlement in North America. The program includes a silver dollar and a $5 gold coin.

The silver dollar features "Three Faces of Diversity" on the obverse, representing the three cultures that came together at Jamestown. The reverse features the three ships that brought settlers to the colony. The $5 gold coin features Captain John Smith greeting a Native American on the obverse. The reverse shows the Jamestown Memorial Church, the only remaining original structure of the colony.

The gold coins are for sale at the Mint for $255 for the proof version and $245 for uncirculated. The silver dollars are available for $39 for the proof and $35 for the uncirculated.

The program authorizes a maximum of 100,000 $5 Gold coins and 500,000 Silver Dollars to be produced. The maximum covers both versions of the coin. To date, approximately 63,312 gold coins and 320,098 silver dollars have been sold (including those issued with the American Legacy Set).

If you have been thinking about adding this coin to your collection, act soon while they are still available directly from the Mint.
Little Rock Central High School Desegregation Commemorative
2007-P Jamestown Gold Commemoratives for sale


Thursday, November 15, 2007

Pricing for Dolley Madison First Spouse Gold Coins Announced

The Mint has just announced the pricing for the Dolley Madison First Spouse Gold Coins. These coins will officially go on Sale Monday, November 19 at 12:00 noon ET.

Pricing has been set at $509.95 for the Uncirculated version of the coin and $529.95 for the Proof version. This is an increase over the pricing for the first three coins of the series which were priced at $410.95 and $429.95 for Uncirculated and Proof versions, respectively.

The driver for the increased pricing is cost of the one half ounce of gold contained in each coin. Gold prices peaked around $840 on November 8. Since that date the price of gold has recently dropped back to $786. It is unclear what spot gold price the Mint's prices have been based on, but it was likely based on a higher spot price than today's.

The first three coins of the First Spouse Gold Series sold out from the Mint within the first day of offering. The excitement for the series seems to have cooled and many collector's are predicting that the Dolley Madison coin will have a much more difficult time selling out. The increased prices combined with the recent drop in the price of gold will only add to this difficulty.
Still No Pricing on the Dolley Madison First Spouse Coins
First Spouse Gold Coins- Will the Popularity Endure?


Mahalo ToDo- Coin Collecting

Jason Calacanis recently announced a quick way to request new Mahalo pages. Mahalo is a people powered search engine.

How about a page for Coin Collecting?

Oh, and Mahalo Daily is hilarious.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Still Still No Pricing on Dolley Madison First Spouse Coins?

The Dolley Madison First Spouse Gold Coin is scheduled to go on sale Monday, November 19. I still have not seen any information on the pricing for the offering.

Prices are expected to be higher due to the increase in gold prices. The previous three First Spouse Gold Coins were sold for $410.95 and $429.95 for uncirculated and proof versions respectively.

According to an article in this week's CoinWorld, the US Mint had still not yet determined pricing as of November 9 when the issue went to press.

The maximum combined release will be 40,000 coins, evenly divided between the uncirculated and proof versions of the coin. Customers will be limited to one of each version per household.

On November 19, the 1.3125 inch bronze medal bearing the images used on the Dolley Madison First Spouse coin will also go on sale. The price for the bronze medal is $3.50. The Dolley Madison medal is actually already available for sale by purchasing the full Four Medal Set.
Official Dolley Madison Release Date Announced
Information on First Spouse Gold Coins


Have You Ever Received a Coin Related Chain Email?

Have you ever received a coin related chain email?

I hadn't until this morning, and it was definitely interesting to see coins come up in this context. The chain email looks like it has been circulating for a while. It is about the new Presidential Dollar coins. The email claims that the new coin does not include the words "In God We Trust" and goes on to suggest a boycott of the new coin for this reason

Most coin collectors will recognize that this is not correct. The standard mottos "In God We Trust" and "E Pluribus Unum" were included as edge lettering.

This page from Snopes shows the chain email and refutes the claim.

Then again, maybe there is some kernel of truth to the email as some of the Presidential Dollars released into circulation are missing the edge lettering. These errors sell for a premium and are frequently found for sale on eBay.


Monday, November 12, 2007

Gold Update: Bullion Falls, Four Coin Gold Eagle Set Sells Out

As I am sure gold followers know, the price of the metal fell $26 dollars on Monday to close at $805. While a pull back is always disappointing, the recent drop follows a long, sharp run up. Over the past 60 days the price of gold had risen from $700 to over $830.

The question remains, where will gold go from here?

Over at the US Mint, the Burnished Gold Eagles are still unavailable for sale. Sales were suspended on November 5 when the price of gold had risen to $810. Now that the spot price of gold is below this level, will the Mint resume sales at the same previous prices? My guess is "no."

The Proof Gold Eagles still remain on sale, although the Four Coin Set has now sold out. It was curious that the Mint had suspended sales of the Uncirculated Gold Eagles, but not the Proof Gold Eagles. Perhaps collectors were taking advantage of the relative bargain available on the proofs while the price of gold was higher, prompting the sell out. Half ounce, quarter ounce, and tenth ounce proof coins still remain available for sale.
Burnished Gold Eagle Sales Suspended Again


James Madison Presidential Dollars Enter Circulation

The new James Madison Presidential Dollars are set to enter circulation this week on November 15. On this same date, bags and rolls will also go on sale at the US Mint.

James Madison will be the fourth Presidential Dollar released and the last for the year 2007. He was known as "The Father of the Constitution."


Friday, November 9, 2007

NGC Introduces New Holder Option for Gold, Silver, Platinum Eagles, and Gold Buffalo

NGC recently introduced a new holder option dubbed The American Liberty Series. This will give bulk submitters a uniquely designed label for some silver, gold, and platinum Mint products.

The labels are available for Gold, Silver, and Platinum Eagles, as well as the Gold Buffalo. All dates and mint marks are eligible, for both proof and uncirculated versions. The new labels incorporate design elements from the obverse of the coin and really add some zing to the standard label.

There are some pretty high submission requirements in order to qualify for the label. For example, you would need to submit 750 1 oz. Gold Buffalo coins. While this is probably out of reach for the average collector, I'm sure these new labels will start popping up on ebay soon. Be on the look out!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Mintage Figures for 2007 Burnished Platinum Eagles

Now that the Burnished Platinum Eagles are back on sale at the Mint, I wanted to do a quick post of the most recently published mintages. Collectors will recall that last year's burnished platinum eagles had extremely low mintages, which significantly drove up prices on the secondary market.

Once again, the mintage figures include coins from four coin sets. The 2006 figures are from an old CoinWorld article- I have seen some other figures floating around and the article lists these are "preliminary" totals. If anyone has a source for the finalized total, please let me know in the comments. The 2007 figures are from last week's Numismatic News.

2006-W 2007-W
1 oz platinum 4,275 3,054
1/2 oz platinum 3,800 2,482
1/4 oz platinum 3,625 2,597
1/10 oz platinum 4,775 4,684

10th Anniversary Platinum Set may be released in December
Updated Mintage Figures for 2007 Burnished Gold and Silver Eagles

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Mint to Offer Individual Proof Presidential Dollars

According to an article in this week's issues of CoinWorld, The US Mint still plans to offer individual proof Presidential Dollars for sale. In addition, Uncirculated four and eight coin sets are also planned. The Uncirculated coins will feature the satin finish currently used on Mint Set coins.

These individual options will provide collectors with a way to obtain individual Presidential Dollars from the Mint without buying an entire Proof or Mint Set. These to-be-released coins and sets were not included in the Mint's holiday catalog since pricing is still being determined. This is similar to the situation for the 10th Anniversary Platinum Sets. These highly anticipated sets were also not included in the catalog, but expected to be offered before the end of the year.


Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Silver Also Rises, Will the Mint Suspend Burnished Silver Eagles?

As readers of this blog know, the Mint suspended sales of Burnished Gold Eagles on Monday when the price of gold broke decisively above $800 per ounce. With the price of silver now rising daily, is a suspension of Burnished Silver Eagles next?

Briefly this morning, the price of silver exceeded $16 per ounce. At the time of writing this post, the spot price is $15.77. This marks another fresh 27 year high for the metal.

The Mint's mark up on the coin above the bullion price has now declined significantly. When the 2007-W Uncirculated Eagle was first offered, the price of silver was around $13. At the $21.95 offer price, that gave the Mint a markup of about $9 per coin. As of today, their mark up has declined to a little over $6 per coin. The markup presumably covers the Mint's cost of production, packaging, advertising, distribution, and some profit margin.

Although suspensions in gold and platinum products have become common, I don't recall an occasion when the Mint ever had to suspend sales of silver based products. As such, there isn't much precedent for determining when the Mint needs to pull the trigger. However, if I had to venture a guess, I would say that the Mint would need to seriously consider the possibility if the price of silver reaches $17 per ounce. This would nearly cut their initial markup in half and perhaps make sales of the coins unprofitable.

If you were putting off purchasing the Burnished Silver Eagles, now is the time. They may not last much longer.


Tuesday, November 6, 2007

2007 Burnished Platinum Eagles Back on Sale

The US Mint has just resumed sales of the 2007-W Burnished Platinum Eagles. Sales of the platinum eagles had been suspended due as of October 12 to the rising price of platinum. The prices have been increased from between 7.5% to 9.5% depending on coin option from prior levels.

A table comparing the old price and the new price is included below. At the time of writing this post, the spot price of platinum bullion was $1,473.00 per ounce.

Old Price New Price Increase
1 ounce $ 1,489.95 $ 1,630.95 9.5%
1/2 ounce $ 759.95 $ 830.95 9.3%
1/4 ounce $ 399.95 $ 435.95 9.0%
1/10 ounce $ 189.95 $ 204.95 7.9%
4 coin set $ 2,769.95 $ 2,976.95 7.5%


Utah Quarter Bags and Rolls

Yesterday Utah Quarter Bags and Rolls went on sale at the US Mint. Utah is the fifth and final coin this year for the 50 State Quarters Program. The reverse of the Utah coin features two locomotives and the "Golden Spike" that joined the Central Pacific and Union Pacific railroads.

The Two-Roll Sets includes one each "P" and "D" mint mark rolls in custom US Mint wrappers. The price per set is $32.95.

The Bags are available in either 100-Coin or 1,000-Coin sizes, in custom Mint sewn canvas bags. Separate bags are available for "P" and "D" mint marks. The mini 100-Coin Bags are priced at $32.95 per bag. The 1,000-Coin Bags are priced at $309.95 per bag.

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Monday, November 5, 2007

Official Dolley Madison First Spouse Gold Release Date November 19

The US Mint has just published November 19 as the official release date for the Dolley Madison First Spouse Gold Coin. This is four days later than the corresponding James Madison Presidential Dollar release on November 15.

The coin will be available in Proof or Uncirculated. The offering price has not yet been published. However, it seems likely that it will be above the price of the first three First Spouse coins since the price of gold has increased substantially. (The prices for the prior coins were $429.95 and $410.95 for Proof and Uncirculated, respectively.)

On the same date, the Mint will also be offering new Four Coin Presentation Cases to house the First Spouse Gold Coins. Separate cases for Uncirculated and Proof coins are listed.

For more information on First Spouse Coins be sure to check out First Spouse Gold.


Burnished Gold Eagle Sales Suspended Again

This Saturday I had done a post asking how much longer the Burnished Gold Eagles would remain available from the Mint. I had also recommended buying them over the weekend in case sales are suspended this week. Personally, I got in one last order on Saturday afternoon.

As of now, sales are once again suspended. If anyone was considering, I hope you got your purchases in over the weekend!

Spot price of gold as of writing this post is $809.70.

Interestingly, the Proof Gold Eagles are still available, except for the previously sold out 1 ounce coin.
Burnished Gold Eagles For Sale


Do you remember the other Dolley Madison coin?

As collectors await the release of the Dolley Madison First Spouse Gold Coin, some will remember that this First Lady was previous featured on a commemorative coin in 1999.

The Dolley Madison Commemorative Silver Dollar was produced to commemorate the 150th anniversary of her passing. This was the first US coin to honor a First Lady. The obverse design is based on a portrait of Dolley Madison by Gilbert Stuart, surrounded by a wreath of Cape Jasmines, her favorite flower. The reverse shows Montpelier surrounded by foliage.

The Dolley Madison First Spouse Gold release date is expected to be November 15*, although the Mint has not currently set a date. This would correspond with the release of the Presidential Dollar honoring her husband, James Madison. The obverse of the coin will include a portrait of Dolley Madison. The reverse of the coin depicts her saving the Cabinet papers and a Gilbert Stuart portrait of George Washington from the White House in advance of oncoming British Troops.

*Update- The Mint has just published the official release date as November 19

Saturday, November 3, 2007

How much longer with Gold Eagles be available from the US Mint?

Gold watchers had reason for a small celebration on Friday when the price of gold closed at $806.00 per ounce. This is the highest spot price gold has reached in the last 28 years.

Whenever the price of gold, silver, or platinum has risen dramatically, the US Mint has suspended offerings of coins containing those metals. Most recently, the Mint had suspended sales of Gold and Platinum Eagle coins. Sales had only recently resumed with prices adjusted higher to reflect the increased spot prices of the metals. Notably, the American Eagle Platinum Uncirculated Coins are still unavailable for sale.

Based on the recent price movement of gold, I am guessing that the US Mint may be preparing to once again suspend sales of Gold Eagle coins. The Mint prices products based on the price of the metal plus a premium for the manufacturing and packaging costs. Right now, for example the 2007 Gold Eagle One Ounce Uncirculated Coin is priced at $831.95. This is only a 3% premium over the spot price of the gold content. This is already historically on the very low end for the premium charged by the Mint. Also, if the recent surge in the price of gold continues, the premium will continue to drop.

I had written some previous posts about the mintages for Burnished Gold Eagles, which are quite low for some coins. I believe that on again/off again nature of the offering this year will continue to contribute to a low overall mintage, which should drive prices higher once production stops. If you were thinking about picking some up, take another look this weekend while they are still available for sale.


Friday, November 2, 2007

Coin Collecting News on Topix

I've recently started editing the Coin Collecting News section on Topix.

Topix is an online news community where individual editors select news or write news stories relevant to their town or particular interest. The Coin Collecting News section includes daily headlines, a forum, and the ability to create polls.

I will try to post timely, relevant, or interesting coin related news stories each day from around the web. Please check out the section and let me know what you think. I want to make this section a great destination for coin collectors. To easily follow the news you can subscribe to the RSS Feed or even add a widget to your own website which lists for most recent headlines.

Today's headline: Price of Gold Approaching New High - Or Not Really?

Thursday, November 1, 2007

2004 Lewis and Clark Coin and Pouch Set Refund

The US Mint is offering refunds of up to $130 for anyone who owns the 2004 Lewis and Clark Coin and Pouch Set if the pouch was from the Shawnee Nation United Remnant Band of Ohio. The refund is being offered because neither the state nor federal authorities recognize them as an official American Indian tribe.

The pouches were originally available from the US Mint from September 7, 2004 to December 31, 2004. The sets contained a 2004 Lewis and Clark Commemorative Proof Coin and a handmade American Indian Pouch. The Certificate of Authenticity included with the set identifies the Indian artisan's name and tribe. The original offering price was $120.00.

The full refund of $130.00 is available if the entire set is returned (including coin). A reduced refund of $90.00 is available if only the pouch is returned.

The sets seem to be changing hands for comfortably less the refund amount on eBay. However, please remember that the refund is only being offered for sets with pouches made by the Shawnee Nation United Remnant Band of Ohio. This may only represent a very small number of sets.

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