Mint News Blog

News, Information, and Commentary on US Mint Products

Monday, November 10, 2008

US Mint Cuts Product Offerings by 60%


In a bold move, the United States Mint announced that they will be slashing the number of product offerings available for sale. The number of products will decline from the current level of 550 to a more manageable 200 items.

The move comes in response to complaints from collectors that the Mint is offering too many products. The 2009 portfolio of products will realign the Mint to producing and selling its core products with the broadest appeal.

The extent of discontinued products is shocking. It includes a large array of bullion related products, eliminating nearly all American Buffalo Gold offerings, nearly all Platinum Eagle offerings, and the fractional Uncirculated Gold Eagle offerings. This is a major retrenchment from the array of "collectible" bullion coins currently offered by the US Mint.

Other discontinued products are related to the ending of the 50 State Quarter Program. The remainder of discontinuations are for less popular offerings related Presidential Dollar series and some other fringe products like collectible spoons.

In related news, the US Mint will be offering a "Last Chance Sale" to clear their inventory of some of the discontinued products.

The list of discontinued products includes:
  • American Buffalo Uncirculated Gold Coins - These are the versions offered by the US Mint with the "W" mint mark. All fractional denominations, 4 coin set, and the one ounce coin will be discontinued. No offerings will remain.
  • American Buffalo Proof Gold Coins - The fractional 1/2 oz, 1/4 oz, 1/10 oz coins and 4 coin set will be discontinued. Only the one ounce Proof coin will remain.
  • American Platinum Eagle Uncirculated Coins - These are the versions offered by the US Mint with the "W" mint mark. All fractional denominations, 4 coin set, and the one ounce coin will be discontinued. No offerings will remain.
  • American Platinum Eagle Proof Coins - The fractional 1/2 oz, 1/4 oz, 1/10 oz coins and 4 coin set will be discontinued. Only the one ounce Proof coin will remain.
  • American Gold Eagle Uncirculated Coins - These are the versions offered by the US Mint with the "W" mint mark. The fractional 1/2 oz, 1/4 oz, 1/10 oz coins and 4 coin set will be discontinued. Only the one ounce coin will remain.
  • Presidential Dollar Coin Historical Signature Sets
  • Presidential Dollar Individual Proof Coins
  • 50 State Quarter First Day Coin Covers
  • Greetings from America Portfolio and Card Sets
  • Coin and Die Sets
  • Collectible Spoons
This significantly changes the landscape of product offerings from the US Mint. I will be posting some of my reactions to the changes in the coming days.

See related: Thoughts on US Mint Product Discontinuations

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8 Comments:

At November 11, 2008 at 4:09 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

You have a lot of information here that is not listed on the US Mint site.

Based on this it appears that the mint will get out of their practice of gouging the public through the W-mint coins and will let the dealers do it instead through just the bullion offerings? If I am reading this correctly, the platinum and gold fractional coins will still be offered?

 
At November 11, 2008 at 4:24 AM , Blogger Michael said...

Correct. The US Mint is discontinuing the "collectible" versions of the fractional coins.

But the regular bullion versions will still be produced and sold through bullion dealers.

 
At November 11, 2008 at 5:36 AM , Blogger sure said...

the mint sure did me on an order placed last Thursday, first it was in stock and reserved, then today an email that products are out of stock.
this is the list...
Item: X21 Qty: 1
2008 FIRST SPOUSE GLD PRF (AJ)
X19 Qty: 1

2008 FIRST SPOUSE GLD PRF (LA)
X17 Qty: 1

2008 FIRST SPOUSE GLD PRF (EM)
Z8B Qty: 1

2008 AE GLD UNC MM 1/2 OZ
T8B Qty: 1

2008 AE PLAT UNC MM 1/2 OZ

i'm not too happy. seems they took the first day spouses away too.

 
At November 11, 2008 at 7:37 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please clarify. The fractionals will still be minted, but not sold in the highly maked up "collectible" packaging? If this is the case, the fractional buffaloes are not discontinued - what is discontinued then is the "collectible" marketing and packaging scheme. Or asked another way, how do you define "collectible versions of the fractional coins"?

 
At November 11, 2008 at 8:05 AM , Blogger Michael said...

Sorry let me try to clarify.

Since 2006, there have been two channels for purchasing non-proof bullion type coins.

Channel 1 - Bullion coins distributed and sold through a network of authorized bullion dealers. Prices are based on spot plus a mark up.

Channel 2 - Collectible coins sold directly by the US Mint. Prices are fixed and can only be adjusted through a lengthy process. These coins are technically different than the bullion coins since they carry a "W" mintmark and have special packaging. This is where the discontinuations are taking place.

Fractional bullion versions for American Gold Eagle and American Platinum Eagles coins will remain available from Channel 1.

As for the Buffaloes, the fractional versions have only been offered through Channel 2. So at this point it seems that fractional Buffaloes are completely discontinued.

 
At November 11, 2008 at 10:24 AM , Blogger sure said...

my experience was that the mint also stopped the sales of the jackson,adams,and monroe first spouse coins, yesterday along with the 1/2 oz platinum & 1/2 oz GAE. I called the mint this am and they told me all first spouses are "sold out" when in fact they were in stock and reserved on friday of last week according to my email from them that day.

 
At November 12, 2008 at 11:22 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

do you know if there is ANY place on the Mint website or in Coin Link will have one which has a complete inventory list of what IS for sale starting Saturday??

 
At November 12, 2008 at 11:32 AM , Blogger Michael said...

The US Mint doesn't seem to have a list on its site. A complete list can be found:

here

 

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