Mint News Blog

News, Information, and Commentary on US Mint Products

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

2008 US Mint Sleeper Hits

One of the ironies of coin collecting is that coins or sets which are overlooked or neglected while available can later become expensive and desirable rarities.

With all of the attention on the US Mint's gold and platinum products, there are definitely a number of other offerings that are being overlooked. In this post, I will examine some 2008 US Mint products that have the potential to become sleeper hits. I will specifically look at some non precious metals related offerings which are still available for sale.

While these coins all have potential, circumstances can change quickly. The US Mint can always fire up production one more time and change everything.

2008 P & D Sacagawea Dollar Rolls

Interestingly, these coins almost didn't happen. The 2008 Sacagawea Dollars were originally scheduled for release on January 17, 2008. The coins would not be issued for circulation, but sold to collectors in bags and rolls. The offering was pulled before sales started, after the US Mint realized that they did not have legal authority to produce the coins. Authorizing legislation was eventually signed on February 29, 2008, and the coins were re-released on April 28.

The most recent US Mint production figures show only 1.82 million coins produced at the Philadelphia Mint and 1.82 million coins produced at the Denver Mint. If no other coins are produced these will be the lowest mintage coins of the series. The current coins with the lowest mintage are the 2005-P and D coins with 2.52 million produced.

In addition, this will represent the final coin of the Sacagawea Dollar series. Next year it will be replaced by the Native American Dollar series.

2008 P & D Kennedy Half Rolls

Similar to the 2008 Sacagawea Dollars, the 2008 Kennedy Halves are showing some incredibly low production figures. These coins were also not issued for circulation, but sold directly to collectors in bags and rolls.

The most recent production figures published by the US Mint show 1.70 million coins produced in Philadelphia and 1.70 million coins produced in Denver. If no further coins are produced, these would be the lowest mintage coins of the entire series.

The 1970-D Kennedy Half Dollar is usually considered to be the key date and its mintage is 2.15 million. The current lowest mintage date is the 2006-D Kennedy Half at only 2.0 million.

2008 US Mint Set

The 2008 US Mint Set is one of the US Mint's core offerings that has become increasingly overlooked. The most recent US Mint sales figures show 626,214 of the sets sold. If the final sales ends up anywhere close to this, it would represent a shockingly low number. The 2004 Mint Set, which sells for a premium, had a mintage of 842,507. You actually have to go all the way back to 1963 to find a mint set with a mintage of less than 800,000.

While the current low sales figures suggest a final low mintage, this one may or may not pan out.

On one hand, last year's 2007 Mint Set was available for sale from the US Mint until July of 2008. (It also reappeared in the US Mint's Last Chance Sale.) If the 2008 Mint Sets remain on sale for another 8 months, sales may continue to grow to levels which would make the set less remarkable.

On the other hand, countless 2008 dated products which usually remain available for sale well into the new year have been selling out. Even one of the annual sets, the 2008 State Quarters Proof Set has quietly sold out. If the 2008 Mint Sets unexpectedly sell out early, the sets would become more remarkable.

Agree? Disagree? Post your own picks on Coin Network.

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At December 10, 2008 at 9:55 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

What about the 10th Ann. set? Any news on how this set is doing?

At December 10, 2008 at 10:01 AM , Blogger Michael said...

The 2007 10th anniversary platinum set has sold a few hundred more sets since it went back on sale. The most recent sales total is 18,398.

The US Mint reportedly produced the full authorized mintage of 30,000 sets.

This one will likely be available for sale for a long time to come. 30,000 is also a very big number for a platinum coin.

I think the main source of up side for this set would be if the price of platinum comes back.

At December 10, 2008 at 3:20 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

2005 - .... Mint Sets are desirable sleepers of this series of mint sets. The key words are (SATIN FINISH)(KENNEDY HALF). The mintage of the Satin Finish Kennedy Halves are:
2005 - 1,160,000
2006 - 842,507
2007 - 907,852
2008 - Unk
Compared to the High Uncirculated Mintage of the Kennedy Halves:
2005P&D - 7,300,000
2006P&D - 4,400,000
2007P&D - 4,800,000
2008P&D - Unk

The Satin Finish Half is worth it's worth in Clad/Gold.

Also look at the 2007 Mint Set which not only has the Satin Kennedy but the also the Presidential Satin Dollars with the same mintage. Compared to the way out thare uncirculated mintage:
2007P&D - 340,360,000

The young mint collectors and new collectors should focus on these sets which are affordable but will offer valuable Numismatic fun to the hubby. Also the sets do not need to be slabbed for protection. One mint set a year is OK. The Old Lone Star TEXAN.

At December 10, 2008 at 7:29 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Although my coin collecting friends think I'm nuts, I like the 50 State Quarter First Day Covers as a likely sleeper item. With the 2007 and 2008 year FDCs limited to a 35,000 mintage, and several of the 2006 year FDCs selling only in the 20,000+ range, these could indead become rare. If I understand the US Mint's policy for the "Last Chance Sale" correctly, after Dec 19th the FDCs from 1999-2007 will no longer be available.

At December 10, 2008 at 10:39 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The perceived scarcity of the 2008 Sacagawea dollars and Kennedy halves may depend on whether the coins in the mint sets are included in the totals. Although they are recognized by advanced collectors and grading services as "satin finish", many collectors don't differentiate between the two types and only need one date/mintmark specimen of either type for their collections.

The key date Kennedy half is the 1998-S silver matte finish with a mintage of about 65,000.

At December 11, 2008 at 8:22 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Last of the 2008 platinum proofs, the 4-coin set has just sold out, leaving only the anniv. set.

At January 4, 2009 at 9:53 AM , Blogger LOURDES LAMBERT said...

Accidentally stumbled upon your site. A lot of good information. I wish I had found it earlier but will make use of it in the future.

At February 7, 2009 at 5:24 PM , Anonymous My Ding-A-Ling said...

Stupidly missed out on the mint release of the 10th. Ann. plat set; finally bit the bullet and got one off eBay for a couple hundred more.

I believe this set will appreciate (Platinum hit $1,000/oz today) otherwise I wouldn't have bought after-market ...

At February 7, 2009 at 5:50 PM , Anonymous George W. Bush said...

No one's mentioned the 2008 silver proof set, still available as of this writing ... mintages are 100K lower than the 2002-S silver, a $60 retail set ...

At April 7, 2009 at 10:42 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just checked US mint website now.
They said, 2008 Sakagawa was minted by 24.6 M. a lot of mintages.
I don't know why it was sold out that fast...

At April 8, 2009 at 5:05 AM , Blogger Michael said...

Regarding the 24.6M listed on their production figures page, I think this is production of the 2009 Native American Golden Dollar which took place in December 2008.

Haven't been able to confirm yet, but some collectors have said similar things have happened in prior years, and the US Mint adjusts the figures later.


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