Mint News Blog

News, Information, and Commentary on US Mint Products

Monday, November 30, 2009

Margaret Taylor First Spouse Gold Coins

The 2009 Margaret Taylor First Spouse Gold Coins will go on sale at the US Mint on Thursday, December 3, 2009 at 12:00 Noon ET. This will represent the fifth and final release of the year for the 24-karat gold coin series.

The obverse of the coin features a portrait of Margaret Taylor designed by Phebe Hemphill and sculpted by Charles Vickers. Inscriptions indicate the order of the Presidency "12th" and the years of the term "1849-1850". The reverse of the coin depicts the First Lady helping an injured soldier during the Seminole War, as designed by Mary Beth Zeitz and sculpted by Jim Licaretz.

The coins will be available in proof or uncirculated version with a maximum combined mintage of 40,000 across both options. This same maximum level has been set for each release of the series, although no coins have reached the maximum since 2007. An ordering limit of 10 coins per household will be in place for the first week of sales, after which the limit will be extended, adjusted, or removed.

The prices for the Margaret Taylor First Spouse Coin will be determined based on the US Mint's new pricing policy. If the average London Fix price of gold from the prior Thursday through this Wednesday remains within the current range of $1,150 to $1,199.99, then the proof version of the coin will be priced at $754 and the uncirculated version will be priced at $741. This will be the highest initial offering price for a First Spouse Gold Coin to date.

On December 3, 2009, sales of Martin Van Buren's Liberty Gold Coins are scheduled to end. These coins have been available from the US Mint since November 25, 2008 and have sold 7,384 proof coins and 4,266 uncirculated coins as of the last weekly sales report.

In closing, I wanted to provide the results of a survey from a few weeks ago. The survey was included in a post where I went over some of the arguments in favor and against the long term prospects for the series in terms of potential price appreciation. Readers were split almost exactly equally amongst the three options.

How will First Spouse Gold Coins Perform in the Future?

Prices will remain around gold value.
102 votes (33%)

Small premiums will develop for low mintage coins.
103 votes (34%)

Big premiums will develop for low mintage coins.
102 votes (33%)



At November 30, 2009 at 6:45 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Looking at th epolls results, you should have added a forth option:

"Hell, I don't know!"

At November 30, 2009 at 7:27 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

What a babe!

At November 30, 2009 at 7:30 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Was there an error in last Friday's posted London Gold AM and PM Fix prices on Kitco? In the morning, they were listed in the $1,160+ range (I forget the exact numbers), but over the weekend they had been changed to $1,128.75 and $1,104.

At November 30, 2009 at 10:23 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Margaret Taylor will likely be the lowest mintage to date of the series. The Van B was significantly lower for much of its offering. The inital price of the Taylor coin will likely be on the low end. That being said, do you follow gold or mintages or the beauty of the coin? Gold will likely be somewhat stable for the next year (doubt a large up or down side for the "short term").
I'm not sure what to do. Usually the first low mintage in the series slips by the radar then everyone overbuys the next option, so the Taylor may be a great investment. On the other hand even serious collectors may not be able to fork over thousands of dollars every year to keep up with the series.

At November 30, 2009 at 11:00 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, the Thur am/pm Fre am/pm London fix average according to Kitco is $1149.625.

Though unlikely, we may actually see a price decline on Wednesday for gold!

At November 30, 2009 at 11:45 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Those Kitco London Fix prices for 11/27 are NOT the same ones they initially reported! The ones on there now don't make any sense, as the price never dipped that low at any point during the day. Both of the original fix prices were in the $1,160's.

Even if those error prices WERE used in the Mint's calculation, it still wouldn't skew the average enough to trigger a price change, unfortunately. Both fixes today came in above $1,170.

I may be forced to buy my Margaret Taylors the first week, even though the thought of paying so much for them kills me! I know I've got at least a year to decide when to buy them, but the price might only go up over that time. I'm not ready to give up on my aspirations of building a complete set of both proof and uncirculated versions, but I'm starting to fall into that category of collectors who might not be able to afford to keep up with it.

I think the Mint should resurrect the complete 4 (or sometimes 5) coin set of First Spouse coins, like they were originally going to sell them back in 2007. If they did that and released it in January, at least we could buy our current year coin set for the same price per coin! We shouldn't have to pay this much for our Margaret Taylors!

At November 30, 2009 at 11:53 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

If central banks around the world keep buying gold, you'll be paying well over $1,000 per first spouse coin in the years to come. Don't fret these prices!

At November 30, 2009 at 12:12 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Premiums are anywhere from 20% to 50+% for coins certified as grade 70. Several of the 24 issued to date are very very difficult to find in this grade. What does all this mean?? I have no idea but do know the floor will always be the gold price and so long as central banks keep printing currency the way the are that floor will continue to get higher.

At November 30, 2009 at 12:28 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The London fix nubers on Kitco for Nov 27 are way wrong.

This is the website for the LBMA itself.

The actual AM and PM fix prices were: 1164.50 and 1166.50

At November 30, 2009 at 2:04 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Eagle proof issue / fiasco is REALLY heating up. Just wait until you read the Letters to the Editor entries in 12/14's Coin World.

I see growing sentiment for Ed Moy to be publically TARRED & FEATHERED on the White House lawn shortly. With all the problems the Obama administration is faced with, they hardly need common every day coin collectors clamoring for the ouster of another inept appointee. Dump Moy now and get those presses rolling. Disgraceful.

At November 30, 2009 at 4:00 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Obama is so busy cleaning up all the other huge messes George Bush and the Republicants made he doesn't have time to fix the mint yet. Give him some time and he'll eventually have to fix this republican mistake too. It's just that he has to fix the bigger problems they caused first. He's not a miracle worker, just the best president we've had in 8-9 years!

At November 30, 2009 at 4:07 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah...obam is great if you're into socialism and a narcissistic buffoon.

At November 30, 2009 at 4:12 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cleaning up the messes of bush...hah!

the lord messiah obama is too busy worrying about his hollywood buddies and getting the Olympics in Chicago to clean up any mess.

History will show that little o is the worst president this country ever had...including jimmy carter, bill clinton and andrew johnson.

long live socialism and acorn...not!

At November 30, 2009 at 4:27 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let's get back to coin talk, please. Why do these posts ALWAYS seem to turn into politics talk?

At November 30, 2009 at 5:07 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Because the current politicians in charge are bankrupting this country.

At November 30, 2009 at 5:29 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kitco fixed the error on the 11/27 London Fix prices. The average so far this "marking period" is $1,174.08. No chances of a price decrease this week!

At November 30, 2009 at 5:48 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is platinum at a tipping point for a price increase based on the weekly average?

At November 30, 2009 at 6:23 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon 4:00PM,

Don't you mean the last 8-9 MONTHS?

At November 30, 2009 at 6:29 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Platinum's average last week was $1,448.56, and the average so far this period is $1,438.83. For the next pricing tier to kick in, the average will have to reach $1,450.

There's 3 more price fixes to go before the price of the proof coin is determined. It will either be priced at $1,692 or $1,792.

At November 30, 2009 at 10:07 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, a couple of Jackson's Liberty Proof coins have fetched $900 the past couple of days. That's a nice mark-up for anyone who bought them from the Mint at ANY time, but particularly when they were selling for around $550 per coin!

At December 1, 2009 at 6:40 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dec 1 am Platinum fix: $1468

We may see the initial offering to be $1792 !

Around $1800 for this poor design with the "obligatory" eagle reduced to a micro-privy. We may have a record low buying for this dud!

Only Donald Trump will be hoarding this. Guess it was worth destroying our proof silver eagle collection I have been building since 1986 and the proof gold eagle for this one! Thanks Mr. Moy! Mr. Moy would likely be in favor of minting a 100 ounce platinum coin with a colorful rainbow on it and offer this as the only option for 2010.

At December 1, 2009 at 6:56 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please don't give Mr. Moy any rainbow idea's.

At December 1, 2009 at 7:56 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now that we've got a "diversity" coin (and an ugly one at that), I think someone here needs to contact the mint (and their respective representatives) to request a "global warming" coin.

In fact, I think the "global warming" coin should be a series. The first coin could have al gore (with a beard of course) on the obverse and him taking off in his personal jet on the reverse.

The second coin could have obama bowing to foreign leaders on the front and a bunch of so called "scientists" deleting data from their hard drives on the reverse.

You get the picture.

At December 1, 2009 at 8:30 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Would the chucklehead on the right please go back to listening to Rush and leave this site to those interested in numismatics and not political blather?

At December 1, 2009 at 8:43 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

With only tomorrow's AM fix left to go, the Platinum average price this week is $1,446.38. If the last fix comes in at $1,478 or less, the initial price of the 2009 Platinum Proof coin will be $1,692. With the way things have been going, I wouldn't hold my breath.

Despite all of the yelling over the coin's design, I still bet that it will sell out in a few weeks, if for no other reason than the simple fact that it is the ONLY platinum coin being offered this year! I'll bet that even some of the biggest ducks in the pond who have been screaming about the design secretly intend to buy the coin as well. Of course, no one will ADMIT to buying one on here!

Truthfully, I don't intend to buy one regardless of the opening price. I don't collect the platinum coins.

At December 1, 2009 at 9:55 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've received all of my 5 buffalo proofs and they are wonderful. I see the Canadian Mapleleaf bullion is selling for more than I paid for my UHR's. I like that by the way.

At December 1, 2009 at 10:36 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think all the ooing and ahhing over is buffalo is odd to me. My reaction seeing my first proof buffalo, is that disproportionally large Mr. Indian Head guy on the front looks CREEPY in such a large coin. Admittingly, I really like the fact that the 1 oz looks like 1oz as opposed to the rip-off UHR visually appearing to be a 1/2 oz (wasup with that Mr. Moy???), but not sure what all the gushing is about with a creepy obverse. The size of the Indian guy looks great on the original buffalo nickel.

Maybe we have less to choose from so our aesthetic score cards must be lowered.

The most beautiful coins, silver and gold full 1 oz American Eagles are not available this year!! Thanks Mr. Moy!!!

Oh, this a First Spouse thread. I agree that Maggie Taylor sure to be the lowest minted (by far) from lack of interest to overpriced. The long run may turn out great for those who can afford her now.

At December 1, 2009 at 11:48 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree Maggies coin has the potential to be the lowest sales volume yet for the series. Poor girl doesn't have too much going for her. First, she looks more like she could have been Zac's twin sister rather than his bride. Kind of beastly. And second, she comes immediately after Sarah Polk who appears to have been a totally hot woman in her day.
Combine all of this with an issue price in the mid to upper $700's and shes a tough sell to all but the collectors of the entire set for which there doesn't seem to be very many of us. However, once the series starts approaching Jackie Kennedy I believe Maggies low numbers will make her one of the stars of the series.
As for the platinum diversity coin. Not for me. There are other options for owning the metal and I have no interest collecting anything with a political correctness theme.

At December 1, 2009 at 12:22 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was buying TWO of each proof and uncirculated First Spouse coin during 2007 and 2008 for sets I was trying to build, but I can no longer afford to do so. I've had to cut it down to one copy of each finish. My extras will be sold off at some point.

At least I will be able to capitalize a bit on the Jackson and Van Buren Liberty coins! I figure I should wait awhile before letting them go, but I've been burned many times in the past by the "this should be worth more later" philosophy. The Jackson's Liberty coins are already fetching $900 each now, quite a bit more than I paid for them a year ago. Van Buren will probably perform as well once the Mint's window has closed for good.

At December 3, 2009 at 2:21 AM , Anonymous All That Glitters is Not said...

I would not be surprised if the US Mint has an early "Sold Out" First Spouse coin in the future.

Unexpected sell outs have a tendency to raise secondary market values. That in turn gets get-rich-quick types to take interest in follow up releases.

Take a look at the 2008 gold buffalo proof, the US Mint's 2009 Birthplace Lincoln rolls, the William Harrison US mint dollar rolls, on and on....

At December 3, 2009 at 2:46 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Vam Buren First Spouse gold coins are GONE now. As expected. Those who did not buy will now have to get them on the secondary market.

Are they going to be worth much? Hard to tell. This coin will have the lowest mintage so far of those who want to collect the Liberty subset (4 coins).

I suspect that the Jackson first spouse Liberty coin is more popular than other coins in the series because of the design and also, Jackson. Van Buren? Who cares much about him?

Maybe Mary Lincoln will generate interest.... Eleanor Roosovelt and Jackie O. definitely will...

At December 3, 2009 at 5:41 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

James Buchanan was also never married, so he will have a liberty obverse as well. I suspect he may be the least popular if gold sustains its lofty levels, and he goes on sale just before Lincoln (2010). Gold was much lower when Van Buren went on sale so the coin was much more affordable.

I would also suspect that Theodore Roosevelt's spouse might be popular as well. Personally, Jackie and Eleanor don't excite me too much (both had philandering spouses), but the Liberty spouses do.

At December 3, 2009 at 5:51 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wouldn't be surprised (if there truly is a gold shortage for the mint) if the spouse series is prematurely canceled. It is not that popular and the mint can always do the bronze metals.

IF it is canceled, then it would likely be canceled without warning although they would probably choose to clean out the remaining inventory. That inventory would sell out quickly (regardless of the gold price), and the coins from this series would go up significantly. Think about it - how big of an uproar would it cause among collectors? I think those collecting the series would actually be glad because they could focus their meager reserves that would have gone towards these spouse coins on other coins.

Alternatively if they keep it going, then it will languish for years. I'm not sure how the Mint can sustain the sales of coins that sell in the low thousands other than by governmental mandate. At least the Eagles, Buffaloes, UHRGEs, annual sets, etc. produce some contribution margin for the Mint. The spouse series has got to be a money loser.

At December 3, 2009 at 6:34 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

No, I wouldn't think the Mint would LOSE money on the First Spouse coins. Even if they do sometimes, they are still required to mint them in both uncirculated and proof by law. To cancel the series would require an act of congress. If that topic ever does come up, hopefully the few thousand of us who faithfully collect the series will be able to make enough noise for them to change their minds. I absolutely
HATE to start a collection of something, only to have it taken away before completion!

I wonder how much it costs the Mint to manufacture the coin dies for these? About how many strikes is a single die good for? I'm sure this information has been published before, but I've either forgotten or missed it.

At December 3, 2009 at 1:39 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wonder if the Mint can legally change to 1/4 ounce $5 (1/2 eagles) for the First Spouse series? maybe they could change them to 1oz silver?

Any thoughts?

The "Liberty" coins are sure to command a premium. Still some on e-bay for minimal mark-up.


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