Mint News Blog

News, Information, and Commentary on US Mint Products

Friday, June 11, 2010

2010 Gold Buffalo Proof Coin Sales at 12,778

Numismatic News is reporting that the 2010 Proof Gold Buffalo sold 12,778 coins through June 8, 2010. The coins originally went on sale June 3, 2010, priced at $1,510 each.

The coins are on a slower pace than last year's 2009 Proof Gold Buffalo offering, which sold 19,468 coins in the first three days of sales from October 29 to November 1, 2009. The offering eventually sold a total of 49,388 coins through the end of sales on March 29, 2010.

A slower start was expected for this year's offering for a number of reasons. First, the coins are priced $150 higher than the initial price of last year's offering. This may have caused some collectors to scale back or attempt to wait for a lower price.

Second, the 2009 Proof Gold Buffalo coins haven't matched the stellar performance of the 2008-W Gold Buffalo coins. Oftentimes, strong secondary market performance for a US Mint product will lead to more robust sales of the following issue from collectors hoping for a repeat.

Third, there was not the sense of urgency and pent up that was present last year. Sales of the 2009 Proof Gold Buffalo began following nearly a year of unavailability for collector versions of the coin and uncertainty about whether the coins would be offered at all. The total number of coins available was also unknown, which may have accelerated the early pace of sales. This year, the coins are offered after just a few months of unavailability for collectible Gold Buffaloes and collectors may be more confident that the offering will be available for some time. Of course, this might not actually be the case if "unprecedented demand" for gold bullion rears it's head.

It seems likely that the 2010 Proof Gold Buffalo will end up with a mintage below last year's level, but how much lower will be the question. The table below shows the final mintages for each of the Proof Gold Buffalo coins.

Proof Gold Buffalo Mintages

1 oz 1/2 oz 1/4 oz 1/10 oz
2006 246,267

2007 58,998

2008 18,863 12,169 13,125 18,884
2009 49,388*

*Last reported sales
New Coingrader Capsule: In Praise of PCGS



At June 11, 2010 at 9:45 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

My bet is on 25K total mintage due to elevated priced, and more specifically, do to the demand for gold. The Mint is only doing AGBs because the law says they have to. They probably only did one run at 1/2 of last years sales and that will be it. JMO.

At June 11, 2010 at 10:34 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

so do you think that will positively impact price? or in other words, are these a good buy or should I hold off? I'm trying to decide..

At June 11, 2010 at 10:58 AM , Anonymous JA said...

Too rich for my blood. There are too many other things I'm trying to collect to fork over this much cash in one shot.

At June 11, 2010 at 11:06 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd really like to pick another of these up, but I'm set on getting the plat this year (IF they go with the recommended design) and that's a lot of coin right there.

At June 11, 2010 at 11:06 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with JA. I don't have any of the Proof Buffalos except for the 2006. I do have two of the 4-coin sets of the 2008 Uncirculateds, but no 2008 Proofs. I won't be forking over the dough necessary to get the missing coins, so I see no point in resuming buying proofs in 2010.

I plan to continue with my First Spouse sets instead. I think the low-mintage of the Julia Tyler coin and the new low imposed on how many complete sets of Uncirculateds can exist is FINALLY starting to get collector's attention. I know I could be wrong, but I have faith.

At June 11, 2010 at 12:01 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you really like the buffalo and can afford it get it. By the time I am ready to get one the price will most likely be out of my reach. Definitely a collectors coin. Investment coin? No one will know that until next year. It is gold. So not likely to drop much if any down the road. The best is example is the '06 proof of which mintage was astromical and price was 800. Now sells for around 1300 but it was a first year coin for what thats worth.

At June 11, 2010 at 12:32 PM , Blogger Bowtie said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At June 11, 2010 at 12:35 PM , Blogger Bowtie said...

I got mine today... Had to open it based on another comment on the last buffalo article... It's a 2010. It was expensive but I'm happy with the purchase. Even if gold went down a substantial amount, I would at least have a coin. I've lost way more in equities to even care about potential losses on gold.

@ 11:06 AM Would love a set of 2008 uncirculateds, those are way too pricey for me to buy now.

At June 11, 2010 at 12:41 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I picked one up to add to my 2009 and 08 MS fractionals...

From the price guide from the US Mint:

Note: The United States Mint reserves the right to discontinue sale of gold numismatic
products in the event that the selling price of United States Mint gold bullion products
begin approaching the sale price of the gold numismatic products.

The grids for gold and platinum only go up to $2100. I guess the cross over point to no more gov. issue coins is that level. As this is 800 or so dollars away it was interesting this caveat is already on the books. Government anticipating inflation?

At June 11, 2010 at 2:40 PM , Anonymous VABEACHBUM said...

I received my Buffalo Proof Thursday AM. I also opened to confirm a 2010 date. It was - and an outstanding specimen at that. I was disappointed that the packaging slip-cover took a beating during the Mint's shipping and handling process. Not worth the hassle of a return and the possibility of receiving a lesser coin.

Going back to the opening comment, I don't think the Proof coins are a legislated requirement, although the wording of the 2005 Presidential Coin Act is open to interpretation. Buffalo Bullion is called out specifically, while the term proof is mentioned only when discussing the need to differentiate the protective covering for the coin(s). Michael, your thoughts and a clarification would be appreciated.

As for the new diatribe the Mint has added into their pricing matrix, it is complete and utter nonsense that gives them the "just because we want to" way to end a program. Why?? The mathematics of simple line equations and limits. The pricing for both the bullion and the proof coins is based on the cost of gold - the same material cost for both. The cost of the proof will always be higher due to the additional fixed, constant costs related to the manufacturing and packaging of the collectible numismatic product. The cost of the bullion coin is always "approaching" the cost of the numismatic product, yet the Mint's ability to adjust pricing on a weekly basis means the bullion will never gain on or exceed the numismatic product.

The Mint has given themselves an out, pure and simple. If the cost of gold remains constant or sees an increase, I also agree with the previous post that the numbers could be 25K or less. I'll add that, when the time comes, the 2010 Proof sales will come to a very abrupt and very quick end.

At June 11, 2010 at 2:45 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't think the '06 Gold Proof Buffalo selling for $1,300.00 has anything at all to do with it being the first year of issue; that price is not even 7% over spot. The $1,300.00 more accurately reflects bullion value with a tad added in for the coin value.

At June 11, 2010 at 2:58 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

You're right, the 2006 had an astronomical mintage, that will most certainly never be approached by a Buffalo Proof coin again. It's solely the increase in the gold spot price that made that one a windfall for those who bought it for $800 way back then. I remember a time when they routinely sold on eBay for LESS than $800.

Since the Mint's pricing was different in those days, the price was $800 the entire time it was sold. If I remember correctly, it went off-sale the same day the 2007 went on sale, but I don't know exactly when that was. It seems like it might have been the same day the Martha Washington and Abigail Adams First Spouse coins went on sale, which was June 19 2007. Does anyone know for sure? I'm just curious.

At June 11, 2010 at 3:00 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Since these went on sale much earlier than the 2009 coins, my guess is the total mintage will end up at least as high as last year. Of course the price of gold and the possible availablity of Proof Gold Eagles would be big factors in the final Proof Buffalo mintage.

At June 11, 2010 at 3:22 PM , Blogger Bowtie said...

I ordered my 2009 late in the cycle and I ordered the 2010 within 5 minutes of the buffalo being on sale from the mint.

I thought all this first strike labeling was bs but I am really amazed at the quality difference between the two coins. I put my 2009 next to my 2010 and the 2010 is much more detailed. The 2010 has a much brighter face, the details surrounding the mouth and eye are also much more prominent. The buffalo on the back is also much more detailed and brighter on the 2010.

Even if the price of gold drops I think it was worth getting the earlier strike after seeing the differences.

At June 11, 2010 at 3:58 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

My guess is the mint is shooting for another 50 large mintage. They might have projected 20 large the first week like the 09's and an average of 1000 a week for the remainder of the year which would be real close. But as commenters pointed out the high price and likely continued periodic price increases along with bullion demand could cut the sales to half that by years end. Sales might then continue into 2011 for several months. We should have an idea where things are going before the end of July. Congrats to all those able to obtain one. Its a nice coin. Didn't the President at the time of initial design(Roosevelt?) request a coin design that was uniquely American? He got one. Start saving up there may be a 100 yr annivesary special packaging in 2013.

At June 11, 2010 at 5:25 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I do not know if I bought my 2007 buffalo the first day or not. My history shows an order date of June 4th. So.. sooner than the spouse.

At June 11, 2010 at 6:18 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The 1/2 ounce Buffalo Proof
looks to be the key of the proofs at a reported 12,169 minted.
It's a nice size for a Buffalo
(wish I had more than one)

At June 12, 2010 at 12:38 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I like the way the mint is always ready to take orders.

The United States Mint is performing routine system maintenance. The system maintenance is scheduled from midnight until 8:00am EDT on Saturday June 12th. During this time period you will not be able to access the Catalog. We apologize for any inconvenience.

At June 12, 2010 at 5:58 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't count the '09 Buff proof out, it may be a sleeper when all is said and done. If gold stays under $1300 for a while, the '10 will likely have a mintage higher than the '09.

At June 12, 2010 at 8:21 AM , Anonymous John said...

Just a few comments related to earlier posts:

1) I believe that PCGS First Strikes and NGC Early Releases will be the same or less than any other proof AGB coins released to date due to gold prices. This includes the 2008W when the price of gold was much lower.

2) I agree that the mintage of the 2010Ws will be at or below the 25K level due to gold prices. Like VABEACHBUM said, expect sales of this coin to come to an abrupt end as well.

3) The Mint's collectible coins are going down hill fast. Silver is much more affordable than gold, yet the Mint did not offer a 2009W ASE last year. Rising gold prices will squeeze the Mint product offerings, and collectible gold coins other than those mandated by law (bullion, spouses, other commems) will only have limited production at best.

4) Prediction: I am going to go out on a limb and say that the lincoln penny will be eliminated in the next couple years at most. It costs more to produce than it's worth, and the Mint has been ordered by the current administration to look at other less expensive currencies. Furthermore, Canada is strongly considering the elimination of their pennies as well. Finally for good or bad, an administration wants things to be remembered by when they are long gone, and eliminating the penny from US currency would be both a "historical" and cost-savings event. Of course, this would take an act of congress as I believe the penny is produced under law.

These will be interesting times for collectors.

At June 12, 2010 at 9:50 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the mint stamps out 10,000 coins in a few weeks time and stacks them and then does another run of 10,000 a month later. All this before the coin is released. How do we know the 10,000 stamped a month later weren't stacked on top of the first 10,000 and those are the ones going out the door first? I guess "Early Release" is accurate but the "early release" coin may have actually been one of the last stamped. Am I missing something or are these labels just a perceived enhancement rather than anything of real substance? They used to call this selling the sizzle and not the steak. Does the mint have a policy that coins go out the door in chorological order to their stamping day? That would seem highly unlikely but then they apparently have some super secret rules.

At June 12, 2010 at 2:44 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bring back the 2001 silver proof Buffalo. Look at the prices now! The Mint will not bring back anything "silver" as they are to busy with what silver they have for their new products etc. Case in point. Where are the silver proof eagles 2009? How about 2010? When the public finally realizes that there will be no more silver proof eagles made,gone,finished then the collectors who collected them in 1986-2008 will be very happy with their purchase. One of the most beautiful silver coins ever made, the silver proof eagle is no more. Sad

At June 12, 2010 at 5:24 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes...early release and first strike are marketing ploys. They mean nothing where the quality of coins are concern. However, there is a market for them, so that makes them more valuable.

The coins sold by the Mint are not sold as they were chronologically produced. Therefore, the term "early release" is a valid description, but the term "first strike" is not.

At June 12, 2010 at 5:30 PM , Anonymous VABEACHBUM said...

If you would like to get the Mint's perspective on the "First Strike" designation, take a look at this article that delves into the mintages as compared to die life and exchange rates for various silver, gold and platinum products.

It's not set up as a hotlink, so copy and paste into your browser.

Shortly after the Mint published this information in late 2006, NCG moved away from their first strike designation, as documented on their website, and started using the term Early Release to better define the relationship to the PERIOD of issue. While PCGS continues to use the term First Strike, it still relates to a PERIOD of issue. The coins released during that period could be the first coin struck on a die, the 500th coin, or the 1,500th coin.

I came across this information nearly three years ago, and haven't worried about the First Strike or the Early Release designations since. Besides, some of those coins have a much better presentation in their Mint packaging.

At June 12, 2010 at 5:57 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would not expect any significant numismatic value on these coins unless the mint abruptly stops sales. There are such vast quantities of moderns being slabbed nowadays. The reported PCGS Population for the 2010 Buffalo MS70 First Strike is already 12349. They are nice to look at but are probably not destined to have anything close to the price appreciation of the 2008's.

At June 13, 2010 at 12:09 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

First Strike Buff MS70 Pop 12349?
Really?....I heard the MS71 Pop was high also..

At June 13, 2010 at 2:14 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Pony Express and Gold coins-

I have been enjoying the history of the Pony Express and the development of the west by reading "The Overland Mail 1849-1869" by Leroy R. Hafen. Many areas in the west discovered gold and silver deposits. New towns developed, seemingly overnight.

Those towns wanted mail service, and they also needed a way to ship their newly minted gold and silver back to larger Eastern cities and their banks.

I would encourage the Mint to review these early mint coins and to produce a series of gold and silver coins to honor our early pioneers.

There is a lot of history here...



At June 13, 2010 at 2:54 PM , Blogger Bowtie said...

@ 2:14PM let me take a stab at what that coin would look like...

Each coin will contain one ounce of .999 fine, 24-karat gold and presented in a faux horsehide box with a matte finish. It will accompanied by a certificate of authenticity signed by the Director of the United States Mint.


There would be a total of 16 people on the coin, each representing a combined total of 93 different different cultural backgrounds. Each person would be designed in such a way as to appear unisex. The pony express motto would appear on the top: "Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night, stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds". Each person will also appear to be doing something to portray the career of a pony express rider. Specifically, four people would portray someone doing the task described in the motto: one will be driving a horse in snow, one in the rain, one in the heat, and one in the gloom of night. One will be purchasing postage stamps.
The remaining 11 people would be shown doing other tasks tangentially related to the pony express.


The obverse will feature Hannah Montana sorting mail.

There will be no household limit on amount of coins purchased. Orders of more than 2 or more will incorrectly include a 2009 Gold Buffalo Proof instead of the Hanna Montana commemorative.

At June 13, 2010 at 3:56 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...


What is your ebay userid? I hope Michael will post one of your auctions in his newsletter. Like he does with others.

That way I will know who NOT to buy from.... LOL!

At June 15, 2010 at 5:27 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

My 2010 P.Buff was shipped very quickly only 2 days after ordering it While it took the mint almost 20 days to ship the 2009 Buff last year(ordered on the first day). I was kinda surprised that they were able to process over 12 K orders that quickly ( I did not oredr on the first day) . The big question are those real numbers? May be many orders were put in then cancelled , so mint still counted them. This may turn the mintage lower than published.

At June 16, 2010 at 5:42 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Mint seems to be shipping orders MUCH more quickly than they used to. I've recently ordered products that were shipped the EXACT same day they were ordered! Gone it seems (at least for now) are the days of the lengthy backorders.

At June 18, 2010 at 7:08 AM , Anonymous Clad Vlad said...

6/18/10 - With gold now @ $1257/oz I'll be forced to buy the Buff at the $1,500 price ahead of next week's price increase - was hoping for at least a one-tier pullback to $1,460 but that doesn't look too likely now ...

p.s. where are all the gold-is-in-a-bubble bubble heads now? Off crying in their beer no doubt haha


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