Mint News Blog

News, Information, and Commentary on US Mint Products

Friday, April 30, 2010

2010 Boy Scouts Uncirculated Silver Dollars Sold Out

Less than a week after the 2010 Boy Scouts of America Centennial Silver Dollars were placed on waiting list status, the coins are now officially sold out at the United States Mint.

On Friday, April 23, 2010, the US Mint informed buyers that orders had been received to meet the "maximum limit" for the uncirculated version of the coins. Customers could still place orders to go on a waiting list. Orders would be fulfilled from the waiting list on a first-come, first-served basis with coins available due to order cancellations.

Yesterday, on April 29, 2010, the Mint officially stopped accepting orders for the waiting list and changed the status to Sold Out.

The proof version of the Boy Scouts Silver Dollar remains available for sale through regular ordering, priced at $43.95 per coin.

The most recent US Mint sales report indicated combined sales of 330,602 coins sold across both options, as of April 25, 2010. This left 19,398 coins available for purchase before the maximum authorized mintage of 350,000 would be met. The breakdown of sales between proof and uncirculated versions is shown below.
Boy Scouts Silver Dollar Sales
Uncirculated 107,292
Proof 223,310
Total 330,602


Wednesday, April 28, 2010

America the Beautiful Quarters Proof Sets

The United States Mint has posted the product pages for the upcoming 2010 America the Beautiful Quarters Proof Set and 2010 America the Beautiful Quarters Silver Proof Set. These products won't be released for some time, but I wanted to write a quick post to provide an early look.

Each set contains the proof versions of the five 2010 quarters struck at the San Francisco Mint. For the regular set, the coins are struck in the standard copper-nickel clad composition. For the silver set, the coin have a composition of 90% silver and 10% copper.

The outer cardboard boxes have been redesigned for the new series with the image of a flag bordered by a red and blue ribbon. It appears that both the clad and silver sets will have an identically designed box, except for the product name. In the past, the outer boxes for clad sets have featured blue color schemes while the silver sets have had red color schemes.

Inside the box, the five coins are housed in a single plastic lens that appears similar to previous packaging. Within the lens, the clad set has a blue colored insert and the silver set has a red colored insert.

Besides the changes to the packaging, there are no big surprises revealed by the product details. I had previously reported on the pricing for the sets. The clad proof set is priced at $14.95. This is the same price level as last year's set, although the number of coins is reduced by one. The silver proof set is priced at $32.95 each. This is a $2 $3 price increase per set, and again the number of coins is reduced by one.

The clad set will go on sale May 13, 2010 and the silver set will go on sale May 27, 2010. I will have a full post on each set closer to the release date.


Tuesday, April 27, 2010

2010 Gold Buffalo Bullion Coins

The United States Mint recently announced that they will begin accepting orders for the 2010 American Gold Buffalo bullion coins from authorized purchasers on April 29, 2010. Last year, the the 2009-dated Gold Buffalo bullion coins were not available until October 15, 2009.

The US Mint's announcement is related to the bullion version of the American Gold Buffalo. These one ounce, 24-karat gold coins are distributed through the US Mint's network of authorized purchasers. They are able to buy bullion coins directly from the US Mint and then resell the coins to other dealers or the public. The US Mint does expect to issue a collectible 2010 Proof Gold Buffalo, but the release date remains unknown. This proof coin will be available for sale directly form the US Mint.

The earlier release of the 2010 Gold Buffalo is a positive sign that the Mint is catching up with demand for gold bullion coins. As many collectors are now aware, before the United States Mint can produce and issue collectible versions of the American Gold and Silver Eagle, they must meet the full public demand for the bullion versions of the coins. Last year the collectible 2009 Gold and Silver Eagles were canceled since the US Mint could not meet full demand.

Another sign that the US Mint is fulfilling demand for gold bullion coins came last month. The Mint ended the allocation program which had previously limited the number of gold bullion coins that authorized purchasers could order. The rationing program had been reinstated in December 2009, following a two week sales suspension.

A contributing factor to the US Mint's apparent progress in meeting full demand for gold bullion coins may simply be a reduction in demand. Through the end of the first quarter, the US Mint's gold bullion sales are down 20.8% compared to the same period last year. After the numbers are finalized for this month, the percentage decline will be even greater.

Whatever the case may be, the prospects for the issuance of the 2010-W Uncirculated Gold Eagle and 2010-W Proof Gold Eagle have certainly improved.

On the other hand, the situation for collectible 2010 Silver Eagles remains somewhat bleak. Through the first quarter, sales levels for the US Mint's silver bullion coins are above the record levels of last year. Silver Eagle bullion coin sales also remain subject to rationing at the authorized purchaser level. The United States Mint Director Edmund Moy also made statements at the ANA National Money Show in Fort Worth, Texas, casting doubts on the prospects of collectible 2010 Silver Eagles.

Some readers have pointed out that the US Mint's online product catalog currently has subscription pages available for the 2010-W Uncirculated Silver Eagle and 2010-W Proof Silver Eagle. However, the subscription options aren't an indication that the coins will be issued. Similar subscription pages were available for last year's releases right up until the cancellation announcement.
Today on Coin Update News:
Collector Creates America the Beautiful Quarter First Day Covers


Monday, April 26, 2010

2010 Boy Scouts Uncirculated Silver Dollars on Waiting List Status

On Friday evening, the uncirculated version of the 2010 Boy Scouts of American Centennial Silver Dollar entered waiting list status. This means that the number of orders received by the US Mint has met the maximum limit, but orders can still be placed on a "first-come, first-serve" basis for any coins available due to order cancellation.

It is a little surprising to see one version of the coin already on waiting list status. At the last available US Mint sales report, total sales for the Boy Scouts coins had reached a combined 312,653 across the proof and uncirculated versions. This meant that there were still 37,347 coins available before the maximum authorized mintage of 350,000 would be met. In the last week of data, the US Mint had sold about 22,000 coins, suggesting at least two more weeks of sales remained.

I think there are two possible explanations for the waiting list status on the uncirculated version. First, one or more bulk bulk buyers could have ordered large quantities of the coins. The orders may have been placed early last week before the price increase took place. There is an order limit of 100 units per version per household, but even a single buyer could coordinate a large purchase with some help.

If the waiting list status was caused by a large influx of orders, then the proof version might be close to entering waiting list status too, provided that the orders were placed across both versions of the coin.

Alternately, the US Mint may have miscalculated the split in production between the different versions of the coin. The maximum authorized mintage of 350,000 coins covers both proof and uncirculated versions. The split in production is generally determined based upon demand. As a practical matter, I think the US Mint most likely takes a look at the proportion of orders before the last production run and then produces coins accordingly. If the proportion shifts after this point, then one version could sell out faster than the other.

Tomorrow when the latest US Mint sales report is available, we should have a better picture of whether the Boy Scouts Silver Dollars are close to the overall 350,000 maximum, or if the uncirculated version was under produced.
Coin Update News: 2010 American Platinum Eagle Designs


Friday, April 23, 2010

The First 2010 Roosevelt Dimes

The first 2010 Roosevelt Dimes have apparently started showing up in the channels of circulation. At least two eBay sellers have individual 2010-P Roosevelt Dimes listed for sale at auction.

As of the last available production figures from the United States Mint, only 19 million of the 2010 Roosevelt Dimes have been produced, with the entire amount coming from the Philadelphia Mint facility. There have not been any 2010 Roosevelt Dimes produced at Denver. Additionally, there have not been any 2010 Jefferson Nickel produced at either mint facility.

Completed eBay auctions show that one of the first listed individual 2010-P Roosevelt Dimes sold for $31.00. That was for a single dime. There are currently 25 different listings for individual 2010-P Dimes on eBay. See the current auctions.

The listings seem to come from just two sellers, both located in Ohio. If you are in the area, it might be worthwhile to check out some banks to see if any additional rolls are available.

Last year, the first 2009-P Roosevelt Dimes started appearing in late May, located in Texas. In early June, more 2009-P Dimes and the first 2009-P Jefferson Nickels surfaced in Puerto Rico. Only recently, some 2009-D Roosevelt Dimes have surfaced, but the 2009-D Jefferson Nickels still remain elusive. (For all of the preceding, I am referring to circulation strike coins, not the satin finish versions which are found in the 2009 Uncirculated Mint Set.)

The 2009 nickels and dimes have attracted attention and high premiums because of the significantly lower mintages and the fact that they had remained elusive in the channels of circulation. The final production figures from last year were the following:
2009-P Roosevelt Dime 96,500,000
2009-D Roosevelt Dime 49,500,000
2009-P Jefferson Nickel 39,840,000
2009-D Jefferson Nickel 46,800,000

As a cautionary note to the current prices being paid for the 2010-P Roosevelt Dimes, an article in Coin World from earlier this year reported that the Federal Reserve had ordered 224 million dimes from the Mint. If the US Mint produces coins to fulfill the order, the total mintage would be above the last year's combined mintage for the denomination.

Also, prices for "firsts," such as this, tend to drive premiums irrespective of the rarity, simply for being the first available. These premiums shrink as time passes or more of the item becomes available.


Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Hot Springs Quarter Launch Ceremony

Yesterday, the United States Mint held the launch ceremony for the Hot Springs National Park Quarter. A Mint News Blog reader was in attendance and relayed some pictures and details of the event.

A recap of the event and plenty of pictures can be found in a separate article on Coin Update News:
Hot Springs National Park Quarter Launch Ceremony and Coin Exchange.

In this Mint News Blog post, I will provide some additional details about the coin exchange and some information about the America the Beautiful Silver Bullion Coins that was revealed at the coin collector forum held the evening before.

The coin exchange was conducted by Bank of America and the coins had the "D" mint mark for Denver. Prior to the event, the limit for the exchange was stated as $100 per person, with multiple passes through the exchange line allowed. At the actual event, attendees were able to exchange for greater amounts than the limit. The exchange was eventually stopped even though there were still quarters left available, with the remaining coins retained by Bank of America.

Other than the ceremony program and some cardboard fans, the park did not create or offer any type of special commemorative product. Before the ceremony, I was hoping that the park might create something unique incorporating the coins, but unfortunately they did not.

A special USPS cancellation designed by Chuck Taylor was available. The cancellation was only offered for the day of the launch ceremony. This was a change from the special cancellation created for the 2010 Lincoln Cent launch ceremony, which remained available for 30 days after the event.

So far eBay sales activity seems to be relatively subdued for Hot Springs Quarter Rolls, with less than 50 active listings. Unmarked rolls are selling for around $15 each. There is a stamped and canceled roll listed with a Buy it Now price of $18.50, but most canceled rolls are priced higher. Here are the current eBay auctions.

Update (4/22/2010): Here's a close up picture of the new Hot Springs Quarter. Click for larger size. Photo contributed by Gene Clayton.

At the coin collector forum held the evening before the ceremony, US Mint Director Edmund Moy provided some updated details on the America the Beautiful 5 oz. Silver Coins. These over-sized bullion coins will have a diameter of 3 inches and feature designs that are exact duplicates of each quarter.

The US Mint was having difficultly applying the legislatively required edge lettering to the extremely thin coins, but they have now "figured it out" and are back on track. The anticipated release date provided at the forum was "mid-summer."

There is one final piece of information that I wanted to provide related to the Hot Springs America the Beautiful Quarter bags and rolls offered by the US Mint. A reader "JA" noticed that the product pages state that the bags and rolls will be available for one year after the initial release date.

This is a major change from previous practice for quarter bags and rolls. In the past, as each subsequent quarter was released, sales of bags and rolls would end for the previous quarter. In order to keep each release available for an entire year, the US Mint must be holding back a big portion of the mintage to ensure adequate supplies for numismatic sales. I will try to get more information on this for a future post.
More Coin Update News:
New $100 Bill Design Unveiled


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Boy Scouts Silver Dollar Sales at 89%, Prices Increase Tomorrow

The latest US Mint sales report shows the 2010 Boy Scouts of America Centennial Silver Dollars at 89% of the maximum authorized mintage. However, with introductory pricing ending tomorrow, the pace of sales will likely slow, delaying the widely anticipated sell out.

Through April 18, 2010, the United States Mint has recorded sales of 211,333 proof coins and 101,320 uncirculated coins. This makes for a combined total of 312,653 coins, representing 89.32% of the maximum authorized mintage of 350,000.

In the latest week, the US Mint sold a combined 22,261 coins, which is down only slightly from the prior week's sales of 23,875. If the pace of sales remained at the current pace of around 20,000 per week, a projected sell out date would be only two weeks out. However, I think the pace of sales will likely decline from this level, pushing the anticipated sell out date further into the future.

Tomorrow, on April 21, 2010 at 5:00 PM ET, the introductory pricing period for the Boy Scouts Silver Dollars will come to an end. The price of the proof coin will be increased form $39.95 to $43.95 and the price of the uncirculated coin will be increased from $33.95 to $35.95. Because the introductory pricing period is well established, most buyers make their commemorative coin purchases within the first month of sales at the lower prices. After "regular pricing" goes into effect, the pace of sales usually falls to much lower levels.

After the introductory pricing ended for this year's American Veterans Disabled for Life Silver Dollars, the pace of sales dropped from around 12,000-14,000 coins per week to sales of 7,010 and 3,427 coins for the two weekly periods following the price increase.

If the general pattern holds for the Boy Scouts Silver Dollars, a sell out probably will not occur for another month or more.

View the full weekly US Mint sales report on Coin Update News.


Monday, April 19, 2010

Sales End for Northern Mariana Islands Quarters Bags and Rolls

Today, the United States Mint ended sales of 2009 Northern Mariana Islands Quarter bags and rolls. The end of sales coincided with the beginning of sales for the new 2010 Hot Springs National Park Quarter bags and rolls.

The Northern Mariana Islands Quarter bags and rolls first went on sale back on November 27, 2009. The US Mint offered two roll sets, 100-coin bags, and 1000-coin bags. A few days after the start of sales, the mintages for the quarters were revealed to be lowest for a circulation strike quarter since 1960. The 2010-P had a mintage of 35,200,000 and the 2001-D had a mintage of 37,600,000.

One of the interesting aspects of the NMI Quarter besides the low mintage, is the proportion of the mintage that was distributed directly to coin collectors through the US Mint's numismatic bags and rolls. The table below shows the most recent unit sales for bags and roll of Northern Mariana Islands Quarters.
Northern Mariana Quarters Bags and Rolls Sales

unit sales quarters per product total quarters
100-coin bag (P) 7,733 100 773,300
1000-coin bag (P) 1,477 1,000 1,477,000
100-coin bag (D) 7,354 100 735,400
1000-coin bag (D) 772 1,000 772,000
Two Roll Set 33,639 80 2,691,120


The US Mint sold 6,448,820 quarters through their bags and rolls offerings out of the overall mintage of 72,800,000. This means that numismatic sales represented 8.86% of the total mintage.

Breaking the figures down by mint mark shows an even higher proportion of the lower mintage Philadelphia strike in the hands of collectors. Bags and rolls sales included a total of 3,595,860 2010-P Northern Mariana Islands Quarters out of the total mintage of 35,200,000. In this case, quarters sold through bags and rolls represent 10.22% of the mintage.

During the prior 50 State Quarters Program, I don't believe that the percentage of each quarter's mintage sold through numismatic bags and rolls was ever this significant. I was able to find data for a few of the 2008 quarters and calculated the percentages to be around 2%.

I think this will be an interesting trend to watch. If mintages continue to decline for this year's quarters and collectors continue to purchase the same or higher quantities through the US Mint's numismatic offerings, even greater proportions of each quarter's total mintage will be purchased and held by collectors. This could have implications for the values of today's low mintage coins and the notion of circulating coins, as fewer of them ever have the chance to actually circulate.

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Friday, April 16, 2010

2010 Hot Springs National Park Quarter Bags and Rolls

The United States Mint will begin selling bags and rolls of the 2010 Hot Springs National Park Quarters on Monday, April 19, 2010 at 12:00 Noon ET. This will represent the first release of the new America the Beautiful Quarters Program.

The circulation release date for the quarters will occur on the same date. An official launch ceremony will be held the following day on April 20, 2010 at the Hot Springs National Park administration building.

The 2010 Hot Springs Quarter reverse design features a depiction of the ornate door of the park headquarters building, with one of the park's many fountains appearing in the foreground. The reverse was designed by Don Everhart and sculpted by Joseph Menna. The obverse of the coin features a portrait of George Washington designed by John Flanagan. The US Mint has restored portrait details that appeared on the original 1932 Washington Quarter.

The US Mint will offer a two roll set containing one 40-coin roll from the Philadelphia Mint and one 40-coin roll from the Denver Mint. The rolls are packaged in custom designed wrappers that indicate the mint mark, name of the park, state abbreviation, and face value of contents. The two roll sets are priced at $32.95 each. This is the same price that was charged for last year's two roll sets of quarters.

The US Mint will also offer 100-coin bags from either the Philadelphia or Denver Mint. The canvas bags will have a tag which indicates the mint mark, name of the park, state abbreviation, and face value of the contents. These bags are priced at $35.95 each. This represents a $3 increase from the price of last year's 100-coin bags of quarters.

At this time, these three products seem to be the only ones offered specifically for the Hot Springs Quarter. Last year, there were three other offerings for each specific quarter. This included 1,000-coin bags from the Philadelphia or Denver Mint and First Day Coin Covers.
The larger sized bags apparently will not be offered, and I have confirmed that First Day Coin Covers will not be produced for the series.

Collectible proof or uncirculated versions of the Hot Springs National Park Quarter will be incorporated into several multi-coin sets released later in the year. This will include the 2010 America the Beautiful Quarters Proof Set, 2010 America the Beautiful Quarters Silver Proof Set, 2010 Proof Set, 2010 Silver Proof Set, and 2010 Uncirculated Mint Set.

Lastly, a duplicate design of the quarter will be used for a 5 ounce silver bullion coin with a 3 inch diameter. The most recent statements from the US Mint suggest that the America the Beautiful Silver Bullion Coins will be available around mid-year. These will not be sold directly by the US Mint, but distributed through their authorized purchaser network.

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Thursday, April 15, 2010

Coin Images for 2010 Quarters

The United States Mint has released coin images for the five 2010 America the Beautiful Quarters. Until now, the only images available have been the line art images.

Line art images were initially released back in September 2009 when design candidates were being evaluated by the Commission of Fine Arts and Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee. The same line art images were also used for the official unveiling at a special ceremony recently held on March 24, 2010 in Washington, DC.

The new coin image versions for each of this year's quarters appear below. For comparison, you can check out the line art versions in this post.

2010 Hot Springs National Park Quarter
Release Date: April 19, 2010

2010 Yellowstone National Park Quarter
Release Date: June 1, 2010

2010 Yosemite National Park Quarter
Release Date: July 26, 2010

Grand Canyon National Park Quarter
Release Date: September 20, 2010

Mount Hood National Forest Quarter
Release Date: November 15, 2010
Today on Coin Update News:
First Day Coin Covers Not Offered for America the Beautiful Quarters


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

2010 Lincoln Cent Two Roll Set Sales at 45,483

The initial sales figures for the US Mint's 2010 Lincoln Cent Two Roll Set have come in far below sales levels for last year's 2009 Lincoln Cent Two Roll Sets. From the start of sales on April 8, 2010 through April 11, 2010, the US Mint has recorded sales of 45,483 sets.

I've gathered the debut sales figures for each of the 2009 Lincoln Cent Two Roll Sets for comparison. Total sales as of the latest weekly sales report are also included, with sold out sets followed by an asterisk (*). Here's how the numbers stack up:

2009 & 2010 Lincoln Cent Two Roll Set Sales

debut sales total sales
Birthplace 63,772 100,000*
Formative years 200,055 300,000*
Professional Life 152,146 282,296
Presidency 153,427 246,896
Union Shield 45,483 45,483

As I mentioned in my initial post on the product, the timing of the release could have been better planned. Back in mid-January, when the first 2010 Lincoln Cents started appearing, secondary market prices were $10 or more per roll. Even by mid-February, when the US Mint officially launched the new design, roll prices were still elevated. Now, three months into the game, availability has been increasing and sealed boxes of 50 rolls can be found for $55 to $60 by careful bidders. The segment of the coin collecting population willing to pay premiums to get new coins early have already purchased their rolls.

The other aspect working against this offering is the fact that the Union Shield design will be minted for the entire year. Last year, the four different designs divided already diminished coin production, resulting the 2009 Lincoln Cents with the lowest mintages in decades. Recent US Mint coin production figures suggest that the 2010 Lincoln Cent will have a combined mintage above 2 billion. Paying a premium for last year's sets was partially justifiable by the low mintages, but this year the situation will be different.

These factors aside, some collectors will still pursue the set as a US Mint packaged Lincoln-related collectible, or as the final component in a complete group of Lincoln Two Roll Sets (LP1 - LP5 product codes). Also, there's the off-chance US Mint could do something unexpected like cut off sales at 100,000 (like they did for the Birthplace Set) and create a packaged rarity. However, realistically I don't think this will happen. I think this offering will be available for the rest of the year.

View the complete US Mint Sales report over at Coin Update News.

PCGS Secure Plus and NGC Plus Grading

Separately, I have just published an article related to recently announced "plus grading" by third party coin grading services. I haven't covered this here, but coin grading company PCGS recently announced a new service known as PCGS Secure Plus. This includes plus grading for coins which verge on the next technical grade level and added security features through laser scanning.

On the same date, NGC announced that they would be implementing plus grading and asked collectors and dealers for recommendations. Where PCGS is limiting the application of plus grading, I think NGC has the opportunity to broaden and define the designation.

Read the full article Recommendations for NGC Plus Grading


First Spouse Gold Coin Prices Likely To Rise

The recent London Fix gold prices suggest that a price increase will likely take place tomorrow for the United States Mint's available First Spouse Gold Coins. These coins are the only numismatic gold coin offerings currently available from the Mint.

The US Mint's current pricing policy for numismatic gold and platinum coins allows the adjustment of prices as frequently as once per week in response to changes in the price of the metals. The average price is calculated for a one week period from the prior Thursday AM to the current Wednesday AM. If the average price for the period moves into a different tier (set at $50 increments for gold coins), product prices are adjusted accordingly.

The London Fix Gold Prices for the current period are the following:
Apr 8 Thurs AM 1,146.50
Apr 8 Thurs PM 1,148.00
Apr 9 Fri AM 1,156.00
Apr 9 Fri PM 1,152.50
Apr 12 Mon AM 1,163.50
Apr 12 Mon PM 1,158.75
Apr 13 Tue AM 1,149.25
Apr 13 Tue PM 1,148.25
Apr 14 Wed AM ?

As long as the Wednesday AM London AM Fix gold price comes in at $1127.25 or higher, then the average price of gold for the period will be $1,150. Available First Spouse Gold Coins are currently priced based on an average gold price in the $1,100 to $1,149.99 tier.

The First Spouse Coin prices would increase from $729.00 to $754.00 for proof coins and from $716.00 to $741.00 for uncirculated coins. These will bring prices back to their highest levels ever. Prices were previously at these levels from November 24 to December 16, 2009.

The US Mint has generally made price adjustments around mid-morning Wednesday. The current prices would continue to be available today and early tomorrow morning until the update is made.

Currently available First Spouse Gold Coins include the 2009 releases for Letitia Tyler, Julia Tyler, Sarah Polk, and Margaret Taylor, and the 2010 release for Abigail Fillmore.

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Monday, April 12, 2010

2010 Hot Springs National Park Quarter Launch Ceremony

The United States Mint will hold a launch ceremony for the Hot Springs National Park Quarter, on April 20, 2010 at 10:00 AM CT. This will be the first coin released in the new America the Beautiful Quarters Program.

The launch ceremony takes place one day after the circulation release date on April 19, 2010. (See 2010 America the Beautiful Quarter Release Dates) This seems to have been done to align the ceremony with the 178th anniversary date of the park. Hot Springs Reservation was created by Congress with the signature of President Andrew Jackson on April 20, 1832. The reservation later became a national park in 1921.

The United States Mint and National Park Service officials will hold the ceremony at the park administration building, located at 101 Reserve Street, Hot Springs, AR. Children under 18 who attend the ceremony will receive a free coin to commemorate the event. Birthday cake will also be served for the park's anniversary.

There will be a coin exchange following the ceremony where attendees can exchange currency for $10 rolls of Hot Springs Quarters. Park sources have indicated an exchange limit $100 per attendee, although the most recently issued US Mint press release does not mention a limit.

A coin forum will be held the evening before the ceremony on April 19, 2010 at 5:00 PM CT. The forum will be held at Quapaw Bath House, 413 Bathhouse Row, Hot Springs, AR.

Will America the Beautiful Quarter launch ceremonies prove to be big draws for coin collectors and park enthusiasts? This first ceremony may set the tone for those that follow.


Friday, April 9, 2010

2010 Presidential Dollar Uncirculated Set

The United States Mint will begin sales of the 2010 Presidential Dollar Uncirculated Coin Set on April 13, 2010 at 12:00 Noon ET. This set will likely be a popular seller since it will include the first released 2010 P& D Abraham Lincoln Presidential Dollars.

Each set will include the 2010 Presidential Dollars featuring Millard Fillmore, Franklin Pierce, James Buchanan, and Abraham Lincoln from the Philadelphia and Denver Mints. The eight coins will be presented in an illustrated folder with biographical sketches and quotes for each president.

Even though the US mint product page makes no mention, it seems reasonable to expect that the coins included in the set will feature the satin finish, which has been used for coins included in US Mint issued Uncirculated Coin Sets since 2005. The Mint has previously confirmed that they will continue to use the finish in 2010, despite rumors to the contrary. Also, I have just received the Millard and Abigail Fillmore Presidential $1 Coin & First Spouse Medal Set and can confirm that the Millard Fillmore Dollar has the satin finish.

The 2010 Presidential Dollar Uncirculated Sets are priced at $18.95 each, which represents a $3.00 price increase compared to last year's set. There are no household ordering limits.

The previously released 2010 Presidential Dollar Proof Set, which marked the first release of the 2010 Proof Abraham Lincoln Presidential Dollar, debuted with sales nearly three times the level seen for the prior year set. I expect that the 2010 Presidential Dollar Uncircualted Set will see a similar strong opening.

Later in the year, the eight coins featured in this set will also be included in the 2010 Uncirculated Mint Set. This set presents a better relative value, priced at $31.95 for 28 coins, but there will likely be many collectors willing to buy the separate set to get the 2010 Presidential Dollars earlier.

On a separate note, the first coin image for one of the America the Beautiful Quarters is finally available. Until now, the US Mint had only provided the line art images of each coin, even at the special unveiling ceremony held last month. Here's a look at the Hot Springs Quarter:

Today on Coin Update News: 2009 Gold Eagle Final Mintage


Wednesday, April 7, 2010

US Mint Coin Production March 2010

During March 2010, the United States Mint had their highest monthly coin production since Mint News Blog started tracking the monthly changes. Contributing factors were an increase in production of cents and the start of production for quarters.

The Philadelphia and Denver Mint facilities produced a combined 384.42 million coins in March, which included cents, quarters, Native American Dollars, and Presidential Dollars. The total production this month nearly matched the production of the first two months, bringing the year to date total to 797.23 million.

With the first quarter of the year already passed, the US Mint is still on pace for another year of extremely low coin production. During 2009 total coin production was 3,548 million.

The table below displays the breakdown of production by denomination and Mint for the month and the year to date.
2010 US Mint Coin Production Figures

March 2010 YTD
Lincoln Cent - Denver 165.20 M 294.00 M
Lincoln Cent - Phil. 128.80 M 278.03 M
Jefferson Nickel - Denver 0 0
Jefferson Nickel - Phil. 0 0
Roosevelt Dime - Denver 0 0
Roosevelt Dime - Phil. 0 19.00 M
Quarters - Denver 19.00 M 19.00 M
Quarters - Phil. 23.40 M 23.40 M
Kennedy Half - Denver 0 1.70 M
Kennedy Half - Phil. 0 1.80 M
Native Am Dollar - Denver 0 14.00 M
Native Am Dollar - Phil. 8.26 M 32.06 M
Pres Dollar - Denver 21.42 M 58.38 M
Pres Dollar - Phil. 18.34 M 55.86 M

Total 384.42 M 797.23 M

The US Mint produced 294 million one cent coins during March. This was divided between 165.20 million at the Philadelphia Mint and 128.80 million at the Denver Mint. Last year, cent production was split between four different designs, resulting in relatively low mintages for each. This year, all production will be for the new Union Shield design, which will result in a comparatively large mintage.

There was no production of nickels or dimes during the month. Nickels have not been produced at all for the year to date. Last month, there were 19 million dimes produced at the Philadelphia Mint. To my knowledge, none of the 2010 Roosevelt Dimes have been spotted in the channels of circulation yet.

The first quarters of the year were produced with 23.40 million at the Philadelphia Mint and 19.00 million at the Denver Mint. These are presumably Hot Springs Quarters, the first release of the America the Beautiful Quarters series coming on April 19, 2010. It seems likely mintages for the new series will be on the low end, which might give prove a motivating factor to collect the series.

During the month, there were 18.34 million Presidential Dollars produced at the Philadelphia Mint and 21.42 million produced at the Denver Mint. The previous production of Presidential Dollars for the year was entirely Millard Fillmore Dollars with the final mintages already announced as 37.52 million Philadelphia strikes and 36.96 Denver strikes.


Tuesday, April 6, 2010

2010 America the Beautiful Quarters Release Dates

I have tracked down some specific release dates for the 2010 America the Beautiful Quarters. Until now, the US Mint has only provided a release schedule by month, except for the first coin of the series featuring Hot Springs National Park, which will be released later this month.

The new series featuring National Parks and National Sites from each state, U.S. Territory, and the District of Columbia will get off to somewhat of a slow start. Other circulating coin series with rotating designs have usually had the first coin released in January or February.

The release dates for the five 2010 America the Beautiful Quarters will be spaced from four to nine weeks apart, with the smallest gap between the first and second releases and the widest gap between the third and fourth releases.

2010 America the Beautiful Quarters Release Dates

Hot Springs National Park Quarter - April 19, 2010
Yellowstone National Park Quarter - June 1, 2010
Yosemite National Park Quarter - July 26, 2010
Grand Canyon National Park Quarter - September 20, 2010
Mount Hood National Park Quarter - November 15, 2010

View the final design selections for each quarter, which were announced on March 24, 2010.

Whether the America the Beautiful Quarters will be readily obtainable through the channels of circulation remains to be seen. The Federal Reserve Banks, which are responsible for distributing circulating coins to depository institutions, do not have any special ordering procedures in place for the new quarter series. This means that banks will not be able to place coin orders specifically for the newly released quarters. Even if coin orders are placed on or around each release date, there will be no guarantee that the banks will receive any of the newly designed coins.

The Federal Reserve Banks do have special ordering procedures in place for the Presidential Dollar coins. During designated special order periods, banks can order unmixed quantities of the current release in $1,000 boxes of wrapped $25 rolls. Similar procedures were also in place for the 50 State Quarters Program.

If the newly released America the Beautiful Quarters are not readily available at banks, collectors will need to consider the US Mint's premium priced bags and rolls or secondary market venues like eBay. Collectors close to the park or site being depicted could also take advantage of coin exchanges following official launch ceremonies.


Boy Scouts Silver Dollar Sales Reach 266,517

The latest sales figures for the 2010 Boy Scouts of America Centennial Silver Dollar are now available. The strong opening figures have followed by a sharp decline in the pace of sales for the second week of release

In the week ended April 4, 2010, the US Mint sold an additional 35,244 proof coins and 16,600 uncirculated coins. The latest week's combined sales of 51,844 added to the opening week's sales of 214,673 brings the overall total to 266,517. This now represents 76.1% of the 350,00 maximum authorized mintage.

With newly released US Mint products, the pace of sales tends to decline somewhat rapidly during the first several weeks of availability, unless some external factor sparks renewed demand. For example, the weekly sales recorded for each of the first four weeks of sales for the American Veterans Disabled for Life Silver Dollar were 98,358 in the debut week, followed by 33,476, then 22,102, and finally 12,432 by the fourth week.

If the pace of sales for the Boy Scouts Silver Dollars follows a similar trajectory, the coins may remain available at the US Mint for at least a few more weeks.

The end of introductory pricing is also on the horizon for the Boy Scouts coins. After April 21, 2010 at 5:00 PM ET, regular pricing will go into effect. The price of the proof coin will increase by $4 to $43.95, and the price of the unicrculated coin will increase by $2 to $35.95.

Find the full weekly US Mint sales report on Coin Update News.


Monday, April 5, 2010

2010 Lincoln Cent Two Roll Set

The US Mint has released the product details for the 2010 "Preservation of the Union" Lincoln Cent Two Roll Set. The product had previously been announced, but pricing and ordering information were not available until today.

Each 2010 Lincoln Cent Two Roll Set will include one 50-coin roll from the Philadelphia Mint and one 50-coin roll from the Denver Mint of the newly designed Lincoln Cents. The rolls will be packaged in special paper wrappers depicting the new Union Shield design and indicating the mint of origin and face value of the contents.

The two roll sets will go on sale April 8, 2010 at 12:00 Noon ET, priced at $8.95 each. There are no household ordering limits indicated.

The product release comes nearly two months after the official launch ceremony for the 2010 Lincoln Cent, which took place on February 11, 2010. It's also almost three months since the first 2010 Lincoln Cents entered the channels of circulation (in Puerto Rico) in mid-January 2010. In some ways, it seems like the US Mint has missed the boat with this offering, with the initial excitement and roll prices having already peaked and subsided.

Last year, the US Mint had offered two roll sets for each of the four different 2009 Lincoln Cent designs. The sets for the "Birthplace" design had sold out after two weeks and sales of 96,000 sets. The "Formative Years" design sold out after three months and sales of 300,000 sets. The "Professional Life" and "Presidency" designs remain available and have sold 280,667 and 243,815 sets, respectively.

The 2009 Lincoln Cent Two Roll Sets were each initially offered with an ordering limit of five sets per household. The ordering limit has been removed for the remaining available "Professional Life" and "Presidency" sets.
Coin Update News: March 2010 US Mint Gold and Silver Eagle Sales


Friday, April 2, 2010

Millard Fillmore Presidential Dollar Coin Cover and Other Updates

Today April 2, 2010, the US Mint released the Millard Fillmore Presidential Dollar Coin Cover. This represents the thirteenth release for the American Presidency $1 Coin Cover series.

Each cover includes 2010-P & D Millard Fillmore Dollars from the first day of production at the Philadelphia and Denver Mints. The coins are mounted on a display card placed within an illustrated envelope. The envelope has a 44-cent Flag postage stamp with a special cancellation and postmark of February 18, 2010, East Aurora, NY. This was the first day the Millard Fillmore Dollar was released into circulation.

The covers are priced at $15.95 each. This represents a $1.00 increase from the price level for previous covers in the series. The US Mint has raised prices for a large number of products this year.

The maximum production for the Millard Fillmore Dollar Coin Covers has been set at 32,000. This is a 20% reduction from the limit of 40,000 used for last year's covers. The covers released during 2007 carried maximum production limits of 50,000.

US Mint Product Schedule Updates

The US Mint has provided specific release dates for a number of upcoming products. This includes the 2010 Lincoln Cent Two Roll Set, which will be released on April 8, 2010. This set had been expected at the end of March. Pricing and release details are still unknown. The comparable 2009 Lincoln Cent Two Roll Sets were priced at $8.95 each. The sets for the Professional Life and Presidency designs still remain on sale.

In the month of May, the US Mint will release the 2010 America the Beautiful Quarters Proof Set on May 13 and the Quarters Silver Proof Set on May 27. These sets will be priced at $14.95 for the regular clad set and $32.95 for the silver set.

On May 20, 2010, the Franklin Pierce Presidential Dollar Rolls will be available. This corresponds with the circulation release date for the 14th coin in the Presidential Dollar coin series.

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