Mint News Blog

News, Information, and Commentary on US Mint Products

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Nearly All Gold and Platinum Products No Longer Available

Currently nearly every gold and platinum product in the US Mint's online store is listed as "Product is not available."

This includes:
  • All 2008 Proof Gold Eagles
  • All 2008-W Uncirculated Gold Eagles
  • All 2008 Proof Platinum Eagles
  • All 2008-W Uncirculated Platinum Eagles
  • All 2008 Proof Gold Buffaloes
  • All 2008-W Uncirculated Gold Buffaloes
  • Andrew Jackson's Liberty First Spouse Gold Coins
  • Louisa Adams First Spouse Gold Coins
  • Elizabeth Monroe First Spouse Gold Coins
The only gold or platinum coin actually still available for purchase is the Dolley Madison First Spouse Gold Coin.

It does not appear that all of the unavailable coins are sold out.

The only coins that are actually sold out are likely the following, which appear on the US Mint's "No Longer Available" section which lists Sold Out products:
  • 2008-W Uncirculated One Quarter Ounce Platinum Eagle
  • 2008-W Uncirculated One-Tenth Ounce Platinum Eagle
  • 2008-W Uncirculated One-Tenth Ounce Gold Buffalo
The US Mint website does not have any message to explain the sudden unavailability these products, but it appears that a massive repricing might be in process. A reader reported the following today in a comment:

just got off the phone with the mint and supposedly the plan now is at noon friday the plat UC 1/2oz goes for 569, the 1/2oz UC GAE goes for 509, and the proof 1/2oz gold first day spouses go for $549. that's friday 11/14 at noon.

I have not confirmed this with the Mint, but it seems like this is a likely scenario. It's supported by the fact that the Dolley Madison coins have remained on sale. These coins have been priced at $529.95 and $509.95. If the new price level will be $549, then no adjustment was needed, allowing the coins to stay on sale.

This raises a few questions. In the past, repricings have taken much longer to accomplish and have usually been preceded by a sales suspension which lasted at least a few weeks. How was the Mint able to pull off a re-pricing so quickly this time?

Second, since the coins were being sold at higher prices as recently as one week ago, what happens to all of the collectors who purchased coins at higher prices? The Mint does have a 30 day return period. Collector who paid higher prices could simply return their coins and purchase new ones. Or the Mint could potentially issue automatic refunds of the price difference for anyone still within the return period.

Yesterday I wrote about the unwieldy management of the gold and platinum related products. These recent events certainly play into that, as collectors are once again taken off guard by a sudden change. I'll post more information as it becomes available.

Update: Most Gold and Platinum Products are now back on sale. Prices are lower. Full post following shortly.



At November 12, 2008 at 5:19 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

They must be out of their mind. What does the mint makes of faithful collectors that buy their coins as they are being issued. This is so unfair. Big joke! Thanks God change is on the way...

At November 12, 2008 at 10:20 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

as one with little faith remaining in our government or economy... this leans toward the rumor of privately held bullion recall as the dollar collapses

At November 13, 2008 at 4:09 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

"this leans toward the rumor of privately held bullion recall as the dollar collapses"

I seriously doubt that--gold was acknowledged as money in 1933 when it happened. By doing such a thing the government would be acknowledging the same after cutting loose from precious metals in 1971. They can manipulate the relatively small metals markets much easier than trying to confiscate privately held gold. If you don't think it is manipulated, check the price of silver in ebay vs. COMEX.

This looks more like a "last chance" sale of discontinued bullion items so they can clear their shelves.

I hope Mike will elaborate more on what happens to people who in the last 30 days have purchased the items that are being downpriced. I wonder if there will be any credit given--will we have to raise hell? I don't think I would want to go through the hassle of sending items back and possibly having them lost, to get a refund to turn around and buy more. Maybe that is what they are counting on?
Seems unfair, at any rate.

At November 13, 2008 at 6:54 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have purchased within the last 30 days. The coins I bought 10/17 will be shipped back, execpt fot the 1/10 unc plats, refunded and if I choose I can go online to buy again. The coins I bought yesterday morning, I had to cancel that order, they would not reprice it over the phone. I could reorder when the coins go on sale again later today or Friday 11/14.

At November 13, 2008 at 8:16 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

After 50 yrs of buying USMint collector items, I am fed up with this repricing and am giving up all dealing with them. Once an item is offered for sale as a collector item then it should not change in price for ANY reason. Bullion type is different and they could do whatever they please. Goodbye USMint and that goes for all of my friends who agree.


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