During the week ending November 27, 2016, the U.S. Mint’s authorized purchasers (APs) bought 340,000 American Eagle silver bullion coins, a notable drop from 826,000 bought during the previous period (and an even bigger drop from 1,525,000 pieces the week before that). Sales of ASEs for the month of November total 3,061,000 coins.
All told, one-ounce Silver Eagles have sold 37,461,500 pieces this year. We are 92% of the way through 2016 with five weeks to go. Sales for these issues are at 80% of last year’s total of 47 million ounces. To reach that total, Silver Eagle sales for 2016 would need to average more than 1.9 million per week for the rest of the year. This is highly unlikely, given the steady slowdown in sales. Another potential factor is the Mint’s official announcement today that it is no longer striking 2016-dated ASEs or American Gold Buffalo bullion coins and will shortly be taking pre-orders for their 2017-dated equivalents. The Mint’s supply of 2016 ASEs may not even cover the 9,54 million coins needed to equal last year’s total.
The figures for Fort Moultrie (Fort Sumter National Monument) and Theodore Roosevelt National Park 5-ounce silver bullion coins were both adjusted downward (by 2,000 and 3,000, respectively) during this period. Total figures for each America the Beautiful type are as follows:
- Shawnee National Forest—105,000
- Cumberland Gap National Historical Park—75,000
- Harpers Ferry National Historical Park—38,000
- Theodore Roosevelt National Park—39,200
- Fort Moultrie (Fort Sumter National Monument)—27,800
Combined sales for 2016’s five 5-ounce bullion coins are at 285,000 units, for a total of 1,425,000 ounces of silver. 2016 has the second-largest annual mintage ever for 5-ounce America the Beautiful bullion coins (2011 ranks first, with the extremely high total of 465,100).
Total (net) amount of all silver bullion (ASE and ATB) sold by the Mint—
- last week: 335,000 ounces.
- in 2016: 38,886,500 ounces.
The value of an ounce of silver is down just a hair from this time last week, having dropped by $0.11 an ounce to $16.67. Silver’s average last week, Monday through Friday, was $16.56 per ounce, down from the previous week’s average of $16.94. (Charts of the six-week averages for all precious metals are located at the bottom of the page.)
American Eagle gold bullion coin sales have reached a total of 936,000 ounces across 1-ounce, 1/2-ounce, 1/4-ounce, and 1/10-ounce options. Last week saw 31,500 ounces of bullion Gold Eagles sold, up a bit from 30,500 ounces sold the previous week. American Buffalo 1-ounce gold bullion coin sales have reached 201,500 pieces; 3,500 units were sold during this period, compared to 5,000 the previous week. In 2015, the Mint sold 801,500 ounces of Gold Eagles and 220,500 ounces of Gold Buffalo bullion coins, for a total of 1,022,000 ounces. The Mint has now exceeded the 2015 total by 115,500 ounces.
Total (net) amount of all gold bullion (AGE and AGB) sold by the Mint—
- last week: 35,000 ounces.
- in 2016: 1,137,500 ounces.
Gold’s value is down $7.25 an ounce from this time last week. Gold is now appraised at $1,178.10, according to the London Bullion Market Association. Gold’s average last week, Monday through Friday, was $1,197.13, down from the previous week’s average of $1,221.50.
The sales total for the 2016 American Eagle one-ounce platinum bullion coins is 20,000 units. Platinum is down $23.00 compared to this time last week, when it was priced at $940.00 per ounce; platinum is now appraised at $917.00 per ounce. Platinum’s average last week, Monday through Friday, was $922.40, compared to the previous week’s $932.80.
Bullion issues are sold by the U.S. Mint to a network of authorized buyers, who then make the coins available to the public. This year marks the 30th anniversary of American Eagle bullion coins, which were introduced in 1986. ❑