The U.S. Mint’s authorized purchasers (AP’s) bought 250,000 of last week’s 2,839,500-ounce allocation of 2016 American Eagle silver bullion coins, leaving 2,589,500 unsold. This is the most unsold Silver Eagles we’ve seen so far this year, continuing a recent trend that has seen the Mint’s inventory growing with the help of consistent production and softer demand.
Sales for the issues dropped sharply, due in part to the observance of the Fourth of July holiday. AP’s bought 73% fewer Silver Eagles during this period than the 938,000 ounces reported last week. The unsold pieces have been added to this week’s new 1,060,000-coin inventory, bringing the available total for this period to 3,649,500 ounces.
One-ounce Silver Eagles have sold 26,500,500 pieces so far this year. The Mint remains on pace to have its biggest sales year ever for silver bullion, and has already exceeded 56.3% of last year’s record-breaking total of 47 million ounces of Silver Eagles sold. We are currently 52.8% of the way through 2016.
Gold continues to gain strength and has increased in value by $7.50 per ounce since this time last week. Gold is now valued at $1,358.25 according to the London Bullion Market Association. The value of an ounce of silver has also increased by 74 cents to $20.47, a level not seen since 2014.
2016 American Eagle Gold bullion coins have sold a total of 510,500 ounces across 1-ounce, 1/2-ounce, 1/4-ounce, and 1/10-ounce options. Last week saw 9,500 ounces of bullion Gold Eagles sold, down from 14,500 the previous week. 2016 American Buffalo 1-ounce gold bullion coins have sold 115,500 pieces; the Mint sold 3,000 of the issues during this period. In 2015, the Mint sold 801,500 ounces of Gold Eagles and 220,500 Gold Buffalo bullion coins.
The Mint did not sell any Harpers Ferry 5 oz. silver bullion coins to its authorized purchasers last week, and the total for that issue remains at 34,200 coins sold. Combined sales for the 2016’s three 5 oz. bullion coins have hit 214,200 units for a total of 1,071,000 ounces of silver. Combined production of 2016’s issues has officially surpassed the total for all of 2015, which wrapped up at 212,000 units. 2016 now has the second-largest annual mintage ever for 5 oz. America the Beautiful bullion coins behind 2011, which had the extremely high total of 465,100.
The Mint sells its bullion issues 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.