April 23, 2014

US Mint Increases Gold, Silver, and Platinum Product Prices as Precious Metals Fall

Proof Silver EaglePrecious metals are currently showing declines from year ago levels, yet the United States Mint has recently implemented a series price increases for gold, silver, and platinum numismatic products.

Collectors who may have been hoping to pick up lower priced numismatic coins following the pull back in precious metals will no doubt be dismayed by this unusual situation.

The first increases were announced in late December through a publication in the Federal Register which included prices for various 2013 numismatic products. Prices for 21 products had remained unchanged, while the prices for three silver products were increased compared to the prior year. Specifically, the price for the America the Beautiful Five Ounce Silver Coins was increased by $15.00 to $244.95, the Proof Silver Eagle was increased by $3.00 to $62.95, and the Uncirculated Silver Eagle was increased by $3.00 to $53.95.

Earlier this month, pricing was announced for the silver and clad composition 2013 commemorative coins. Price increases were included for each of the silver options and for one of the clad options. The proof silver dollars saw increases of $5 per coin compared to the prior year, and the uncirculated silver dollars saw increases of $6 per coin.

Effective today, the US Mint has adopted revised pricing grids for gold and platinum numismatic products. These products are priced under a flexible policy which results in adjustments as frequently as weekly based on the average market prices of the metals. The newly adopted grids reflect increases in the premium component for numismatic gold coins of as much as $80 for the Proof Gold Buffalo. The premium component for the Proof Platinum Eagle was increased by $108.

During the United States Mint's most recently completed fiscal year, numismatic program revenue had fallen by 33.32%. Much of the  decline could be attributed to lower sales for gold and platinum proof coins, which were down by 56.34% compared to the prior year. Despite the sales decline, the segment had remained steadily profitable with net margin of 12.01%.

For the same fiscal year, silver product revenue had shown an increase of 16.49%. Net margin for this segment was rather robust at 32.69%. Silver product segment had generated more net income than any other numismatic segment.

According to the United States Mint, a main objective of the numismatic program is to increase their customer base and foster sales while controlling costs and keeping prices as low as practicable.

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Comments

  1. Count me in as one of the disappointed.

    I decided that this was finally going to be the year where I bought a proof gold buffalo and had been saving up for one for some time. Then the Mint went ahead and increased prices on us despite the price of metals falling sharply.

    I made the decision to buy a bullion gold Britannia instead and ordered last week. The US Mint can find someone else to sell their overpriced proof coins that immediately lose value on the secondary markets to. I’d also thought about buying the new platinum eagle as I liked both top contenders for those designs as well. Count me out on those as well, a $108 premium increase is just too much.

  2. windage says:

    Why would anyone spend a premium for anything above “bullion” grade? It’s the “beanie baby” collectable phase revived. WTSHTF, and it will, you will not recieve premium back in trade…only bullion value. Sell your highly collectable nusmimatics now, while there is still a market. Convert to 90% junk, in mixed denoms, so you can eat, travel and trade for usable items in the very near future….sound pessimistic about the future of our economy, don’t I?

  3. Bilbo says:

    It’s the age old question isn’t it? Sales are down. How do you increase profit, by lowering prices to make it more affordable to more people?, Or raise prices, making it unaffordable to more people but making more off of those who can still afford it? Which is more? LESS PROFIT X MORE SALES MORE PROFIT X LESS SALES. This new pricing is laughable when considering their ‘Main Objective’.

  4. art says:

    “According to the United States Mint, a main objective of the numismatic program is to increase their customer base and foster sales while controlling costs and keeping prices as low as practicable.”

    They just did the exact opposite. This move will lead to less customers, less sales, and more mintage lows. Shame on the mint for this one.

  5. Dustyroads says:

    This is nothing more than bureaucratic red tape at the Mint, they evidently can’t make adjustments to save customers. I personally am feeling the squeeze and hope to be able to make some purchases this year, but this is just more bad news on top of more bad news.

  6. John Q Public says:

    My purchases from the mint have come to an end as of now.
    I will not buy again.

  7. Ridgerunner says:

    I have cut back quite a bit over the last couple of years. I love the 5 ounce ATB but I don’t see where it is worth buying, not when you have to pay $20 an ounce above market, even if it is limited. I will cut back even more this year and maybe just try to buy on the secondary market when the MINT runs everyone off.

  8. spitfire1979 says:

    I wasted a lot of money buying proof sets from the mint from the 70′s to the 90′s. Found out big dealers were buying from the mint for a fraction of my price so i stopped. The mint and the government are always ready to stick it to the little guy so beware.

  9. shotgun says:

    “US Mint Increases Gold, Silver, and Platinum Product Prices as Precious Metals Fall”

    i dont buy anything from the mint anyway but wow, what a bunch of crooks.

  10. gtwo says:

    Can someone tell my you would buy proof coins with premiums if your not a collector? If your sole purpose is to invest in silver, why not buy pre 64′ coins at spot? I don’t understand. Silver is silver…..

  11. GP says:

    Can someone please tell me the difference between the P and non-P 5 ox ATB coins? There doesn’t seem to be a way to choose between the two, but some of my older ATB coins are “non-P”.

  12. Coin Update says:

    I recently recapped the differences between the bullion and numismatic ATB coins here: http://mintnewsblog.com/2013/02/2012-america-the-beautiful-five-ounce-silver-bullion-coins/

  13. DMan says:

    Increase in First Sposue prices is an absolute rip off. Want to trim costs? Get rid of the extravagant Mahogony box. This smacks of another sequestration ‘hurt the public as much as possible” strong-arm maneuvre.

  14. Barry says:

    Two hands down to the mint. Is this the U.S.
    Mint or The Chinese Socialist Republic Mint ?
    When a policy is taken not to benefit the
    people because of lower product costs. Instead to fatten the coffers of the elite on
    the backs of the people. I think this is considered a Socalist policy. Did China buy the U.S. Mint ? Whats next an air we breath
    tax. Didn’t we go to war with England over a
    tea tax. As usual the bottom line is the dollar. It’s in decline were broke in debt so pass it on.

  15. ed says:

    what a bunch b— s— i was a subsrciber of all they minted NO MORE I WILL NOT BUY ANOTHER COIN FROM THE MINT

  16. Tim Ramich says:

    What about the bullion Silver Eagles? They were $2.00 over spot from The Mint. Did they increase that $2.00 premium?

  17. Coin Update says:

    So far bullion coin premiums have not been raised this year, although somewhat ominously the US Mint actually generated a loss selling Silver Eagle bullion coins in the last fiscal year.

    http://news.coinupdate.com/us-mint-bullion-program-revenue-falls-silver-eagles-generate-loss-1781/

  18. MarcM says:

    Over $63 plus shipping for a proof silver eagle.
    Good luck US Mint I’m no longer a buyer from you.

  19. Mintisstupid says:

    a lot of money lost by the U.S. Mint lost money is due to they have NO price control. And they sent craps, then buyers have to send them back for exchange. Almost 100% of proof sets I bought from the Mint need to be exchanged. Yes, the Mint had to pay for the return shipping between $8 till $20+ for a $70-$45 set.

    Some dealers buying those in big quantity, and cherry picking out BEST ones to send to grading, return a lot of craps back to the Mint. What the Mint does with them, send to the retail buyers like me. Due to the Mint has NO quality control whatsoever, a lot of so-called proof sets are craps, spotty on many of them. The mint from other countries produces significantly BETTER quality silver coins than the U.S. Mint. For example, Most of the BU silver panda coins from China Mint have Better quality than the so-called proof silver coins produced by the U.S.. It is laughable.

  20. Mintisstupid says:

    Sorry, I meant to say the U.S. Mint has NO “Quality control”, not price control.

  21. Gary Cooper says:

    In my opinion, the American Gold Eagle and the American Silver Eagle series are a bit long-in-the-tooth at this time. The American Gold Eagle, while measuring a full ounce of gold, is composed of a very esoteric composition of 91.67% gold, 3% silver, 5.33% copper (22 Karat). Why anyone would bother to invest in gold bullion in this odd & outdated composition is beyond me, especially upon the introduction of the .999 fine gold American Buffalo in 2006. The only thing I can think of is that most of the American Eagle Gold Bullion and some proof coins are being held in IRAs. As the U.S. population ages and retirees cash in their IRAs I think there will be a great flood of them into the market and cause a drastic drop in gold prices.
    The reverse on the American Silver Eagle should at least have been changed to a new design every 5 or 10 years to keep breath into the program. All that has been done is just to offer all manner of mintmark variations combined in endless variations in proof, reversed proof, unc. burnished, and the venerable “non-circulating legal tender” plain vanilla bullion coin.

  22. Ron says:

    As I write, silver ask is 28.60 [http://www.kitco.com/market/]. As a collector, the Mint can kiss my a$$, there’s nothing they produce that’s worth $25-35 over spot. Yet, there’ll be a Fool’s Rush with many coins submitted to TPG’s.

    The Mint’s constant screwing of the collector community does nothing but cast a pall over it. The prices for clad mint and proof sets are ridiculously high. I can’t help but wonder how the Mint’s “main objective of the numismatic program is to increase their customer base and foster sales while controlling costs and keeping prices as low as practicable” is discouraging YN’s to the point that they’re considering – or now – doing something else.

  23. d.g. says:

    Yes, indeed, raising prices when precious metals’ prices are dropping makes little sense to me, too. However, this “government-sticking-to-the-public” attitude is way off.

    – While the Mint’s sale of the 5-coin Silver Eagle anniversary set was poorly handled, it’s the private concerns -such as Coast-to-Coast and Skyline (and others) that are really sticking it to the public with their $700-$800 asking price for that set.

    Such companies would LOVE for you to stop buying from the Mint! – They’re surely squealing with glee when they read the posts here. The prospect of misguided collectors turning to them instead of the Mint must have them drooling.

  24. spitfire says:

    d.g. It is one thing for a private company to stick it to you. It’s entirely different for a taxpayer supported entity to rip off it’s constituents. There are many other places that I can spend my hard earned money so if coins look like a sucker bet I wil look elswhere.

  25. d.g.,

    Actually, the private companies will probably help us undercut the mint. A frequent phenomena with mints such as the Perth Mint is they will ask for ridiculous premiums and then be undercut by secondary market dealers who offer those same coins at much more reasonable prices. The colored 2012 dragon gold coin from Perth, for example, was much cheaper from APMEX than it was from the Perth Mint.

    The US Mint is essentially giving potential sales away to private companies, especially for common coins like the proof gold eagles.

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