The United States Mint has resumed minting American Platinum Eagle bullion coins after more than a five year gap. Production had been suspended in late 2008 in order to devote additional resources to the production of gold and silver bullion coins.
The American Platinum Eagle was introduced in 1997, complementing the US Mint’s existing gold and silver bullion coin offerings. The platinum coins were struck in .9995 purity and available in one ounce, one-half ounce, one-quarter ounce, and one-tenth ounce sizes carrying legal tender values of $100, $50, $25, and $10, respectively. Similar to other US Mint bullion products, the coins were distributed through a network of authorized purchasers.
Both bullion and numismatic versions of the Platinum Eagle were issued for all years from 1997 to 2008 across the four different sizes. The bullion versions have featured John Mercanti’s “Portrait of Liberty” design on the obverse and Thomas D. Rodger Sr.’s “Soaring Bald Eagle” on the reverse. The collector versions have featured the same obverse design, paired with an annually rotating reverse design typically following a multi-year theme.
Amidst surging demand for gold and silver bullion coins, the US Mint announced the suspension of production for the platinum coins in late 2008. In 2009, production was initially announced as delayed, but later canceled. The platinum bullion coins were also not offered for each year from 2010 to 2013. While the production of American Gold and Silver Eagle bullion coins is mandated by law, production of Platinum Eagles is left to the discretion of the Secretary of the Treasury.
Despite the absence of the bullion version, the US Mint continued to offer a single annual numismatic version of the American Platinum Eagle for collectors. One ounce proof coins have been issued for each year featuring different reverse designs representing the core concepts of American democracy.
The 2014 American Platinum Eagle bullion coins are being struck at the West Point Mint facility in one ounce size only. Authorized purchasers will be able to order the coins starting on March 10, 2014 priced at a 4% premium to the prevailing price of platinum. Shortly thereafter, the coins should be available in the broader market.