U.S. Mint delays America the Beautiful silver bullion coin on launch day
Once again, the U.S. Mint has delayed sales of a silver bullion coin--this time on the day it was supposed to be launched--citing sky-rocketing prices being charged by dealers.
Posted: Tuesday , 07 Dec 2010
RENO, NV -
It's déjà vu for silver bullion coin investors as the U.S. Mint decided to delay the America the Beautiful Silver Bullion Coin Launch Monday.
But this time, skyrocketing prices rather than a limited number of coin blanks is the issue which stalled the coin's release.
Ironically, a bill that actually deals with the Mint meeting its coin demands is awaiting President Barack Obama's signature this week.
Aside from the American Gold and Silver Eagles, no other U.S. Mint bullion program, including the America the Beautiful silver bullion coin, is required to be produced in sufficient quantities to meet public demand.
The America the Beautiful silver bullion coins are the first large-format coins produced by the U.S. Government. Sunshine Minting in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho and Gold Corp. in Perth, Australia supplied the planchets for the five-ounce bullion coin that the U.S Mint will produce on a special $2.2 million coining press made in Germany.
The Mint is supposed to make 33,000 bullion coins for each of the five coins issued this year in honor of Grand Canyon National Park, Hot Springs National Park, Mount Hood National Park, Yellowstone National Park, and Yosemite National Park. The Mint had originally announced it would produce 100,000 bullion coins for each design.
Maximum minting levels for the 2011 and future bullion coins have not been determined.
This year's bullion coins are to be made available to authorized dealers who then resell the coins. The Mint will charge its distributors $9.75 per coin above the price of silver.
CoinNews.net reported the U.S. Mint decided to delay its release of the America the Beautiful Silver Bullion Coin Monday because of exceptionally high prices being charged in the market for the coin. U.S. Mint spokesman Michael White told CoinNews.net that the agency "is aware of reports of concerns by many consumers about the high prices and premiums being charged in the market for the newly released America the Beautiful Silver Bullion Coins."
The U.S. Mint sent a memo to authorized purchasers late Monday afternoon announcing it was delaying the launch of the program, CoinNews.net reported. "Due to the limited availability of the 2010 American the Beautiful Silver Bullion Coin coins, public anticipation has been extremely strong," the memo said. "Since the press release was issued, the United States Mint has received numerous calls and inquiries from the public regarding being charged for these coins."
"As a result, we are delaying the launch of this program. No America the Beautiful Ounce Silver Bullion Coins order will be confirmed today," the Mint stressed.
Meanwhile, President Obama is scheduled to sign the Coin Modernization, Oversight, and Continuity Act of 2010 into law this week. Once the act becomes law, the U.S. Mint will have new powers to change the America the Beautiful Coins, potentially making this year's version a real collector's item. Should the Mint change the coin specifications in 2011, the 2010 issues may become the scarcest in the series.
Production of the coins will continue until 2021 and will feature a total of 56 designs to be released at a rate of five per year.