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U.S. Mint Sales Were Slower in May but Are Up Strongly in 2020

Total sales of bullion coins by the U.S. Mint slowed from their torrid pace in March, but they are still up strongly above the same five months in 2019.  For the first five months of 2020, sales of American Eagle gold coins total 335,000 Troy ounces, up 222% from the 104,000 ounces sold last year. This May, the Mint sold 11,500 ounces, down from April, but 187% above the 4,000 ounces sold in May 2019.

Sales of American Eagle silver coins reached 490,000 ounces in May 2020. Although down from April and from last May, this brings the total American Silver Eagle sales for the year to 11,218,500 one-ounce coins, which is 25% more than the 8,987,000 coins sold through the same five months in 2019.

American Buffalo gold coin sales totaled 2,500 ounces in May, lifting their year-to-date total of 118,500 ounces, which is 166% above their sales level for the first five months of 2019, when they totaled 44,500 ounces.

One reason bullion coin sales were down in April and May was the Mint was often closed due to coronavirus concerns. If the Mint were open more days, sales would likely have been much higher.

Whenever gold and silver prices are rising, as they are now, coin dealers place more ads, and those ads bring in more new customers than usual. As you watch cable TV coverage of various crisis events, you will notice this proliferation of ads. After those new customers buy bullion coins. Within 6-24 months, a good percentage (say 10% to 20%) will graduate into rare coins, often pushing up the prices of rare coins.


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