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US Government Minting Five-Ounce Silver Rounds

This article was written by in Coin Collecting. 5 comments.

In the U.S. Mint’s continuing effort to create more products for use outside of currency, the organization has created a series of new silver bullion coins with the same designs as the 2010 and 2011 American the Beautiful quarters. These new coins are five-ounce .999 fine silver, unlike the coins that share the designs. While the release of the bullion was announced last year, only a few weeks ago did the Mint deliver the first set of five-ounce coins to a select list of private bullion dealers. Each yearly set consists of five coins.

This small list of companies, in order to qualify for the Mint’s direct authorized dealer program, must agree to make the coins available to the public. There is concern among dealers and collectors that with this product that is in such a high demand, mostly from speculators, that the authorized dealers are not being fair with the public, holding the coins back from the public against the spirit of the Mint’s directives.

The dollar value of silver has surged over the past few months — this might be a bad time to buy bullion in bulk. From a collector’s perspective, these products are intriguing. The Mint is not stopping with bullion, though. They will be releasing collectors’ uncirculated versions of the coins, most likely before the end of March. The Mint sells these for a premium over their intrinsic worth plus the manufacturing cost to make a profit, and if the series is popular and mintage is limited, they could provide a nice return for collectors.

The Mint would be better served by producing coins for circulation only, but as long as there are collectors with money to spend, they’ll continue creating new products for collectors, more like the Franklin Mint than the U.S. Mint.

These products are not what you should consider for a beginning collection or a coin collection for your kids.

Updated October 1, 2011 and originally published January 26, 2011.

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About the author

Luke Landes is the founder of Consumerism Commentary. He has been blogging and writing for the internet since 1995 and has been building online communities since 1991. Find out more about Luke Landes and follow him on Twitter. View all articles by .

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar 1 Anonymous

With the excessive demand for investment grade silver, it’ll be interesting to see the premiums the US Mint smacks on these things. I think the one ounce rounds are already $2 over spot….and that’s wholesale!

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avatar 2 skylog

these have gone from bullion to numismatic status. from what i understand, the going price from an authorized dealer is about 950 (that is for the set of 5. 25 ounces total). that said, everyone grabbed as many as they could and now the ebay price is anywhere from 1500-2000 or more. a friend of a friend was lucky enough to get a set. he sold it on ebay, got his money back AND had enough to purchase a 2010 Libertad kilo (32 ounces) of silver AND he had some cash left over. the price he got on the kilo was not even that great, but he essentialy got it for a little leg work.

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avatar 3 skylog

i have been reading about this for a while on a few coin forums, it has been just short of a disaster. many people are quite mad.

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avatar 4 Anonymous

The US Mint was required to produce these bullion coins under America’s Beautiful National Parks Quarter Dollar Coin Act of 2008. As with many of the things the US Mint does, their motivations are not their own.

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avatar 5 eric

I’ve never collected coins but I’m always fascinated reading about them. :)

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