The US Mint has just announced that next year’s core annual products will be available for sale in January 2011. These products will include the 2011 Uncirculated Mint Set, 2011 Proof Set, and 2011 Silver Proof Set.
Typically, the US Mint’s full annual coin sets have gone on sale much later in the year. For the current year, the 2010 Mint Set went on sale July 15, the 2010 Proof Set on July 22, and the 2010 Silver Proof Set on August 26.
A quote included in the release states that the products will be available for sale earlier in the year in response to customer demand. Specifically, the desire to have the current year products available for collections and gift-giving occasions throughout the year is mentioned.
The press release does not indicate whether sales of the 2010 dated sets will end once sales of the corresponding 2011 dated sets begins. On past occasions and for some other products, sales of the prior year versions have ended as sales of the current year versions have begun. However, there have been plenty of exceptions to the general pattern.
Most recently, sales of the 2009 Mint Set, 2009 Proof Set, and 2009 Silver Proof Set were all concluded together on June 15, 2010, well before the current year versions went on sale. The reason was that the sets contained Lincoln Cents struck in a composition of 95% copper that were only authorized to be sold for a specified period. Meanwhile, sales for the 2009 DC & US Territories Proof Set and Silver Proof Set have continued to the present day.
If sales of 2010 annual sets are concluded in January to coincide with the offering of the new 2011 sets, this could set up extremely low mintages for the 2010 sets. However, I think it is more likely that sales of the 2010 annual sets will continue into the following year alongside the 2011 sets. I will see if I can get some confirmation of how this will be handled.
Coin Update News: Silver Eagle Rationing Ends