This represents a slower start than each of the past two years. The 2009 Proof Platinum Eagle began with sales of 7,207 in the first three days. The 2010 Proof Platinum Eagle began with sales of 8,268 in the first three days. These two issues sold out of their maximum mintages of 8,000 and 10,000 respectively, after only seven days.
The 2011 issue has a much higher maximum mintage of 15,000 units. The initial sales account for 45.24% of this amount. A sell out could still happen, but it would likely develop over the course of months, rather than days or weeks.
In a previous post, I examined some of the factors working against the 2011 Proof Platinum Eagle such as the higher mintage, higher price, and current outpouring of expensive products from the US Mint.
The slower initial sales may also be the result in a shift in collector buying patterns. In past years, huge sales have tended to occur in the first few days, followed by an extreme drop off, and eventually the establishment of a somewhat stable base weekly sales level. This year, the sales drop off seems to be less extreme, for gold and platinum products in particular. Collectors may be more confident that the offerings will not immediately sell out and are willing to place orders days or weeks into the offering. Orders may also be delayed in the hopes of price decreases.
As a case in point, the 2011-W Uncirculated Gold Eagle had initial sales of just 1,098 coins. The following week sales fell to 237 coins. Pricing for the product was decreased, impacting the following two weekly sales periods, which had sales of 490 and 435.
View the full weekly sales report on Coin Update News.