Gold and Silver Bullion Storage at the West Point Mint

As a break from the string of Gold Kennedy Half Dollar posts, I wanted to complete the series of articles from my tour of the West Point Mint. This final article takes a look inside a bullion storage department containing newly $2 billion in gold and silver.

Previous articles from my visit include:

The West Point Mint was originally called the West Point Bullion Depository and served as a storage facility for silver bullion. It once had the highest concentration of silver of any US Mint facility, earning the nickname “The Fort Knox of Silver.” In 1980, West Point also began storing gold bullion in its vaults. Shortly afterwards approximately $20 billion worth of gold was stored at the facility, making it second only to Fort Knox for gold storage.

In the following years, the West Point facility began to take on more production duties including minting commemorative gold coins and American Gold Eagle bullion coins. It gained status as an official branch of the US Mint on March 31, 1988. Production would continue to expand, eventually including commemorative silver coins, American Silver Eagles, American Platinum Eagles, American Gold Buffalo coins, as well as other numismatic items.

In addition to the extensive production activities, the West Point Mint continues to serve depository functions. During my recent visit to the facility, I had the opportunity to step inside one of the storage compartments.


The compartment contained stacks and stacks of gold bars. I was told that these were “Good Delivery” gold bars from approved purchasers. The bars were .9999 pure and had a weight of 400 troy ounces each, carrying serial numbers and hallmarks from the manufacturer.


I was able to very carefully pick up one of the  bars, which carried a value of more than $500,000. It was much heavier than expected for the small size and unwieldy to handle.


The entire compartment contained more than 1.4 million ounces of gold with a value of more than $1.8 billion.


Silver bars were also stored in the compartment within a caged area. At the time of the visit, there were 2,800 silver bars with a total fine weight of 2,778,708.334 troy ounces and total value of $58,936,403.76.


In what appeared to be a long running tradition, I was able to sign the wall of the storage compartment.


A historical giant scale can also be found within the vault. You can see my signature on the section of the wall appearing above the left tray.

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  1. says

    I had a 1,000 oz silver bar Once. As you say Michael they are very hard to handle because all the weight is concentrated in one spot. I think the 1,000 oz bar weighed somewhere around 77 pounds…

    This was Years ago when Silver was MUCH cheaper…

  2. says

    Sold the bar for Much less than I paid for it. Probably one of the worst investments I ever made. Held it for several years, paid lock box fees and Lost money. If I had kept it I still don’t know if the inflation adjusted return would have been positive..

  3. says

    Great pictures, Michael. It must have been pretty awesome to be in a room full of gold like that, and actually be allowed to handle gold bars like that too. The signing of the wall was icing on the cake.

    I didn’t comment much in previous threads, but I enjoyed your previous posts on the West Point mint visit very much.

  4. VA Bob says

    You should have worn baggy pants with inside pockets…. and a strong belt in there Michael. lol

    I didn’t see any smelting equipment, so I’m guessing they don’t make their own planchets? I could be wrong. I recall seeing a video from the Royal Canadian Mint and I believe they do make their own. At least I saw them punching them out of a sheet of gold.

    I suppose the Mint could do it by just using high pressure reduction to convert the bar into a sheet which planchets could be punched out of.

  5. bg35765 says

    Thank you for these articles and pictures. I have really enjoyed them.

    Two off-topic comments:

    1. At the ANA they had trial pieces of the 4 coin silver Kennedy set in a display case near the mint booth. The Enhanced Unicrculated was right next to the regular proof and I couldn’t tell them apart. The lighting was not good, so that may have had something to do with it. But it was pretty disappointing.

    2. The reverse proof set idea is terrible and I hope they scrap it. This blog has had several articles on the declining sales of proof and mint sets, but the solution is not to create more sets. In fact, I think the multitude of sets the mint already offers is the root cause.

    If anything they should eliminate all of the subsets (quarters, dollars, etc.) and get down to three core offerings that are always prominently advertised on the web site. Those would be the clad proof set, silver proof set, and the big P+D uncirculated set.

    The good news is that when the presidential dollar series ends the sets will once again become smaller and more affordable. All of the sets are on the expensive side for giving as gifts to young kids right now.

  6. Hidalgo says

    @MIchael – thanks so much for sharing your photos and experiences! They make coin collecting interesting!

    @bg35765 – I really like the idea of a reverse proof set. I also like the idea of an Enhanced Uncirculated (EU) set. Imagine all the possibilities…! Collectors can buy a clad proof set, silver proof set, clad reverse proof set, silver reverse proof set, clad EU set, and silver EU set.

    Off Topic. Silver Towne – it is now selling NGC certified gold Kennedy half dollars. First Day ANA Convention, Washington DC, Philadelphia, and Denver: PF 70 – $5,000. PF69 – $4,000. There is no way I would ever pay $3,700 + for a PF70 label or $2,700 PF69 label….. 🙂

  7. Mint News Blog says

    VA Bob- You are correct, the Mint does not make their own planchets. In the Coin Update article on coin production, I described how the bars are sent to contractors where they are alloyed and made into planchets.

    I am glad that many have enjoyed these articles and photos. The visit was a incredible experience that really provided a new perspective on the US Mint’s coins and I am happy to be able to share this.

  8. Billsey says

    OT/Gold Kennedys

    It looks like not many more golds have sold since yesterday per the CV site:

    8/7 8:45 PM 8/8 7PM
    NGC PF70 4 pc set 16 available 14 available
    NGC PF70 Phila 80 available 80 available
    NGC PF70 Denver 80 available 80 available
    NGC PF70 DC 80 available 79 available
    NGC PF70 Chicago 57 available 54 available
    NGC PF69 Chicago 18 available 14 available

    So a total of 2 “sets” and 8 coins sold.

  9. GoldFishin says

    OT- sort of….JFK 12:29 order now cancel box gone…CC pending. I hope they ship this weekend.

  10. thePhelps says

    Michael – thanks for these recent articles on the West Point mint. It must have been an awesome experience, since the stories and pictures are equally awesome!

  11. Jon in CT says

    Sith wrote on August 8, 2014 at 7:31 PM:

    CO and other called it, and said no coins would ship until next week.

    Yeah, those cynics turned out be correct. The Mint made a huge deal about having a mythical 40K coins ready to ship on Day 1, but this is turning out to be just like every other spectacular first day bust the Mint has managed over the last few years. 😥

  12. VA Bob says

    Jon – Cynic’s LOL, The Mint has never shipped a new offering quickly. In fact one can place an order for say this years annual proof set (available for months) and it will still take a week to ship. One just has to look at their own order history, it’s all there, the time you placed the order, the time it shipped, and the time you got it. You have to remember when the government talks about “ready” it’s going to take away. Heck we are still waiting for Shovel Ready jobs.

  13. VA Bob says

    Even a Subscription order for an ATB: the Mint called the order on 5/14/2014. It didn’t actually ship until 5/22/2014 (and I received it 5/27/2014)… and that’s the Mint running the whole show. This is not uncommon.

  14. Jon in CT says

    VA Bob wrote on August 8, 2014 at 8:09 PM:

    Seems my cancel box finally disappeared (12:40 order). Still in process.

    Yeah, maybe later this month you’ll get a notice that one of those 40,000 gold Kennedys that have been sitting around the warehouse has actually been shipped to you. Good luck!

  15. VA Bob says

    Jon – lol you could be right! If we all believed the Mint truly used FIFO I’m afraid we’d all be in for a rude awakening. Not even the waiting room was FIFO, and how hard could an electronic time stamp be to honor?

    While I would like to get the coin sooner (I’m not having items out in the nether, arriving willy nilly, with CC charges appearing after I forgot about them), I’m patient and don’t mind waiting. Chow line on an aircraft carrier will do that to you.

  16. Jon in CT says

    Dave wrote on August 8, 2014 at 1:32 PM:

    To VA Bob:

    “Dave – Check your numbers for the UHR. I’m pretty sure it’s a 115,178 final mintage. I would be interested to know where the number you got came from.”

    – The final audited sales were posted on this (Mint News Blog). Maybe Michael can give the reference again. I will search later — I’ve got to run, just checking in for now.

    The Mint has never officially published an “audited” sales number for the 2009 Ultra High Relief gold coin.

  17. VA Bob says

    Jon – Did you scare everyone off, or was it me? Or maybe people got better things to do on a Friday night than talk about coins. I guess until they start to ship, there’s not much to say. We’ve all beat this one to death.

  18. Dave says

    Off Topic —

    To: VA Bob
    Re: 2009 UHR Eagle
    “Dave – Check your numbers for the UHR. I’m pretty sure it’s a 115,178 final mintage. I would be interested to know where the number you got came from.”

    Ok — I called the mint (not ordering phone) head quarters and left a message, I will let you know when I hear from them; I could not locate the data on their web site — I might have errored, however, I think not.

    Here is a reference:
    2009 Ultra High Relief Double Eagle Final Sales 115,178

    January 15, 2010 By Coin Update

    The final sales figure of 115,178 represents unaudited sales data and remains subject to final adjustments.

    To: “ThePhelps”
    “Does this mean it took about five years for the Mint to do a final auditing of the ’09 UHR?”

    Yes, it did take them a loooooong time.

  19. Dave says

    Hello?? — Where did everybody go? Was there a barbeque, someone did not tell me about — LOL!

  20. vaughnster says

    Great stuff Michael. Even though I haven’t commented much, I enjoy reading ALL your posts 🙂

  21. VA Bob says

    Dave – I’m not trying to put you on the spot or anything, I’ve just never heard another number beyond the 115K. But do share if you hear anything to the contrary. Thanks.

  22. Solo says

    Good for you Michael! I’ve appreciated your site for years now so I’m sure it has to be satisfying on some level to get to leave your mark at the mint. Good for you indeed kind Sir :D!

  23. Pittsburgh P says

    Sith – CO & others said they wouldn’t ship for weeks not this week. I was hoping they would but didn’t hold my breath… Was thinking next Monday or Tuesday & was told our cards wouldn’t even be pinged by then. I’m just happy they ar IS&R! Everyone knows that once it goes to In stock & reserved it takes at
    minimum 2 or 3 days before
    shipment. Did anyone really think
    this would be different?

  24. VA Bob says

    Gold Fishin – Thanks, retired from the Navy in 03. We have lots of vets commenting here on the blog (many of them my VA brothers 🙂 ). If I’m not mistaken we also have an active duty commenter. It’s the guys and gals serving now that really deserve our respect, trying to do their jobs with the most restrictive rules of engagement.

    To keep it on coins. I ordered my 2 two coin 2001 Silver Buff sets from the Persian Gulf. We had one Internet computer for 70 people and a connection speed that made dial up look like FIOS. It’s a wonder I got my order in. It wouldn’t have worked with these recent feeding frenzies. But it wasn’t as bad as the old snail mail days. Now one can call home regularly. Times sure have changed.

  25. Dave says

    To Bob:

    No worries! This is just part of the fun in collecting/investing in coins.

    Anyway, I must be loosing my mind; here is what I came across and for some reason, I scrambled this in my brain with the 2009, UHR Eagle. Too much focus on too many stats lately.

    “2011 25th Anniversary Silver Eagle Set 99,882 .” This number was revised downward on final audit. It however, did take the mint almost four years to publish final numbers on a 2009 Platinum.

    Anyone have a little garlic to go with this crow? LOL!

  26. Dave says

    VA Bob —

    Yeah, I will let you know if my phone call to Mint head quarters reveals any different number on the final UHR numbers.

  27. Brice says

    Not so sure the in stock and reserved means a possible shipment in 2 to 3 days as my silver proof and unc. HOF has been in that status all week. That being said I’ll look for my Kennedy 12:10 order time in September. Lol

  28. RSF says

    At the ANA show today and saw several dealers’ tables stacked 3 high with dozens of slabbed Kennedy gold. It didn’t appear that any were selling at the $4 to $5,000 price tag. When asked about it, one dealer admitted that “these will all end up being sold on TV to the usual group of dupes and rubes” and that “suprisingly, most TV buyers are repeat customers that think they are getting a great deal.”
    Saddly probably true.

  29. Willy Wonka says

    @RSF, that’s almost criminal in my opinion. Selling to the old folks, throw some religion with that too, jack the price more, maybe include a labeled bible too.

  30. Jerry Diekmann says

    bg – I agree wholeheartedly with your comments on the proposed reverse proof set. More is definitely not better. The U.S. Mint needs to get back to the basics – they are starting to act more and more like the Royal Canadian Mint, which pretty much ruined collecting Canadian coins for nearly everyone with the ungodly proliferation of coins, finishes, values, etc. etc. etc.

  31. Jerry Diekmann says

    VA Bob – OT, but regarding your reference to chow line on an aircraft carrier – my wife and I took four of our grandkids to San Diego for 6 days and nights for summer vacation. One day we toured the U.S.S. Midway, which is now a museum in San Diego harbor. What a magnificent ship CV 41 was – and still is! Met a lot of veterans who act as guides – many of them around my age (70). Joked with a couple of them that I was never drafted during Vietnam because I was too tall – I’ve shrunk at least 2 inches over the years. But my, those ladders and stations are tight! One of the veterans told me the number one cause for sick bay was men hitting their heads on the various steel fittings on the ship. With my height I wouldn’t have lasted a day on board – you have to lean way forward when climbing up the steps and way back when descending the steps. A great experience!

  32. HarryB says

    @VA Bob-OT, Your carrier comments are reviving many memories for me, I was a Ships Company sailor on the JFK 71-73. Seems like yesterday in some ways. I enjoy your coin commentary as well. Harry.

  33. Ikaika says

    Thank you for sharing these pictures with us Michael. I am sure this is a once in a life time experience. Cheers!

  34. says

    Opening Day Only Sales Silver Kennedy
    • VA Rich 100k on 08/08/14
    • thePhelps 85,500 08/08
    • CaptainOverkill 75,000 08/08
    • cagcrisp 212,125 08/08
    • VA Bob 105k 08/08
    • HiCal 93,564 08/08
    • Bob R 169,000 08/08
    • Pittsburgh P 148,888 08/08
    • Hawkster 184,546 08/08

  35. VA Rich says

    FYI – Dear United States Mint Customer,

    The United States Mint will be processing your subscription order for the 2014 United States Mint Annual Uncirculated Dollar Coin Set in approximately 4 weeks.

  36. PaulinMA says

    I think the delay in shipping the gold halves is to give the big dealers time to grade and rip off people. I have a 2009 ultra high relief gold. Bought it as soon as it was available. Looks like a proof like 70 to me. I don’t know why people buy the labels on these offerings, as all of them are either 69’s or 70’s. I would bet a 68 would be ten times more rare than either the 69 or 70. Does it mean it is ten times more valuable?

  37. Clark the Contest Winner says

    Pittsburgh P says
    AUGUST 8, 2014 AT 4:47 PM

    Clark… You have ZERO chance to win Cagcrisp’s First Mintage Guestimate Contest. How’s that? The
    JFK gold’s will not touch anywhere near 200,000 imho.

    PittsP–Now that’s a hurtful thing to say. I am very hopeful about winning. In fact I am so confident that I already changed my handle to “Clark the Contest Winner”

  38. Sith says

    Opening Day Only Sales Silver Kennedy – 200K if their is no household limit… with a household limit of 5 100K

  39. VA Rich says

    2014 America the Beautiful Five Ounce Silver Uncirculated Coin™ – Great Sand Dunes National Park (NR4)

    This product will be available for sale on September 15, 2014, at noon (ET).
    Mintage Limit: 30,000 (and the new low of the year)

  40. thePhelps says

    Sith – I think he means despite 30,000 production limits… this coin isn’t going to sell. Likely to be the new low, simply because it isn’t that great of a coin.

  41. mgm says

    I had so much hope for that coin (Colorado 5oz ATB) but its the ugliest coin ever. Even uglier than the 2015 designs.

  42. VABEACHBUM says

    @ VA Bob – “Roger Ball,” Brother!!

    @ VA Rich – Saw that, too, but this will be the 3rd release in a row where the authorized mintage has been increased to 30K. I never really understood the increase from the 25K we saw with Smoky Mtn. Granted, the subscription program and renewed interest vaulted opening sales to 20K+, but sales for Smoky languished from that point to the 25K sell-out, while Shenandoah and Arches just now are cresting the 25K sales threshold for their respective availability. I firmly believe that the market saturation for these coins falls within this 25k range, and that the Mint will end the availability for these coins well before they reach their maximum authorized mintage.

  43. VABEACHBUM says

    @ ThePhelps – From that perspective, agreed completely. I will add it to my collection for the sake of series continuity. Other than that, quite bland.

  44. VA Rich says

    thePhelps is right, I really liked the coin design or one of the earlier similar designs, then they had to go and put sandcastle makers on it. Detracts from it imo and how will that look on the quarters? They look like dead stumps in a desert on the quarter.

    Paul – no delay in shipping the gold halves, a week delay is pretty standard. I’m expecting to have an email in the morning of a shipping confirmation (which really means UPS/Fedex has received the preliminary shipping notification). It’ll be in the mail by Tuesday with a Thursday arrival I’m thinking

  45. VA Rich says

    VABB – that’s what I’m hoping for shipmate! With Everglades leaning more towards the end of the year, I’d like to see the mint do an initial and final run of 20k and then wrap it up for 2015 production. Florida will go quick perhaps.., I’ll just say I’m moving my normal buy from the desert to the ‘glades.

  46. says

    The enhanced uncirculated worked great with the Silver Eagle, making the flag that is draped around Miss Liberty really pop. I am just not sure how effective the enhanced unc. will be on the Kennedy coin. A couple of commenters, having seen the prototype, have remarked that it looks pretty much like a regular proof version.
    Has anyone else seen the prototype and, if so, care to comment?

  47. VA Bob says

    Jerry – I’ve been to San Diego on a business trip, but unfortunately didn’t get aboard the Midway (the wife did, however). I did get aboard the Coral Sea, when she active (scrapped now) and the Intrepid in NYC. Those guys were packed like sardines. Much of my time was “outdoors”. When weren’t flying, we were painting, testing fire equipment, or respotting planes for maintenance. Glad you had the opportunity to visit one, it’s a worthwhile tour.

    HarryB – Thanks for your comment. I had the pleasure of being aboard the JFK for a “visit” (we’d always scrounge each other for parts and things, especially prior to a NAVAIR inspection). You’re getting a new JFK flat top in the coming years.

    VABB – Don’t bolter, it’s almost 2AM, cold and raining and starts (for the next day) are in 4 hours. lol

    Not exactly coins per se but if anyone gets the opportunity to collect some challenge “coins” from these ships (Army, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard commands too) many of them are well done. Not sure if they will ever be worth anything, but they sure do look nice.

  48. Hawkster says


    Regarding the 2015 5 oz. ATB’s: I know that North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Parkway depicts, of all things, a road. But, it is one nice looking design, looking out the portal of one tunnel to the next tunnel. The only thing that puzzles me is how the small dogwood tree managed to take root IN the tunnel. Artist’s license?

  49. VA Bob says

    Someone must be stepping on the Mint’s neck to make more money, with the ATB mintage increase and now the half dozen annual sets idea. I think I’ll call it the “War on Coin Collectors”. lol

  50. VA Rich says

    After much deliberation, I’d like to revise my silver JFK 1st day sales estimate to 137,000

    which is constrained by the 5 household limit assumption. The mint, if we’re lucky, will show with at least 100,000 sets and thus ensuring a major backlog. First week’s orders will take through Thanksgiving to ship, or longer. People will buy this set on day one in anticipation of Christmas and to have sets in hand on 22 November, those that don’t will panic later. My friends out here on MNB will double down on the offering as the next round of pandemonium approaches. The new mint website will self-destruct. A prediction? Nah, but one possible scenario. haha

  51. VA Bob says

    Hawkster – that’s why they want to raise the gas taxes. Not enough maintenance money for clearing those tunnel trees. Clever use of a coin to highlight the problem. 😉 .

  52. VA Rich says

    VA Bob – you bring your best challenge coin on up to Baltimore in late-October and we’ll put’em up to vote, loser gets first round. Nah, you be my senior you’ll drink for free though I do have you beat on serving on the oldest ship in Fleet (CV-62 ’98).

  53. VA Rich says

    Hawkster – at least the bird got knocked off the branch by a passing car! The artist of that design was confusing a national park design competition with a NC state quarter design.

  54. gary says

    @Jerry D_ I’m with you and also against the Mint’s idea to introduce reverse proof / special finishes to their proof set products. When the Mint declared in 2009 they were going to streamline the product lines look what has happened: “S” mint ATB quarters in the middle of the ATB timeline,1-time oddities like the ’13 RP Buffalo and now Gold Kennedy, too numerous to mention American Silver Eagles in multiple finish and mint mark flavors (many on the “birthday” anniversary of the coin itself), etc., etc. How can new collectors make much sense and rhyme & reason for all this “stuff”? Now for 2015, a possible ASE series in a mix of special finishes to mark the 50th birthday of proof coins being struck in San Francisco??? That is ESOTERIC for sure!!!

  55. VA Bob says

    VA Rich – I try to stay out of Baltimore if I can. If I did though, we’d both be feeling no pain. Yeah, you got me beat on that old rust bucket Indy. They had to keep F-4’s (my personal favorite) in service longer for her, since the F-14’s were too big, and took up too much space. The Hornets gave her a reprieve for a while. We are probably be shaving with her soon. As far as old ships goes, I did get a chance to go aboard AVT 16 Lexington (former CV 16) while it was active. That was right after the crash that killed 5. A nugget hit the island structure.

  56. Hawkster says


    How many times may a contestant in the 1st day sales Kennedy silver set guesstimate game revise their estimate? Or, can revisions be made right up to sales day? It seems that additional information coming from the Mint, especially any changes in household limits, may influence contestants to revise their estimates.

  57. JSM says

    I wouldn’ t read too much into the coin vault inventory numbers. I am pretty sure they have more than 80. They know people look at their inventory number and I think they don’t want people to know how many they really have. I would also guess they no longer want you to know how many they sold either .

  58. VA Rich says

    VA Bob – well then, you have me beat on both accounts Sir! It’s been 69 years today since Nagasaki, it amazing me still how these rogue nations still haven’t learned one big lesson, if you don’t have air superiority, you really shouldn’t even bother (and just co-exist with your neighbor). Oh well, back to coins!

  59. Hawkster says


    I have to agree that the Saratoga ATB design doesn’t cut it (alright, pun intended). A cannon in the foreground along with the Nielson farmhouse, where the American officers were quartered, would have been a much nicer design. The mountains in the background could also have been used.
    If you go on the National Parks website and bring up Saratoga, there is a photo of this scene.

  60. says

    Opening Day Only Sales Silver Kennedy
    • VA Rich 100k on 08/08/14 ; 137k 08/09
    • thePhelps 85,500 08/08
    • CaptainOverkill 75,000 08/08
    • cagcrisp 212,125 08/08
    • VA Bob 105k 08/08
    • HiCal 93,564 08/08
    • Bob R 169,000 08/08
    • Pittsburgh P 148,888 08/08 (8’s are wild)
    • Hawkster 184,546 08/08
    • Dustyroads 64,000 08/09
    • Louis 115k 08/09
    • Sith 100k 08/09

  61. Ikaika says

    @ VA Rich

    It is too bad that the turkey was chosen for Louisiana instead of the wood pecker as recommended. They needed another turkey to pair with the one in the native American dollar. At least one can build a turkey subtype collection 🙂

  62. VA Rich says

    Anyone have a bead on Day 3 & Day 4 Kennedy sales? Any other cred”I”ble chatter heard?

  63. says

    @Hawkster , You make valid points. I will just continue to put out the guesses and you’ll can be the judge as to the winner…

  64. says

    I think Shipments for the Gold Kennedy starts Monday. That does Not bother me. With all the people “saying” that they are cancelling on different blogs, it is better to have them cancel before they ship than take receipt and then send them back for a refund. Maybe by Monday there will be a complete shake out of the Cancelers…

    Again…..It does Not bother me if you want to cancel…I would rather see you cancel an order than ‘dump’ it on the bay.
    On 08/07/14 a Seller dumped 10 BHOF Silver Dollars for $59.00 as a Best Offer. There was Many $70 sales Before the dump and Many $70 sales After the dump.

    That just Really bugs me…

  65. says

    @Ikaika, I know a Lot of Turkey hunters that will Buy the 5oz ATB that have Never bought ANY mint products. I don’t know Any woodpecker hunters….

  66. Ikaika says

    @ cagcrisp

    That is a valid point, but I think most collectors preferred the woodpecker. IMHO it does look nicer.

  67. Hawkster says


    I wasn’t sure what you were referring to in regard to the bird being knocked off the dogwood branch on the Blue Ridge Parkway ATB. I later realized, after going to a link for the 2015 ATB designs, that this was one of the design proposals for the Parkway coin.
    I, as you are, am glad this oversized cardinal (it took up half the tunnel) wasn’t used on the final design. After all, we already have a genetically mutant dogwood growing in the dense shade of the tunnel–we don’t need to include a mutant cardinal.

  68. Larry says

    @ Hawkster, I saw the enhanced unc Kennedy at the show, it looks close to the proof, but there are diffrences in the details. The only thing I can vividly remember is the shied on the eagle has some ares that are different and really pop out. As I have said before, the coin that really got my attention was the reverse proof. You will want that one. However my desire for the coin is now slightly diminished with the mints decision to make reverse proof sets. That would mean this would not be a unique coin. But, I will still buy the silver set.

  69. says

    @Ikaika, The Turkey has already sold 2 5oz ATB’s. I have 2 men that I buy something for at Christmas. I saw where Initially the Turkey was chosen. I was planning (and still am now) giving them the Turkey ATB for Christmas 2015. I have Never bought an 5oz ATB before so I bought 2 Smoky Mountain to give to them This year so as I could determine if they liked them for Next year.

    If the Turkey had not been chosen Initially I would have Never bought my first 2 5 oz ATB’s. Now they may not like the 5 oz Smoky Mountain but my guess is that they will like it and they will Love the Turkey. One person actually does a hunting show on Dish so maybe the entire crew and staff may want to get the 5 oz Turkey.

  70. VA Rich says

    Well, I can’t find JFK sales for Thursday or Friday any where, perhaps the mint can’t keep up with the cancellations and hasn’t tallied the net effect.. so keep up the good work Pitt! Keep those cancellations coming in and continue to whoop this dog! ;7

  71. Hawkster says


    I hope you caught my intentional pun in the last comment I made to you. What the heck, it’s Saturday and we need a little humor injected into all these serious comments.
    While on the subject of woodpeckers: did you ever hear the story about the genetics professor who attempted to cross-breed a carrier pigeon with a woodpecker? He was trying to develop a bird that not only delivered messages but also knocked. Well, the experiment ultimately failed, as the resulting offspring did not have these traits. He did, however, develop a good sized woody.

  72. Dan in Fla says

    The gold is so golden definitely 24 kt
    Those pictures make me drool. Thanks Michael.

  73. Ikaika says

    @ cagcrisp

    Well, at least you are helping promote the 5oz ATBs. Me and others on this blog have been collecting the 5 ozers from the get go. Despite being the first of its kind, many people have never heard about them. We all wish the US mint would advertise more to get people interested in this series.

  74. Eagle One says

    This blog has been like Kennedy crack coin news for the last two weeks and now there is nothing. I am going through withdrawals while waiting for my Gold Kennedy to get here. It is going to be a long terrible weekend. Michael, we need more Kennedy news! If you are out of Kennedy; we’ll take some ASE.

  75. Pittsburgh P says


    The Mint probably didn’t want to release the numbers since the total # sold came out in the negative for Thurs & Fri after all the cancellations!!! Proud of you guys-keep the cancellations comin-lets teach the Mint a lesson…

    OT- Made another trip the the Rivers casino today. Don’t know if anyone remembers my last trip that I posted about but I took a Silver BHoF coin for my card topper this time. Don’t want to go into a long story but it garnered a lot of attention like the clad did last time. I didn’t win the tourney this time but sold it & used the cash at the roulette table & tripled my money! These damn coins are lucky I tell you!

    Maybe I can get a JFK Gold now….. Nah I’ll get one in 6 months for half spot.

  76. GoldFishin says

    @Cagcrisp- my number for the JFK silver contest is 108,622. This number is based solely on the ability of the US Mint website to process orders and my guestimate as to the average units purchased per order.

  77. Willy Wonka says

    @ Pitt P, I agree, that Baseball HOF is a truly lucky coin, here is why in with my story.

    I was driving my wife and our 5 and 7 year old daughters back from Colorado Springs on July 4th. Just after entering KS on I70 there was light traffic and we had the speed control set at 82 mph-140km/h. (speed limit is 75 in KS)

    Well there was a on ramp to I70 from some worthless whole-in-the-wall town. I saw a 18 wheel rig pulling onto the highway, with a old ford pickup also behind him. Needless to say I was behind them appx 1/16 mile, so I just changed lanes to the far left to pass. As I approached to pass them the goofball in the pickup did not see me and he pulled in my lane forcing me off the highway at 82mph, lucky for my family I keep our vehicle on the shoulder and not in the grass, if we would have hit the grass at that speed I believe we would have rolled the vehicle many times and probably all of us would have been killed.

    I agree with Pittsburgh P, I had a lucky HOF Silver Proof in my pocket, that may have saved us.

  78. jeff says

    Guessing the mintage of the silver Kennedy issue should be quite easy, now try guessing the ship dates that’s tough. LOL I’ll defer my estimate until we here the real story the mint might be holding back information on these coins. Something is up with the silver release I can’t imagine more than 100,000 sets that’s 400,000 coins Something says its more difficult than the bhof but what do I know. I’m in just waiting for the fervor to intensify.

  79. Eagle One says

    Michael, I found another recent article you wrote on the processes at the West Point Mint. The pictures and the article correlate better with what I was expecting to see. This article shows processes that are more in line with most high tech companies you would find here in the Silicon Valley. Pattern imaging systems, Adept robotic arm handlers, automated die polishing, and a Scanning Electron-beam Microscope (SEM) to analyze grain. It also looks like automated aqueous wash systems are employed too. This has to be one of your better articles and it lends more respect to the Mint’s processes. However, I am confused about the WP Silver Eagle spotting problem. After I dip my coins, I always rinse dip them in 3D water (reagent grade Deionized and double distilled water). I never get spots. Maybe you can pass this along to your contacts in the Mint. Again, this is your best article that I have read to date and I enjoyed it thoroughly.

  80. Jon in CT says

    GoldFishin wrote on August 9, 2014 at 6:14 PM:

    @Cagcrisp- my number for the JFK silver contest is 108,622. This number is based solely on the ability of the US Mint website to process orders and my guestimate as to the average units purchased per order.

    Why am I not surprised that you appear clueless about the completely new website and software which will be processing the initial Kennedy silver set orders in October?

  81. VA Rich says

    Never a dull moment in this neighborhood…

    Anyhoo, I bet they’ll be a good dozen of us hawk’n that sales report come Monday morning, when is that thing usually available, 11:30’ish?

  82. GoldFishin says

    @Jon in Ct- Oh crap Jon….if I would have been aware of that I would have guessed much lower….Keep up the good work!

  83. Hawkster says


    In regard to your comment about the difficulty the Mint might have in producing the Kennedy silver set, as compared to the HOF coins: I believe that the Mint had a great deal of difficulty in producing the domed HOF coins, especially the gold and silver versions. The fulfillment process lasted an extraordinarily long time, and is just finishing up now after several months. After the initial inventory was shipped, there was a long period where no orders were sent out.
    The Mint probably was forced to reject many of the minted coins because of quality issues, which contributed to the long delays in getting orders out.
    As for the silver Kennedys, the Mint will have a much less of a challenge in producing these. After all, they have been minting flat coins for over 200 years. The recent silver eagles have given the Mint experience in producing reverse proofs and enhanced uncirculated coins.

  84. GoldFishin says

    @ cagcrisp- I wish to withdraw my first number for the Kennedy Silver set and replace it with 88,844…sorry about the change

  85. VA Rich says

    Jeff – not sure I follow how the silver JFKs may be more difficult to produce then the BHoFs, I don’t see that being the case at all unless you’re making an inference regarding the full scope of coins to be produced (?).

    I could easily seeing the sales for the silver set topping 250-300k, which begs the question, could the mint sustain that level of production? I personally think they’ll show up short handed on day one for demand and hence, my posting above regarding the bow wave that could result. We’ve seen this play out before, once the first allotment of sets are gone, who knows how long it may be before the mint sync’s up 4 different coin production schedules with packaging and reestablishes some uniformity in distribution. Seems like a BHoF order date of 04-09 April surge all over again if you ask me.

  86. VA Rich says

    GF – LMAO!

    Pitt – glad it worked out, congrats! Though don’t sell yourself short, easily 1/3rd spot for these JFK this time next year! First time the roulette table has had better odds!

  87. Pittsburgh P says

    Willy wonka- thanks for the story and for whatever reason it was, lucky coin or otherwise, I’m happy to hear you & your family are safe!

  88. GoldFishin says

    @Va Rich – my 88,844 was my first choice, but after reviewing how many orders the “old” system could manage and trying to figure out about what time the orders would start to significantly taper, I ended up going with a higher number……all bets are off with Jon’s new magical mystery tour of the US Mint’s new system. Maybe I should guess zero, if it works like everything else….site will crash and there are no sales that day, except in Ct. where Jon will have a 12:00:01 order time. 😉

  89. GoldFishin says

    @Va Rich – I am sure that Jon in CT is used to “placing orders” in 1 second…plenty of practice I am sure.

  90. Pittsburgh P says

    VaRich thanks – I was being conservative… I bet if I buy more than 10 – quarter spot easy!

    Yeah, I had to wait for my buddy who was still playing in the tourney & figured I’d try my luck. I never play table games and don’t enjoy slots. Put 15$ on 8 & 19 with 10$ on black… First spin black 8!!! Walked away and grabbed lunch while I waited. If you play roulette you know how much that was-not huge but will pay for my JFK in 6 months 😉

  91. Pittsburgh P says

    GF what are you talking about?
    Jon doesn’t place orders! The mint sends him his orders 2 days prior to release, which he places telepathically without grammer or punctuation error, with an informational booklet that holds the “secrets” to the US Mint & numismatic/bullion in general!

  92. GoldFishin says

    @Pitt P – I have to say though in all sincerity, this blog just would not be the same without Jon and I for one am glad he chooses to grace us with his omnipotent and humble presence. You just can’t get this kind of entertainment on cable anymore!

  93. VA Rich says

    You guys are killing are me, almost at tears now laughing so hard. I’m sure there will be hell to pay come Monday evening. Well, if they do stick with the old system, it can only process 100-115 orders per minutes, I’m convinced of that, and first day orders seem to slack off big time by 1300 PST, so you might just be right going lower. Doesn’t really matter, Pitt and I will only have to cut grass with a push mower for a month or two for what pittance it’ll cost to snag one of these in the New Year…,

  94. Harry Baskins says

    Within 6 months of issue, the Kennedy silver sets will be available at half price.

  95. Pittsburgh P says

    Cable… We can’t find this vast array of comedy, drama, or knowledge(albeit the quality at times is questionable) anywhere!!!

    Still unlike you I could do with out.

    Now on to coins… We know mid October. Anyone want to fancy a guess exactly what day mid October?

    I say October 7th

  96. Pittsburgh P says

    Yep VaRichie Rich all we gotta do is set back & it’ll come to us…

    Whoa Harry Baskins I’ll see your half price & raise you to a quarter of the Mints retail… 24.99$ LESS than spot!

    Better yet order 5 then cancel… Show the mint somthin. Who wants a JFK Special Edition silver set anyway? Reverse proof? Put the truck in reverse – to the dumpster! Enhanced uncirculated-what are they enhancing? Not my wallet! Proof-already got one & a BU??? PU I say!!!

    I’m thinking about changing my first day sales total to 4.5 mil though-the average# of americans bitten by dogs each year. Don’t get bit by this one.

  97. Louis says

    Good for Laura Sperber! You know she is a dealer, one of the wealthiest and most successful in the country, and baby, she tells it like it is. You go girl! Only thing is this will not stop, and I guarantee you those dealers will not be reimbursing the ANA or Mint for security. They just laugh all the way to the bank.

  98. Pittsburgh P says

    HiCal thx for the article… It’s good to read someones perspective that was there. Although I don’t agree with everything she says she makes valid arguments & most everything is spot on! True Louis-none of this will stop anytime soon but maybe this can be a turning point where we can look back & say the outrageous acts by these dealers is why things changed, hopefully for the better..

    “Your not a genuis to buy an overhyped coin thats brand new and the value is soley based upon the holder!”

  99. VA Rich says

    Well, they’re not shipping on Monday, maybe Tuesday.

    Pit t- Thursday, 23 October,,, the week we show in Baltimore to put the truck in reverse – to the dumpster! Dude, that’s freak’n hilarious! 4.5 million bitten by dogs..ROFL

  100. Steve says

    Who were the three dealers that bussed people in at the ANA? I heard one was Silvertowne. I am boycotting all three and will never do business with them again.

  101. thePhelps says

    I like what the article says – she makes some very good points. I think she may have a rather elitist attitude towards moderns and that blunts it a bit.

    I also think those that are calling what these dealers did as capitalism are mistaken. There is a line between capitalism and greed and the dealers crossed into pure greed territory. Put it in the perspective that we see happen often when a natural disaster strikes and the retailers of some commodities such as fuel and water or even ice – suddenly find themselves with a high demand item. We have all seen the stories of price gouging. I see a parallel here in how these dealers were approaching these sales. They are attempting to rig the market in their favor, by buying all available product, by hook or crook if necessary… and call it capitalism at its finest.

    We all knew going in that they were going to do this. Just because they could – doesn’t make it right that they did. They should hear from the rest of the coin collecting society how disgusted we are with them.

  102. VA Rich says

    Steve – I emailed Laura, I’ll post if I find out. I will be writing Silvertowne, and the others if I’ve purchased from them.

    Louis – any confirmation of the dealer’s? Thanks

  103. Ikaika says


    Thank you for sharing the link to Laura Sperber’s article. So true what she states. I already said that there should be an investigation by the Feds in this whole fiasco. From the dealers involved to the TPG companies. This is market manipulation at its best. The sales of those first 4 coins to Silvertowne to the $100,000 buyer is another illusion created by the same mafia to hype the market. I truly hope more articles covering these issues will surface to educate those who unaware of what is going on.

  104. Hidalgo says

    @HiCal – I agree with many of the points that the author makes in her article. It’s amazing how greed and the opportunity to make a fast buck transform people. I even see these things based on comments on this blog.

    I have referenced several times that buyers who spend $100s and even $1,000s more for certain Third Party Grading (TPG) – company certified coins are paying extra for the labels and not the coins themselves. All PF70/69 coins are (or should be) identical when graded by the same TPG company.

    Silver Towne is selling PF70 gold Kennedy halves with that ANA and P, D, S First Day labels for $5,000 and PF69 halves for $4,000. There is no way that I will pay such prices for a special label.

    Considering that the gold Kennedy half will be minted to demand, I am forecasting that uncertified versions of this coin will sell close to the US Mint’s retail price on the secondary market. In the long-term, its value can go up or down, depending on gold bullion prices.

  105. thePhelps says

    The $98,760 label attached to the Gold Kennedy half should leave a coin collector with a sour taste in their mouth. The fact that someone paid that price is actually beside the point.

    Most are laughing at the buyers willingness to pay that amount and aren’t seeing the true sleazy used car sales pitch the label peddlers are hyping on the coin market.

  106. gary says

    @Hidalgo… I agree with you that at least for the period that the Gold Kennedy halfs are available from the Mint they will be easily and readily available and could in fact sell for less than $1,244.95 should gold spike down meaningfully through December. Even now if they are sold in OGP on Ebay it would be extremely difficult to realize a profit after Ebay, Paypal and shipping costs. You would need to sell them elsewhere to get a profit but even with that you would be up against the reality that knowledgeable collectors would know that they are available (with an undetermined waiting time) directly from the Mint.

  107. gary says

    Besides Silvertowne’s Gold Kennedy coins, it may or may not be common news among MNB readers that Silvertowne is the company behind the Perth Mint’s 2014-P Tuvalu Silver American “Buffalo”. It is a Silvertowne “exclusive” with a stated maximum mintage of 5,000! Seems that the Perth mint will now contract with any private entity to churn out more silver round junk. Seeing this, I have no respect for any Perth mint products. The design for this Tuvalu “coin” was also submitted by Silvertowne to the Perth mint and it sure looks like it! LOL! The “buffalo” looks pretty flat with the animal’s coat looking like the spaghetti hair reminiscent of the U.S. President’s on our circulating coins and a morbid, pupil-less eye staring at nothing! The price?, $79.95 (Four times current silver melt!)

  108. Clark says

    I am surprised by Ms. Sperber’s reluctance to name the three dealers whose identities she claims to know. In a hobby as small as ours, peer review. self-regulation and customer rebuke are very powerful catalysts for change. Without other dealers and collectors, they go out of business.

    Many thousands of my hard earned dollars have gone to Silvertowne over the years, mostly for bullion, but also for supplies and collectables. If Silvertowne turns out to be one of the price-gouging dealers from this week, it will never see my business again.

    Identifying the culprits and holding them accountable for their actions is the only effective way to stop them in the future. Sure they can secretly hire straw purchasers in the future, but their ill-gotten gain will soon afterward go onsale at their online stores and reveal them.

  109. Jon in CT says

    I see that Laura Sperber at Legend Coin is quick to castigate competing coin companies but then here spine turns to jelly when it comes to those companies which are co-conspirators and are arguably the root cause for much of this Modern Coin Idiocy — NGC and PCGS. Imagine if these TPGs refused to issue special holders for 1st coin sold, or 1st coins sold at ANA, Denver, Philadelphia or DC. Then the artificial premiums for such stuff will suddenly evaporate and the rationale for paying people to circumvent the Mint’s sales rules all but disappears.

  110. VABEACHBUM says

    @ Louis – Took delivery of the 2014 PR Britannia yesterday. I will agree with you in advance, in that these continue to be rather pricy 1 oz silver coin. Still, it’s a well struck coin with bright mirrored fields and sharply defined, frosty devices. The isometric globe design is choice and appears to present in a 3-D perspective quite well on the coin.

    The RM even took the extra step to place this product into a secondary, snug-fit shipping box prior to placing it into the bubble wrap envelope. A big surprise and a huge improvement; I hope that becomes a best practice within their shipping services.

  111. jeff says

    There is no way in hell I would pay 1200 +/- for 3/4 of an oz. when you can buy 1 oz. for the same price. I never liked the gold Kennedy issued coin my prediction is in the coming months & years this coin will be obtainable for what ever the spot price would be for 3/4 oz. EVERY ONE CAN HAVE ONE I’m sure many will say the same about the up coming silvers but I’ll take my chances and if it does not work out it’s only $100 less downside risk in the silver. There really selling like hot cakes on the secondary market lol

  112. VABEACHBUM says

    @ cagcrisp – and it seems to have changed again since your post 0819 post. Now shows 09/08/14 on the product schedule. Still no dates for the 2014 Platinum PR or the LESPS, either.

    I have to wonder if these delays are representative of even more “packaging” issues, as the Mint has had all of the component coins for both sets for several months now. Not that the Mint would bother to offer their customers any type of an explanation.

  113. Larry says

    I mostly agree with Laura Sperber. Not on the modern coin market, though. If there were no market this blog would not exist. We all can’t afford the true rarities, like $100,000 20 dollar proof coronet gold eagles! The market for those isn’t always so great either, sometimes prices go down, and sometimes a lot. How many can afford such a coin? I like moderns because I like something new and exiting that I can get right from the mint. As for the market for moderns, if she means the over hyped labels I would agree. But there is a market for OGP moderns. I have no problems selling most to local dealers. And if you wait long enough, moderns will be old coins too. Once upon a time that proof coronet was a “modern”.

  114. gary says

    @Jon… spot on! If Laura Sperber’s account of three dealers being members of PNG (Professional Numismatist Guild) it casts a shadow on that organization’s code-of-ethics and credibility. It may or may not be an illegal activity but if the three unnamed dealers are involved in the fiasco it certainly casts a shadow on the credibility of all other PNG members. But ultimately as you said, if NGC and PCGS were to take a moral higher ground and lasting benefit to the hobby they would STOP with the ridiculous coin show release labels and STOP with the patently fictitious notion of new U.S. Mint products described as FIRST STRIKES for sure. The early release, first release junk is technically accurate to the point of the TPG arbitrary cut off date but even this is an accolade that is just one more big “SO WHAT?”

  115. Hawkster says

    I’m sure that the names of the unethical dealers/hustlers at the ANA show will become public knowledge in the very near future; they will receive a deserved backlash from both the coin collecting community and the media.

    If one is enamored with label collecting: just soak them off beer or wine bottles. You will have a colorful collection for pennies of the cost of TPG coin labels.

  116. Jon in CT says

    The ANA clearly supports these nonsensical coin holder labels because the ANA allows the TPGs to operate freely on the bourse floor at its shows. If the ANA’s leadership ever decided these types of labels were unethical and unprofessional, then those TPGs should be banished to operate on the fringes and outskirts of the ANA’s shows.

  117. Hawkster says


    I’d take it a step further. As far as I’m concerned, the TPG’s should be made to crawl back under the rocks whence they came.

  118. stephen m says

    C.V. has had the $5000.00 gold Kennedy ANA label on this morning along with the other three first day of sales labels that their “representatives” purchased. While the coin is gorgeous who would pay $3500.00 for a label. People with the money of course. Nothing illegal here but there seems to be a lot of greed in selling these labels. Only in America. Oh by the way if you want all four for 20,000.00 you better hurry as quantities are limited.

  119. tinto says


    When the Mint had sent me the survey about the Kennedy I indicated that I would not buy the gold version. Once I checked that ” not buying” box the tone of the survey seemed to turn quite indignant IMO

    What those dealers did was to circumvent the purpose of fair distribution of a product they stole that opportunity from others who abided by the rules and that to me is worse than immoral.

    I think a good looking by the Feds (and naming names) into the dealers’, the TPGs’ and the Mint personnel’s actions in this sordid affair would go a ways towards ending this perverted practice.

    All IMO

  120. Jus-a-coin-luvr says

    When I read the Sperber commentary, I thought, yep and those areas of concern are not new or the first time they have been raised. I’ve personally written to the US Mint from past ANA (and Mint website) shenanigans that these dealers are pulling. I got a written response from them too, so I know they got my letter. The response was rather weak and basically said “thanks for your input and we will consider your points”. The Mint has heard about these concerns before and have just decided not to act appropriately. I lay a lot of the problems that came from this year’s ANA directly at the US Mint’s feet. They can (if they want to) change the way they allow sales to happen and deal with these kinds of issues.

    As average collectors, I’d like to see the Mint cater to fairness and our interests rather than leave the door open for these scalping, unscrupulous Dealers. I hope all the Dealers behind this years (continued) invasion of ethics are named and outed. Bringing this stuff to the “light of day”, where customers can see it is a good start, but the Mint still needs to effectively deal with the problem.

  121. Hawkster says


    You’re right. It was the combined actions of the dealers, the TPG’s, and Mint which resulted in the unethical and immoral Kennedy coin episode. The representatives of the ANA show also have some responsibility in enabling this to happen by allowing the Mint to sell the coins at their venue. Fortunately, they realized their mistake by pulling the plug on further sales after day two.

  122. says

    My guess On Monday when the excel spreadsheet comes out that the Total Sales Number for the Gold Kennedy will be 71,000. (That does not bode well for anyone that guessed 71,293 OR the ones that guessed 70k)

  123. Hawkster says

    The disgraceful actions of these 3 individuals should result in them being stripped of their memberships in the prominent National coin organizations.

  124. jeff says

    tinto Here Here could not agree with you any more. Now how do we get the HSN fraudster to recognize his wrong doing I to understand they need to make a living but to gouge the unsuspecting is heartless..

  125. Sith says

    Jon in CT – I actually agree with one of your comments the ultimate responsibility is to the parties that issued the “first coin sold” and the other crazy labels. The “first coin sold” was not announced prior to the show, at least nobody mentioned it, but obviously the dealers knew about it, or did they request it?

    Anyway I find it funny that Laura is having a hissy fit over things that have been said in this blog for years. Its obvious to me for years that the big dealers act like a cartel, with the TGP’s actively supporting the cartel’s interest with special labels and treatment. The ANA had no problems with the special labels either as they drew in a bigger crowd, until those crowds contained riffraff. In other words it seems to me that the author would not have an issue with the dealer’s actions if the people bussed in were collage students.

    From what I see everyone is complaining about the the dealer’s actions but they are canceling their coins in order to buy them from the very same dealers at a future date. In these cases the dealers are taking all the risks, so how can you complain later when you get gouged?

    To those of you who call this market manipulation, how can it be when the coins are minted to demand, it is only manipulative to label chasers, and IMHO if your think their is some value attached to a label, you get what you deserve, its like going to Vegas expecting to hit it big, then after you don’t win complaining to the Gaming Commission that the casino is rigged in the houses favor.

    As far as the mint not having issues minting the silver Kennedy coins, tell that to the FS collectors it seems the mint has issues cropping up each year to delay their release. Even with about 40K Kennedy coins in stock as far as I can tell none of the coins have actually shipped.

  126. VA Bob says

    As bad as some of these dealer are, I blame the people that buy into this nonsense. A coin that when taken out of its holder is no different from any other coin of the same type, deserves no special label. To a lesser extent, those supporting ER/FS labels are partially to blame. They do it to get “a bit” extra out of the buyer. I say stop all this BS, buy the coin, and refuse to pay a premium for ER/FS. It’s the only way to help put an end to this gimmickry.

  127. stephen m says

    Wasn’t the Mint only introducing the gold Kennedy at the ANA show. In yesteryear or in days gone by there would not have been the problems that are here in the year 2014 with new coin introductions. Bob D. said it was coming and now the times have changed. In this case I think for the worst. It would be nice if we can pick this coin up later, for all of us that are sitting the Gold Kennedy out at this time, for a song but I don’t see it happening unless the price of gold goes down tremendously by years end.

  128. Sith says

    “I’d like to see the Mint cater to fairness and our interests rather than leave the door open for these scalping, unscrupulous Dealers.” – Then buy directly from the mint, not from ” these scalping, unscrupulous dealers,” they are minting this coin to demand.

  129. Louis says

    Hidalgo says:
    “I have referenced several times that buyers who spend $100s and even $1,000s more for certain Third Party Grading (TPG) – company certified coins are paying extra for the labels and not the coins themselves.”
    But he also stated he plans to buy a graded first strike 70 JFK later and got baseball gold coin with the same label from MCM. So aren’t you also paying hundreds for the label?

    @VAB- Good to hear you got the Britannia.

  130. Louis says

    never mind, I accidentally added a character to e-mail field, which made it seem like I was new person

  131. gary says

    For the moment (at least) the Third Party grading companies do perform a valuable service to AUTHENTICATE and VERIFY collector coins, rare and “common” with an opinion on grade that is more-or-less in accord with today’s grading standards (it has happened that their so-called standards have varied from time to time and for certain series of coins). Since their inception grading standards have suffered grade “deflation” and also grade “inflation”. You might have an argument that non-U.S. modern coins have an added benefit to be authenticated but that’s if authentication is actually performed. For modern U.S. numismatic coins do you really think that the 3rd party graders do an authentication? I would say no because OPG submissions have the Mint COA. So what’s left for them to actually do for a fee? A quick look, paper label, some plastic & out the door!

  132. Louis says

    Hidalgo- You mentioned people paying hundreds and thousands for labels, but aren’t you doing the same when you said you plan to get a 70 JFK later which I am sure will be around $2K and didn’t you pay $1k or 2.5 times issue price for a $5 gold 70?

  133. Louis says

    If you look at e-Bay sales, lots of people are paying $4-5K for show release coins. Isn’t that the main thing keeping all this going?

  134. Sith says

    Third Party grading companies do perform a valuable service to AUTHENTICATE and VERIFY collector coins…I understand that for older coins but I buy modern coins directly from the mint and I have a mint issued Certificate of Authenticity…IMHO the TPG provide no added value for modern coins besides a grade, but as most coins are either graded 69 or 70, and I can’t tell the difference between them, even that value is debatable. This has been discussed ad nauseum here.

  135. Jus-a-coin-luvr says

    Sith says

    August 10, 2014 at 12:26 pm

    “I’d like to see the Mint cater to fairness and our interests rather than leave the door open for these scalping, unscrupulous Dealers.” – Then buy directly from the mint, not from ” these scalping, unscrupulous dealers,” they are minting this coin to demand.

    I never buy from those kind of Dealers and 99% of the time buy US coins direct from the Mint. However, these Dealers with deep pockets and lots of purchasing recruits are also the ones that have invaded purchasing on the US Mint website. Their “scalping” tactics are not just limited to the ANA, and the effects of it still affect those of us that do buy from the Mint. Let’s face it, this “lets load up lots of buyers and gain huge quantities of special Mint releases” is not a new problem to those of us that are simple collectors wanting to buy from the Mint. It is a pervasive problem that is steeped in greed and having lots of money to throw at a system that allows it to happen.

  136. Louis says

    NGC says if you send them a JFK bought in Philly, Denver or DC with receipt dated 8/5 you can get a 1st day release label. But what is stop unscrupulous people from selling receipts?

  137. Hawkster says

    Hey, look. I’m just a small potatoes coin guy, who collects coins for enjoyment. I have never flipped coins. All of my coins are ungraded–I trust myself in determining the condition of a coin. I have never attended any of the big time coin shows, only a few local ones. I did not buy the newly released Kennedy. Seemingly, I shouldn’t care about the sleazy practices of these 3 afforementioned individuals who corrupted the first day Kennedy gold sales, as I was not impacted by their actions.
    But this is not the case. I am impacted. Everyone who collects coins is impacted. The sleaze element is thriving in the coin hobby. The Big Dealers and TPG’s are in bed with one another and, together, are dragging down the hobby. I have a bad feeling in regard to the outlook for coin collecting.

  138. Clark says

    TPGs deserve their share of blame and public rebuke for marketing “fake value” of some labels. They also should be penalized for their roles in what happened on August 5th and the days that followed at on-site sales locations. NGC lost some credibility by, for example, partnering with ModernCoinMart’s John Maben to create labels favoring a particular dealer. (See link below). When will PNG start policing TPGs?

    I do appreciate and will continue buying the basic grading, authentication, conservation and encapsulation services that NGC and PCGS provide me as a collector. I NEVER want to return to the days of relying on some cranky old local coin dealer’s squiggly handwritten grades on cardboard coin holders. Collaborating with warehouse retailers’ marketing stunts hurts TPGs’ credibility with the ultimate end users of their products. If they lose all credibility, then serious collectors eventually will create new, probably non-profit, TPG grading services that follow a strict code of professional conduct and ethics, leaving cheap gimmicks and incumbent TPGs behind.

  139. VA Bob says

    The best we can do here is to raise the issue from time to time. Try to educate the new hobbyist, and hope they will see this label game for what it is. It probably doesn’t mean they wont use it when it’s to their advantage. One really can’t complain about the big guys doing it, then justify when they do it.

  140. Sith says

    Jus-a-coin-luvr – I would agree with you if this was the BHOF coin, but the Kennedy coins are minted to demand, no matter how many the dealers buy you can order yours from the mint at their cost.

    Hawkster – Everyone who collects coins is impacted. I’m not impacted my coin is going to ship soon, none of the shenanigans has had any affect on my purchase.

  141. says

    Doing an Analyis of SOLD listings on the bay for 2014 Gold Kennedy.

    Search was “2014 Kennedy gold ANA”
    Got 15 listed sales.
    In Total 24 coins have been Sold; 21 Listed as 70’s with 3 Listed as 69’s
    Here are Final Sales $ Listed from the Oldest Sale to the Most Current Sale:


  142. Rick of Miami says

    As said before by others, my proof silver Baseball dollar is now shipped after being ordered on April 9th!

  143. says

    The above listing Is Correct on Pricing, however, on some occasions multiple orders were Sold at the same price to the same buyer.
    A total of 32 coins were Sold

  144. VA Bob says

    Grading coins is not very difficult. There are plenty of resources that would allow even the novice to accurately grade a coin. They will tell you exactly what indicators on each coin type to look for levels of wear. Some even provide detailed photos.

    Where it gets hard is this 69 – 70 BS on modern coins that will NEVER circulate or wear. Here I can tell you, if under magnification, and put away any bias you may have about the coin, err on the side of caution, and your call will be just as good as the TPG’s. People falsely believe the TPG’s eyes are better, or they been persuaded they can’t trust their own eyes.

    As pointed out by other TPG’s do have their place, I just happen to believe grading fresh from the Mint moderns is not one of them. It’s easy money for them, and I’m sure they smile ear to ear when these new coins are released.

  145. Jus-a-coin-luvr says

    “Sith says

    August 10, 2014 at 1:10 pm

    Jus-a-coin-luvr – I would agree with you if this was the BHOF coin, but the Kennedy coins are minted to demand, no matter how many the dealers buy you can order yours from the mint at their cost.

    Hawkster – Everyone who collects coins is impacted. I’m not impacted my coin is going to ship soon, none of the shenanigans has had any affect on my purchase.”

    The difference between your points (and mine) are that yours are solely focused on this one coin and the fact that is it “minted to demand”. I already know that and follow the US Mint’s releases as a closely as most that participate here. So, repeating that point doesn’t mean anything to me and is not what I’m talking about here. My points are about the overall problem with these Dealers that reach a broader spectrum of influence. I did not buy this coin, nor have any interest in buying it. That does not limit (or remove) my freedom to voice an opinion about what these Dealers do (and have done in the past).

  146. says

    Adjusted for multiple purchases:

  147. VA Bob says

    The Mint did a one time deal called Legacies of Freedom in 2002. It contained an UNC ASE and a Britannia. This would have been a nice annual set to continue. I guess it didn’t do well enough to continue.

  148. Sith says

    Jus-a-coin-luvr – Two words household limits..but .the issue goes deeper than that just look at the “collectors” reaction, if a coin is minted to demand they cancel their coins as it will affect its secondary market value, and they can’t afford to buy a loser. But if the dealers corner the market and artificially drive up the cost it is declared a winner, and they buy one for their collection. You figure it out.

  149. Sith says

    Jus-a-coin-luvr – IMHO for all the complaints about the dealers apparently a lot of people rely on the shenanigans to flip their coins, and others view the dealers as a discount market, as they hope to get coins from them “for a song.”

  150. Jus-a-coin-luvr says

    @ Sith, I wouldn’t even try to explain the myriad of behavioral motivations of “collectors”, “flippers”, the “secondary market”, etc. All I would like to see is that the “little guy”, the regular collector who enjoys the hobby to have as good a chance as the “big dealers” to obtain coins from the Mint. Sometimes that has not been the case and you literally have hours to compete with these big dealers/buyers. Whether at a “show” or direct from the Mint’s website, allow the individual collector a fair chance to purchase something. Even coins that are “minted to demand” have some limitations from within the Mint that are not always known when a coin is announced. Ultimately, it is up to the Mint to decide just how far “minted to demand” actually reaches into production.

  151. Pittsburgh P says

    Sith I agree with yoyr earlier comment… Nothing illegal went on here and there can be no recourse. Although what was done by these “dealers” is sickening, bad for our hobby & basically just wrong imo people are buying there coins and falling for their tactics… There is no manipulation & everyone who knew anything at all about this situation knew exactly what was going to occur-Why all the outrage now?

    As I said earlier I do agree with a lot of what Laura stated especially about TPGs & labels, not so much about her veiws on modern coins as a whole. Your comment about her throwing a hissy fit fit after the fact was funny but the more I thought about it very true. Seems almost hypocritical…

  152. Pittsburgh P says

    Too much info… Too many posts.. too many opinions(including mine)

    VaRich thanks for confirmin those 3 dealers on top of silvertowne.

    Yes Louis buy what you like! Can’t lose that way no matter what-even when every comment seems to be geared towards telling you how stupid and uniformed you are. That’s how I can sit back and be lackadiasical while being humorous(trying at least) while learning as much as possible… Worst case senario I have a great coin that I wanted & it will always have melt value at minimum. Best case senerio this mint to demand everyone keeps harping on will produce less than 80,000 coins after cancellations when all is said and done. People who thought they’d get em for less than melt will rush out to buy them driving up the price astronomically & pay 5x’s the mint price in ogp before it levels out to around a little more than double a few months later…
    I still have a great coin that I wanted.

    Hey I read all your far fetched hypotheses…

  153. gary says

    Everyone who collects U.S. modern coins in particular and those who collect more classic U.S. coins is affected by the outrageous behavior of a consortium of greedy dealers. Many MNB reader-collectors intend to leave their collections for their heirs. If either or both of the TPG should go bust from a scandal, how might that affect any coins, modern or otherwise, that were slabbed by them? The collusion of the Third party graders with the Greed Bunch can do nothing but tarnish their reputations over the long haul just for the sake of making their fees for several hundred rapid slabbings.

  154. gary says

    @PittP_ I had to laugh, you are right. Too much info, posts and opinions. And to you and Louis, I agree and wholeheartedly chime in… BUY WHAT YOU LIKE & ENJOY. As a collector for over 50 years that is exactly what I have done.

  155. Ikaika says

    1. Buy what you like; 2. Buy directly from the US Mint; 3. Keep it in the OGP. This is the best way to go. Back in the 70’s, just getting that envelope from the US Mint in the mail box made my day. Still have many of them 🙂

  156. Louis says

    I just feel most of us, me included, get so wrapped up in the market aspect, which is understandable, but at the end of the day, moderns do tend to decline in value on the whole, and coins are really not a great investment unless you can afford very rare coins (yes, there are exceptions), so I increasingly just try to get stuff i enjoy owning and paying the lowest price for it that I can since I know there is a risk it will lose value

  157. Hawkster says


    You are affected. Obviously, by buying the gold piece directly from the Mint, you are far removed from the nonsense that took place at the 1st day sales locations. The way you and fellow collectors are impacted has more to do more with the long term health of the hobby. Looking at things in a broader perspective, the impact on a collector like you is indirect.
    Specifically, I believe the gold coin you receive will be every bit as important and desirable as the $100,000 coin that some fool purchased. BUT, the perception is out there among a vast number of coin buyers that your coin is not as important as the afforementioned one. You know what? I would rather have your ungraded coin, which is going to be a 69 or 70 anyway, than the coin with the “first sold” label–which means nothing. Does the customer who buys the 1st Apple iphone 6 from the Apple store in New York get a special label affixed to his or her phone? You get my point?

  158. Hawkster says


    I completely agree with you–buy the coins that you want and enjoy them. Modern coins should not be looked at as avenues for investment. Stocks and mutual funds serve that purpose. I basically hope, as you do, that the coins I own will hold their value. I’m sure that we have all experienced both loses and gains in the value of our coins. Some of my purchases have done well, others not so much. ALL collectors can say that.

  159. Sith says

    Hawkster – I understand your point now, but this has been discussed before, and I’m in the boat like you that this will end like the comic book craze and a total crash in the market, but their is nothing I can do about it as long as some collectors think their one of a kind label is worth more than the actual coin. I just hope the crash is only in the label market not in the coin market…you can always hope. Now saying all that my collection is my collection regardless of its value. It might hurt a car collector if the value of a 57 Chevy collapsed, but he will still own it, and hopefully he did not pay extra for the special edition all weather tires.

    Jus-a-coin-luvr – I hear you, all I can say is as noted by other posters the dealers killed the ATB bullion program with their greed and it may kill the Kennedy’s if buyers feel the same level of disgust.

  160. SmallPotatos says

    Hawkster said at 12:50pm
    “Hey, look. I’m just a small potatoes coin guy…” Now, wait a minute! I’m SmallPotatos! But for a small ($98,760) fee, you can have that label! 🙂

    While I don’t post a lot, I read this blog everyday. And I, like you, collect for myself and the enjoyment that come with it; a tradition handed down from my dad. I don’t have a lot of respect for some of the actions of others that I read about, but I don’t plan on buying from them anyway.

    And while I agree with Louis, that moderns tend to decline in value; I would hazard a guess that the majority of all (now desirable) coins did when they came out as well. I’m guessing that today’s moderns will come around. Just probably not in my life time! Ha!

    Keep up the great work Michael. Great behind the scenes report at West Point!!

  161. VA Rich says

    Gentlemen – PLEASE consider the following for a moment –

    There is an opportunity here to make a difference.

    The mint received far more Negative Press with what transpired at ANA and the Denver news broadcast than whatever could have been possibly gained by rolling out JFK at ANA. We need to capitalize on that.

    What do you want the future to look like?

    From what I’ve read, you (we) 1), don’t want a repeat of what transpired this past week for the health of the hobby and that we may actually GO TO A COIN SHOW and have a remote possibility of BUYING A NEW RELEASE OFFERING, and 2) you want a lottery system that’s fair and equitable for new on-site releases (which seemed to garner considerable interest here in the last few weeks).

    If that’s what you desire for the future, then please put that in writing substantiated with the facts and send a letter to the US Treasurer, Mint Director, and Mint PAO.

    My email to the retailers will be professional, short, AND will include an excerpt of a paragraph that will be in a letter sent to the Treasurer and Mint leadership regarding a 3rd party perspective on what transpired this past week.

    My letters to leadership will be objective and makes the case for a lottery system that may be a first step in preventing last week from occurring again. I ask for your help in doing the same.

    Look, I joke on here about loading up the bus for head of line privileges and what not, all in jest, of course. What I didn’t share was that I took a week a vacation to see my folks and the plan was for my brother and I take my dad on a roadtrip up to his first coin show and buy a JFK. After reading the preliminary articles, there was no way I was going to take my 71 year Father into that mess. Yes, we could have gone to the show though it would have been bittersweet and most likely utterly frustrating. What transpired last week didn’t have to happen, it simply didn’t have to happen. It’s was appalling and embarrassing to watch.

    A part of me has lost confidence in the integrity of this hobby. With that said, take a moment to make a difference and put your vision of the future on paper and put it in the hands of those that can most directly influence the change to come. Thank you.

  162. Sith says

    Last thought rather than have the mint stop the sales, could you imagine if the ANA told the TPG’s no special label, their would be no need to bus anyone in and the coins would be available for the collectors who attended the show. No need to banish the TPGs just tell them they can’t use your name to market their labels, but doing that would be be like biting the hand that feeds you.

  163. Louis says

    VA- Thanks for what you are doing, but just FYI- and I am not a lawyer, so I am not sure- some people say the Mint is not legally allowed to use a lottery system. Though before I heard that I suggested the same thing in an article I wrote a couple days ago. There are all kinds of better options and I encourage people to send their suggestions to the Mint.

  164. Jus-a-coin-luvr says

    Agree with you VA Rich and why we should be more “active” in communicating concerns, suggestions ad ideas directly to the Mint. We can all agree/disagree here in 1000+ posts and little will come of it other that making point/counterpoint with each other. Sometimes I post here just to air a thought or a reaction to something (like what just happened) and am not wanting to debate every nuance of thought. If we actually want to do something that might have some impact, then it requires sending our collective emails and letters (en-mass) to the Director of the Mint.

    I am a buyer, collector and enjoy all of my coin collection regardless of whether it is ever of any big value. I’ve never even sold a single coin since I began collecting 54 years ago. So, my entire perspective is along the buying, collecting and retaining end of this hobby.

  165. Hawkster says


    Good point. No special labels should be tied into coin shows. I would take it a step further. Remember the good old days when coins were graded without the special labels? For grading companies to regain some semblance of credibility, they need to return to the basic ways they formerly slabbed coins: a bar code registry, the grade, and the basic descriptive terms that may apply to the coin, such as “cameo”, “proof like”, etc.

    such as “cameo”, “proof like”, etc.

  166. Hawkster says


    I know that, in your opinion, a lottery system should be instituted by the Mint when offering coins for sale at shows. I would rather the Mint further refrain from 1st day sales at coin shows altogether. I believe they should return to the practice of only displaying new offerings at the shows.

  167. VA Bob says

    It’s not going to happen. Labels are the TPG’s cash cow, all profit no work. All it costs them is a few drops of ink and a snippet of paper. The ignorant masses are going to have to suffer when they resell their collections years from now. But for now the genie is out of the bottle, and he’s granting the label chasers wishes.

  168. Louis says

    Right- We need to focus on changes the Mint can make to how they do this because they already said they will do it again, and also the ANA should make changes, but the TPG’s will do what the want. See the PCGS board which is blowing up on all this. This does affect dealers too who do not need, not do buyers, gang members roaming around the bourse!

  169. simon says

    Hawk : I would rather the Mint further refrain from 1st day sales at coin shows altogether.

    A simple solution would be to offer all coin releases on the website / phone 1 day to 1 week ahead of coin show displays. The Kennedy offerings at ANA and Mint locations, and the ensuing fiasco, did absolutely nothing to honor this great President. He certainly deserved significantly better IMHO.

  170. Small time collector says

    However it shakes out I do not think the small time collector will change the way he approached the hobby. We shouldn’t turn sour grapes on something we love. Either roll with what’s dealt, or maybe realize it’s time to get out.
    I started collecting when my great grandpa gave me a silver dollar in ’61 when I was 4. Back then it was common to find mercury’s, an occasional buffalo or standing liberty. I have my first purchase, a set of steel pennies bought at the emporium or macy’s on a trip visiting my grand mother. I have my first two silver kennedy’s in a frame I made with red velvet matting, put there when new and now nicely toned because they went through a house fire. For years my collection grew only when I got silver for change, then as a young adult I bought a couple bank rolls of franklins and tried to pick up a couple mint offerings every year. I got tired of the low interest in the coins (and quality) and started buying silver bars, then eagles and finally proof and reverse proof silver mint coins. As I got older I shifted interest to the gold proofs. I feel buying direct from the mint is the best way to avoid all the hoopla. I do try to call, or buy on line the first day, for my personal satisfaction I will get a coin with a good strike. I do not think me, as a small collector (coins are just one part of my life and investments), will change my buying habits because of how the mint sells.
    I think coins are now like ammo, the focus of people worried about the future. I think they are chasing the wrong things in life.
    I don’t know what percentage the small time collector occupies in mint sales or secondary market. Ultimately we are all consumers and we spend our money to satisfy us. The most ironic part, when our kids or grand kids divvy up the family trust, they will be faced with the difficult task of dividing up our possessions. Home, cars, furniture, photos, coins, etc. I hope they have as much fun as my wife and I did putting together our happiness.

  171. fmtransmitter says

    Hawkster says

    August 10, 2014 at 5:18 pm


    Good point. No special labels should be tied into coin shows. I would take it a step further. Remember the good old days when coins were graded without the special labels? For grading companies to regain some semblance of credibility, they need to return to the basic ways they formerly slabbed coins: a bar code registry, the grade, and the basic descriptive terms that may apply to the coin, such as “cameo”, “proof like”, etc.
    Agree but will NEVER happen. This train aint goin backwards. Even had the lady on the phone at NGC mumble under breath about “all these labels”…Sad turn for the hobby BUT in the end I know we will all find some silver lining in this cloud. Stay positive!

  172. Ikaika says

    I think many of the long time collectors would agree that back in the old days, coin collecting was a hobby, not an investment.

  173. brad says

    Hi guys,
    Just thought I’d comment one more time. I’ve read all these comments here and on other sites about what happened last week. I’m so turned off that I am in the process of selling all of my PCGS coins. I just started collecting moderns a few years ago and thought I was doing it right by getting the 70 graded First Strikes to ensure resale value. Now I find that’s not the truth. Then I find out that most of my PCGS slabbed coins tone WAY faster than any other slabs (have you checked yours recently?). Add these stupid labels to the mix – and I’m done. Selling them all. Yes, the dealers seem like bottom feeders, but I can’t blame them entirely when the Mint has selling limits. What sickens me more is the TPG that handed out these dumb labels. Lots of shady things happening, and I’m sick of it. Going all OGP from now on.

  174. VABEACHBUM says

    @ Louis – Not sure how the Mint’s potential use of lotteries might be bound by laws, regulations or operating procedures, but there already has been a precedence for Federal Enterprises using “drawings” to identify customers to have the opportunity to purchase products.

    The USPS had produced the “Legends of the West” commemorative sheet in 1994, then recalled the entirely of the production when error sheets containing the wrong picture for Bill Picket were identified. Upon recovering those error sheets not already sold publicly, the USPS made the decision to make them available to interested customers via an application / drawing process, rather than destroy the remaining error sheets and inflate the instantaneous rarity of those several sheets already sold.

    I recognize that the Mint is not the USPS, but they are very similar in many regards. There would have to be something very specific that prevents the Mint from using a drawing system. Hell, every time I log into the US Mint website, I feel like I’m playing a game of chance!!! Why not use a lottery / drawing?

  175. Willy Wonka says

    Back in the old days of coin collecting I started probably around 1960, just a 9 year old kid. I would go downtown to the bank and buy rolls of halves, dimes, nickels, and penny’s. Living in the far west midwest most of our raw coins from the banks were D and S mint marks, unless you were looking for morgan dollars and they were many O and CC in this part of the country. The Morgan dollars were still available in the banks in those days.

    I would never consider keeping any Walking Liberty, Mercury, Buffalo, or Lincoln if it was not pre 1939. Never got into quarters because most Standing Liberty dates were unreadable, not worth the time looking into those rolls.

    Today I collect the modern offerings, but yearn of days gone buy, riding the bus downtown to the big bank, walking up to one of the tellers and asking for rolls to search, and picking up a few Morgans, which was usually returned for more to search. Times has changed.

    My first wife I got a first strike label on her, and that investment sure went south. So much for labels. (had to throw that in)

  176. guama says

    We took a road trip to Chicago to go to our first ana show on Thursday. The big news was the Kennedy. I saw only a couple of dealers with several in their cases. Most customers there were not interested in the labels. I only buy moderns in ogp. I am not a veteran of coin collecting, but only thought the slabs were for the older coins

  177. Sith says

    @Brad – Buying 70s from a grading service is a good strategy, and as a bonus the encapsulation is suppose to protect the coin. That is the theory but IMHO the reality is different., and ultimately I don’t think the graded modern coins will be worth the premium paid. But like the tarnishing\toning your observing on your slabbed coins it will take time to show itself. The good news is you can get out before everyone else goes to sell their coins. I’m sure there are a few collectors who would disagree with my assessment but I will let them post in defense of modern coin grading

  178. DCDave says

    Just a reminder that TPGs were made so you knew an old coin wasn’t doctored.
    OGP doesn’t need slabbing.

  179. Louis says

    Earlier someone, Clark I believe, criticized MCM for doing a deal with NGC, but the fact is many dealers have deals with the TPG’s, do does John Mercanti and Cassie McFarland, etc. This is perfectly normal and no one has to have their coins graded with those labels. Some people want to have their coin marked as one of the top 100 moderns according to one book, or the top 50 according to another. No one is forcing anyone to request those labels, and the people who do so, want them. You guys have no idea of all the deals like this, which I am not even at liberty to discuss.
    But I will say something about MCM. They did not participate in the ANA/JFK madness because the owner feels the first day coins are overpriced. He has a statement coming out probably tomorrow in one of the key sites.

  180. brad says

    Thanks for the words, guys. @Louis, I just wish it didn’t take me so long to realize the impact of all these backdoor deals – like I said, I just started about 4 years ago, but this ordeal with the Kennedy’s made it absolutely clear. Lots of dollars lost since, I’m really starting to wonder if there’s something even MORE sinister going on with the way some of these coins are toning – like I paid extra to be guaranteed that my coin would lose value. But I digress.

    Too bad OGP is so bulky!!! lol!

    Also, I have purchased a few items from MCM and their service was always very professional. It would be nice to see some of the good ones set themselves apart.

  181. Sith says

    @Louis – It goes deeper back in the 1990s Tulving Rare Coin Investments went under (for the first time) and was caught inflating the prices of his coins by creating an artificial market for them. At the same time PCGS settled on charges that it misrepresented the objectivity of its grading service, and not in all cases observe its “strict anti-self interest policy.” Coincidence…

  182. Clark says

    Louis–That it is “perfectly normal” for Third-Party Grading (TPG) services to have multiple arrangements with large coin resale conglomerates is no excuse. The whole idea is to have an unbiased, uninterested, neutral “third-party” certify a coin’s authenticity and condition so that buyers may confidently invest in or purchase them with information uninfluenced by the seller.

    Consumers pay for the advertised integrity and value of TPG grading services and deserve nothing less. TPGs that grade and then jointly market a particular seller’s coins create a conflict of interest and the appearance that they are no longer neutral or unbiased. It is akin to certified real estate appraisers in real estate transactions running around in gold Century 21 blazers…it looks bad and makes the relatively less sophisticated consumer lose confidence about the fairness of a deal.

    The more that TPGs blur the distinction between what themselves and dealers, the less consumers will want their services. IMHO.

  183. John says

    BHOF Golds are still shipping! Just received ship notice for my 3/28 order placed at 9:45 am for 2 BHOF Gold UNC coins.

    Order number: 429722**

    Order Date: 03/28/2014 at 09:45 AM

  184. Clark says

    VaRich–I will spend two hours this afternoon to prepare letters to the acting Mint director and join the chorus. In addition to the issues you identified, I will emphasize the importance of receiving assurances that it has or is developing policies to protect consumers of its numismatic product lines from predatory coin resellers, similar to those it uses to certify authorized purchasers of bullion products.

  185. thePhelps says

    TPG do have a place in the coin collecting industry. Where they have gone astray, and many collectors have led them and continue to follow… is creating an artificial market. They charge extra for people to request a label, and have become enamored with the cash profits of the labels. It is now a side note that the coins are graded – the focus for far too many collectors isn’t just the grade – but what label was used at the time the coins were graded.

    I’d champion a grading service that found a way to create a slab – that carried the grade of the coin with serialized tracking numbers from the grading service – much like the classic holders – and left space for the collector to add any label they wanted – and left you the ability to change labels as you see fit without impacting the grade of the slabbed coin inside.

    That would eliminate the labeled holder profit taking we see today. Until they actually get back to caring about the coins they were hired to grade – and not how much profit they can make from attaching a label – I’ll continue to view TPG as snake oil salesmen for hire… or sleazy used car hacks.

  186. VA Rich says

    Clark – that’s Great! Much Appreciated!

    If there is a time to influence how these coin releases are conducted in the future, now is the time for one’s voice to be heard! Even if the mint receives half a dozen letters, when they most likely do not receive any letters, it sends a message and something is likely to stick.

    Regarding these coin releases at shows, I think it’s here to stay from what I’ve read the Director commenting, so it’ a matter of acceptance and helping to craft how they’re conducted in the future – Everyone on the blog can make a difference, time for your voice to be heard!

  187. stephen m says

    Looks to me that TPG’s and labels are in the beginning growing stages and will over time work out one way or another. I don’t think moderns need a grade but will in the very distant years to come. I do have NGC graded proof silver eagles and a few PCGS slabs on other various coins. I am not going to throw the baby out with the bath water but will hold these slabbed coins. We all live and learn even in this coin hobby. I also have gotten a lot of coin and TPG knowledge from Michael and the people on this blog. Thanks and best of luck to all.

  188. VA Rich says

    For 62,341 net sold – must have been a BOAT LOAD of cancellations

    cag – I’m still in buddy! 🙂

  189. VA Rich says

    2014 KENNEDY ANNIVERSARY UNC CLAD SET 97,655 8/3/2014
    2014 KENNEDY ANNIVERSARY UNC CLAD SET 112,134 8/10/2014

  190. Philboy says

    I am keeping mine. I see them in a year or two worth more in melt then I paid for them, and they are nice coins. And they are 24K gold.

  191. GoldFishin says

    @ VA RICH – thank you…just about where I expected. I think the cancel train has left the station and is speeding down the tracks. 😉

    @Clark @Stephen M @The Phelps@ Pitt P – Thank you for not making it personal and providing objective and unemotional perspective

    @small time collector- Enjoyed your post!

    @Louis- for emoticon smiley face I just type : – ) with no spaces and I think MNB’s software converts it to smiley face. I use Firefox so maybe it is their software, but give it a try and see if it works

  192. Hawkster says

    For grading companies to be completely unbiased, the individuals doing the actual grading should have no prior knowledge as to what customers’ coins they are grading. I’m pretty sure the PCGS graders who handled the first four Kennedy coins at the ANA show were informed as to whose coins they were grading.
    Grading is subjective, as it is an opinion or judgment. We don’t need an opinion that is also biased.

  193. says

    Mint BHOF excel spreadsheet update for 08/10/14:
    Gold proof BHOF 32,887 down 76
    Gold unc. 18,453 down 6
    Silver proof 279,695 down 1,272
    Silver unc. 145,172 down 929
    Clad proof 204,799 down 651
    Clad unc. 130,639 up 110
    Young Collector 15,529 up 1,621

    Gold BHOF oversold 1,340
    Silver BHOF oversold 24,867

  194. joe says

    @brad says

    August 10, 2014 at 6:55 pm

    I absolutely agree with your post…especially your comments regarding PCGS coins that are tarnishing/toning. The percentage of PCGS gold coins that they claim tarnish “naturally” is a statistical impossibility, and I would expect a class-action lawsuit against PCGS at some point in the future that puts them out of business. PCGS’s greed is ruining coin collecting in so many ways (e.g., ruining coins by dipping them, stupid labels, etc.)!

  195. Jon in CT says

    If the objective of the Mint’s on-site retail sales on the first day of issue is to get coins directly into the hands of individual coin collectors, then I have a few suggestions about how that goal might best be accomplished.

    The Mint should issue “Frequent Buyer” identification (FBID) cards.

    Physically, the FBID cards would be simple and inexpensive. Since these cards would rarely be carried on the person, they can be made of paper. They should contain an element which makes it difficult to duplicate with a color copier machine (e.g. it might contain a hologram) and the name on the card should be difficult to alter (e.g. it might be embossed). They would also contain a reminder of the penalties associated with the misuse or counterfeiting of Federal government-issued identification papers.

    An FBID card would be issued based on the number of transactions and/or the dollar volume of transactions which occur associated with a Mint online/phone sales purchase account (i.e. an account whose transactions can be tracked by a customer via the website). When a new Mint order passes the threshold for issuance of an FBID, because the order was the nth order within the last xx months and/or because the dollar total of all orders within the last xx months surpassed zz dollars, then the FBID card would be created and shipped as part of that order. Other opportunities to mail the FBID cards to their owners with very little cost would ne in association with any catalogs or questionaires periodically mailed to Mint customers. Each year’s card might have a different color and a different coin collecting design.

    Then, after FBID cards have been circulated to the Mint’s best customers, any subsequent Mint “event” might specify that hightest service priority would be reserverd exclusively for Mint FBID holders. In order to receive that priority, the FBID card holder appearing at the event would present his card along with a valid photo ID card. If the name on the FBID card matched the name on the photo ID card, then the holder would have his FBID card stamped/punched and he would be allowed to proceed to the cashier. Note that Mint accounts in the name of a company would fail this verification test (a company is not a “household”). An FBID card with stamps/punches from multiple Mint events might itself become a keepsake some day.

    The Mint should restrict special sales events in the near futuer solely to its Headquarters sales counter until it has developed a reliable and repeatable process which assures that nearly all coins are sold with minimum delays/waits to real collectors, not to mercenaries. I recomend this because I believe that sales counter is operated by US Mint employees (not contractors) and it is easily monitored first-hand by the Mint’s C-suite execs, who also work in that building.

  196. Hawkster says


    The U.S. Mint is the nation’s largest coin dealer. It wants to sell its new, “hot” offerings at the major coin shows. Never mind that the phone and internet customers have to wait weeks or even months for their orders. The Mint, by doing business in this fashion, has created a customer hierarchy. The hierarchy is: Mint—big time dealers—small customers.

  197. says

    Gold Kennedy Guesstimates (resorted from low to high)

    • GoldFishin 66,532 – 73,185 07/31
    • Jeff 70k 07/10
    • TimTom 70k 07/31
    • Longarm 70k 08/01
    • VA Rich 50k +/- 8k 07/10 ; 71,293 07/31
    • Louis 50k 07/10; +/- 75k 08/01
    • zeeman 75,000 08/03
    • bg35765 75,920 08/01
    • Dustyroads 86,500 07/31
    • Pittsburg P between 88,000 and 110,000 07/31
    • gary 92,586 07/31
    • SilverFan over/under 100k 07/11
    • VA Bob 100k +/- 5k 07/31
    • A Bob 100,000 07/31
    • VABEACHBUM 07/16 do not think it will either garner the interest or come anywhere close to 109k
    • Sith 60k 07/11; 100k to 120k 07/31
    • thePhelps between 75 and 100k the first week and a total of 125k 07/31
    • cagcrisp north of 125k on 07/10——-conceded defeat; saw handwriting on the wall————–
    • Stephen m. 150k+ 07/11
    • Clark exceed 200k 07/26

  198. Small time collector says

    Jon in CT, would it be reasonable to add an element that would allow small time collectors to have some assurance that it they are repeat buyers of mint sets, reverse proofs, commemoratives, spouse, medals, etc. that they will be able to buy within the series.
    What I feel is a shame is should someone recurrently purchase, then be pushed to the back of the bus so the big resellers ALWAYS be in the front, it will continue to build the pandemonium, and may actually leave the smal guys to buy on the secondary market.

  199. Larry says

    Looking at some sold 2013 RP buff listings on Ebay, in OGP they are pretty much selling for the original mint issue price. The gold Kennedy will probably do the same, or maybe worth a little less as there will be more produced. IMHO, the RP buff is a much more stunning coin.
    The ANA RP Buffs are still a lot more. Sigh. So as long as some folks are willing to pay more for a label, the show/label insanity will continue.

  200. joseph says


    Then I find out that most of my PCGS slabbed coins tone WAY faster than any other slabs (have you checked yours recently?).

    Agreed, I don’t know what kind of slab they used. don’t want to buy any of their stuff.

  201. Sith says

    Al this talk about holding the mint accountable I say they simply withhold their coins for future shows until the ANA or the event’s sponsor sets up a safe if not fair system. As far as the counters are concerned release them first on the website then wait a day or two before making them available at the gift shops. It may not stop the lines but it will stop most of the madness by make them invalid for first release labels

  202. Jon in CT says

    Small time collector wrote on August 11, 2014 at 11:19 AM:

    Jon in CT, would it be reasonable to add an element that would allow small time collectors to have some assurance that it they are repeat buyers of mint sets, reverse proofs, commemoratives, spouse, medals, etc. that they will be able to buy within the series.
    What I feel is a shame is should someone recurrently purchase, then be pushed to the back of the bus so the big resellers ALWAYS be in the front, it will continue to build the pandemonium, and may actually leave the smal guys to buy on the secondary market.

    It would be simple (after Oct 1) for the Mint to alter their FIFO shipping scheme for those orders received during the first two days of availability. The Mint would simply batch those orders and would sort them first by size (smallest to largest) and then, within size, by time received. That would mean any order for one received during the fist two days would ship before any order for two receive during that period, and so on.

    Sith wrote on August 11, 2014 at 11:24 AM:

    Jon in CT, It is to my understanding that the mints sales counters are operated by Aramark

    I’m pretty sure Aramark is not involved with the Mint HQ sales counter in DC. BTW, what’s the phone number of that DC sales counter?

  203. Pittsburgh P says

    @Clark @Stephen M @The Phelps@ Pitt P – Thank you for not making it personal and providing objective and unemotional perspective

    @gold fishin I couldn’t tell if this statement was sarcastic or not. I always try to be objective & leave emotions out of it… one has too imo or you’d never learn anything and loose you mind taking everything personally… Especially here 😉
    You know many of my comments are made in jest right?
    l never try to make things personal -especially on an intenet blog – so if you’ve takin my light hearted comment the wrong way GF – sry

    Jon idk how a card would work & it’s doubtful they’d ever implement something like that. Seems like dealers & high volume buyers would still be at an advantage using your idea~going by amount spent or number of sales would not make it fairer for the average small time collector imo.

  204. Louis says

    I am 100% certain the sales counter in DC s staffed by Mint employees not Amarak, which handles Philly and Denver. The folks in DC also sell at the big shows like last week.

  205. says

    Gold Kennedy Sales Day 1 —- 56,694 (Noon -Midnight)
    Sales Day 2 —- 5,006
    Sales Day 3,4,5,6 —-641
    Total Sales —- 62,341

    I guess the Main Question is just how many Sales were cancelled? 2k, 5k, 10k? Since these sales numbers are Net Sales, the Higher the cancellation numbers the Higher the Possibility of continued future Sales numbers. In other words IF (and I don’t think it was the case) there were very few cancellation, then the Possibility of Substantial future sales numbers looks pretty bleak. I sure wish the Mint would state just exactly How Many Cancellations they had. So many of those cancellation number were probably Flippers and Once they became IS&R they had to look to the bay and the bay was Not being kind to them. Cancellations soon followed…

  206. Pittsburgh P says

    Yeah only Philly & Dever stores are run by Amarak… Louis would know~just read an article you wrote about it.
    Did they close the Union station store?

    -BTW, what’s the phone number of that DC sales counter?-

    Here are the numbers for both in DC if not:

  207. Sith says

    Jon in CT – Whoa!(you wil be glad that I looked up the spelling of this word) You take these posts way to serious. I had a caveat “it was to my understanding” I actually looked it up and it is run by Mint employees. They also set up the sales for special events like the ANA conference

  208. Sith says

    of course I just noticed I misspelled will, hopefully you will forgive me and let that spelling error slide.

  209. Sith says

    I just found the following in Wiki…

    In the May 26, 2003 edition of Coin World, the hobby newspaper had announced they had contracted investigators to conduct a year-long, comparative study of PCGS, ACCGS, NGC (Numismatic Guaranty Corporation) and several other grading services, each known as a Third Party Grader (TPG). In their investigation, several of the same coins were sent to each grading service over the course of a year, each graded by all Third Party Graders sent to. Their findings: In no case did the grading services agree on the grade of the many coins sent in, and in some cases the difference in grading was seven points off on the standard Sheldon coin grading scale of 1 to 70. The Coin World article cited several cases, such as a case where ACCGS had correctly noted that a coin had been cleaned while the other services had overlooked this aspect. ACCGS graded the coin several points lower than PCGS, while PCGS had not noted the same coin was cleaned although it clearly had been, evidenced by wire brushing. This was neither the first nor last time PCGS had failed to note when coins had been cleaned. In June 1998, PCGS had failed to note on their holders that thousands of shipwreck coins had been cleaned, although the coins slabbed by PCGS had been encrusted with sea debris and barnacles, and subsequently cleaned in acid baths prior to grading by PCGS.

  210. Ikaika says

    @ Sith

    I would be interested to know how the same coin would grade if a regular Joe submitted several times vs a dealer like Silvertowne doing the same thing with the same coin.

  211. Ikaika says

    @ Louis

    When do we expect an article from you regarding the whole JFK fiasco? Looking forward to it 🙂

  212. GoldFishin says

    @Pitt P. – no sarcasm at all…I really appreciate the people that look at all sides of an issue fairly and don’t jump to harsh conclusions based on their relationships or collecting biases. 😉

  213. Sith says

    @Ikaika – Several poster have stated seeing coins from the big boys graded 70 with noticeable flaws, at the same time they sent their best coins for grading only to have them come back as 69s. As I stated before I can’t tell the difference between a 69 and 70 so I must defer to their judgement.

  214. zeeman says

    Ikaika@ I was at the ANA show in chicago, talk to a dealer there, he told me he does bulk submissions with NGC, and they take care of him, he said he was not going to pay a lot of money to get 69’s, and sometimes if he does, he send them back and they come back 70’s, i have no more trust on those grading companies, its only for BIG boys.

  215. Sith says

    @Louis – Thank you for the nice article on the US Mints counters\gift shops. I did not notice the author until Pittsburgh P pointed it out

  216. Tinto says

    Thanks for the lawsuit link, that was what I was thinking about in one of my earlier postings on first strikes. .

    @Ikaika – Big customer money talks … and as for the regular joe’s resubmissions .. I gues the TPGs make money from that as well?

    Didn’t PCGS announce earlier this year about coming out with new anti-counterfeiting holders? Anyone seen these?

    I wonder how on earth can these TPGs accurately grade thousands (maybe tens of thousands) of coins from US and rest of the world? How many are employed in a “typical” TPG to handle the volume, esp. at certain times of the year when volumes spike up? Talking about labels, are the coins holdered in earlier years (from early 90’s or before) seen as being down to earth and perhaps more valuable (for same grades) ? Wondering aloud ….

  217. Sith says

    @Tinto – It is a anti-counterfeiting 3D security hologram. As we are attacking the TPGs it only took them 10 years to try to fix this issue, but then again as far as I can tell the counterfeits were limited to certain high end coins but tell that to the sucker who purchased it.

  218. Sith says

    @Tinto – Yes to my understanding coins holdered in earlier years (not sure of the cutoff) are seen as being graded more stringently, and have more valuable for the same grades as a resubmission general results in a higher grade. The PCGS “rattler” holders are one of the holders that sells for a premium.

  219. Sith says


    Correction per one article –

    Those rattler slabs have now been picked over for upgrades for 15 to 20 years. Most every coin still in a rattler holder has been examined for upgrade potential dozens if not hundreds of times. So today most everything in a rattler is accurately or overgraded by todays standards. The only reason they bring a premium at all is because they can be sold to newbies who have heard the myth that coins in rattlers are undergraded.

  220. Pittsburgh P says

    Louis thanks-I wasn’t sure iv it was closed or not. Guess there really isn’t a need for 2 in DC. Another interesting read on thecJFK release… Jon in CT was the article meant to provide “concrete” solutions for the Mint to utilize? Guess I missed that…

    Gold Fishin glad to hear that, I was just making sure. It is true some here do not think and act as we do. Not saying that’s wrong but imo it’s just inappropriate at times… Why say anything if its not constructive or if its just rude?

  221. Louis says

    Thanks, PP. I miss the union station kiosk because it was open late, you could talk to the staff more freely since their bosses were not around, etc. And yes, you are right, the solutions, some anyway, will be discussed in another piece in a competing pub that has the same initials. Given that the reactions to this affair are stronger from what I can tell than what happened over the 25th anniv. sets, there is a chance it will actually result in some changes. But let’s hope they are for the better. We can appoint VA Rich our ambassador.

  222. Tinto says


    Read your article, nice reading. So according to the Editor’s Note we will see a series of articles in the future. I’m looking forward to them!

  223. Voice of Reason says

    To all of you complaining about PCGS:

    As my disclaimer: I am/have been a victim to mislabeled coins etc from PCGS so I am not some paid spokesperson or whatever…


    You, what I would assume, men are on the Internet crying like little school girls. They are a for profit business, and to be honest are doing a darn fine job for the volume of business they handle.

    If someone wants to pay more for a first strike label – so be it. If someone thinks an MS 70 graded by PCGS holds more credibility versus the others – so be it.

    Grow a pair and quit crying on the Internet about this nonsense. I for one personally spend more money for a coin with a PCGS label because I know when it is all said and done they are the standard in this hobby. However, if you don’t like that I won’t be on hearing crying. Deal with it. It is what it is….

    Also, for those of you little girls crying about dealers making money – stfu as well. They also run a for profit business. If I was in their business I would do the same things. It is what it is.

  224. Hawkster says

    Can, as Cagcrisp speculates, the significant number of Kennedy gold cancellations be attributed to small-time, ebay-style flippers withering on the vine? It didn’t take these flippers very long to realize that after the fat boy dealers hogged up the first day sales of the Kennedys, there was no meat left on the bone for them.
    Gee, does that mean that most of the remaining Kennedy orders will be going to collectors who actually want one or two for their own collections? That’s refreshing.

  225. VA Bob says

    Easy solution for the Mint at coin shows is to have a kiosk where buyers can place an order online just like everyone else. No favorites. No first coin sold BS.

  226. VA Rich says

    I just called the DC mint sales counter to inquire if they’ve resumed sales of the gold – answer back was, Nope, they’ll be no more sales of the coin at any locations from this point forward and a “you can blame the coin dealers”

    Wow! And, I thought they may resume this week or next.

  227. VA Rich says

    Pitt – for all the cancellations thus far – you get a Gold Star for the week! Dog Gone good job!

    Oh, and try to beat last week’s sales canx’ed for this week!

  228. HiCal says

    My gold Kennedy ordered 1:17 went from “on hold” to “in process” cc pinged. Thank you very much for cancelling your order.

  229. AkBob says

    @Cagcrisp – I’ll jump in on my prediction of sales of the Gold Kennedy at 83,000 but wouldn’t be surprised at all with sales less than what I’m predicting/estimating:))) If you look at the 2011 25th Ann Set at 100,000 I see them for sale on the bay daily which tells me there’s less demand for just about anything above 100,000 and more than likely much less than that. The only reason anymore than this would be sold would be for investment/speculation for re-sale at a later time/date. JMO though. This JFK Gold coin, being a big dollar item will not be affordable to the all of the same collector’s that could afford the 25th Ann. Set. and that’s one of the reasons I don’t think there will be anywhere near 100,000 JFK’s sold. BTW, thank you for doing all of your stats for us, it’s vey interesting and gives us a lot of insight, very much appreciated. Keep it up:)))

    Louis – BTW, I’ll second the motion for VA Rich as our Ambassador :)))))))

  230. Hawkster says

    VA Bob,

    My sentiments, exactly. Place an order at the coin show and wait for the order to be fulfilled –just like the customers who order over the phone or website. Stop the show sales insanity.

  231. Jon in CT says

    Pittsburgh P wrote on August 11, 2014 at 11:55 AM :

    Jon idk how a card would work & it’s doubtful they’d ever implement something like that. Seems like dealers & high volume buyers would still be at an advantage using your idea~going by amount spent or number of sales would not make it fairer for the average small time collector imo.

    A theoretical Mint “Frequent Buyer” ID (FBID) could be issued after a single purchase or a purchase of $5. That level might be called “Copper” and there might be other higher levels with names like “Silver” and “Gold” with higher minimum purchase requirements. The whole idea here is to have something physical (the ID card) that a potential buyer at a Mint “event” could present to an event employee who either reads or scans it to verify the holder is entitled to special preference because he/she is an actual previous Mint customer. The cards should have bar codes or something equivalent printed on them which would let a cashier’s handheld checkout scanner read it in order to determine whether the account qualifies for special treatment at the event. If not, handle the customer as if his/her credit card had been declined.

  232. says

    Also, for those of you little girls crying about dealers making money – stfu as well. They also run a for profit business. If I was in their business I would do the same things. It is what it is.

    I don’t usually make harsh comments directed at individual posters, but this was just too much.

    “Voice of Reason,”

    You would hire goons and thugs that would force the US MInt to shut down over the counter sales because of concerns about public safety, while also intimidating legitimate buyers, and then slam critics as whiners and criers? Hope you never become a coin dealer, then!

    What happened at the ANA show and other retail sales locations was absolutely indefensible, and shame on people who are trying to defend it as “the price of doing business.”

  233. dan says


    Since it sounds like there may be some follow up in regard to all the shenanigans that went on, If you look at one of the TV show coin sites, as of this writting they have approximately 80 each of Washingron, denver, and philadelphia Kennedy coins all graded 70/ first day of sale. They have no 69’s from these, just 70’s. How many coins does that mean that had gotten to have this many grade 70 or did all their coins miraculously grade perfect. What a coincidence dont you think?

  234. says


    Sold for $15,000 on the bay

    It is Amazing that the first 3 were Also able to get a 70. Just Amazing…

  235. simon says

    VOR : “I for one personally spend more money for a coin with a PCGS label because I know when it is all said and done they are the standard in this hobby. ”

    BULLSH** : PCGS is the standard in “this hobby” which in reality is label collecting.

  236. Louis says

    Barry Stuppler, one of the biggest dealers ever and a former ANA president, also wrote about the Kennedy “disaster” and predicts lower prices for the show releases.

  237. AkBob says

    Those JFK Gold coins bought and graded FDOI at the show and various mint stores are “DIRTY”!!! Wouldn’t want one for FREE, well maybe I would for free:) but you get the point. They are DIRTY, DIRTY DIRTY!!!

  238. says

    You do a search “2014 Kennedy gold” (leaving out anything under $1,000) and you get 266 “Completed Listings” you get 57 “Sold Listings”

    That’s 78% of Listings that Ended in “Not Sold”

  239. VA Bob says

    Recall the UHR wasn’t even half way sold months after availability. It will be the same for the gold JFK. It will have small numbers until the holiday buyers kick in. Personally I’m glad the flippers bailed and orders canceled now, they never intend to hold the coins and just flood the market anyway. Larry mentioned RP Buffs going for near issue price, and I have no reason to doubt him. My question is what collector sells a coin just a year later? Maybe someone down on their luck and forced to sell, but not a collector in for the long haul. The JFK (like the RP Buff) are coins for the long haul. Eventually, if this hobby grows (which, admittedly will be harder with all the antics), the increased collector base will naturally create an increased demand for these coins. It happens all the time with coins that were in adequate supply when issued, now there aren’t enough to go around. The only thing that could foul it up is if gold rises to surpass numismatic value, which means you still have a valuable coin.

    Example; the 1925 Stone Mountain $.50 Commem. It had a final mintage of 1,314,709 (high mintages plagued many early commems). Everyone that wanted one got one (originally slated for 2 million to be made).Today the low end is around a $100 (MS 64) with higher examples (MS 66) around $300, way above the silver melt value by both counts, even today. It’s easy to think tactically when it comes to coins, much harder to think strategically. Popularity has much to do with it. Look at the popularity of Lincoln over the years. Debatably, JFK is probably the closest president in his popularity for a 20th Century president, if nothing more than the media hype and reverence placed upon him. This coin has all the indicators that it won’t slip into obscurity, but IMO it is a coin for the collector in for the long haul. The person that will not be selling until their golden year, or passing it down to their heirs, which will without doubt (if the US isn’t belly up by then) have a nice windfall.

  240. GoldFishin says

    @cagcrisp – that listing you speak of, the #1,#2,#3 is not what it seems. The seller did a good job of making people believe it was the first 3 coins sold, when in fact all it is, is the first 3 in sequence of a submission invoice, coin -001, -002, -003 with the submission number coming first. I almost posted that completed auction earlier but if people are stupid enough to fall for traps like that, well they must have more money than sense. The seller has to live with himself for basically lying to the buyers. Well, that all’s I have to say about that. As, someone famous once said.

  241. Hawkster says

    It’s amazing to hear about all of the PCGS 70’s that have been given out to the Kennedys submitted by the big, greedy dealers. This is especially true of the first few coins sold at all the Mint’s sales venues, which quickly ended up in the hands of said dealers/hustlers. No doubt, it is just pure coincidence.

  242. GoldFishin says

    @all – something to just be considered, a thought passing through my pea brain. Is it not possible that the US Mint maybe pre-screened these coins that were available at the differing venues for obvious flaws and only brought the best of the best examples to sale at these shows. It wasn’t a tremendous amount of coinage available at these shows and they had plenty of time to screen them if they wanted to. It really wouldn’t be good business to show up at the most prestigious show we have with a bunch of scuffed up coins that the “gloveless wonder” had sweated all over. Just a thought>>

  243. AkBob says

    GF – I wish I could give the mint the same benefit of the doubt as you may be giving them, maybe not too. I normally would have had to think this was a very good possibility and frankly I hadn’t even thought about it but I have to defer to my feelings and actions of past by the mint and do NOT feel that they would do that when they know they can replace them easily (even though it would be the prudent thing to do). It’s just very hard for me to give the mint the benefit of the doubt at this time. I do however think the mint is trying to do a better job of producing nicer coins (quality wise) and better designs but it all ends there as if you can’t produce them in a timely manner and can’t get them shipped then what’s the sense. I personally feel it’s time for a shake up at the mint and get some better folks in there managing it. Here we have a new release with 40,000 already produced and we are what, 6 days out and not one has even shipped yet:(((( Maybe I’m too impatient and expect too much from a business. Would anyone continue to buy from the mint if they didn’t have to???? Would you make your purchases from a business that did what they should do rather than what they want to do. Remember, it is a business and I can’t buy into the fact that this is just a gov’t entity and you shouldn’t expect too much, that’s BS. Why should we have to expect this from the US Mint? A lot of questions and some will agree with me and some probably won’t but that’s ok, each to their own and this is just my opinion. After this event, I really have a bad taste in my mouth and feel very embarrassed about the JFK release. I just hope regular folks out there don’t think that regular collector’s are the same as dealers. I may just switch to stacking bullion now. Time will tell. Thanks to all that contribute to this awesome forum and give their ideas, thoughts, insights and analysis, it’s very helpful to many of us. More heads together can be better:))) I just hope that this was a “wake up” call to the mint and to some of the dealers as well as ALL of the TPG’s that participated in this “DIRTY” deal. The US Mint is partly responsible for what happened last week. It’s a black eye to our hobby, JMHO though.

  244. Pittsburgh P says

    Voice of unsoundness? Stupidity? Not trying to be mean here just looking for the opposite of reason… no it’s not faith. Oh no PCGS handles so many coins-they do a good job anyways? I feel so bad for them… what are you their mom? Go ahead and pay more for your grading to make sure the modern coin that came straight from the mint with coa is legit. I’ll pass… I enjoy hearing all opinions but no need to be an ass.
    Anyway seems like most comments before me summed it it up nicely. Well said CO, well said…

    Louis very true, lets hope someone hears us and at least begins to make some changes…

    I thought VaRich WAS appointed ambassador! Hey I’m on this dog!!! I’ll take all the gold stars you’re given Va-AND all the gold JFK cancelations out there! I can only do so much though, if we get the same amount of cancelation this week their gonna have too recall ones they put in the mail 😉 The last 4 days of the sales week averaged 161 per- So if that holds were lookin at 1127 per week. Imo it will not even be that strong with exceptions the week the silver set comes out and Christmas if they are still available then. If it goes to Dec 31 as stated we have roughly 19 weeks @ 1127 is 21,413… So an estimated total of 83,754-lower than my low end estimate of 88,888…
    It’s true the UHR did not sell over half of what it did til months after availability but imo this is a different monster. Don’t believe it’ll be available as long & there are more than just one offering with the silver & clad. Just my lowly opinion & if you’re on the fence save yourself now- cancel.

    Jon I don’t know if it would work but I do like the idea of having a tangible cord from the mint.

  245. simon says

    Louis : Here is John Maben (owner of MCM)’s take on things

    Not very inspiring and quite frankly very insipid

  246. NC-Phil says

    Folks looks like the first batch of Kennedy gold coins are shipping today. My 12:18pm order has been shipped.

  247. thePhelps says

    @gbotz…JFK would probably not have prefered to see his image on a US coin in the first place.

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