The initial sales figures for the 2013 Proof Platinum Eagle are now available. From the start of sales on July 18 through the reporting date of July 21, sales have reached 2,139 units. This represents the third consecutive year of decline for the opening sales figures of the product line.
Sales had been uncharacteristically strong for the the start of the design series featuring the core concepts of American democracy as found in the Preamble to the United States Constitution. In 2009, opening sales reached 7,207, accounting for nearly the entire maximum mintage of 8,000 coins. A full sell out occurred after about a week of availability.
The strong sales could be attributed to the cancellation of the proof Gold and Silver Eagles for the year, which may have driven more demand to platinum coins. Additionally, this represented the first year for the design series, the first year that Platinum Eagle bullion coins were not offered, and the first offering after a significant retrenchment in the available options for numismatic Platinum Eagles. In previous years, the US Mint had offered four different sized coins in both proof and uncirculated versions, which had been reduced to just a single one ounce proof version.
In 2010, the US Mint had raised the maximum mintage to 10,000 units, following the prompt sell out of the prior year coin. Another strong opening occurred at 8,268 units out of the 10,000 maximum. Once again, a full sell out had occurred after about a week of availability.
In response to the two prompt sell outs, the US Mint once again raised the maximum mintage. The 2011 release carried a maximum of 15,000 coins, or nearly double the level of the first release of the design series. Opening sales were weaker than the prior two years at 6,786 units. A sell out occurred after about 14 months of availability.
Despite the slower sales, the US Mint maintained the same 15,000 maximum for the 2012 release, which had debuted at 2,461 units. This coin continues to remain available, with current sales at 9,661 out of the 15,000 maximum.
The opening sales for the 2013 release of 2,139 units represents 14.26% of the 15,000 maximum. Given the tepid opening, a full sell out does not seem likely. In fact, sales may have a difficult time reaching the levels of the 2009 or 2010 issues.
At one time, the US Mint had seemed to reverse the fortunes of the numismatic American Platinum Eagle products with two quick sell outs. The renewed interest in the product was dashed by the diminishing impact of some one time factors, the swift increase in maximum mintage level, and the general decline in sales for higher priced US Mint numismatic products.
Gold Numismatic Product Price Increase Likely
Based on the available data, it seems likely that the prices for the United States Mint’s numismatic gold products will be increased tomorrow.
Products are currently priced based on an average gold price within the range of $1,250 to $1,299.99. The available data suggests that the average price for the latest weekly period will be within the $1,300 to $1,349.99 range.
In the most likely scenario, as long as the Wednesday PM London Fix price of gold is above $1,300, a one tier price increase will occur. Impacted products would include the 2012 First Spouse Gold Coins, 2013 commemorative gold coins, 2013 Proof Gold Eagles, 2013 Proof Gold Buffalo, and 2013-W Uncirculated Gold Eagle. These products would see their prices raised by the proportional equivalent of $50 per ounce of gold content. Price increases have generally been made effective around mid-morning on Wednesday.