Three products have recently sold out at the United States Mint. The products are the Louisa Adams First Spouse Gold Coins, the 2008 Silver Proof Set, and the Harrison Presidential Dollar Coin and First Spouse Medal Set. With this post, I wanted to take a brief look at each sold out product.
Louisa Adams First Spouse Gold Coins
Sales of the Louisa Adams First Spouse Coins ended on July 2, 2009 to coincide with the release of the next coin in the series. The duration of sales lasted somewhat longer than expected. The US Mint has stated that each coin will remain available for sale until the maximum authorized production has been sold or for approximately one year, whichever comes first. In this case, the coins remained on sale for over 13 months due to the delayed release of the Letitia Tyler coin.
The last reported sales statistics for the Louisa Adams coins indicate that 4,223 uncirculated coins were sold and 7,454 proof coins were sold. Of the First Spouse Gold Coins which are no longer available for sale, this marks the lowest mintage level to date.
Whether collectors will eventually come to appreciate the low mintages of the First Spouse coins has been a topic of continual debate. In the past, coins which were unpopular or poor sellers during their offering period, ironically became popular and more expensive coins after sales had ended. Collectors who had initially ignored or overlooked the coins became enticed by the low mintages. This doesn’t seem to be happening to any large extent with the First Spouse Gold Coins. One potential reason is that most collectors expect the mintages to continue declining as the series progresses, or at least remain perpetually low.
Sales of Louisa Adams coins on eBay have tended to be sporadic. Most current listings either have high opening bids or high fixed prices. Most coins offered for sale also tend to be NGC or PCGS graded examples. Here are the current eBay auctions.
2008 Silver Proof Set
The 2008 Silver Proof Set went off sale on July 17, 2009 to coincide with the start of sales for the 2009 set. The 2008 set featured a total of 14 coins, including the final five issues of the State Quarter series.
The last reported sales figure for this set was 774,874. This seems to be the lowest mintage for a Silver Proof Set released during the State Quarter era (1999-2008). The next lowest figure occurred in 1999 when 804,565 sets were produced. It should be noted that in 1999, the US Mint did not issue a separate Silver State Quarters Proof Set as they did from 2004 onwards. The previously sold out 2008 State Quarters Silver Proof Set had sold 429,021 units.
The 2008 Silver Proof Sets now seem to be selling for around $50 each, which is a slight premium to the original offering price of $44.95.
Presidential Dollar Coin and First Spouse Medal Set – Harrison
This small set contains one uncirculated (satin finish) William Henry Harrison Dollar and one Anna Harrison Bronze Medal. The latest sales indicate that 15,038 sets were sold. The sell out seems to have occurred this Wednesday.
Many collectors have opted for these neatly packaged sets as an inexpensive alternative to the costly First Spouse Gold Coins. However, ordering and receiving the sets has often proven to be a difficult task. There have been multiple and continued reports of orders which remain in backorder status for months, only to be eventually canceled when the product’s status is changed to “Sold Out.” If you are looking to collect this series, the best bet seems to be ordering them soon after release.