According to the US Mint’s website, the uncirculated version of the 2011-W Lucy Hayes First Spouse Gold Coin has sold out. Based on the most recent available sales figures, this coin should set a new mintage low for the series by a wide margin.
The Lucy Hayes coins originally went on sale at the US Mint on September 1, 2011. The maximum mintage established across both the proof and uncirculated versions of the coin was 15,000. As we have seen in the past, the US Mint apparently produced significantly fewer coins, likely based on customer ordering trends.
As of the latest sales report, the uncirculated version of the coin has sold 2,152 coins. The proof version which remains available for sale has sold 2,931 coins. (Updated numbers should be available tomorrow.)
The now sold out uncirculated version at 2,152 comes in well below the previous mintage lows for the series. Within the third year of release, the Julia Tyler uncirculated coin set a fresh low for the series. The last reported sales were 2,861, although final figures reported elsewhere have put the number at 3,143. Recently, the Eliza Johnson uncirculated coin sold out with last reported sales of 2,905.
Throughout the First Spouse series, we have seen low mintages keep getting lower. Will this new extreme low finally generate some excitement and put in a bottom?
In the near term, the uncirculated Lucretia Garfield Gold Coin should be watched to see if the US Mint used the same production level, which would create the potential for a similarly low mintage. Another factor to watch for is how the Mint handles the offering for the 2012 First Spouse Gold Coins. There has still been no indication of release dates or offering details for the coins. In the past I have suggested that this might mean some change in ordering format is in the works, which could have an impact on sales.
Some have suggested that the series might be canceled outright, however I do not think this is a possibility. The series is required under current law, so unless the US Mint takes a very creative interpretation of the requirement, the series will continue.