US Mint Sells 2,866,600 Chester Arthur Dollars

Based on figures from the latest weekly sales report, the United States Mint has sold 2,866,600 of the Chester Arthur Presidential Dollars within the first four days of availability.

The Mint began sales of the Chester Arthur Dollars on April 5, 2012, with products including 25-coin rolls, 250-coin boxes, and 500-coin boxes from either the Philadelphia or Denver Mint. This release marked a significant shift for the program since it is the first design that will not be issued to the channels of circulation, but only distributed by the US Mint in numismatic products. Additionally, the coins were available in new bulk options and at lower pricing.

Here is a breakdown of sales for the Chester Arthur products through April 9, 2012. The last column calculates the actual number of coins that have been sold.

Units Coins
$25-roll (P) 31,533 788,325
$25-roll (D) 29,291 732,275
$250-box (P) 1,254 313,500
$250-box (D) 1,216 304,000
$500-box (P) 721 360,500
$500-box (D) 736 368,000
Total Coins 2,866,600

The total number of coins sold across all options is 2,866,600, which accounts for almost exactly 50% of the US Mint’s preliminary production of 5,740,000 coins. The Mint has reserved the right to revisit additional production within the calendar year based on demand.

The initial sales of the Chester Arthur Dollars as measured by the number of coins sold is more than triple the debut figures for the previous release. The James Garfield Dollars had initial sales of 18,794 Philadelphia and 18,386 Denver rolls, which makes for a total of 929,500 coins.

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  1. vaughnster says

    “The initial sales of the Chester Arthur Dollars as measured by the number of coins sold is more than triple the debut figures for the previous release”

    Not that surprising since they are no longer available at face value at local banks. I for one have been purchasing them at face value and now have the decision of quitting or paying the Mint’s premium mark-up price. Not many choices when the Mint holds all the coins……

  2. ClevelandRocks says

    As I suspected, PM sales were pathetic. They should release the 2012 ATBs since the 2011s may not sell out for another 2+ years! Do the math: 135 coins ave/week =7k/yr, so in 2 more years we would sell say 14k more Olympics bringing sales up to 30k of 35k sold. Mint needs to seriously re-think the 5oz ATBs.

  3. says

    Those figures are extremely interesting, enough that I may consider picking up some Arthur rolls, or perhaps the coin & cover, tomorrow along with the proof silver eagle. I really thought that demand for the $1 coins was exhausted and that Arthur sales would be terrible.

    Michael, do you think we’re looking at a genuine resurgence in the dollar coin program, or is it too early to tell?

  4. Ikaika says

    @ Captain

    I think people are jumping into the Chester dollars because the US Mint is no longer making them commercially available via the banks. So it is more difficult to obtain and the mintage is lower compared to previous president dollars. This is just MHO. I feel 2.86M coins is still a heck of a lot. Not rare by any means. The future president dollar releases should probably bring in lower sales numbers.

  5. Brad says

    Sorry to go off-topic, but what is going on with the 2012 First Spouse coins? Typically sales for the spouse coin and medals would begin two weeks following the start of sales for the corresponding presidential dollar, which would make sales of the Arthur spouse coin (Alice Paul) start on April 19th. It appears extremely unlikely that will happen.

    We’re only about three weeks away from the one-year anniversary of when the Eliza Johnson coins went on sale, which themselves were delayed two months from the planned release date in early March. If this year’s coins get delayed even longer than that, it will make for a very expensive summer as the Mint makes the releases even closer together to get back “on schedule” by early September like they did last year. The first three 2011 coins went on sale in just a four month time frame, when in most prior years the first three coins were offered for sale in a six-month span. These delays make for laying out a lot of dough in a short time! Unless, that is, you don’t mind taking the chance of receiving someone else’s reject coins by delaying your purchases past the first week of availability! I for one don’t want to risk that. Those who believe the Mint does not re-sell returned coins are kidding themselves. Only those coins with obvious severe damage that should have been rendered unsellable in the first place will be melted down. The rest of the returns with what are deemed to be minor blemishes or even no noticable defects are most certainly pawned off on someone else.

  6. Wylson says

    Eliza was released in early May. We are not yet in May folks.

    Eliza’s on sale for a year or until it sells it’s ugliness out.

  7. jeff72 says

    “the United States Mint has sold 2,866,600 of the Chester Arthur Presidential Dollars within the first four days of availability…..”

    …I don’t get it….

  8. Shutter says

    This is just MHO. I feel 2.86M coins is still a heck of a lot. Not rare by any means.

    In fact, what is the opposite of rare? Of the nearly 3MM coins, almost every last one will be a survivor in pretty good condition that will never get spent. That’s on top of another million+ that will go into annual sets. I don’t know how many direct ship and bank distribution coins got squirreled away, but I’m guessing that most of them were sent back to the Fed and very few remained in collector’s hands.

  9. says


    I agree with your comments which is why I find the rapid pace of sales so surprising. I guess we could get a situation where a quick sellout catches people off-guard and creates some (artificial?) demand for them in the secondary markets.

    Either way, seems like the Mint is probably getting better returns here on these coins than expected.

  10. Shutter says


    A quick sell-out may create a very temporary rise in price. However there is no guaranty of a sell-out here. The mint can produce unlimited number of these through the end of the year. And even if you have a sellout, there is no guaranty that the price increase will hold. Look at 2010 Boy Scouts commemorative. It sold out, and recently some have have been selling on eBay for $30. That’s less than the introductory pricing and the price of silver is nearly double what it was then.

  11. Wylson says

    Lots of scarce/limited stuff and most of it’s gouit ugly and deserves to go unnoticed.

  12. Zaz says

    It really depends whom is buying these bags & rolls. If the mass marketers are cornering them as a precaution, they will be scarce, but as posted above, they will not be rare in any sense of the word, and as there are at least 17 releases left in the series, this “cornering” might be unsustainable for the remaining releases. It feels like the advent of the 2010 ATB bullion and uncirculated, the interest dropped off sharply after the first few releases, and look where we are now with the 2011 coins. As the Presidential dollars have never really circulated, the only way massive interest can happen is IF the paper dollar is eliminated, then investing in the Arthur dollars for future profit is a sure thing, when everyone is forced the use the coins.

  13. Sam says

    Is the surcharge still in place on the 500 coin box? if so, why would anyone buy the 500 coin box instead of 2 250 coin box and avoid the surcharge

    I don’t get it

  14. vaughnster says

    The Mint delayed the release of the Chester Arthur $1 rolls almost two months. I went on the Mint website this morning to order some Arthur rolls and they are backordered until 5/18. It’s almost laughable how the Mint is operated.

  15. Sam says

    And if they still have this glut of dollar coins, why not revive the direct ship program for all available dollar coins? why not get them out of storage which is cost everyone money?

  16. Shutter says

    why not get them out of storage which is cost everyone money?
    It’s not costing everyone money. Crane&Co. would be very happy if no more dollar coins were ever released into circulation. By extension, senators from Massachusetts would be very happy as well.

  17. Jon says

    I have followed the Presidential Dollar Roll (PDR) set ordering through ebay (for philly rolls) while getting denver mint rolls from the local bank. Now that they are no longer distributed through banks (starting with the Chester rolls) I would like to know if it is worth keeping in OGP? Thoughts?

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