Weekly column by Q. David Bowers to commence this Wednesday

This Wednesday, January 3, 2018, Coin Update and Mint News Blog will commence hosting weekly columns by renowned numismatist and author Q. David Bowers. Every Wednesday, both blogs will be posting regular content produced by Bowers and we are delighted to deliver his uniquely qualified insights to the community. Bowers himself describes the columns as covering topics such as “nostalgia, philosophy, and current events,” the latter of which particularly refers to auctions. Readers of the two blogs are in for a treat, as Bowers’s very name is synonymous with the field of numismatics.

Quentin David Bowers was born on October 21, 1938, in Honesdale, Pennsylvania, and since the age of 14 has massively contributed to the numismatic hobby. He has served as president of both the Professional Numismatists Guild (PNG) and the American Numismatic Association (ANA). The PNG’s highest honor, the Founders Award, was bestowed upon Bowers, and furthermore, he received their Freidberg Award for numismatic literature seven times. To many hobbyists, Dave Bowers is one of the most revered numismatists to ever grace the hobby. He holds additional interests in music and cinema as well, having assembled sizeable collections of musical instruments in addition to historical silent film posters. He has written books on collectible postcards, early silent film, mechanical music machines, famous personalities, and other historical topics.

Even if you are not familiar with Q. David Bowers, if you possess a copy of The Official Red Book, then you are already familiar with his work, as Bowers has been a long-time editor and researcher of the ubiquitous tome. He has produced many other notable works as well, both online and in print, such as Lost and Found Coin Hoards and Treasures (2015), A Guide Book of Lincoln Cents (second edition, 2017), A Guide Book of Half Cents and Large Cents (2015), and A Guide Book of Morgan Silver Dollars (fifth edition, 2016). He has contributed regularly to publications such as Coin WorldThe Numismatist, and CoinWeek as well. Bowers has appeared publicly on the Today Show, CNN, Fox, ABC, NBC, and the Discovery Channel and has also lectured at Harvard University.

Tune in every Wednesday to Coin Update and Mint News Blog to gain access to this exclusive content by Q. David Bowers and we wish all of our readers a happy New Year!

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter!

Facebook Twitter Email


  1. KEITHSTER says

    This will be fun to have an coin expert put in his two cents and maybe read ours Welcome aboard and Happy New Years All And Good Luck With Us.”>”>”>”>”>”>”>”>”>”>”>”>”>”>”>”>”>”>

  2. jhawk92 says

    Interesting…I got an email from the Mint this afternoon stating that “All Enrollments now Receive Free Budget Shipping..” That’s certainly good news, though it may be too late with the Proof ASE. Will have to check that out in further detail tomorrow.

  3. Jerry Diekmann says

    It will be great to have articles by Q. David Bowers on the Mint News blog every week. He is probably the best writer on coin collecting who has ever lived.

    Happy New Year to everybody! Hope 2018 will be a healthy and prosperous year for all.

  4. cagcrisp says

    As one commentator said this morning “The Dollar is getting pummeled”…

    USD was Down 9.7% in One year and it’s Down Currently .48% just Today…

  5. mgm says

    Hi all,

    At the mint now is the Ellis Island 2017 Uncirculated Five Ounce Silver Coin, two items.

    No George Rogers Clark National Historical Park 2017 Uncirculated Five Ounce Silver Coin or 2017 Gold Proff Buffalo.

    Happy New Years all!

  6. earthling says

    It’s 9:10 AM and those 2 Ellis Island Chunks are still there. What’s that Lady looking at? I can’t help thinking shes looking at a needy person with a sign of some sort. They are near New York City, after all.


  7. Ryan says

    Anyone see the email from the mint titled “lessons that make cents”. They list all the circulating coins, the picture shows the penny, nickel, dime, quarter and 50 cent piece but the note below doesn’t talk about the 50 cent piece. There is ZERO mention of any dollar coins either in text or picture.

  8. cagcrisp says

    16AN 2016 ATB SILVER UNC 5 OZ – FT MLTR 17,861 + 33
    17AJ 2017 ATB SILVER UNC 5 OZ – EFF MNDS 16,477 + 38
    17AK 2017 ATB SILVER UNC 5 OZ – DOUGLASS 16,708 + 59
    17AL 2017 ATB SILVER UNC 5 OZ – OZARK 16,568 +95
    17AM 2017 ATB SILVER UNC 5 OZ – ELLIS ISLAND 17,643 (1)
    17AN 2017 ATB SILVER UNC 5 OZ – G R CLARK 14,839 + 2

  9. cagcrisp says

    16XA 2016 WALKING LIBERTY 24K GOLD .5OZ 65,521 + 169
    16XC 2016 STANDING LIBERTY 24K GOLD .25OZ 91,774 + 226

  10. cagcrisp says

    16EA 2016 AM EAGLE SILVER PROOF 1 OZ 582,751 +960

    16EB 2016 AM EAGLE GOLD PROOF 1 OZ 23,962 + 24
    16EC 2016 AM EAGLE GOLD PROOF 1/2 OZ 5,881 + 6

    16EG 2016 AM EAGLE SILVER UNC 1 OZ 216,422 + 275

  11. cagcrisp says

    17EA 2017 AM EAGLE SILVER PROOF 1 OZ 369,356 +3,072

    17EB 2017 AM EAGLE GOLD PROOF 1 OZ 8,208 + 142
    17EC 2017 AM EAGLE GOLD PROOF 1/2 OZ 2,237+ 40
    17ED 2017 AM EAGLE GOLD PROOF 1/4 OZ 3,921 + 89

    17EG 2017 AM EAGLE SILVER UNC 1 OZ 139,610 + 1,050
    17EJ 2017 AM EAGLE PLATINUM PROOF 1 OZ 8,892 –
    17EL 2017 AM BUFFALO GOLD PROOF 1 OZ 15,184 –

  12. cagcrisp says

    17CA 2017 BOYS TOWN GOLD PROOF 1,844 +163
    17CB 2017 BOYS TOWN GOLD UNC 2,947 (47)
    17CC 2017 BOYS TOWN SILVER PROOF 26,119 + 263
    17CD 2017 BOYS TOWN SILVER UNC 12,313 +703
    17CE 2017 BOYS TOWN CLAD PROOF 17,681 + 285
    17CF 2017 BOYS TOWN CLAD UNC 15,561 +502
    17CG 2017 BOYS TOWN 3-COIN SET 5,532 +79

    17CH 2017 LIONS CLUBS SILVER PROOF 68,526 +335
    17CJ 2017 LIONS CLUBS SILVER UNC 17,252 +220

  13. cagcrisp says

    17XA 2017 AM LIBERTY 24K GOLD 1 OZ 27,190 +168
    17XB 2017 AM LIBERTY SILVER MEDAL (P) 54,667 +606
    17XC 2017 225TH ANN ENHANCED UNC SET 210,398 –
    17XD 2017 AM LIBERTY SILVER 4-MEDAL SET 29,059 +448

  14. cagcrisp says

    JQ1 2015 FS GOLD PROOF 1/2 OZ – TRUMAN 2,748 + 9
    JQ2 2015 FS GOLD UNC 1/2 OZ – TRUMAN 1,946 +15
    JQ4 2015 FS GOLD UNC 1/2 OZ – EISENHWR 2,102 + 11
    JQ8 2015 FS GOLD UNC 1/2 OZ – JOHNSON 1,930 + 35

    16SA 2016 FS GOLD PROOF 1/2 OZ – NIXON 2,649 +15
    16SB 2016 FS GOLD UNC 1/2 OZ – NIXON 2,011 + 36
    16SC 2016 FS GOLD PROOF 1/2 OZ – FORD 2,488 +30
    16SD 2016 FS GOLD UNC 1/2 OZ – FORD 2,003 + 28
    16SE 2016 FS GOLD PROOF 1/2 OZ – REAGAN 3,549 +16
    16SF 2016 FS GOLD UNC 1/2 OZ – REAGAN 2,010 +12

  15. Buzz Killington says

    On the FS mintages, returns will tell the story.

    I am predicting lots of returns.

  16. Richard A says

    Whoever bought the large number of Nixon and Fords uncs, smart guy. He now sees the unofficial totals for all those that remained on sale through 12/31, so he can decide how many of each to return to guarantee not only which FS will be the key to the series, but will hold a significant number of them to try and control the market.

    If I were he, I would attempt to return enough Nixon and Fords so the final mintage figures for both are just below 1800. Eleanor Roosevelt stands at 1,886, so this would make the Ford and Nixon coins the only two in the whole series with final mintages in the 1,700’s.

    Just wondering… what would happen if Ford and Nixon end up with identical mintages? Would one coin be considered more desirable than the other? Maybe that is this guy’s plan… to hold quantities of both “co-keys” of the series.

  17. Buzz Killington says

    I was also interested to see the BU gold Boys Town returns kept coming in, despite it being a “key”.

    I think the game has totally changed. There were NOT many people playing on either the commems, or the First Spouses.

    “Without a viable second market, there will not be a viable primary market.”

    This is true!

  18. datadave says

    I agree with Buzz, I don’t expect to see a big jump in FS coins because of final mintages. I imagine anyone who wants one already has one. Also, to go under 1800 they would have to return 210 of them. Not sure they bought more than 200 anyway.

  19. datadave says

    17AN 2017 ATB SILVER UNC 5 OZ – G R CLARK 14,839 + 2

    This product is unavailable and at a new low for the series. I don’t understand it going CU so quickly. Did they only make 15K?

  20. KEITHSTER says

    I think the clue on the Jolly Rodger Clark was the backorder status don’t recall seeing that before? But there might have been others? Did backorder 1 on the 22nd. and it shipped the 27th. but also have 2 from day one! Funny how some of our most beloved coins were in the day the most hated and too costly ?Would be a good subject for Mr. Bowers to give us his thinking as to why that is? Maybe not in our day but someday look out to the moon Alice Well Good Luck All “>”>”>

  21. Einbahnstrasse says

    Wow. I was expecting much stronger sales numbers for the BT commems in the final week. Yep, all six of these are Low-Mintage Wonders by wide margins:

    Gold proof: 7376 / 13266 = 55.6%
    Gold unc.: 2947 / 5150 = 57.2%
    Silver proof: 31651 / 61992 = 51.1%
    Silver unc.: 12313 / 14497 = 84.9%
    Clad proof: 23213 / 47326 = 49.0%
    Clad unc.: 15561 / 21019 = 74.0%

    The clad proof didn’t even make it halfway to the old record low. Amazing. And the numbers will likely drift even lower due to returns over the next few weeks.

    It seems strange that all six record lows now belong to the same commem program. The previous record lows were much more diverse: two from last year’s National Park Service coins, one from last year’s Mark Twain program, one from the 2014 Civil Rights Act dollar, one from the 2013 Five-Star Generals program, and one from clear back in the 1995-6 Atlanta Olympics set.

    Eh well, now to wait and see what 2018 brings. Personally, I’m in agreement with those who’ve predicted that these Boys Town mintages are likely to remain the record lows for a while.

    A very happy new year to all! 🙂

  22. Rick says

    I guess that we will know the first spouse key in the next couple of weeks. However, it will not be revealed for a few years if the mint stops reporting their sales next week.

  23. achmed says

    I have a simple question: Is it the aim of the usmint to inform the public about the sales figures of ALL coins and products of a year or is it the aim of the usmint to HIDE sales figures for coins and products of special interest?

  24. Artie43 says

    Rick, I thought you said the big purchase was cancelled. Why would that number show up in sales report.? A lot of other people must have come in and bought Ford & Nixons. Less chance for returns this way I am thinking. Also people may be more likely to hold here thinking there are going to be a lot of returns. Which may cause opposite effect if people miss the return window. May end up with very few returns.

  25. Rick says

    Artie, it normally takes about 10 working days for us mint to report adjusted sales after receiving returns or processing canceled orders. For example, the boystown unc. Gold sold out three weeks ago, and the canceled orders were just reported earlier today. Just FYI.

  26. Artie43 says

    Thanks Rick. I didn’t realize that was the case on cancelled orders. We really don’t know for sure how many the big order was for. Maybe 200 each. Maybe it was 150 out of the 237 sold that week. Which means we are looking at final numbers around 1800 to 1850.Is my thinking correct?

  27. Rick says

    Artie, your estimate sounds reasonable. It depends on the size of the canceled orders though.

  28. NCM Collector says

    In late 2016 the Mint updated sales figures for many of their commemoratives as far back as 2005. The updates were too late to appear in the 2018 red book. Some of the differences are minimal but other updates differ by thousands and yes tens of thousands. The 2005 Marine Corps proof in the red book is listed at 49,671. How could that be when it sold out? Mint site now lists it at 184,231.
    Take a little time to update your red book. It is way too soon to talk final numbers for mint products. Somewhere along the line someone will find out they listed proof sales as uncirculated or vice versa or they find that they forgot to count a specific product code altogether. Proceed with caution low mintage chasers.

  29. KCSO says


    These sets are limited to 100,000 units across all five medal product options, and can be ordered only between noon ET on January 17, 2018, and 3 p.m. ET on February 20, 2018, unless the limit is reached prior to that date.

    Production will be based on the orders received within this window.

    Fulfillment of these sets will begin in late May 2018.

  30. KCSO says

    Pay in January..,

    Receive in late-May..,


    Or Pay in May? (e.g.., when my C.C. gets pinged)

    One WORD for this release – “Botched”

    Synonymous acronym – “FUBAR”

  31. cagcrisp says

    “Fulfillment of these sets will begin in late May 2018.”

    Wow…That tells you a few things have changed.

    Mint To Demand.

    MTD helps some and hurts others. Another class warfare…

  32. Larry says

    Order in January ship in May? Who do they think they are, Tesla? Just when you thought the mint couldn’t do anything crazier. they do.

  33. Rob says

    It would be nice if they did pull the GR Clark 5oz coin early. It would spark some interest in this series again for sure. I somehow doubt that is the case. I bet we will see another 1000-1500 pop up and it will remain on sale for a while longer . . . I hope I am wrong though.

  34. cagcrisp says

    Looks like the Mint model has finally changed.

    The 1 oz. and 1/2 oz. AGE proofs from 2016 are still on sale.

    The 2016 Fort Moultrie is still on sale.

    The 2017 Ellis Island and Trump puck are CU.

    The ^ post by KCSO shows the Mint is going more to MTD.

    Since the Ellis Island and Trump puck can not be produced in 2018, when the Mint takes the CU sign down and starts sales again, the next time they go CU it could be close to the end.

    Just tells you that the Mint’s model has changed and things will Not be hanging around on the website for years to come…

  35. cagcrisp says

    Currently the Mint has both the 2016 and 2017 Proof ASE on sale.

    Tomorrow is Launch of the 2018 Proof ASE.

    …SO…Unless something changes, we will have 3 Proof ASEs on sale at the same time…

    I don’t see that happening going forward…

  36. Hidalgo says

    In previous years, the US Mint had a “mint to demand” approach for certain products. Those who wanted a particular product in the quantities requested was able to obtain one. This approach certainly reduces secondary demand and will dampen secondary market prices as well.

  37. cagcrisp says

    @Louis, Thanks…

    From FR:
    United States Mint
    changes for 2018
    United States Mint Numismatic Products
    Agency: United States Mint, Department of the Treasury

    The United States Mint is announcing pricing changes for some
    2018 United States Mint Numismatic Products.
    Please see the table below:

    2018 Retail Price United States Mint Proof Set $27.95
    United States Mint Silver Proof Set $49.95
    United States Mint Uncirculated Coin Set $21.95
    United States Mint America the Beautiful Quarters Proof Set $15.95
    United States Mint America the Beautiful Quarters Silver Proof Set $33.95
    United States Mint Limited Edition Silver Proof Set $144.95
    United States Mint America the Beautiful Uncirculated Set $13.95
    United States Mint America the Beautiful Circulating Set $8.95
    United States Mint America the Beautiful Five Ounce Silver UcirculatedCoin $154.95
    United States Mint American Eagle One Ounce Silver Proof Coin $55.95
    United States Mint American Eagle One Ounce Silver Uncirculated Coin $46.95
    United States Mint American Eagle Bulk Pack $11,749.50
    United States Mint Congratulations Set $56.95

  38. cagcrisp says

    I’ve said for years that you will see Higher premiums and Lower mintages…

    At least at this point, Gold has not been changed…

  39. cagcrisp says

    I think the Increased prices from the Mint is a No Brainer. There is a core of people that buy NO matter what. A Base. IF you can Not increase mintage sales (which is the Current case) then the Only way to Increase Revenue Sales and meet budget requirements is to:

    1. Raise prices for current products
    2. Gimmick sales such as the 2016″S” (and now 2017 “S”) and the 225 Enhanced Uncirculated sets

    …SO…In the future you will see Higher prices, Lower mintages and More gimmicks.

    That’s your future…

  40. says

    You can have FREE SHIPPING on Subscriptions of $4.95..,

    Though we’re going to raise our P Puck pricing by $5,

    And you wait for 4 to 5 months.., for your overpriced medals,

    Can’t make this stuff up,

    Yeah, It’s the new 2018 U.S. Mint Musk (USMM) business model..,

  41. says

    Cag –

    Well, I don’t like clowns 🤡

    And when Barnum & Bailey closed up shop, that wasn’t an invite for the USMM to fill their 🤡 shoes

  42. cagcrisp says

    @KCSO, I’m Not a fan of Clowns…either…

    I don’t have a problem with the Price Increases on the Numismatic side.

    The Mint will Have to do something on the Bullion side also with either premiums to APs OR the discounts offered to APs.

    The Mint has No Choice.

    The waiting until May for Medals is a Joke…

  43. Daveinswfl says

    The mint seems to be trying to get their costs under control with the mint-to-demand process. Also, items will not be hanging around for years. Wonder if they will eliminate the return option. The expectation of getting a 70 every time is unrealistic.

    Too bad they are are unwilling to pass on some of the savings to the consumer.

  44. Ryan says

    Once again we follow in the steps of Canada in all things. Our government is so bad in all areas we would be better off being the United States of Canada and adopt all of their systems. With the economic activity we generate in the US some of the systems that don’t run that well in Canada would run much smoother here.

  45. cagcrisp says

    FDOI for the Last 5 “P” pucks are as follows:


    FDOI Sales Revenue $ for the Last 5 pucks was ~ $10,156,413

    Current sales of the Last 5 pucks are :


    Current Sales Revenue $ for the Last 5 pucks ~ $12,331,138

    …SO…with Free Budget shipping ($4.95) saving and a Higher $5.00 price it just forces those that are interested in the “P” pucks to set up an enrollments OR they will pay $5.00 more than they did in 2017…

  46. Daveinswfl says

    The puck stats argue well for mint to demand and get ‘em outta here and off the website.
    If no one knows the order #s until the window closes, there could some really big surprises!

  47. datadave says

    The Mint hasn’t changed all its bad behavior. I just got an email for a last chance at the Betty Ford Gold UNC. When I click on the link, bad page.

  48. John Q. Coinage says

    Dave I just got an offer for Nixon dollars & “CC” dollars (well not the 2nd…)

  49. Tinto says

    Yup, I did say in an earlier blog that the Mint was going to mint to order for the WWI medals … what a low blow to the medal buyers .. first the Mint saddles them with a coin they might not want but have to pay for in order to get a medal .. now they gotta wait .. and pay up first!

    Glad I’m not into medals …

  50. Tinto says

    And the WWI coin is FUGLY with a seeming likeness of the artist .. yeah life is sweet for him

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *