Yesterday, rolls of 2009 William Henry Harrison Presidential Dollars went on sale at the US Mint. Sales began February 19, 2009 at 12:00 Noon ET.
The rolls are available from either the Philadelphia or Denver Mints in custom US Mint wrappers. The 25-coin rolls are priced at $35.95 each.
Since this is one of the US Mint’s routine offerings, I almost did not write a post about it. However, I realized something noteworthy this morning. This is the first Presidential Dollar for which the US Mint is not offering 250-coin Bags.
For all previous eight Presidential Dollar releases, the US Mint has offered 25-coin rolls from each mint priced at $35.95, as well as 250-coin bags from each mint priced at $319.95. Sales of the 250-coin bags had been slowing, and it looks like the US Mint may have (at least temporarily) bought it to an end.
US Mint sales stats show that the number of 250-coin bags sold declined steadily since the start of the series. The George Washington Presidential Dollar had sold over 8,000 of the 250-coin bags. This number declined for each subsequent release and then experienced a significant decline with the release of the John Quincy Adams Presidential Dollar when sales fell below 1,000 bags. The most recent bag release for Martin Van Buren has sold 724 units to date.
I believe the reason for the decline is twofold. First, some people are likely losing interest in the series, especially as it moves into the lesser known Presidents. Second, the US Mint’s Direct Ship Program, which sells $250 boxes of Presidential Dollars at face value is cutting into sales of the high premium bags. When the program was first announced, I suggested that this was a likely outcome.