Sales of the United States Mint’s American Silver Eagle bullion coins started the year in impressive fashion. For the opening day of availability for 2013-dated coins, the US Mint received orders for 3,937,000 coins from authorized purchasers.
This amount exceeds the opening day sales levels for recent years, which had seen 3,197,000 coins ordered to start 2012; 2,085,000 coins ordered to start 2011; and 2,440,000 coins ordered to start 2010.
The strong opening for the 2013 Silver Eagles has been driven by pent up demand for the popular one ounce silver bullion coins. The US Mint sold out of the 2012-dated coins in mid-December, creating a three week period during which no coins were available for authorized purchasers to order. The pent up demand supplemented the already typically high demand for the first release of the newly dated coins.
To put yesterday’s numbers in perspective, the sale of nearly 4 million one ounce silver coins represents more than one-tenth of annual silver production within the United States. Since the start of the program there have been two years (1996 & 1997) where annual Silver Eagle sales measured in ounces have been lower than yesterday’s sales which occurred in a single day. Measured in dollar terms, yesterday’s sales of approximately $120 million worth of Silver Eagles were higher than the annual sales total for each individual year from 1986 to 2005.