Happy 2008 from me and your US Mint. For this year, I will continue to write about what interests me and the US Mint is trying to adjust to an every increasing set of product offerings. I also want to give a shout out to the Bureau of Engraving and Printing for jumping on the new product bandwagon. So let’s first take look at the Mint.
With a price increase of $2, the US Mint began sales of the American Silver Eagle Proof coin on January 3. US law prevents the US Mint cannot from selling or distributing coins with a future date, but it does not prevent them from striking the coins in preparation. So these coins are being shipped as they are sold. I believe that is the earliest in the year that the Mint has delivered a current year coin.
You can order the Bald Eagle Commemorative coins beginning on January 15. The Bald Eagle Commemorative will have three different designs on a $5 gold coin, silver dollar, and clad half-dollar. Coins will be available as Proof and Uncirculated coins that can be purchased individually, as a three coin proof set, a “Young Collector’s Set” with an uncirculated half-dollar and other educational material, and a coin & medal set featuring an uncirculated silver dollar and a bronze Bald Eagle Medal from the National Wildlife Refuge System Centennial Medal Series. See the Mint’s announcement for complete list of products, mintage limits, and prices.
Sales of bags and rolls of 2008 Kennedy Half-Dollars and Sacagawea Dollars will begin on January 17. These coins will not see circulation because there is no demand for them. But since the Mint is legally required to strike these coins, they will be offered to collectors.
Sales of the 50 State Quarters usually begins earlier than other proof sets. So get ready for the last of the 50 state proof coins on January 24. The program has been extended one year to include the District of Columbia and the five territories of the United States.
Also released on January 10 are the 2004 $20 Single Note for the federal reserve districs of Atlanta, Boston, New York, and Philadelphia. The notes in this set are those with the lowest possible serial numbers that are packaged in an archival sleve placed in a folder representing the federal reserve district. Each folder is $45 and the entire 12 note series can be bought as a subscription for $479.95.
Taking their cue from their friends at the US Mint, BEP “is excited to celebrate the year 2008 by offering the 2008 $2 Single Note.” This product is a Series 2003A Federal Reserve Note from the Atlanta federal reserve district with the serial number beginning with “2008.” Since the serial number is eight digits followed by the letter designating the federal reserve district, there will only be 10,000 notes for this product (20080000D through 20089999D). Each folder will cost $7.95. There is no indication that this type of collectible will be extended to other federal reserve districts.
Maybe the other notes whose serial number beginning with 2008 will be used for BEP’s Prosperity Line collection. The Prosperity Note Line features serial numbers beginning with 168 or 8888 which are significant in Chinese symbolism. On January 17, BEP will release the $2 Double Lucky Money Set. The set features two uncirculated $2 Federal Reserve notes. The serial number of one note will begin with “8888,” to symbolize good fortune, and “2008,” to commemorate the New Year. Both notes will feature serial numbers with matching last four digits. When released, the set will cost $48.88.
All this being introduced in January—with eleven months to go! Happy Collecting!