Before the February 11th sale of the 2021-W American Silver Eagle Proof coins, the U.S. Mint allowed dealers to buy the coins in bulk. Coin World reports that dealers were able to purchase coins three-days in advance of the public sale.
The U.S. Mint had a product limit of 327,440 coins with a household limit of 99 coins. Since learning about this, it was surprising that coins available to purchase. The coin sold out in a few moments.
Speculators purchased as much as they could afford then listed their inventory on eBay. They are profiting from the U.S. Mint’s decision to serve the dealers rather than the collector. If you want to buy the coin on eBay, the average sale price of the coin issued at $73 is $110-140. It is a 33-percent to 48-percent increase over the issue price.Who does the U.S. Mint serve, the collectors or the dealers? If the U.S. Mint serves the collectors, then a policy change is necessary to work better with the collector community.
For those who complain about coin designs and base-metal coinage as a threat to the hobby, what about the U.S. Mint’s action to shutout collectors from silver coins?
If the U.S. Mint serves the dealers, they do not serve the public and do not serve the hobby. If the approach is all about business, then what about the collectors?
When Rhett Jeppson started the U.S. Mint’s Numismatic Forum in 2016, the promise was to bring in different members of the numismatic industry to help guide the mint into the future for the benefit of the hobby. Jeppson was nominated to be the Mint’s Director but was never confirmed.
The U.S. Mint continued with the forms in 2017, 2018, and 2019. Reports of those meetings said that they were productive. It has not made an impact.
Since the Senate approved David Ryder as director, he has done little to make the U.S. Mint more responsive to the customer. The Numismatic Forums have ceased, and Ryder seems to favor creating collectible coins instead of getting the coins into collectors’ hands.
An example of what is wrong with Ryder’s approach is when there were ordering problems with the V75 American Silver Eagle. Instead of saying that the U.S. Mint will work on the issue, Ryder touts the collectibles he created.
What good is creating collectibles if the collector cannot purchase the coins?
The ever-changing quarter designs, privy marks, and other things people complain about will not hurt the hobby. Forcing the collector into the unregulated secondary market to buy newly issued coins will drive collectors away.