Monday, December 7, 2009

US Mint Runs Out Of Tenth-Ounce Gold Coin Inventory Day After Its Release For Broad Purchase

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The sad state of affairs in gold land: the premium for the 1 ounce Gold Eagle coins has expanded from $59 to $99, Krugerrands are not available for sale in most places, and this most recent development just out of the US Mint: the one-tenth ounce American Eagle inventory at the mint has been depleted, almost instantaneously after the coin was made available for purchase. This occurred the day after the mint announced the release of fractional Eagle Gold Bullion Coins in one-half ounce, one-quarter ounce, and one-tenth ounce weights. As Coin News reports:

The Mint sold 345,000 coins to its authorized purchasers for a total of 58,000 ounces of gold. That, without a single one-ounce size leaving Mint doors.

Sales of 2009 one-ounce sized gold eagles are expected to resume in "early December" while the production of the 2010-dated American Eagle Gold and Silver One Ounce Bullion Coin are expected to begin in Jan., 2010.

So no sooner did the Mint start selling the new 1/10 ounce denominated gold pieces, than they ran out.

The US Mint ran out of one ounce 2009 American Gold Eagle coins last week which caused their temporary suspension, and now the fractional sizes that were just launched are either gone or being allocated following record one-day sales.

This is the notice sent out by the Mint to authorized purchasers:

Due to strong demand, the American Eagle Gold Tenth-Ounce Coin inventory was depleted. The inventory for the half-ounce and quarter-ounce coins remains very limited. We will offer the remaining half-ounce and quarter-ounce coins for sale via the United States Mint standard allocation process.

And indicative of the massive gold demand, the 24-karat one ounce Buffalo coin inventory was depleted as well:

"The United States Mint has depleted its inventory of 2009 American Buffalo One Ounce Gold Bullion Coins," the US Mint stated in a memorandum to authorized purchasers of the precious metal coins. "No additional inventory will be made available. As additional information becomes available regarding 2010-dated American Buffalo One Once Gold Bullion Coins, you will be notified."

Following their launch on Oct. 15, the selling pace was fierce. US Mint figures have the 2009-dated coins at 198,000. By comparison, the Mint has said 172,000 were sold in all of 2008 while 167,500 were purchased in 2007.

It appears the 79% of the US population that disapproves of Bernanke and is asking for his head, is not sitting idly and every single day continues expressing its "vote" of no confidence in the Chairman by making gold increasingly scarcer. In the meantime, the massive demand for silver coins is also starting to hit the Mint, which as of today had none in store.

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