Sales are going backward for the American Eagle 20th Anniversary Gold and Silver Set. The number of sets considered sold by the Mint fell by 528 to 18,672 from last week?s reported 19,200. The maximum number of sets, 20,000, was a number that at first excited buyers, but now that it is clear that 2006-W uncirculated gold and silver American Eagles will also be available at a lower price when purchased separately, hobbyists are canceling their orders.
Certainly a reduction of 528 sets is not a large number. There probably were a few more cancellations than that, but these would be offset by new orders from collectors who don?t know of the other methods of buying the coins, or simply prefer the set itself.
What happens next is not clear. News of the greater availability of the 2006-W uncirculated coins is still not known by the entire collector population. As the word gets around, there could be more cancellations and returns. Some collectors are even hedging their bets, not quite believing that the coins sold separately are indeed the same as the ones in the uncirculated set. Skepticism is healthy, but it probably has the effect of slowing down the net effect on total orders. Let?s check this again next week.
Proof Buffalo one-ounce gold coins saw sales rise by 3,000 coins to 219,000 out of a possible 300,000. The bullion version saw another 8,000 pieces shipped. Since the bullion coin was introduced in June, a total of 264,500 have been sold into the market. It is interesting to note that the number is hardly higher than the collector-only proofs sold in the same period. Do we blame weakening gold prices, or a period where buyers need to get used to it?