Author Archives: Pat Heller

Mint mistakes: What’s your favorite story?

Joseph Stalin’s initials are not on the Roosevelt dime, though there were rumors in 1946 that Mint Chief Engraver John Sinnock’s initials stood for the Soviet dictator. The Communist hammer and sickle emblem is not on the Kennedy half dollar. … Continue reading

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Quarters sag after state issues

From 1994 to 1998, before the debut of the U.S. state quarter series, the U.S. Mint struck an average of 1.71 billion quarters per year. The popularity of the state quarters, that for the 56 different issues in the 11 … Continue reading

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Bullion for quick buck or long-term security?

Just a small percentage of the public actually owns any bullion-priced physical gold or silver, maybe only 1-3 percent of adults in the U.S. Because of this, it would take a lot to achieve a major expansion in demand. Dealers … Continue reading

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Viewpoint: Many say Mint prices are excessive

A year ago, the U.S. Mint held its first Numismatic Forum in Philadelphia, with perhaps 55 invited guests in attendance. Mint staff reached out to solicit ideas and suggestions from outside of their own sphere, and the attendees responded with … Continue reading

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Monetary systems influence future

While government monetary systems come and go, they can influence the long-term future. Take a look at the ancient Greek drachma. Various derivations of that term have been applied to subsequent monetary systems long afterward with terms such as dirham, … Continue reading

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Gold recall unlikely

In recent decades, some numismatic marketers promoted the sale of rare coins as being exempt from “confiscation” such as was done by the U.S. government in 1933. In my judgment, this tactic was sometimes used to steer potential customers away … Continue reading

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Should U.S. Mint be privatized?

Last week, I lamented that, at this year’s U.S. Mint Numismatic Forum on Oct. 17, Mint personnel devoted most of the time to explaining their current operations and near-term future plans. As a consequence, they didn’t really reach out to … Continue reading

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Dealers object to Mint price hikes

A year ago, the U.S. Mint held its first Numismatic Forum in Philadelphia, with perhaps 55 invited guests in attendance. Mint staff reached out to solicit ideas and suggestions from outside of their own sphere, and the attendees responded with … Continue reading

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Put coins in children’s hands

I have just returned to the office from participating in the U.S. Mint’s Numismatic Forum in Washington, D.C. Next week, I will go over the event in more detail. However, there was one simple comment during the program on how … Continue reading

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Gold: A rock in life’s storms

What would you do if you lost access to all of your electronic asset and payment sources? This is no longer a theoretical question. Just look at the widespread destruction across the Caribbean and Southeastern United States over the past … Continue reading

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