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Mint starts 2018 with proof silver Eagle

The first collector coin that the U.S. Mint will put on sale in 2018 is the proof silver American Eagle.

It becomes available on the website Jan. 4.

This is a good indication of how relatively popular the coin is among collectors and other potential coin buyers.

We are still waiting for word on when the bullion version will become available to the Authorized Purchaser network for distribution among the nation’s investors/speculators and collectors.

The earlier the better.

Don’t forget that speculators are self-reinforcing.

The higher that initial pop in volume seems to make them want to buy even more silver Eagle bullion coins.

Come summer with no date specified, the Mint will offer another proof silver Eagle, but this one will be struck in San Francisco and carry the “S” mintmark.

The routine annual proof silver Eagles are struck at West Point and carry a “W” mintmark.

Doing this is called a product extension in marketing parlance.

Collectors like silver Eagles. Give them more of them that are slightly different. That’s how a product line is extended.

Can “P” and “D” proofs be all that far behind for 2019 or 2020?

Speaking of product extension, the Mint is going to offer a second silver proof set in 2018.

In this case, it will be a reverse proof set struck in San Francisco with an “S” mintmark. It goes on sale in the summer.

The regular proof silver set will become available in the spring.

The standard silver proof set, which was first issued in 1992, has established itself as a collector favorite.

A silver reverse proof set will give silver lovers two possibilities. They will probably take both.

Offers of next year’s commemoratives come in the Mint’s now traditional two-step presentation.

The first program will begin Jan. 17 with the World War I silver dollar.

Collectors will be able to buy proof and uncirculated versions. Both will have the “P” mintmark.

As a product extension, the Mint is pairing the new proofs with medals for each branch of the armed services. There will be five of these two-piece sets for Coast Guard, Army, Navy, Marines and Air Force.

Come the month of March, the Mint will offer the Breast Cancer Awareness gold $5, silver dollar and clad half dollar. Sales are to begin March 15.

The $5 coin will be struck in pink gold. A pink ribbon symbolizes support for breast cancer sufferers.

Those who are waiting for the palladium proof coin have to keep focused until it is offered sometime in the fall. No date is specified.

Buyers of the regular clad proof set have to wait but only until March, the 6th to be precise.

America the Beautiful coins hopscotch through the schedule. There are five designs applied to regular quarters as well as the five-ounce silver versions.

Other offerings of precious metals include the proof one-ounce platinum coin on Jan. 25, celebrating the a portion of the Preamble to the Declaration of Independence. This design is for “Life.”

Gold Eagle proofs follow.

The tenth ounce will be Feb. 8.

The quarter, half and one-ounce proofs are set to arrive March 1.

The standard clad Uncirculated Coin Set is set for spring.

If the Mint is looking for more product extensions, one of these in silver might do the trick in a future year.

Spring 2018 will also bring the proof one-ounce gold Buffalo and the uncirculated silver Eagle.

The uncircuated one-ounce gold Eagle is set for summertime.

As usual, the Mint has many possibilities to offer collectors to get them to spend their money.

How much of yours will the Mint get?

For more details, check the Mint’s online schedule.

Buzz blogger Dave Harper won the Numismatic Literary Guild Award for Best Blog for the third time in 2017 . He is editor of the weekly newspaper “Numismatic News.”

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