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Bottom hit for enhanced set sales?

The sales plunge has stopped for the United States Mint’s 225th Anniversary Enhanced Uncirculated Coin Set.


A two-week swoon of 16 percent of all sets was reversed in the week ending Sept. 3.

Sales figures rose by 2,512 sets, according the Mint’s latest sales report.

The current 189,816 figure compares to 187,304 a week earlier.

Maximum mintage is 225,000.

Buyers had taken all 225,000 on Aug. 1, but cold feet apparently set in.

Two days later, sales began again.

What was a trickle of returns and cancellations turned into a flood by the middle of August.

The Mint said it had sold 217,514 sets as of Aug. 6.

Buyers pushed that number up to 223,310 by Aug. 13.

Sales even were suspended again for two days as of Aug. 14.

But still the set could not stay sold out.

The sales number reversed by 12,037 to 211,273 as of Aug. 20.

An even larger fall then occurred.

Subtracting another 23,969 took the sales figure down to 187,304 by Aug. 27.

Collectors now can acquire these sets in original Mint packaging more cheaply than the Mint’s issue price by participating in online auctions.

Closing totals of $30.29, $31 and $31.11 can be seen in eBay’s recently concluded auction listings.

The Mint sells each set for $29.95 plus a handling charge of $4.95 per order.

Sets authenticated and slabbed by third-party grading services in the very top grades are still selling for multiples of issue price.

A recent Professional Coin Grading Service SP-70 First Strike set went for $177.80.

The enhanced uncirculated set was created by the Mint this year as one means of celebrating its 225th anniversary of founding in 1792.

All coins in the set have an “S” mintmark on them.

The coins have an “enhanced uncirculated finish using a combination of laser frosted areas and an unpolished field that accentuates design details, creating a unique contrast distinctly different from the mirror-like finish of proof coins.”

This description is taken from the Mint’s website.

Because they are neither proof nor regular uncirculated, the special set excited collectors in the days leading up to their Aug. 1 debut.

However, daydreams of huge profits to be made apparently did not pan out.

Those that canceled orders presumably were trying to limit their potential losses.

If the wave of cancellations has ended, we can see that there are 35,696 sets left to be sold by the Mint.

Will buyers take them all eventually?

We might have to wait until next year to find out.

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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