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Eagle bullion numbers leave 2018 worries behind

Do statistics soothe your nerves?

Diving into some numbers and figuring out their significance can distract me from a crazy day in the office.

I took a look at the Mint’s sales report of bullion American Eagles.

The results should soothe the nerves of gold and silver investors.

Mint sales results so far in 2019 point to a stronger year compared to last year.

Gold and silver Eagle bullion coins have now both surpassed the January 2018 sales numbers.

Silver was the first to cross this milestone, but gold is close behind.

In January 2018, buyers took 3,235,000 silver Eagle bullion coins.

For the month so far in 2019, 3,931,000 have been purchased.

The current weekly sales number increase is 565,000.

If sales for the rest of January march along at roughly the same pace, we should see a final monthly number of nearly 4.5 million silver Eagle bullion coins.

That is almost 40 percent more than in January 2018.

Is that a good start to 2019?

Before you answer, let’s look at gold Eagles.

These, too, have outsold their January 2018 counterparts thanks to a jump in demand for the one-ounce coins.

This year, 42,000 one-ounce gold Eagles have sold so far compared to 36,000 in January last year.

For the half-ounce, the numbers are 14,000 coins in 2019 versus 16,000 last year.

The quarter ounce has registered sales of 20,000 pieces compared to 26,000 last year.

The tenth-ounce has come in so far at 75,000 compared to 80,000 last year.

Thanks to that extra 6,000 one-ounce coins, the Mint has sold 61,500 ounces of gold in the form of Eagles in 2019 compared to 58,500 in 2018.

This 3,000-ounce lead should be padded in the remainder of January.

There is no way to know what the rest of 2019 will bring.

At least bullion investor nerves jangled by the low sales figures recorded in 2018 can find in these latest figures some soothing reading.

But my nerves won’t stay soothed for long. It is back to my crazy day in the office.

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."