The ongoing supply shortage of 2008 silver American Eagles got the attention of the Silver Institute May 29 when its executive director, Michael DiRienzo, wrote a letter to Mint Director Ed Moy asking that steps be taken to increase the number being struck.
?It?s clear that the Mint misjudged the strength of the current silver market, and we are encouraging the Mint to take immediate steps to increase its production of these popular investment coins and plan accordingly for the balance of 2008 and for 2009,? DiRienzo wrote.
The Mint issued a statement in response:
?Since the introduction of the 2008 American Eagle Silver Bullion Coin Program, the United States Mint has issued a record number of coins (about 9.65 million), as demand for them has increased exponentially. That number is almost as high as the United States Mint?s production for the entire year of 2007 (about 9.8 million).
?By law, the United States Mint?s American Eagle silver bullion coins must meet exacting specifications and must be composed of newly mined silver acquired from domestic sources. The United States Mint will continue to make every effort to increase its acquisition of silver bullion blanks that meet these specifications and requirements to address continuing high demand in the silver bullion coin market.?
The Silver Institute notes that over 165 million silver American Eagles have been produced since they were introduced in 1986.
Headquartered in Washington, D.C., the Silver Institute is a nonprofit international silver industry association founded in 1971.