Skip to main content

Was I paying attention?

I have an email from a reader of my Monday blog who made a good point.

He wrote, “Don’t forget that the Mint has sold about 11,000 of the 2-coin SSB sets, each of which includes a SSB $5 gold proof.”

He of course is pointing out that in evaluating the overall rarity of the Star-Spangled Banner proof and uncirculated $5 gold coins you have to consider all the sources for the coins.

In this case, there are 11,217 additional proofs to add to the gold total while there is no other way to acquire the uncirculated $5 except by individual purchase.

Adding 5,792 individual proofs to the 11,217 gold $5s in the two-coin sets yields a total of 17,009 proof $5 gold coins.

This compares to 6,257 of the uncirculated gold $5s, which puts the proof to uncirculated ratio at 2.72, which is very much within the usual range.

Why didn’t I do it?

Would you believe the dog ate my homework?


I guess I succumbed to a case of “package blindness” that I am usually warning others about.

Fortunately, I have sharp-eyed readers to straighten me out before I get too far off base.

One thing I should point out, the sales numbers I am using today have been updated from the ones I had on Monday.

Buyers took an additional 1,131 of the uncirculated $5 coins in the prior seven days, increasing the ongoing total by 22 percent.

Obviously the cherry-picker activity of the fence sitters is alive and well even if I had trouble keeping my story straight in the prior blog.

On another note, this is the last blog of the week because of the Thanksgiving holiday.

This will give you time to join all the online shoppers who will be active over the starting Friday.

Word is retailers are starting to favor online buyers even more than the hardy shoppers who arrive at the stores in the wee hours of the morning.

Check out the Black Friday numismatic bargains on the special NumisMaster page at

Get ready, get set ...

Buzz blogger Dave Harper is editor of the weekly newspaper "Numismatic News."