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Honor our veterans

Today is the day we salute our nation’s veterans.

Patriotism and numismatics can be combined this year.

The Mint is offering two commemorative coin programs in 2011 with military themes. Sales will end in Dec. 16.

If you have not yet purchased the U.S. Army commemorative silver dollar and $5 gold piece and the Medal of Honor half dollar, silver dollar and $5 gold coins, today might be an appropriate day to consider doing so.

The numismatic side of the brain will be looking at sales numbers to see if there is a chance some of these coins will be scarce when they go off sale.

With this in mind, the uncirculated Army $5 gold with a current sales number of 7,172 and the uncirculated Medal of Honor $5 sales number of 7,490 look attractively low.

Even the proof totals of 16,555 and 17,231, respectively, look like potential scarcities.

Of course, issue prices with gold at almost $1,800 a troy ounce are not low. The uncirculated coins are currently $524.30 and the proofs are $10 more at $534.30. High prices undoubtedly have kept collector participation this year on the subdued side.

The proof numbers are well below the Jackie Robinson gold proof total of 24,072, though the Robinson uncirculated total of 5,174 has already been passed by this year’s gold uncirculated coins.

So are they worth the gamble?

Put one more set of facts into the equation before you decide.

The $35 surcharges on the coins in the case of the Army will go toward building the National Army Museum at Fort Belvoir, Va. The Medal of Honor Foundation will use its funds for its educational, scholarship and outreach programs.

Visit the U.S. Mint’s website at www.usmint.gov for more information.


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