Bullion speculators have purchased considerably fewer gold and silver American Eagle bullion coins in the first six months of 2012 compared to the same period last year.
The biggest hit occurred in the 1-ounce gold American Eagle. Sales in the first six months were 285,000 coins, down 43 percent from 507,500 pieces sold in 2011.
As might be expected, 1-ounce silver Eagle demand held up better. Sales slumped by only 22 percent, going from 22,303,500 to 17,392,000.
Sales of quarter-ounce gold Eagles dropped by 19 percent, from 64,000 pieces to 52,000 coins. The tenth ounce fell 30 percent, hitting 175,000 in 2012 compared to 250,000 in 2011.
Not all was negative, though. Sales of half-ounce gold Eagles rose by 1,000 to 56,000 when comparing 2011 numbers to those of 2012.
Gold Buffalo bullion coin sales fell marginally, dropping from 79,500 in 2011 to 75,000 in 2012 for a loss of 5.7 percent.
Sales of the two-coin San Francisco Eagle proof set stood at 245,131 as of July 3, two days prior to the end of sales.