Could the silver American Eagle bullion sales total in 2012 actually come in lower than the 2011 number of nearly 40 million? If the first few weeks of 2012 are any indication, it could.
The book has been closed for the month of January and the 6,107,000 silver Eagles sold did not exceed the 2011 record January total of 6,422,000 coins. So far in February, another 470,000 have been bought by Authorized Purchasers, behind the sales pace set in February of last year.
With the change in the month to February, the running tallies for 2012 Eagles have taken the place of the final 2011 totals in the far right column.
I have been asked many times what the difference is between the Mint’s uncirculated silver coins and standard bullion coins that also would grade uncirculated in the collector market. In a nutshell, the difference is the mintmark. The Mint puts a mintmark on the coins it calls uncirculated while bullion coins have no mintmark. In the case of the Eagle unc., it has a “W.” In the case of the 5-ounce unc., it carries a “P.” OK, now the discussion can start about the definition of “uncirculated.”