Sales of gold Eagle and Buffalo coins by the US Mint were 21,500 ounces in August, compared to 69,000 ounces in July and 48,000 ounces in August 2012. August gold sales were the lowest month since June 2008. As of August, year to date gold sales are 881,000 ounces which is 76% more than in 2012 and 1% more than in 2011. The US Mint reported that in August 10,000 gold Buffalo coins and 11,500 ounces of gold Eagle coins were sold.
Sales of silver Eagles by the US Mint were 3,625,000 in August, compared to 4,406,500 ounces in July. Silver sales are still strong despite the drop from July's exceptional performance. August silver Eagle sales were 26% more than in August 2012. And, sales in August exceeded sales in May and in June. Year to date silver Eagle sales are a record 33,075,000 ounces which is 47% more than 2012. Silver sales are well on track for a record year.
The US Mint increased the retail price for an uncirculated Gold Eagle by $50 to $1,675 during August. An uncirculated silver Eagle retails for $43.95 which is unchanged from July.
A quick survey of 3 internet coin dealers shows that pricing for gold and silver Eagles is about $65 and $4.00 over spot respectively. The premium for gold Eagles decreased slightly and for silver has increased over the last month. These price premiums are based on purchasing one coin. The dealers all offer volume discounts for larger purchases. Spot gold and silver market prices are currently $1,392 and $23.40, respectively.
Coin dealers are currently offering to pay about $25 and $1.75 over spot to purchase gold and silver Eagles, respectively. This seems reasonable because the US Mint charges dealers 3% for gold and $2.00 per coin for silver premiums. Dealer purchase premiums are not hinting at supply constraints as they were in April and May.