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Eagles Stay Scarce
By Numismatic News

How many silver American Eagles must the U.S. Mint offer for sale before buyers have enough?

Good question.

During the first quarter of 2010, the Mint sold a record 9,023,900 of the one-ounce silver coins, but demand still exceeds supply and the Mint is continuing its allocation process among its authorized purchasers to ration the supply.

If sales continue at this pace, more than 36 million could be sold by the end of the calendar year. Such a figure would be up sharply from last year’s 28,766,500 coins, which itself was a record number for a calendar year.

In contrast, the demand for gold American Eagles has been better matched by supply this year. Buyers have taken 271,000 of the one-ounce gold coins and the Mint has been able to sell them for almost a month now without rationing the supply.

Maintaining this pace would push total sales for calendar 2010 to 1,084,000 coins, which would actually be lower than the 1,315,000 sold in 2009.

However, demand conditions change during the course of the year and these projections could be useless before the ink dries on this story.

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