$20 Call Joined in US House
Posted By Mike Unser
An earlier year
Senate bill calling for .995 pure palladium
one-ounce UHR $20 Saint-Gaudens Double Eagle coins
was joined by a House version introduced Thursday,
July 30, by Rep. Dennis Rehberg [R-MT]. Both bills
seek to produce "coins in palladium to provide
affordable opportunities for investments in precious
House Resolution 3405, the Original Saint-Gaudens
Double Eagle Ultra-High Relief Bullion Coin Act of
2009, is nearly identical to the same named Senate
bill, S. 758, brought forward by Sen. Max Baucus
[D-MT] on April 1.
The legislation states the coins must "bear exact
replicas of the original obverse and reverse designs
by Augustus Saint-Gaudens which appear on the famous
27-millimeter version of the 1907 Double Eagle
ultra-high relief gold piece and the edge of the
coin shall have all appropriate raised lettering in
the same manner as the original coin."
H.R. 3405 would have the Mint strike up to 15,000 of
the $20 gold coins in both proof an uncirculated
options. The legislation mandates that these
collector coin may:
Only be minted in 2009
"Only be struck at the United States Mint at West
Point, New York"
"Not be minted in fractional sizes
H.R. 3405 also states that if "a gold bullion coin
that bears the same design as the ultra-high-relief
numismatic coins is issued," the palladium coin "may
only be issued in a set containing 1 of each such
coins," and in a " presentation case of appropriate
Additionally, the bill calls for annual bullion
investment versions with mintage levels determined
by the Secretary of Treasure. Interestingly, West
Point would be prohibited from producing them.
Finally, the palladium used within the coins would
be restricted to deposits mined in the United
States, which would be a significant boon to
Montana’s Stillwater Mining Company — the only US
producer of palladium.
"There are more than thirteen-hundred Montanans at
Stillwater Mine right now who are worried because
the government-controlled General Motors yanked the
contract that feeds their families out from under
them," Rep. Dennis Rehberg stated Friday.
"This bill won’t replace the GM contract, but by
creating a new bullion coin, minted from a resource
produced solely in our backyard, we can increase
demand to provide a boost for Stillwater at a time
when they really need one."
"The proposed legislation which would create an
Ultra-High Relief Saint-Gaudens palladium bullion
coin is terribly exciting for the men and women of
the Stillwater Mining Company of Montana who proudly
produce palladium from the extraordinarily majestic
Beartooth Mountains immediately north of Yellowstone
National Park," commented Frank McAllister, Chairman
& CEO of the Stillwater Mining Company.
Modern UHR $20 gold pieces were launched in early
2009 with an average price of over $1200 per coin.
Despite a sizable collector base that has been
chased away by the cost, the coins have been
extremely popular. The US Mint sold 28,173 on launch
day and 40,727 within the first four days.
Palladium is a precious metal like gold, but vastly
less expensive. An ounce of palladium has ranged
from $185 to $268 between early January and the
morning of this writing. In contrast, an ounce of
gold has ranged from $926 to $960 during the same
Both the House and Senate bills are within
respective committees awaiting some action. Similar
bills were introduced in each house last year. The
House version passed, but the legislation stalled in
the Senate. The measure died with the conclusion of
the 110th Congress. For any coin legislation to
become law, it must pass both in the House and
Senate, and get signed by the President.