RENO, NV – In a memo to its Authorized Purchasers, the U.S. Mint said it will accept orders for its 2011 five-ounce silver bullion coin beginning April 25 with the coins honoring the Gettysburg National Military Park in Pennsylvania, as well as the Glacier National Park in Montana.
The composition of the coins is .999 fine. A portion of the bullion coins will be graded by a third-party service, which makes them of more value to coin collectors.
Those bullion coins that are slabbed and receive the upper 69 or 70 grade will have values substantially higher than their melt values, which is based on a coin’s precious metals content. Silver coin melt values have soared this year as silver prices have hit 30-year highs.
The U.S. Mint launched its first five-ounce silver bullion coin series when it released all five of the 2010 America the Beautiful Silver Bullion Coins on Dec. 10, 2010. The mint was forced to temporarily suspend its Dec. 6, 2010 launch date due to consumers’ allegations of price gouging.
Only 33,000 coins of each design were released in 2010. The Mint said this year at least 126,500 coins of each design will be minted. The Authorized Purchasers buy the coins in bulk from the mint, then re-sell for a premium above the current market price of silver, plus an addition $9.75 charge by the Mint to cover minting, marketing and distribution of the bullion coins.
In order to participate in the 2011 program, the Authorized Purchasers may certify they sold all of their 2010 America the Beautiful bullion coins.
The three additional America the Beautiful silver bullion coins to be released in 2011 will honor the Olympic National Park in Washington State, the Vicksburg National Military Park in Mississippi and the Chickasaw National Recreation Area of Oklahoma.
As of April 3, the U.S. Mint reported a total of 13,179,000 American Eagle Silver one-ounce bullion coins have been sold thus far this year. A total of 34,662,500 silver ounces were sold last year.