Three .9999 fine gold bars with a combined value of more than $2
million will go on indefinite display on the public tour at the Denver Mint.
The bars are from working stock at the West Point Mint.
U.S. Treasurer Rosa “Rosie” Gumataotao Rios was scheduled to
unveil the Gold Bar Exhibit to the media the afternoon of May 10, on
the first day of the American Numismatic Association’s National Money
Show in Denver.
Each of the three gold bars measures 7 inches by 3.625 inches by
1.75 inches in size. The combined weight of the three bars is
1,200.102 troy ounces of pure gold.
Gold bars, according to Tom Jurkowsky, director of the U.S. Mint’s
Office of Public Affairs, can be characterized as “deep storage” or
➤ Deep Storage is defined as that portion of the Treasury-owned
gold bullion reserve that the Mint secures in sealed vaults. Deep
storage gold comprises the vast majority of the bullion reserve and
consists primarily of gold bars.
➤ Working Stock is defined as that portion of the Treasury-owned
gold bullion reserve that the Mint can use as the raw material for
minting coins. Working stock gold comprises only about 1 percent of
the gold bullion reserve and consists of bars, blanks, unsold coins
and condemned coins, according to the Mint. With working stock, gold
bars are purchased by the Mint and then sold to a fabricator who makes
blanks and then the fabricator sends the blanks back to the Mint where
they are made into gold products, according to the Mint.
The Treasury Department’s Financial Management Service indicates
that as of April 30, 2012, Mint-held Treasury gold at all locations,
comprising coins, blanks, bars and any other form, totaled
2,783,218.656 fine troy ounces.
Mint-held gold in deep storage at the Denver Mint, West Point
Mint, and Fort Knox Gold Bullion Depository totals 245,262,897.04 fine
troy ounces, with Denver holding 43,853,707.279 fine troy ounces.
The totals do not include Treasury-owned gold held in Federal
Reserve Bank vaults or on display. The book value of all
Treasury-owned gold is based on the statutory value of $42.2222 per
troy ounce and not the prevailing spot price. The value of the three
gold bars placed on exhibit May 10 at the Denver Mint is calculated on
the current spot price of gold.
The Gold Bar Exhibit is an extension of the Denver Mint’s history,
which dates back to 1858 when gold was discovered in Colorado.
For its first 46 years, the United States Mint at Denver was only
an Assay Office in the Clark, Gruber and Company Bank Building. Miners
brought in gold dust and nuggets to be melted, assayed and cast into
bars stamped with their weight and quality.
By 1895, the Assay Office was booming, bringing in more than $5.6
million in gold and silver deposits annually. In 1904, the government
converted the Assay Office into a working Mint, and built a much
grander facility, an Italian Renaissance style building modeled after
a Florentine palace.
In 1906, its first year in operation, the new Mint produced
167,371,035 gold and silver coins valued at $27 million.
Today, the Denver Mint manufactures all denominations of
circulating coins, coin dies, the Denver Mint portion of the annual
Uncirculated coin sets and commemorative coins authorized by Congress.
The Denver Mint is also a repository, storing gold and silver bullion. ■