US Coins

Erroneous Mint information on 2015 silver Eagles

The U.S. Mint issued a statement May 25 announcing that information Mint officials released March 20 pursuant to a Coin World Freedom of Information Act request in February was erroneous concerning tracking numbers that might be able to be used to identify the source Mint facility for boxes of 2015 American Eagle silver bullion coins.

While the mintage figures reported for 2015 American Eagle silver bullion coins struck separately at the Philadelphia and West Point Mints are correct, details released regarding the tracking numbers on the 500-coin boxes of 20-coin tubes were incorrect.

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That erroneous information has been used in the numismatic marketplace to promote some coins as rarities. Mintages are reportedly correct; 79,640 2015-(P) American Eagle silver bullion coins were struck at the Philadelphia Mint. 

However, much of the Mint’s statement appears to be aimed at secondary market promotion of the Philadelphia Mint strikes as rarities, which the Mint appears to be disputing.

A complete explanation is anticipated by June 30. Coin World is working to get additional details and will publish them as they become available.

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Following is the complete statement released May 25 by the U.S. Mint’s Office of Corporate Communications:

“By way of background, while most American Eagle silver bullion coins have been minted at the West Point Mint, to meet demand the United States Mint (Mint) has sometimes produced these coins at the Philadelphia and San Francisco Mint facilities. It is important to note that the Mint offers bullion coins through Authorized Purchasers to provide investors the opportunity to acquire precious metal coins at a slight premium to spot market prices. As such, all Mint silver bullion coins are, by their very nature, homogeneous. None of these coins bears a mint mark designating the facility where it was produced. The Mint’s goal is to ensure that the American Eagle silver bullion coins struck at any of these three facilities are identical and indistinguishable from one another. 

“On March 20, 2017, in response to a request made pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, the Mint released internal manufacturing tracking numbers used on the boxes that contain American Eagle silver bullion coins that are shipped to Authorized Purchasers. It has come to the Mint’s attention that some of the information that was released on March 20 was erroneous. 

“The erroneous information released on March 20, as well as confusion surrounding the Mint’s use of internal manufacturing tracking numbers—specifically those connected with American Eagle silver bullion coins—has resulted in a mistaken belief that some of these coins are rarities.

"The internal manufacturing tracking numbers on these boxes support the Mint’s quality control program and were not intended for the public to rely on to establish which Mint facility produced the silver bullion coins.     

"The Mint will provide new information regarding these coins by the end of June.“

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