US Coins

Chester Arthur dollar mintage at 5.74 million

The mintage for the first 2012 Presidential dollar is less than a tenth of the total mintage for the final 2011 Presidential dollar.

The United States Mint reports that it struck 5.74 million circulation-quality Chester A. Arthur Presidential dollars, the first coin in the series not produced for circulation. By production facility, 2.8 million coins were produced at the Denver Mint and 2.94 million pieces were struck at the Philadelphia Mint. Mintages for the 2011 James A. Garfield Presidential dollar, the last Presidential dollar produced for circulation, totaled 74.2 million coins — 37.1 million each at the Denver and Philadelphia Mints.

The drastically lower mintage for the Arthur coin is a result of Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner’s Dec. 13 directive suspending the production of Presidential dollars for circulation. He suspended production in an effort to save $50 million to $75 million annually on dollar coin production costs since Federal Reserve Banks and their storage facilities hold in inventory some $1.4 billion Presidential dollars. According to the Treasury Department, the inventory is sufficient to meet commerce needs for dollar coins for the next 10 to 12 years without the need to strike and release additional Presidential dollars.

The Mint is required by law to strike Presidential dollars, although the Treasury secretary holds broad powers in determining the number of coins that will be struck and the Federal Reserve is not required to order the coins.

Although authorizing legislation required that 20 percent of all dollar coins struck and released for circulation be Native American dollars, the actual number of 2012 Native American dollars struck so far is nearly equal to the number of Chester A. Arthur dollars struck, and three other Presidential dollars are scheduled to be struck in 2012. U.S. Mint officials report that 5.6 million circulation-quality 2012 Native American dollars have been struck for numismatic products, with the production of the coins evenly divided between the Denver and Philadelphia Mints.

The U.S. Mint struck 80.78 million 2010 Native American dollars and 77.56 million 2011 Native American dollars.

Starting in 2012, circulation-quality Presidential and Native American dollars will only be available as numismatic products from the U.S. Mint and from secondary sellers who buy them from the Mint.

The Mint plans to offer unmixed quantities of circulation-quality Presidential dollars at premiums above face value in various ordering options, with Arthur Presidential dollar rolls being offered beginning at noon Eastern Daylight Time April 5. ¦

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