US Coins

Monday Morning Brief for April 16, 2018

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, left, congratulates David J. Ryder April 11 after administering the oath of office for Ryder as the 39th director of the United States Mint. Holding a Bible at center is Ryder’s wife, Margaret Mary, who is, coincidentally, nicknamed Monie.

Color image courtesy of U.S. Department of the Treasury; background image of Philadelphia Mint from Coin World files.

Now that the United States Mint has a real director — one nominated by the president, confirmed by the Senate, and sworn into office — what will he do that changes the bureau and the collector customers it serves?

Ryder brings to the office a wealth of experience, including a prior stint as Mint director during the presidency of George H.W Bush. He also has practical experience, acquired while leading a company that manufactures and supplies covert and forensic security features for the authentication of currency, value documents and products.

Both of those areas of expertise are important in today’s minting business. Ryder is no political appointee selected simply to recognize service to the president who nominated him. And he brings to the Mint a level of knowledge in an area that the United States Mint has neglected and even claimed was no big deal — the counterfeiting of the Mint’s precious metals coins.

Regular readers of my editorials in Coin World know that I have criticized the Mint bureaucracy for its head-buried-in-the-sand approach to a problem that everyone else in the coin community recognizes as a serious problem that requires a serious response from the government. Counterfeit coins are a problem for this country and the collector community in particular. 

Thanks to the work of others in the numismatic community, namely those who work on behalf of the Industry Council for Tangible Assets’ Anti-Counterfeiting Task Force, two government agencies — the Secret Service and the Customs and Border Protection, are now more aware of the problems and seem to be taking steps to do something meaningful about them.

Now it is time for David Ryder to make sure that the U.S. Mint steps up and starts to take this issue seriously. 

We have hit pause on our Monday Morning Brief videos. They will return later this year.


Community Comments