US Coins

Sales fall for bronze medals after 2021 price rise

U.S. Mint customers preferred the 1.3125-inch bronze medal (left) for President Obama’s first term over that for his second term. The Donald J. Trump Presidential medal was the top seller of 2021.

Images courtesy of the United States Mint.

The U.S. Mint’s decision to substantially raise the prices in 2021 on its bronze medals for the first time in 11 years had a profound effect on sales of some of the medals.

At Coin World’s request, the U.S. Mint provided a listing of the sales of all of its medals from its product catalog for calendar years 2019, 2020 and 2021.

The accompanying chart provides recorded sales for the 20 most popular medals offered by the bureau. The designation N/A indicates the medal issued was not offered for sale during a specified year.

On Jan. 1, 2021, the prices for 3-inch bronze medals more than quadrupled, to $160, from the $39.95 charged in 2020 and 2019.

The prices for the 1.3125-inch and 1.5-inch bronze medals nearly tripled, to $20, from $6.95.

The 1.3125-inch diameter size is used for the smaller Presidential medals and some other topical medals.

The top sales recorded for any medal was the 2021 sales of 3,681 of the 1.3125-inch Donald J. Trump Presidential medal.

Sales of the 1.3125-inch first-term medal for President Obama went from 2,356 in 2019 to 2,361 in 2020 when the medal price was $6.95, but dropped to 1,035 in 2021 when the price tripled.

Second-term Obama small medal sales were affected the same way, going from 1,660 in 2019 to 1,682 in 2020, but dropping to 715 in 2021.

The U.S. Mint uses two different bronze compositions for its collector medals.

The 1.3125-inch medals are made from a composition of 95% copper and 5% zinc.

For all 3-inch bronze medals and for 1.5-inch bronze duplicates of congressional gold medals, a composition of 90% copper and 10% zinc is used.

United States Mint Bronze Medal Sales 2019-2021

Description

2021 sales*

2020 sales

2019 sales



U.S. Marine Corps Bicentennial 3-inch

104

506

1,072

U.S. Army Bicentennial 3-inch

101

630

765

U.S. Navy Bicentennial

132

481

1,345

Fort Knox Bullion Depository 1.3125-inch

128

126

171

Martin Luther King, Coretta Scott King
1.5-inch

430

712

686

Martin Luther King, Coretta Scott King
3-inch

10

138

191

Barack Obama
Presidential, 1.3125-inch, First Term

1,035

2,361

2,356

Barack Obama
Presidential, 1.3125-inch, Second Term

715

1,682

1,660

Barack Obama
Presidential, 3-inch, First Term

57

295

482

Barack Obama
Presidential, 3-inch Second Term

52

327

359

Tuskegee Airmen 3-inch

133

235

200

Tuskegee Airmen 1.5-inch

2,020

863

1,217

Abraham Lincoln Presidential,
1.3125-inch

252

366

577

Theodore Roosevelt Presidential,
1.3125-inch

167

355

364

Doolittle Tokyo Raiders, 3-inch

50

199

237

Doolittle Tokyo Raiders, 1.5-inch

398

753

895

Monuments Men, 3-inch

1

173

57

Monuments Men, 1.5-inch

114

2,415

464

Donald J. Trump Presidential, 1.3125-inch

3,681

N/A

N/A

Donald J. Trump Presidential, 3-inch

736

N/A

N/A

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