Top Official Coin Sales: Market Overwhelmingly Chooses Silver

With the results finally out, the market overwhelmingly chooses to purchase official silver coins over gold.  I was patiently waiting for the Austrian Mint to publish their 2013 Annual Report releasing the gold and silver Philharmonic sales for the year.

Unfortunately, the Austrian Mint’s 2013 Annual Report will not be released until July, however, their Director of Marketing and Sales providing me the figures on the total gold and silver sales for 2013.  I received the figure for the silver Philharmonics but only a total amount of gold sold by the mint… including other coins and bars.  So, I estimated their 2013 gold Philharmonic sales.

According to all the data released by the Official Mints, here are the top 5 gold coin sales:

Top 5 Official Gold Coin Sales 2013 NEW

The Gold Maple Leaf sales took first place at 1,140,000 oz while the Gold Eagle came in second at 856,500 oz, followed by an estimated 750,000 oz of South African Krugerrands, 544,000 oz of Gold Philharmonics, and 460,082 Gold Pandas.

The total top 5 Official Gold coins sales were 3,750,582 oz.  Of course this was not the only gold sold by these official mints as other gold bullion, bars and numismatics were purchased as well.

For instance, the Austrian Mint sold a total of 1,388,700 oz of gold bullion and coin products in 2013 up from 1,020,900 oz in 2012.

Now, let’s compare official gold coin sales to silver.  In 2013, the top 5 official coin sales topped 98 million oz.

Top 5 Official Silver Coin Sales 2013

The U.S. mint came in first place by selling 42.6 million Silver Eagles, while Canadian Maples came in second at 28.2 million oz followed by 14.5 million Philharmonics, 8 million (est) Silver Pandas and 5.3 million in Australian Kookaburra’s, Koala’s and Lunar Silver Snake sales.

Total of the top 5 official silver coin sales were 98.7 million.  Again, these figures represent their top-selling official coins.  This does not include other silver bullion coin and numismatic sales.

Thus, the market purchased 27 times more official silver coins than official gold coins in 2013.

With a high ratio of 27 to 1 set last year, 2014 may break that record in flying colors.  So far, the U.S. Mint sold 19.8 million Silver Eagles compared to 193,000 oz of Gold eagles.  This is 102 to 1 ratio.

I would imagine Silver Maple sales are probably just as strong as the Silver Eagles.  As soon at the Royal Canadian Mint releases their Q1 2014 report, I will update their Gold & Silver Maple sales.

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22 Comments on "Top Official Coin Sales: Market Overwhelmingly Chooses Silver"

  1. I find it interesting that the Canadians are dominating the gold bullion market. They do have the better coin though.

    Also, I sent you an email of this interesting pattern the other day, but since you never got back to me I figured that I didn’t explain it well enough.

    By fitting an exponential curve line through the bull run, there is a very distinctive pattern as you can see in these images. Congruous patterns and swings along the trend line that occur every 2-2.5 years. A series of trading above the line followed by a series below.

    exponentially growing volatility

    Massive up and down swings every time the trend line is crossed. There have been 4 crossings of the line (the trend line is a little off so it looks like there are more crossings) which define the trading periods.

    The blue area is the estimated “next crossing” based on previous periods (2-2.58 yrs)

    • SilverHawk | May 13, 2014 at 2:31 am |

      Gold Maple Better coin?

      This from Wikipedia:
      Some dealers have complained about the production quality of the Gold Maples.The softness of 24 karat gold combined with the Gold Maples’ milled edge, clear field around the Queen and the tube storage supplied, means that the coins easily show handling marks. This is a standard problem with pure gold.

      The American Gold Eagle weighs 1.0909 ounce. One ounce of pure 24 karat and .0909 base metals for durability.

      I’ll take the American Coin over the Canadian one, any day.

      • Cannonfodder | May 13, 2014 at 8:40 am |

        When I shop for durability, I always look for Chinese made, gold plated tungsten.

      • Outlookingin | May 13, 2014 at 10:26 am |

        Please check your facts. eg:

        American Gold Eagle;

        91.67% Au, 3% Ag, 5.33% Cu @ 22 karat and a gross weight of 1.0909 troy oz.

        Canadian Gold Maple since its inception contains 99.99% gold.

        • They both have 1 oz of gold in them overall. The 22k gold pieces are more durable but they are also more difficult to ship internationally w/o tax or fee.

      • For clarification the American Gold Eagle is a 22 karat coin, containing one ounce of gold alloyed with .0909 base metal.

    • I’m with you, Brendan.

      The Singapore government imposes a 7% tax on AGEs because they are not considered ‘investment grade bullion’ according to their criteria. So the fact that they contain the same 1oz of gold as CGMs is a moot point. They are more expensive here than Maples, even before the tax is added.

      Also a moot point is the softness of the 24ct gold Maple. These are not numismatics, so why be worried about a few minting imperfections or handling & shipping marks?

      I buy for wealth preservation and the possible investment potential. Based on that, Maples are the better buy, or if you like, the ‘better coin’.

  2. ‘I find it interesting that the Canadians are dominating the gold bullion market. They do have the better coin though.’

    Thank US tax laws

    • Outlookingin | May 12, 2014 at 11:06 pm |

      Could it be purity?

      AGE @ 22 ct or 91.67% gold content


      CML @ 24 ct or 99.99% gold content

      Which would you choose to buy?

      • I would say that gold is more useful in its industrial form when it is pure. I might add that further refining would be necessary to bring US Eagles back to the most pure form of gold. So, I personally would go for the most pure gold coin, that being the Canadian Maple Leaf. If you care about the image quality of the coin, then the US Eagle should be your choice.

  3. Good morning!

    I just want to say that there is nothing royal at the Austrian Mint AG. The Austrian royals disappeared after WWI back in 1918. Since then Austria is a “democracy”.

  4. Apolitical Blues | May 13, 2014 at 4:53 am |

    While it is obvious that silver is outselling gold coins, I find it odd that no one has mentioned the fact that silver is the poor mans gold. Who can afford to buy gold that is 66 times more expensive than silver. I fail to see how more silver sales is a surprise to anyone knowing the industrial uses, the shortages of physical metal, price suppression and the impending fiat crash of the US dollar. Even if you only had a couple of grey cells living next to each other you could see the need for covering your ass…ets.

    BTW how in the world can miners sell so cheap with the price of energy going thru the roof?

    • I’ve personally always feared that the opposite is true … that silver is valued correctly for the most part and gold will come down to meet the 15:1 ratio again at some point. I always hear people talking about silver meeting gold at the 15:1 ratio, but can’t it also go the way I fear? Am I missing something or are people forgetting about the opposite reality?

      • Constantine Mavridis | May 14, 2014 at 1:01 am |

        Nobody is forgetting the opposite (you say) ‘reality’. Money supplies around the world are exploding so most people who pay attention and are bullish on Precious Metals believe that the far more likely scenario would be that silver, given its multitude of uses, the fact that most silver has been discarded in industrial production, and the fact that silver is affordable to a wider group of investors, will grow relative to gold. I don’t see how public holdings of gold can be dishoarded (“loaned out”) in enough quantities to get it down to about 20% of its production cost, which is what you’re suggesting. Like it or not, there are huge portions of the global population that are very comfortable with holding gold and they’re not going anywhere despite the overtures of the western elites running their rapidly deteriorating economies.

  5. RE: “BTW how in the world can miners sell so cheap with the price of energy going thru the roof?”

    ANSWER: because making money for their shareholders is NOT what is a priority –

    making a big salary for THEMSELVES is.

    that and supplying metal to the market to insure that the price does not rise.

    miners are the willing stooges of the banking cartel

    • Max Meister | May 14, 2014 at 7:14 am |

      To me that makes no sense. How can CEO’s of mining companies get horrendous Bonuses in a business environment where the mines sell their Silver at a loss. I somewhat doubt that this is the case. Nevertheless it is a fact that the global mining output increased in spite of the price slump during the last tree years. From an economical point of view that makes no sense whatsoever unless you dig a bit deeper. As we know about 70% of the Silver is mined by not primary Silver miners. These mines usually make their money with base metals mainly copper, lead and zinc. If you check the supply/demand charts of these metals you will notice that they are very volatile but overall in a steady uptrend since years. So that leads me to the conclusion that the non primary Silver miners just don’t really care about the silver price. They just mined Silver as a by-product and as they mined more base metals they also increased the amount of Silver as a consequence. So i would assume that only the primary Silver miners are actually suffering the price slump in Silver but even when some of them would have to shutdown operation, it wouldn’t be enough to cause a Silver shortage short to medium term. So bearing that in mind i’m not too optimistic for Silver at the moment.

  6. Steve, thank you for another good write-up.
    Do the gold figures also include fractional gold, or just the 1-oz gold Maples & Eagles?
    The reason I am asking, is unless we are looking at total weight of PM’s sold, this could skew the numbers since they do not sell fractional silver Maples & Eagles.

  7. These are the numbers for the big mints. Does anyone know what the numbers are for rounds and 1-100 ounce bars. Personally I buy way more of these.

  8. Hi Steve, there is another big mint out there, the Istambul mint.
    Yearly figures are published on
    For 2012 their mintage is 1.3 million oz according to page 9
    with bars minted on top of that.
    The Isambul mint has a website in english but I did not find anything useful there.
    In an older Zerohedge comment “2517935 JOYFUL” stated [my edits where I took stuff that is not relevant here:]
    The mint produces coins n bars…the demand has been shifting to bars increasingly over the last three years…therefore the Mint’s output has been a combination of coins n bars…
    the Ziynet is 1.607 gr fine…the coins are minted in 91.1(22k)

    The Turkish State Mint has issued 134 million Meskuk and Ziynet gold bullion coins (13 million ounces equals about 405 metric tonnes), making them the world’s best-selling gold bullion coins over the past decade.

    The Turkish State Mint is unusual in that any company or private individual can ask it to mint a nominated size of Meskuk or Ziynet provided there is a minimum order of 1 kg of the nominated size of coin, and larger orders are in multiples of 1 kg. In addition, the Mint does not stock or sell the coins. It mints coins only when approved kilobars (99.5% gold purity) are supplied by the entity placing the order – delivery of the coins occurring within two working days.
    The Mint covers its minting costs for most coin sizes by retaining a part of each kilobar supplied by the ordering entity.
    integrity of the gold market here is unreally real, compared to the shenanigans of Camp Fema … some things just be what they are…outside the Euro-merikan prison zone…

    I could go on, but I see my good bud & personal censor e-recep be in the house…I better shut up or I’ll get my wrist slapped for some grammatical eroor….>:\ yu want to no moor bout buyin turkish gold, msg me.

    • Gunther,

      Thanks for the info on the Turkish Mint. However, I am familiar with the Turkish Mint and its huge selling Meskuk and Ziynet gold coins. While the Turkish Mint does sell more gold oz a year than the Maples or Eagles, the overwhelming majority of the Meskuks and Ziynets are sold to the Turkish peoples and other former Ottoman Empire countries such as Syria, Libya, Iran, Jordan, Bulgaria and etc.

      I plan on including the information on the Turkish Mint gold coins in a Report. Even though the Turkish Mint does produce a lot of these gold coins, the king official gold coin is still the South African Krugerrand. The Rand Mint produced over 6 million oz of Krugerrands in 1978 and over 50 million oz of these coins since 1970.

      Data from


  9. WhatsUpDoc1958 | May 13, 2014 at 7:00 pm |

    Continuing to wonder how much of those India silver imports of 5,478 to 6,125 metric tonnes were used for investment purposes. I am assuming that Indians invest using jewelry and crockery (silverware) in much the same way that the Chinese invest in gold using investment grade gold jewelry.

    Is there any way to shed any light on how much of the imported silver the Indians used for investment?

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