While it may seem obvious to most, 2021 will likely go down as one of the more expense years for coin collecting. That is particularly true for those of us who buy from the United States Mint. There are a few reasons for this of course which I will go into. But, if you are looking at your coin collecting budget and wondering “what the hell happened?”… yeah, you are not alone.
One of the first reasons this year has been so expensive is the price of bullion. Silver, gold, and platinum have all seen highs that they have not enjoyed in decades. That has, in large part, been driven by the COVID-19 pandemic as investors and collectors both looked to precious metals as an alternative or addition to their wealth portfolios. That, in turn, has made 2021 a great year to sell off excess precious metals in your portfolio or collection as you likely would see high profits and gains.
From the United States Mint’s perspective, they too have been subject to these higher prices. The Mint buys millions of ounces of gold and silver each year and while they do get favorable pricing, they still are subject to the exact same price hikes that you and me see. The Mint, of course, turns that around in the form of higher prices to you and me and products that have gold and silver.
This problem is not unique to the United States Mint by-the-by. The Royal Mint in England, the Royal Canadian Mint in Canada, and the South African Mint have all seen higher prices on purchases of bullion and increases in numismatic product prices to collectors.
The second significant reason that coin collecting in 2021 has been so expensive is the number of those bullion products that the United States Mint offered this year. Effectively, the Mint offered double the normal American Eagle products in 2021. There were the gold and silver Type-1 (inaugural design) releases early in the year, then from mid-year onward, were the Type-2 designs. That meant for collectors double the cost – on top of increased prices for bullion. Then there were the incredibly popular – and 90% silver – 2021 Morgan and 2021 Peace Dollar releases. Those coins were some of the most anticipated releases by the Mint in the past several years and all should out incredibly fast (with some fun website challenges to boot).
Lastly, don’t forget the silver commemoratives that the Mint released this year. This is particularly true of the Christa McAuliffe silver dollars. That release has been one of the more popular commemorative releases by the Mint in the past several years.
Add all this up and your wallet took a bit of a pounding this year.
The good news is that there should be relieve in 2022. While there will be the normal commemoratives, American Eagles and silver-based Proof Sets released, there won’t be a doubling of bullion coin releases like we saw this year.
So if you are wincing as you look at your coin collecting budget being smashed in 2021 – or getting a little bit of side eye from your partner – 2022 should bring some better budget news.