US gold coin sales are plummeting
According to figures from the US Mint sales of American Eagle gold coins – a good indicator of overall gold demand in the US – tumbled in July to 30,000 ounces.
The figure was the the second lowest this year – 21,000 ounces of sales were recorded in March – and down from 48,500 ounces in June.
The comparison with last year is even more startling.
Despite a very strong start to 2014 with 91,500 ounces sold in January, 2014 sales now total 296,000 ounces, that's 56% below the 679,500 ounces sold during the first seven months of 2013. July 2013 sales of more than 50,000 ounces were recorded.
Gold Eagle sales soared following the global financial crisis to top 1.4 million ounces in 2009, but have been declining since to reach 856,000 in 2013.
Sales of 2014 American Eagle silver coins mostly tracked gold bullion sales, but over the last couple of years have been diverging.
Just under 2 million were shipped in July, to bring year to date sales to 26.1 million, below the same period for 2013, but the second highest figure on record.
Silver coin sales exploded last year with annual American Silver Eagle sales soaring to more than 42.6 million. Some 4.4 million were sold in July 2013 alone.
The American Eagle gold and silver were launched in 1986 with more than 20 million ounces of gold and 380 million silver ounces sold.
Image by Mark Dumont