Sellout Fallout for 25th Anniversary American Silver Eagle Set

November 4, 2011 by · 30 Comments 

2011 American Silver Eagle Anniversary Set

The buzz is loud for the 25th Anniversary American Silver Eagle Set.

Expected and now realized, the collecting community is abuzz with talk of the commotion surrounding the sellout of the 25th Anniversary American Silver Eagle Set. Two newly developed events on Thursday percolated to the top of collectors’ discussions.

1.) Taking heat from collectors unable to get their hands on a set after the limited 100,000 sold out in mere hours following its launch, the United States Mint has undertaken "an aggressive" review of its release.

2.) For those who were able to order a 25th Anniversary American Silver Eagle Set and now want to flip at least one for a profit, eBay is apparently throwing a wrench into the works.

United States Mint Reviews Release

On the first point, given the frustrations born from customers who attempted or were eventually able place orders for the sets, the United States Mint is essentially trying to say "we hear you." In an email to its customers Thursday, the Mint said:

"We are fully aware of the difficulties many customers encountered last week with the release of the American Eagle 25th Anniversary Set. We would like you to know that we have undertaken an aggressive review of how we brought the product to market so we can better serve all of our customers in the future."

In addition to reviewing forthcoming products to apply lessons learned with the rollout of the 25th Anniversary American Silver Eagle Set, the United States Mint specifically noted the problems customers faced in ordering online and via the phone. On that topic, the Mint said:

"One of the principal sources of frustration was our web and phone order-taking system. As many of you know, we are in the process of updating our order management system. Our current system is very outdated and we recognize that it does not serve our customers well. Accordingly, we recently selected a contractor that will develop and implement our new system — one that will be modern and comparable to other top-rated retail Web sites. Unfortunately, this transition will take some time; we are anticipating that the new system will be in place by fall 2012.

In ending, the Mint reaffirmed its goal to mitigate the type of "inconvenience and frustration" customers encountered through the entire experience, noting customers deserve no less than its full commitment to serve "professionally" and "responsively."

eBay Stops 25th Anniversary American Silver Eagle Set Auctions

With enormous pent-up demand and anticipation building, 25th Anniversary Sets were pre-selling strong before the United States Mint even launched them on Thursday, October 27. The difficulties in placing orders and the resulting sellout in under five hours lifted the set’s appeal, if realized auction prices are any gauge.

While the Mint charged $299.95 for each, secondary market values soared for the sets on eBay. Premiums went up to around twice the Mint’s price — at least. Hundreds were listed, that is until Thursday. During the day messages began appearing on collector forums saying eBay was apparently canceling auctions until sellers had physical possession of the sets. According to postings on numerous numismatic sites, eBay sent the following message, in part, to some of its sellers:

"Because the 2011 25TH SILVER EAGLE ANNIVERSARY SET is in such high demand, requirements have been put in place for 2011 25TH SILVER EAGLE ANNIVERSARY SET sales. It has been reported that the MINT sold out of these within 5 hours.

We understand that some sellers on eBay could have potentially placed their order in time, however we request that these coins are not listed unless they are in the physical possession of the seller. The strict requirement of not listing the item until you have it in your possession also applies to sellers with confirmed orders.

Please wait until the Anniversary set is in your physical possession before listing it for sale."

As another point to the last sentence, eBay also suggested that a unique photo of the set(s) be used for auctions.

The United States Mint is not expected to begin shipping any 25th Anniversary American Silver Eagle Set until the end of next week, or early the next.


30 Responses to “Sellout Fallout for 25th Anniversary American Silver Eagle Set”
  1. Eric Erlendson says:



  2. John T. Dwyer says:

    Coin collecting, much like toy train collecting, has been taken over by speculators and some of those trying to make a quick buck. For some, $299.99 for a set is within reasonable reach. To others, a galaxy away in ever acquiring one. Such is the free enterprise system. First come-First served.
    To the serious collector of coins and other items of numismatic value, greed will always be a serious impediment.
    These sets will be available for sale on E-bay and elsewhere by the quick buck artist. Let us hope their conscience and sense of fair play, never involves a life and death situation.

  3. John says:

    What’s wrong with buying 5 sets then selling 3 of them to cover your cost on the two you are keeping? It’s called the American way–hell that’s how I plan on becoming one of the 1%! Life isn’t fair, coin sales aren’t fair, if you not had multiple Iraqi insurgents shoot at you protecting the American way then shut up and appreciate a country where at least you can own precious metal (so go ahead and trump my statement with that attached–I bet the most dangerous thing you have had happen to you is cutting someone off in traffic–and if you’re in the same boat as me, then God bless you, you are a great American).

  4. lavender63 says:

    Shame, Shame, everyone is entitled to make a profit, but the playing field should be level. The mint blew it. I wondered if there was some hanky panky going on. When the mintage for a product is low, the limt per order should be one. This sounds suspiciously like insider trading, exactly who were these buyers. They were merchants who are going to gouge the coin collector and suck him dry. The mint posted an apology on their website, which was nothing but words. If they are truly sorry for the sloppy way they conducted themselves they will mint more of the anniversary coins. I can’t wait to see who all will be selling these coins and how many they will have for sell. Once again shame shame shame. The Little Poor Coin Collector.

  5. Henry says:

    I would like to say thank you for your services to this country. My son is currently USAF. Your logic on its the American way don’t seem quite right. I work for a living and can’t be sitting at my computer at twelve o’clock and when I get home at four and the Mint is sold out, that don’t seem right. The mint went about this all wrong. It should of been limited to one per household not five. Give 100k a chance not 20k!! It’s the coin collector that makes this all possible not the Mint and for sure not the greedy dealers and the hustler’s on Ebay, so they should be given at least a chance to get one before the people trying to make a fast buck!! I don’t think the American way should be GREED! God bless you and thanks again for your services!!

  6. Keith says:

    Here’s the deal… Mint should have (and should consider even now) limiting one order per household. Once the one/household has been honored, then release the order limitations. That is what the Mint did on other prestigious offers.

    Just saying…

  7. Brent says:

    Fair is the dirtiest four letter word In the English language. Poor little American coin collector who didn’t get what he/she wanted. If it was food or water and meant for your survival is one thing, a gosh darn collectors set is quite another. I can’t believe I’ve deployed for you bunch of whinny brats. Get your priorities straight.

  8. ericgodiers says:

    Well, I’m new to the hobby of Numismatics and ebay. I got in because of the state quarters program. In that short time, I’ve seen how greed and those with the $$$’s have influenced another aspect of our everyday lives. Another aspect of our lives, which included a simple hobby to which we could have introduced our children to, has been corrupted by greed and arrogznce. Shame, shame on the U.S. Mint for creating, no reinforcing, this atmosphere. I’m going to sell my collection (at a fair price) and get out of Numismatics. Again, just like everything else in this once great county, this has been spoiled and corrupted by politics. I’m going to call the mint and tell them how I feel, and I humbly request that those who feel that this is just plain wrong should do the the same. PEACE, and may we all come together and let those in power know enough is enough

  9. alvaro says:

    I hope the flippers on ebay cant sell the sets, will that
    be cool lol, they will be pissed cause they dont want the coins they just want to make a profit. So people dont buy from flippers that will fall in their asses lol. They will be selling to their local coin dealers for melt value lol. Hope the mint mints more for collectors so they dont have to buy from flippers. Will that be funny for flippers opps

  10. Bob says:

    Yes, I agree the mint should have set the limit to one or two per household for the 1st day or week, after that then make them unlimited. Also one way to stop the ebay flippers is that the Mint make more sets, with the above limit. Ouch!!! the flipper says!

  11. nancy b says:

    How many times can the mint say ‘they’re sorry and will learn’. I’m tired of it. Wasn’t it just lately when variations were found in the 5 oz ATB pucks when a lot of 25 was being graded. Gee, how’d that happen when there was a one per limit? There’s Mint deals with the resellers anyway so it’s hopeless for the average person. I too have to work and get home with no hope of ordering these things. I don’t use my work computer for personal business. Half the time I get error messages when I order over the internet and the Mint people have no idea what they mean. It takes years to upgrade a website? I can name any numer of places that have upgraded multiples of times in that time span. I hate to say it but I have been buying a lot of Canadian coins. They are very inovative with design, have low mintages, and offer deals like free shipping and preordering to me, the little guy.

  12. Travelcamel says:

    Please…..bunch of crybabies. You would have bought 5 sets if you had the chance. It wasn’t hard to get thru on the phone. Take your hour lunch break and start calling. I guess feeding your face was more important.
    I got 10 sets and could have gotten 20 more if I was greedy. Yes, I plan to sell some, to cover my costs.
    God bless America. Life isn’t fair… In 10 years most of you won’t remember or care.

  13. Ken says:

    Travelcamel , you’re so full of it. I tried to get through on the phone for 2 and a half hours and finally got an order in on line , and if you placed the order by phone there is no way they let you alone order 10 sets.

  14. Travelcamel says:

    You’re right. I ordered with a friends info. Speed dial took 15 min per order. I got thru a 3 rd time, but didn’t have all my brothers info.
    Hope you got a set or 5

  15. Travelcamel says:

    I. Sending them in to be graded. If not I would sell you a set

  16. SilverRock says:

    Greed is the driving factor behind the Mint sale and “Buyers”. The rules were plainly stated as “a limit of 5 sets per household”. Not all collectors had $1,500 laying around to buy 5 sets. The only reason one would want 5 sets is to make money. Many dealers used underhanded methods to buy more than five sets. Multiple email addys etc. This is really beyond not fair to the average collector who is now without a set, due to not being able to get on the Mint site or get through on phone lines. This is like concert scamming where the promoters sell a zillion tickets when there is limited seating available.The US Mint needs to take a great deal of responsibility for this screw-up and “dealers” need to back down a bit in their greed to make money. All knew this was going to be a hot item and measure should have been taken to run a fair and honest sale.
    Ebay is also at fault for allowing the sale of items that the sealers don’t even have in hand yet, to be allowed to be posted on their site.

  17. Travelcamel says:

    Well this is some payback for the 5 ounce bullion the mint sent to dealers only who jacked up the prices.
    Modern Coin Mart sent emails offering to pay $60 per set over cost and pay shipping. Wait till you see their markup. The market is bringing $700-800 a set and with Christmas coming…..ouch for some..pure joy for others

  18. John says:


    I do agree that it should have been only a 1 per household limit, especially with only 100K avaliable. Luckly the mint in one of the few websites that isn’t blocked at work and it took me 45 minutes to get through. I originally had no intention on buying more than two, but realizing that I could cover my cost by selling the other 3 sets, I got the extra 3. It is keeping my wife off my back for spending $600 more on coins that she sees no value in.

  19. PJ says:

    I could not get through for the entire 4 1/2 hours. So far the best price in the secondary market is $699.95 with free shipping @

  20. keithster says:

    Oline @ 11:50 ET just to be kicked off hours trying with no luck more hours no luck 5;25 only 6 min. to place 3 oders for2+2=1 5;25 ST so still no luck hope not much but still in process maybee for months like the last of the grand canyons hey mint want to make this right how about a comp to all who didnt get in but tried say maybe acopper eagle you must have some old dies laying around heck maybee thatold 2211 reverse die you aint useing anymore you no who we are were on your list just waiting to be canceled that would flip the flippers out they would have to try to get ours how about it mint a free copper eagle for pain and suffering you know who we are

  21. David says:

    Greedy people on one side, cry babies on the other side. I got two sets. One for me one for my brother. You win some you lose some.

  22. bubba says:

    People are complaining about not getting a set. I took off work and spent 4 hours
    before my order finally came through. I knew it would be hot and figured it would sellout in about 4 hours. Would have been better if the mint had a limit of 1 or 2 so more people could get them. Maybe they were trying to generate some excitement. The people that didn’t get one who want one and can afford it can buy on Ebay. The prices will probably continue to go up so even if you pay a higher price now it should be cheaper than it will be in the future. As far as I know, anyone with a phone or internet had an equal chance of getting an order in. A couple of coin companies were offering to buy these at a profit to the buyer before they came out. They basically increased the competition. Collectors might be upset, but I think everyone had a chance if they really wanted one and wanted to take the effort required to get a set or 5. If you missed out, it isn’t the end of the world. There will be more relesaes of coins. It is kind of nice to see a coin set that has a healthy secondary market. If everyone could get a set there wouldn’t be a very good secondary market. It was really frustrating spending 4 hours trying, but was worth it when I got a confirmation number.

  23. not thinking says:

    What a load of crap… If you do not like what the US mint is doing then buy somewhere else. That is the AMERICAN WAY! As stated, many of the foreign coins are doing great, and have tremendous upside. This is the only way to teach the mint and the flippers bye just losing sales! Especially when all these flippers are stuck with 1500 worth of silver, worth only 600. If the secondary market is too high, then buy something else. The price will eventually come down on the product you want, if not you really did not need it. Whoever would of thought we would be looking at a change in some of the current prices realized for some coins now. Let them sell all of it to the secondary market; come 2012, they will see their profits disappear from Taxes, anyway.

  24. Jody Gautier says:


  25. Jay says:

    I was in a Coin store in Canada yesterday they had 10 sets for sale @ $1100.00 this is a bunch of crap.

  26. Tony says:

    Why is it I get an email from the mint notifying me of every “new” product except this one? Dear US Mint, I’m still waiting to find out when these go on sale! I cancelled all my mint subscriptions because they stopped notifying me of the price before they shipped. I have stopped buying mint and proof sets because they always lose value. I stopped buying commemoratives for the same reason, and I think now I will stop adding to my collection of Eagles. I’ve decided that anything less than 50 years old is too new to collect! There’s no way I can order these things at 9 am my time from work. I’d be fired.

  27. vera lands says:


  28. synoptic12 says:


    It really does not stand to reason why you did not receive your set within two hours. We would imagine two hours after 12:00 P:M. If your order was “in process”, you should have received the item. Order numbers 38366xxxx – 38394xxxx, were shipped, or yet to be shipped. Time listed at 4:00 P:M for 38366xxx to 5:00 P:M for 38394xxxx.

  29. Jay Westfall says:

    My order got in the system at 6:17pm on October 27th #38392XXX for one set. I just got the delivery on January 3rd 🙂 Patience rewarded!!

  30. AmericanEagleDrama says:

    Personally my opinion really don’t matter to most any of you but the reality of collecting the Silver Eagle’s has become a real pain. After all now each mint is producing “one” or more of these collectibles each year.
    The five coin sets may be one of those collectibles much like the 1995 W but seriously the mintage is not even close to that nor is the set GOLD like that of the 95 W and thus I see no reason in paying the outlandish prices these people think there going to get for them. Of course some idiots will pay the price, thus keeping the market up for this set. The only true coin worth having out of the whole damn set is the reverse proof and maybe the San Francisco Minted Eagle. Seriously the mints need to keep the coins to a minimal or at least come together each year and make a set with all the same individual coins minted each year. Unlike what there doing this year…two coin San Francisco Set, Philadelphia has minted one also as well as West point and then there is the proofs. The mint is making a killing off those new to collecting.
    For us older collector the price of obtaining and keeping up with the collection of American Silver Dollars has become a market designed only for those that wish to spend more and more money each year for there hobby. Me I’m about fed up with collecting anything any more as the mints have taken all the fun out of it!

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