Gold Hoarders Cause Mint Stoppage

The U.S. Mint has temporarily halted sales of its American Buffalo 24-carat gold one-ounce bullion coins because "inventories have been depleted," the Mint said.

The coin sold for $800 on the Mint site.

The Mint can't keep up with demand from panicky investors looking for something -- anything -- that seems safe during the current crisis.

The price of gold has risen in recent weeks, topping $920 per ounce briefly today as concerns rose over the passage of the $700 billion Wall Street bailout and subsequent fears about a further stock market drop.

As of Wednesday, the Mint had sold 164,000 24-carat gold coins this year, which is nearly 30,000 more than during all of 2007.

The Mint had to suspend sales of its American Eagle one-once gold coins on Aug. 15, restarting sales later in the month under an allocation program. The Mint will soon do the same for its buffalo coins.

We would say the buffalo coin has gone the way of the buffalo, except there's plenty of buffaloes around these days. Eagles, too.

Wait a minute -- we've got a genius business idea! Yesterday, Jessup-based bedmaker Classic Sleep Products offered to deliver 535 free mattresses to Congress so lawmakers could sleep on the Hill and work 'round-the-clock to hammer out a bill.

The rush on gold coins has made clear that investors are looking for a safe place to put their money. We suggest Classic Sleep rebrand their mattresses as "savings devices," which no doubt would jump-start the entire bedding sector.

-- Frank Ahrens

September 26, 2008; 3:35 PM ET  | Category:  business
Previous: Dems' 'Discussion Draft' of Bailout Bill Already Changing | Next: Markets Surge at Close


Please email us to report offensive comments.

Wouldn't it be even better if "THEY" listened to what we are saying, and that "THEY" know we do not want this at all.

Posted by: Annonymous | September 26, 2008 3:29 PM

I hope 'They' don't listen to 'us' - a population more interested in 'AMERICA'S GOT TALENT' and 'Football Night in America' than in spending the time to understand this crisis.

Posted by: JkR | September 26, 2008 4:13 PM

The problem is that the bailout will only delay the inevitable. If you ran your household the way the government runs this country, you would be bankrupt and sued by every creditor there is.

What do you think will happen when America goes bankrupt? Who will bail out the government? The markets must be allowed to correct themselves and the Fed needs to be prevented from inflating the money supply!

Posted by: Austrian Economics 101 | September 26, 2008 5:00 PM

May God and Allah (same guy) bless the United States of America. And may the politicians become statesmen and remember why they are in Washington and what a great country this could be.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 26, 2008 5:32 PM

...just don't put them in safe deposit boxes...went to my first box auction not too long ago...they were selling gold by the ziplock bag full...

Posted by: Anonymous | September 26, 2008 5:55 PM

"Gold Hoarders?" I think you have it wrong here. Hoarders do not waste their time with coins, they are the ones who buy as many 1-kilo bars of gold as they can. The coins are for investors who range from the "hard working person" to the "low six figure income person". But whether it is in coin form or kilo sized form, everyone should buy gold while you can afford it.

Posted by: thowze | September 26, 2008 6:11 PM

Wouldn't it be easier just to buy exchange traded fund GLD that is essentially gold bullions? Most people are so backwards.

Posted by: Nick | September 26, 2008 6:27 PM

Wasn't that Cheney and George Soros I saw sneaking out of the back of the Mint (their bearers laden down with bags of gold coins) and setting sail for Monaco on Trump's yacht? Weren't those The Girls Next Door flashing and mooning on deck?

Posted by: sawargos | September 26, 2008 8:29 PM

come on - who is hoarding what here?
wake up people! its the government that is actually hoarding the gold here; bernanke, paulson, bush and company are inflating away the value of the dollar. there is a currency crisis that is coming that will make the mortgage disaster look like a picnic.

don't ever, ever trust the government

Posted by: pjnNCA | September 26, 2008 9:06 PM

Nick, Wake Up! GLD is paper-based Gold and will fail along with all the other phony paper investments. Get the real thing as it is no one else's liability.

Frank Ahrens/Post Editors, Gold Hoarders? They are simply people scared that their hard-earned savings will soon be inflated away. Why call them disparaging names? Are you jealous of their foresight?

Posted by: GOLDsavesU | September 27, 2008 3:43 AM

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