Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. TESLA! Cathy Wood ARK Funds Bubble BURSTS! - 12th May 21
2.Stock Market Entering Early Summer Correction Trend Forecast - 10th May 21
3.GOLD GDX, HUI Stocks - Will Paradise Turn into a Dystopia? - 11th May 21
4.Crypto Bubble Bursts! Nicehash Suspends Coinbase Withdrawals, Bitcoin, Ethereum Bear Market Begins - 16th May 21
5.Crypto Bubble BURSTS! BTC, ETH, XRP CRASH! NiceHash Seizes Funds on Account Halting ALL Withdrawals! - 19th May 21
6.Cathy Wood Ark Invest Funds Bubble BURSTS! ARKK, ARKG, Tesla Entering Severe Bear Market - 13th May 21
7.Stock Market - Should You Be In Cash Right Now? - 17th May 21
8.Gold to Benefit from Mounting US Debt Pile - 14th May 21
9.Coronavius Covid-19 in Italy in August 2019! - 13th May 21
10.How to Invest in HIGH RISK Tech Stocks for 2021 and Beyond - Part 2 of 2 - 18th May 21
Last 7 days
Tech Stocks Bubble Valuations 2000 vs 2021 - 25th Sep 21
Will Biden’s Neo-Populist Economic Doctrine Support Gold? - 25th Sep 21
Markets Deflationary Winds Howling - 25th Sep 21
Crude Oil Price Piercing the Sky: Where Will We See the Black Gold by Xmas? - 25th Sep 21
Cryptocurrency policy choices and consequences - 25th Sep 21
The Next Emma Raducanu UK Tennis Star Pleasing the Crowds at Millhouses Park Sheffield - 25th Sep 21
Stock Market Rescued by the Fed Again? - 24th Sep 21
Are Amazon Best Cheap Memory Foam Mattresses Any good? Bedzonline £69 4ft Small Double ECO Example - 24th Sep 21
Evergrande not a Minsky Moment - 24th Sep 21
UK Energy Firms Scamming Customers Out of Their Best Fixed Rate Gas Tariffs - 23rd Sep 21
Global Stock Markets Topped 60 Days Before the US Stocks Peaked - 23rd Sep 21
Should School Children be Jabbed with Pfizer Covid-19 Vaccine To Foster Herd Immunity? - UK - 23rd Sep 21
HOW TO SAVE MONEY ON CAR INSURANCE - 23rd Sep 21
Stock Market FOMO Hits September Brick Wall - Evergrande China's Lehman's Moment - 22nd Sep 21
Trading Crude Oil ETFs in Foreign Currencies: What to Focus On - 22nd Sep 21
URGENT - Crypto-trader event - 'Bitcoin... back to $65,000?' - 22nd Sep 21
Stock Market Time to Buy the Dip? - 22nd Sep 21
US Dollar Bears Are Fresh Out of Honey Pots - 22nd Sep 21
MetaTrader 5 Features Every Trader Should Know - 22nd Sep 21
Evergrande China's Lehman's Moment, Tip of the Ice Berg in Financial Crisis 2.0 - 21st Sep 21
The Fed Is Playing The Biggest Game Of Chicken In History - 21st Sep 21
Focus on Stock Market Short-term Cycle - 21st Sep 21
Lands End Cornwall In VR360 - UK Holidays, Staycations - 21st Sep 21
Stock Market FOMO Hits September CRASH Brick Wall - Dow Trend Forecast 2021 Review - 20th Sep 21
Two Huge, Overlooked Drains on Global Silver Supplies - 20th Sep 21
Gold gets hammered but Copper fails to seize the moment - 20th Sep 21
New arms race and nuclear risks could spell End to the Asian Century - 20th Sep 21
Stock Market FOMO Hits September Brick Wall - Dow Trend Forecast 2021 Review - 19th Sep 21
Dow Forecasting Neural Nets, Crossing the Rubicon With Three High Risk Chinese Tech Stocks - 18th Sep 21
If Post-1971 Monetary System Is Bad, Why Isn’t Gold Higher? - 18th Sep 21
Stock Market Shaking Off the Taper Blues - 18th Sep 21
So... This Happened! One Crypto Goes From "Little-Known" -to- "Top 10" in 6 Weeks - 18th Sep 21
Why a Financial Markets "Panic" May Be Just Around the Corner - 18th Sep 21
An Update on the End of College… and a New Way to Profit - 16th Sep 21
What Kind of Support and Services Can Your Accountant Provide? Your Main Questions Answered - 16th Sep 21
Consistent performance makes waste a good place to buy stocks - 16th Sep 21
Dow Stock Market Trend Forecasting Neural Nets Pattern Recognition - 15th Sep 21
Eurozone Impact on Gold: The ECB and the Phantom Taper - 15th Sep 21
Fed To Taper into Weakening Economy - 15th Sep 21
Gold Miners: Last of the Summer Wine - 15th Sep 21
How does product development affect a company’s market value? - 15th Sep 21
Types of Investment Property to Become Familiar with - 15th Sep 21

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

How to Protect your Wealth by Investing in AI Tech Stocks

US Mint Running Out of Silver (and Excuses)

Commodities / Gold and Silver 2010 Sep 09, 2010 - 04:51 AM GMT

By: Tarek_Saab

Commodities

Best Financial Markets Analysis ArticleIn Title 31 of the US Code, the United States Mint is required by law to supply "in quantities sufficient to meet public demand, one dollar silver bullion coins of specified size, weight, and design." (Source) This law is widely referenced, and I have criticized the US Mint in the past when it fails to meet consumer demand because of poor planning, despite the availability of silver.


DOMESTIC SILVER SUPPLY

However, there is an incredible amount of confusion about a second law which allegedly states that the US Mint must supply its silver "blanks" from domestic resources. At present, two of these resources are the Sunshine Mint and Stern-Leach. On June 5th, 2008, during the first massive Silver Eagle shortage, the director of the US Mint published the following statement:

"By law, the United States Mint's American Eagle silver bullion coins must meet exacting specifications and must be composed of newly mined silver acquired from domestic sources. The United States Mint will continue to make every effort to increase its acquisition of silver bullion blanks that meet these specifications and requirements to address continuing high demand in the silver bullion coin market." (Source)

This interpretation of the law is extremely relevant because Silver American Eagle sales are now on the verge of surpassing total domestic silver mine production.

*2010 data assumes flat domestic silver production from 2009 YoY. Silver Eagles sales figures are linear estimates based on 23.6M coins sold through August 2010, with no market assumptions. Sources Silver Production: USGS.gov Silver Eagle Sales: USMINT.gov

WHAT DOES THE LAW ACTUALLY SAY?

However, many contend that the 'domestic supply' law doesn't actually exist for silver, but has been confused with a different law on the books for gold, PUBLIC LAW 99-185—DEC. 17, 1985 99 STAT. 1179.

“(4) The Secretary shall acquire gold for the coins issued under section 5112(i) of this title by purchase of gold mined from natural deposits in the United States, or in a territory or possession of the United States, within one year after the month in which the ore from which it is derived was mined."

There is no mention of silver in this law. In fact, the only mention we found for silver supply chain requirements comes from Title 31 U.S.C. § 5112 : US Code - Section 5112: Denominations, specifications, and design of coins:

"(C) Sources of bullion. - The Secretary shall obtain silver for minting coins under subparagraph (B) from available resources, including stockpiles established under the Strategic and Critical Materials Stock Piling Act."

With respect to the law on the books for gold, the phrase "available resources" is somewhat ambiguous. Are there any qualifiers to an "available resource"?

This ambiguity is so serious that in 2002 Representative Frank Lucas of Oklahoma proposed the Silver Eagle Coin Continuation Act of 2002 (H.R. 4846) to the House of Representatives "to amend title 31, United States Code, to clarify the sources of silver for bullion coins, and for other purposes."

On June 25, 2002, this bill passed the house by a count of 417 Ayes to 1 No (16 Abstain) and moved onto the Senate as S. 2594 [107th]: Support of American Eagle Silver Bullion Program Act.

However, the Senate referred this legislation to the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs, where it has since remained, and has never been signed into law.

So where does that leave the situation? It apparently leaves us with an ambiguous law that is open to interpretation by the only party with the authority to make one - the Treasury Department.

We will discover the ramifications soon enough. If the United States Mint decides not to source in the open market or tap into strategic reserves, the data would indicate that there will be extreme domestic shortages. If they do decide to source from the open market, well, who knows? . . . What happens when the US Mint begins buying physical bullion on the open market?

'Til next time, that's my Saab Story.

By Tarek Saab

Website: trustedbullion.com E-mail: tarek@trustedbullion.com

Tarek Saab is an entrepreneur, speaker, and nationally syndicated author. He is the founder of Saab & Company Inc., which owned the online bullion business, Guardian Commodities, before it was acquired by Trusted Bullion in August 2010. An avid precious metals enthusiast, his column, Saab Stories, is published on this site and syndicated on many others.

Tarek rose to fame as a popular contestant on Season Five of The Apprentice with Donald Trump.  He has been prominently featured in such magazines as Us Weekly, TV Guide, People, Enigma, In Touch Weekly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Fort Worth Business Journal, Digital Gold Currency Magazine, The Mensa Bulletin and numerous other print and online publications.

© 2010 Copyright Tarek Saab - All Rights Reserved
Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisors.


© 2005-2019 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in