The United States Mint has been producing American Eagle bullion coins since 1986. They come in gold, silver, and platinum and while they are minted in different denominations, they are valued and sold based upon the actual metal content of each coin. They are also mass-produced, so scarcity does not factor into the pricing.
Because of their affordability, the American Eagle Silver Dollar seems to be the coin of choice for most coin enthusiasts and investors, with sales last year reaching over $34.6 million according to the US Mint, and 2011 is on pace to be an even better year.
Interestingly, if you live in Utah, you might be able to use your silver dollar coin to purchase approximately $40 worth of goods or services (based upon today’s silver prices). The state of Utah is the first state to pass a law called The Legal Tender Act of 2011, which encourages the use of precious metal coins, valued at their “intrinsic” worth and not their “face” value (bullion coins are traditionally printed with an arbitrary face value, which is often much less than the value of the metal contained in the coin).
Most view the new legislation as little more than symbolic, but there are those who see it as a first step toward legalizing the minting of Utah’s own currency.
While several other states have considered passing similar legislation, it seems unlikely that any (or at least many) merchants in any state will accept precious metals as legal tender. The logistics alone (weighing each coin or bar, assessing purity etc.) would be a nightmare!
Here at Manhattan Gold and Silver, we offer an alternative to using your bullion coins to try and make actual purchases. We can offer you payment for the precious metal in your bullion coins based on the London daily fixing. Visit us in the Diamond District in NYC, or online at mgsrefining.com.