WASHINGTON — The American Eagle, the first general-circulation U.S. gold coin to be minted in more than 50 years, went on sale today to bulk purchasers, and officials reported brisk business.
Treasury Department officials said that in the first two hours they processed orders for 232,000 ounces of gold, with 18 of 25 primary distributors placing orders.
The gold coins, which have a face value of $50, $25, $10 and $5, contain between one-tenth and one troy ounce of gold. Their actual price will fluctuate with the price of gold on the open market.
U.S. Mint Director Donna Pope stressed that the new coins are not aimed at collectors but at people who want to invest in gold now that new imports of the South African krugerrand are banned.
The coins will be widely available by Nov. 1 through local coin shops, precious metal dealers, banks, brokerage firms and other financial institutions.