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U.S. gold coin sales surge after historic sell-off

April 19, 2013 in Coins, Gold, Gold Coins, Investing, Precious Metals, USA Coins

By Frank Tang. April 17th, 2013. (http://www.reuters.com)

(Reuters) – U.S. gold coins have been flying off dealers’ shelves this week as retail investors snapped up bargains since the metal’s historic plunge in price.

The spike in gold coin sales reflects a desire among mom-and-pop investors to have physical metal as a store of value in troubled economic times.

In contrast, retail and institutional investors have fled gold exchange-traded funds and futures contracts in recent months as fears of inflation have waned. Gold is seen as a hedge against inflation.

Sales of the American Eagle gold bullion coins totaled a whopping 77,000 ounces in just two days, exceeding the entire month of March, when dealers sold 62,000 ounces.

“We haven’t had two back-to-back days like this since 2008 after the collapse of Lehman Brothers,” said David Beahm, vice president at New Orleans-based coin dealer Blanchard & Co.

Beahm said that one customer bought an entire 500-ounce gold “monster box” usually delivered by the U.S. Mint to coin dealers which then sell the 1-ounce coins individually to customers.

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