The numismatic world was treated to the discovery of a new rare variety coin early in 2017 when it was discovered that the U.S. Mint struck a very small number of its flagship American Silver Eagle coins at the Philadelphia Mint beginning in 2015. These coins do not bear a mintmark that identifies where they were struck, so this Silver Eagle variety was previously unknown to collectors.
In general, these types of subsets and special varieties are some of the most prized items in the coin collecting community. It's fairly uncommon, however, for such varieties to pop up in a bullion coin series such as the regular-strike American Silver Eagle.
These are the rarest variety of bullion American Silver Eagles in history. Coin World reaffirms that the "Philadelphia Mint’s mintage of 79,640 American Eagle silver bullion coins is the lowest mintage of the bullion coins from any individual Mint production facility since the series’ introduction in 1986." In fact, no other issue of Silver Eagles even comes remotely close to this minuscule total.
As a reference point, most years, there are tens of millions of Silver Eagles produced. This means that less than 80,000 represents only a small fraction of this total. A higher number of Silver Eagles—in the low millions—were produced at the San Francisco Mint during the time period in question, but these quantities were still far less than the standard annual production of the coin.
The combination of these coins' extremely low mintage and the high demand for the coins has driven premia for the 2015 (P) Silver Eagles much higher. Some of these coins, when graded, are now selling for as much as $700. Comparable but more common ASEs are by contrast sold for between $40 and $60.
Given the incredibly limited number of these coins that are available, it's not unlikely that such premia will continue to rise for 2015 (P) Silver Eagles.
The opinions and forecasts herein are provided solely for informational purposes, and should not be used or construed as an offer, solicitation, or recommendation to buy or sell any product.
Everett has been the head content writer and market analyst at Gainesville Coins since 2013. He has a background in History and is deeply interested in how gold and silver have historically fit into the financial system.