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The curious case of the 1999-W MS gold eagles

hernancortes

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#1
Here is a timely article from PCGS on the subject of these interesting issues:


http://www.pcgs.com/articles/article_view.chtml?artid=6269&universeid=313&type=1

Population reports indicate, barring the discovery of some huge hoard in someone's IRA account, that this coin was struck from one die, in both the case of the $5 and the $10. Eleven years on, and only 2300 total submissions to NGC and PCGS combined for the $10. The '08-w $10, with it's 8,883 published sales, have that many total submissions to NGC and PCGS in two years time. Given the much greater incentive to crossover, or crack-out and re-sumbit a '99-W for a higher grade, to me this indicates that the surviving pop. of the '99-w $10 is far lower than that of the known-key '08-w.
I can't find an older article from PCGS that talks in more detail about the '99-w. In it they made a pretty convincing case that these were struck intentionally by the mint. Mint dies are necessarily under very tight security, & proof and MS coins are actually struck in seperate buildings, this article claimed, which makes it seem extremely unlikely that some employee was able to up & walk off with a die mistakenly.
Anyway an interesting tidbit from Jordan's book is that an entire roll of the $10's that PCGS recieved showed identical die damage on lady liberty. This may help explain why nowhere near 6,000 of these have been found, that they may have scrapped that die early due to the damage.
 
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321AU

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#2

hernancortes

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#3
Apparently the winner has never heard of apmex, they've had a $5 in PCGS MS70 for $6500 for months now...
 

hernancortes

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#4
Though both services have graded the $5 in roughly equal numbers, PCGS has given out only 17 MS70's to NGC's 238. Which would you rather have?
 

321AU

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#5
Ouch!! That guy is going to feel pretty dumb for awhile if he figures that out. I've been thinking of picking up a MS69 but most are going for $500+ and I can't bring myself to spend that much on a $5 gae yet. I'm hesitant because there are no firm #s like the 06,07,08. I see them pretty regular on E%ay. I could sell a 07 and 08 and pick one up. Do you have any Hernando?
 

hernancortes

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#6
I also used to see the problem with the '99W's as being mystery mintage but now I realize the pop. reports speak pretty clearly that they are the least available of all AGE's. The remaining drawback I see is that they are still widely thought of as an "error" coin and error coins are not collected as being crucial to a series. This perception may change who knows. PCGS doesn't help matters by tagging most of them 'error' on the slabs but not all. The other services do not call them errors ---NGC's say 'with w' and ANACS and ICG call them 'struck w/ unfinished proof dies'.
I've got a $10 in a ICG MS69 holder and like alot of ICG stuff frankly it looks overgraded, NGC would probably grade it 68.
 
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321AU

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#7
This is off topic but I'm thinking of selling one of my 08 W $10 Gold Eagles. There is one on auction now that is up over $1600. What do you think? Could they go much higher? I would use the money to reinvest in PMs, not sure what yet.

Update. Auction ended at $1,824.88

230499088314
 
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hernancortes

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#8
Well that is a very strong price, even if that little extra is because of gimmick slab value. 'Early Release', LOL sounds like a 1st sexual encounter...
It's hard for me to be objective as a own a healthy # of these, but there is no denying the rather steady upward march in prices since they went off sale at the mint, & especially since the revised mintage numbers came out last autumn. I see them continuing to pull up slowly for the next several years before they stall out. If you are too heavy in numismatics then there's certainly nothing wrong w/ selling & mulitplying your bullion holdings. What's that saying about no-one ever going broke by booking profits?
 

321AU

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#9
Well that is a very strong price, even if that little extra is because of gimmick slab value. 'Early Release', LOL sounds like a 1st sexual encounter...
It's hard for me to be objective as a own a healthy # of these, but there is no denying the rather steady upward march in prices since they went off sale at the mint, & especially since the revised mintage numbers came out last autumn. I see them continuing to pull up slowly for the next several years before they stall out. If you are too heavy in numismatics then there's certainly nothing wrong w/ selling & mulitplying your bullion holdings. What's that saying about no-one ever going broke by booking profits?
Thanks. I can't make up my mind and while I was looking around I saw a nice 2007 $25 W Unc MS70 GAE and bought it instead of listing the $10 W. I don't need to sell it so I'll wait awhile and see if the price flattens out.

I have about 50% gold bullion 20% silver bullion and 30% modern numis. The numi % keeps going up more because it's increasing faster than the bullion.
 

321AU

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#10
Check this auction.

http://cgi.ebay.com/1999-W-American...em&pt=Coins_US_Individual&hash=item2eac6f6596

1999 was the run up to the Y2K hysteria and there was a great deal of concern about whether or not the computers of the world would function properly when the date changed from December 31, 1999 to January 1, 2000.



Many people bought gold and silver coins so that they would be able to barter if the monetary systems all became unusable.



In late 1999, there was unprecedented demand for smaller denomination American Gold Eagles. In my opinion, the US Mint had run out of regular dies for these coins and because of the demand, reached up on the shelf and utilized some dies that were prepared for Proof Only strikings. They used these dies to make commercial strikings of the $5, 1/10 ounce, and the $10, ¼ ounce coins.



Some people refer to these coins as errors, but I prefer to call them Emergency Issues, like the 1942/41 dimes. Regardless, they are the key issue to the $5 AGE and the $10 AGE collection. Estimated mintages of these coins are in the low thousands, maybe 2500+ for the $5 and 1000+ for the $10.
Here is a finished auction I was watching. PCGS MS68 $405, lowest I've seen lately.
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=260635878577&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT
 
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hernancortes

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#11
Thanks. I can't make up my mind and while I was looking around I saw a nice 2007 $25 W Unc MS70 GAE and bought it instead of listing the $10 W. I don't need to sell it so I'll wait awhile and see if the price flattens out.

I have about 50% gold bullion 20% silver bullion and 30% modern numis. The numi % keeps going up more because it's increasing faster than the bullion.
After flurries of sales last year the '08-W has pretty much disappeared from ebay lately. The flippers have run their course at the different price points. Maybe $1500 average for raw or MS69s, $2000 MS70 will bring out the next round.
 

hernancortes

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#12

321AU

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#13
After flurries of sales last year the '08-W has pretty much disappeared from ebay lately. The flippers have run their course at the different price points. Maybe $1500 average for raw or MS69s, $2000 MS70 will bring out the next round.
I put one of my $10 08 W NGC MS70s up with a $1750 BIN price. I only put it up because I bought a MS70 PCGS for a decent price with BIN and Bing. I'm just trying to trade up for a PCGS.
 

321AU

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#14
The seller is a well-known dealer and longtime hoarder of the '99-w's. I read an essay he wrote a while ago where he claims the '99w's were struck intentionally and are not errors.
What you see in that auction is a very representative sample of the coins --- more $5's than $10's, and relatively few in ultra grades.
He says "Regardless, they are the key issue to the $5 AGE and the $10 AGE collection." But these can never be official Unc W series keys because they were never officially issued, right?
 

hernancortes

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#15
Well I agree technically they are the keys, that there will never be a monster hoard of raw 99w's discovered which will threaten the 08w's. To once again tout Jordans book he points out that submissions to the grading services have steadily dropped for these over the last few years, as have previously undiscovered rolls.
It only really matters what the masses think though, and early on the perception was established that they were error coins. Redbook, Coin Prices and Greysheet all list them as 'unfinished pr dies' or some approximation, so to the uninitiated they take on the look of the error or special issue. I don't know if perception will change but it won't take much new collector attention to drive these higher, since there are so few out there.
 

321AU

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#16
I put one of my $10 08 W NGC MS70s up with a $1750 BIN price. I only put it up because I bought a MS70 PCGS for a decent price with BIN and Bing. I'm just trying to trade up for a PCGS.
This sold in 1 day :-)

I'm keeping an eye out for a decent deal on a 99 W $10 or $5. I wish I would have grabbed that $5 MS68 PCGS for $405.
 

hernancortes

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#17
Congrats, very well done. What was the last price on these from the mint, like $300 or less? Moderns can make for fantastic profits.
I would check apmex if not ebay for your '99-w's and bear in mind that the $10 is considerably scarcer than the $5. Another high-grade $10 is on my radar. PCGS 69 or carefully picked NGC ICG or ANACS 69, NGC has graded only 10 as MS70 but I've never seen one for sale.
 

321AU

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#18
Congrats, very well done. What was the last price on these from the mint, like $300 or less? Moderns can make for fantastic profits.
I would check apmex if not ebay for your '99-w's and bear in mind that the $10 is considerably scarcer than the $5. Another high-grade $10 is on my radar. PCGS 69 or carefully picked NGC ICG or ANACS 69, NGC has graded only 10 as MS70 but I've never seen one for sale.
Well I paid $500 for the MS70s I have and I wanted to buy more at the time but didn't have the money.

I'm now the owner of a 99 $10 Unc W NGC MS69. I won one on auction tonight. :grin10:

I joined NGC and PCGS and I have a question about PCGS pop report. When I look at the population report there is a drop down tab on the far left of some coins that shows how many 1st strikes there are. On others there is no tab to see the number of 1st strikes. I know 1st strikes are something of a gimmick but people are willing to pay more for them so it would be nice to know. Seems like they are withholding that information on a few coins for some reason. Any thoughts?

One example would be for the 2007 W Unc $10 GAE (no 1st strike info), but the 2008 W Unc $10 GAE has the info.

Thanks for your help :bowdown:
 

hernancortes

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#19
I think a backdoor way of viewing pops for First Strike coins is to look at the price guide and note the coin #. I think all of the first strike coins are listed in the price guide. Then try entering the coin # in the pop report.
 

321AU

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#20
I think a backdoor way of viewing pops for First Strike coins is to look at the price guide and note the coin #. I think all of the first strike coins are listed in the price guide. Then try entering the coin # in the pop report.
Thanks for the tip, it worked.

This 99 W $5 MS70 is up over $1800 with about an 1.5 hours to go, 220643858051. Price guide says $2,060 but I don't think those are really up to date on some coins I've looked at.

Edit Auction ended at $3,650.
 
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hernancortes

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#21
Among the $25 W-unc a.g.e. series it looks as if the '06's and '07's have finally caught up to the '08s in pricing on ebay and dealer bids, despite having lower mintages especially in the case of the 07. Remember the '07 is the key to the whole $25 series and it does not have a '99-w to threaten its status.
 

321AU

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#22
Among the $25 W-unc a.g.e. series it looks as if the '06's and '07's have finally caught up to the '08s in pricing on ebay and dealer bids, despite having lower mintages especially in the case of the 07. Remember the '07 is the key to the whole $25 series and it does not have a '99-w to threaten its status.
I only have one $25 07 that I bought to help complete a 07 w 1st strike set. I still need the $10 to complete it. Looking for one at a decent price.

I forgot to tell you I got to talking with the guy that bought my $10 08 W and it turns out he's the guy that sold the $5 99 w for $8200 that I mentioned above. Turns out he has 6 more just like it.
He's been eyeballing that PCGS at Apm*x too.
 

hernancortes

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#23
You might ask him how he came across so many 70's. Perhaps they were resubmissions that finally made 70. Jordan claims that many of the pops if not most are likely resubmissions.
 

NotTheOne

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#24
If a coin was graded a 69 and subsequently resubmitted, would it stand a better chance of grading higher is it was resubmitted right away or years later when the submissions for said coin are dramatically less? (assumes coin is worth of higher grade) Does population of submissions affect grade result? Similar to not everyone can get an A, somebody has to get a B, C, D.
 

hernancortes

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#25
In PCGS's case I would say the answer to does pop reports affect grade, the answer is an unequivocal YES. NGC yes also, though perhaps not as much. I think it would have to be the case that time tightens grading standards on deep keys. PCGS has graded only 2 '95-w silver eagles as PF70 in fifteen years and to start giving out 70's now would erode the 'prestige' of the service.
 

321AU

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#26
You might ask him how he came across so many 70's. Perhaps they were resubmissions that finally made 70. Jordan claims that many of the pops if not most are likely resubmissions.
I haven't asked yet but I think you are correct because the one he sold is in a new ngc edge holder and so is the one he has listed now.
 

321AU

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#27
There is, as of this week, 1 graded MS70 PCGS 1999-W $10 Eagle Unfinished PR Dies. 829 graded MS69s. This is out of a total of 1,452 that have been graded by PCGS.
That guy has to be very happy right now :-)
 

321AU

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#28
Number 3 on the PCGS top 10 losers over the last 3 months is the MS70 $5 99-W

(99940) 1999-W $5 Eagle Unfinished PR Dies MS-70, new price 8,000, old price 10,000, -2,000, -20.0%
 

hernancortes

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#29
There is, as of this week, 1 graded MS70 PCGS 1999-W $10 Eagle Unfinished PR Dies. 829 graded MS69s. This is out of a total of 1,452 that have been graded by PCGS.
That guy has to be very happy right now :-)
I cannot be 100% certain but I have great reason to believe that MS70 $10 is a recent crack-out or resubmission by an employee of PCGS. I swear this kinda stuff makes me ignore the slab more and more...
 

321AU

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#30
I cannot be 100% certain but I have great reason to believe that MS70 $10 is a recent crack-out or resubmission by an employee of PCGS. I swear this kinda stuff makes me ignore the slab more and more...
I wouldn't doubt it after some of the PCGS stories I've heard. It's just the way of the world.
 

321AU

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#31

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#32
the owner does it all the time...sorry...

IT'S THE "you work in the (PCGS) candy shop" so you sample all the candy TYPE deal...!
He BUYS all the marginal HIGH priced stuff and resubmits it for a SLAM DUNK.


I've seen writers who bid on the same material and watch HIM do IT.
 

hernancortes

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#33
What is known is that the seller who is considered somewhat of a specialist/authority on the 99-w having followed them since their discovery and collecting them over the years, recently submitted a large quantity to PCGS. Also he is affiliated with PCGS in some way as he is listed as one of their board of experts. After eleven years of holding out, the 1st MS70 is awarded--- to one their own. LOL.
In any case since it appears he's dumping it all now perhaps it should tell us something... maybe he has the inside track on an upcoming disgorgement of someone's SDB somewhere? hmm.
 

hernancortes

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#34
What is goin on here. At a recent auction the 'coveted' pcgs $10 99-w MS70 went for about $10,000. A few weeks ago an ICG 70 went for just over $1200 and last week an ANACS 70 for $4800.
 

silverbusa

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#35
Good to be an insider. Makes me wonder what grade it would have been granted if submitted by "Joe Six Pack".
 
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#37
Has it ever been determined how many of the 1999W $5 and 1999W $10 were struck? I have watched the few eBay auction sales and just can't pull the trigger on one.
 

hernancortes

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#38
Has it ever been determined how many of the 1999W $5 and 1999W $10 were struck? I have watched the few eBay auction sales and just can't pull the trigger on one.
No, the best we have are guesses. Estimates put the $5 at 6,000 or so and the $10 at some number below that.
 

hernancortes

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#39
Latest greysheet has the $99-W $10 at $1275 bid/$1350 ask which is record territory. In my recent correspondence with Jordan he insists that there aren't more than 2,000 examples of this coin in existence. The $5 is also much higher at $700/$750.
 

hernancortes

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#40
It's not so easy to pin down a trend with these coins but the last couple ebay sales have been showing stronger price action, near the current greysheet value.
The '99-W $10's seem to be closing in on the '08-w $10's and perhaps if they surpass them then maybe somebody will take notice?