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Puzzled by San Francisco Quarter?
July 05, 2012

Is demand for the new S-mintmarked clad El Yunque National Forest quarter high or low?

It might seem like either, depending on how you choose to present the figures.

The total number of the coins taken by collectors in the first 11 days of their availability was 815,680.

That’s a figure that looks like it is well on its way toward the Mint’s initial production target of 1.4 million pieces.

However, if you look at the number of rolls sold, which is 7,907, or the number of bags, which is 4,994, those figures give the impression that this particular program is not attracting all that many collectors.

It is important that collectors make up their minds about this new quarter and the four designs that are yet to come in 2012. They are not being released through the banking system, nor in any of this year’s annual sets. Anybody who wants them will have to go to the Mint and its roll and bag offers.

Collectors also are trying to assess their desirability as well as rarity. Historically, clad coins and/or uncirculated quality have taken a backseat to silver coins and/or proof quality.

So what will the verdict of history be?

High or low?

Desirable or undesirable?

Buzz blogger Dave Harper is editor of the weekly newspaper “Numismatic News.”

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About the Author
David C. Harper has been a coin collector since 1963. He joined the Krause Publications editorial staff in 1978 and is currently editor of Numismatic News and World Coin News. He also edits two books annually, North American Coins & Prices and Coin Digest. He is the author of the Class of '63 column that runs each week in Numismatic News. His first bylined numismatic article appeared in the June 1971 issue of Coins Magazine and his various Krause Publications assignments included a stint as editor of the magazine 1980-1983. Harper received a bachelor of science degree from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh in 1977. He had a double major of journalism and economics.

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