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What's Next for First Spouse Program?
December 04, 2007



The Dolley Madison First Spouse gold coin is not yet sold out more than two weeks after it went on sale Nov. 19. This situation was not unexpected.

The price hike for this, the fourth coin in the series, upset many potential buyers.

The expense of routinely buying expensive gold coins is beginning to hit home with collectors who are facing the costs of building a set of approximately 40 designs and 80 coins (if we assume they want both proof and uncirculated versions).

And the instant profit available to any buyer who acquires what can be popular on eBay is missing.

Of the three factors, the eBay factor is probably the most critical for this set. Once this factor disappears, can it ever return?

That raises other questions in my mind that I would ask all collectors. Have you written off the idea of ever collecting a complete set of First Spouse gold coins? Have you written off the possibility of ever buying even one First Spouse coin? If you happen to have purchased any of the first three, will you continue to keep them, or will you sell them while the price of gold is high and move on to other areas?

I would like to know the answers. I think the Mint would like to know, too.

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Recent Comments
On December 4, 2007 Mike Unser said
My thinking is along yours as well.

I waited through the 30+ minutes to order the Uncirculated and Proof Jefferson Liberty First Spouse coins.  

I wager I was competing with some ?eBayers of the world? who were more interested in the coins for their profit potential. The Mint servers were so busy it required a huge degree of patience and many attempts just to get an order registered.

In any event, I purchased both coins from a pure collection standpoint. I like their design and uniqueness. That?s how I?ll make my decision for all future spouse coins purchases.

Honestly, I?m still on the fence with the Dolley Madison?s.  And because their demand is down, there?s less of a burden to purchase ?today?.  If I do decide I want them, I know now that there?s a solid chance I can buy them in the secondary market from a reputable coin dealer. Plus, I may even spend less.

In the interim, I can purchase older coins for my collection that are more interesting for me right now, than spending the money on Madison spouse coins.

In terms of collecting the entire series, I?m hoping my wife will one day become President so the Mint Director will gift them all to me in some presentation. I guess I should wake up. ;-)

I enjoy your blog,

Mike
On December 7, 2007 Alberto Pico said
I placed an order from the Mint of the Jane Adams uncirc.,on the day of the program's debut.I ordered this particular coin,thinking that it would be the least in demand,and thus, that I would have the best chance of getting it.I was told that the coin was sold out,but was put on a waiting list,with no assurance that I could expect to get it.Two weeks later,I saw the coins advertised by dealers for about $200 more than the issue price.I then swore that if this was going to be the way the series was to be sold,Iwould have nothing to do with it.Idid not bother with the Jefferson issue,particularly since it did not depict a real person.Two weeks later,I received the Adams coin from the Mint.It is beautiful,and nicely packaged.I have since ordered the Dolly Madison Proof.If the series is not discontinued,I will buy other coins,but only of real persons.It's a pity that no coin will issue as to Rachel Jackson,an etraordinary lady.I only hope that I may live to buy the pair of Jaqueline Kennedy's

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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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