Production figures for the Yellowstone National Park Quarter have been released by the United States Mint and while they indicate a gain over the first America the Beautiful Quarters™ Program strike, they still lag far behind most other recent mintages.
A total of 68.4 million of the circulating Yellowstone coins were produced, with 34.8 million coming from the US Mint’s facility in Denver and 33.6 million from the US Mint’s facility in Philadelphia.
In comparison, the inaugural America the Beautiful Quarter released earlier this year representing Hot Springs National Park came in at 59.6 million total — 29 million from Denver and 30.6 million from Philadelphia. In gross numbers, the Yellowstone National Park Quarter showed an improvement over the Hot Springs Quarter of 8.8 million coins, or a 14.8% increase.
However, it is important to remember that the Hot Springs coin had the lowest mintage of any quarter dollar in decades. In fact, it stands as the quarter with the lowest total number struck since 1955, making any improvement over it "easier."
Of course, the most realistic comparisons can only be made to quarters struck since the start of the 50-State Quarters Program back in 1999. That marked the first time the Mint started issuing quarters of different designs during the same year. It was continued in 2009 with the follow-up D.C. & US Territories Quarters Program which also saw multiple strikes released in the same year.
With that in mind, taking a look at the 2007 Wyoming State Quarter Dollar (representing the same jurisdiction as the newly released Yellowstone Quarter) really puts the low mintage of the newer strike into light. 564.4 million of those coins were produced, or 496 million more than seen for the Yellowstone Quarter. While the 2007 numbers are massive in comparison, it should also be noted that their total mintage only put them in the middle of the pack when compared to other state commemorative coin releases.
The highest mintage seen for a 50-State or D.C. & US Territories Quarter Dollar was the 2000 Virginia coin which totaled an astounding 1,594,616,000.
Recent economic conditions are responsible for the lower number of Yellowstone and Hot Springs quarters. Many people are more likely to use their change during difficult times instead of hoarding it at home. As a result, more coins remain in circulation –local banks order less from the Federal Reserve resulting in the Reserve ordering less from the Mint. Plus, daily transactions are simply down during a recessed economy, further cutting into new quarter demand.
Still, if there is a positive light to be shed on the Yellowstone figures, it is that their scarcity may prove to help their numismatic value. One indicator of collector’s interest in the coins can be seen by the number of 100-coin bags and two-roll sets ordered directly from the US Mint. Shown below is the most recent figures available for the products currently on sale:
|Hot Springs National Park Quarters|
|100-coin bag (P)||8,015|
|100-coin bag (D)||7,383|
|Two-Roll Set (80 coin) (P&D)||38,386|
|Yellowstone National Park Quarters|
|100-coin bag (P)||5,752|
|100-coin bag (D)||6,197|
|Two-Roll Set (80 coin) (P&D)||29,522|
The "as of date" for the figures is Sunday, July 4, 2010. The Hot Springs products launched on April 21, 2010, giving it several weeks lead time since the Yellowstone products were released on June 1, 2010.
For comparison, the Northern Mariana Islands bags and rolls numbers are shown below. Readers will note that the figures include 1000-coin bags which the Mint does not offer for the new America the Beautiful Quarters.
|100-coin bag (P)||7,778|
|100-coin bag (D)||7,400|
|1000-coin bag (P)||1,491|
|1000-coin bag (D)||792|
|Two-Roll Set (80 coin) (P&D)||33,788|
The next Yosemite National Park Quarter will be released into circulation on July 26, 2010. The Mint has already started minting them in preparation.
The America the Beautiful Quarters Mintages page has been updated.