HIDDEN EAGLE BUYER
I believe JPMorgan has been responsible for buying 50% of the 190 million Silver Eagles sold by the U.S. Mint over the past four and a half years. This unusually large and unprecedented number of Silver Eagles was purchased in the face of weakness in retail buying.
A reader who initially rejected my premise about JPMorgan buying Silver Eagles wrote to me to say he wrote to the Mint to request an updated list of its authorized dealers for Silver and Gold Eagle coins. This list was always made public but was last updated in 2010. The Mint refused to provide a new list. It’s entirely possible that JPMorgan had become an authorized dealer itself and could buy Silver Eagles directly from the Mint, without going through a middleman.
Why won’t the Mint now publish a list of authorized dealers when it has done so regularly in the past? The sudden lack of transparency is more than troublesome – it smacks of the Mint hiding something. I suspect some type of unholy alliance between the U.S. Mint and JPMorgan. The law requires the Mint to produce sufficient Silver Eagles to meet demand. This law was intended to ensure that the Mint produced enough coins for all buyers. The law was never intended to allow a single large buyer to accumulate massive quantities of Silver Eagles.
I’m relying on the Mint’s sales figures and note that it’s not retail buyers driving the impressive sales of Silver Eagles. That leaves the hand of a big buyer at work and that big buyer is probably JPMorgan. This buying has had a direct impact on the current scarcity and high premiums on Silver Eagles. It also begs the question of why they are buying. They invest in silver because they expect to make a lot of money. In that respect, getting in bed with JPMorgan is a smart move.
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