Commemorative Coin Reform Act Report to Congress, FY 2000 Fourth Quarter

Quarterly Financial Report of the United States Mint
Commemorative Coin Program,
P. L. 104-208, as of September 30, 2000

INTRODUCTION

Public Law 104-208, the Commemorative Coin Reform Act of 1996, requires the Mint to report the quarterly status of commemorative coin programs. In general effect, the law makes coin program beneficiaries partners in bearing the risks and marketplace realities of commemorative coin programs, and it assures that the U.S. Mint recovers its costs of operating coin programs. In addition, the law requires beneficiaries to file audited financial statements, and it requires the Mint to report quarterly on the status of commemorative coin programs. In compliance, this—the Mint’s fifteenth quarterly commemorative coin report—discusses programs reporting significant program activity July 1 through September 30, 2000.

PROGRAM-WIDE ISSUES

Revenues generated, as of September 30, 2000, for the Yellowstone National Park, Library of Congress, and Leif Ericson Commemorative Coin Programs exceeded $35 million. The U.S. Mint web catalog remains popular as well with nearly 30% of 4th quarter commemorative coin program revenues generated via online sales.

Sales for the Yellowstone Commemorative Coin Program ended July 15, 2000, generating nearly $9 million in revenues. A final surcharge payment of $824,263 was made August 14, 2000. The payment was divided equally between the two designated recipient organizations – Yellowstone National Park ($412,131.50) and the National Park Foundation ($412,131.50). A final surcharge payment of $576,120 was made August 9, 2000 to the Mount Vernon Ladies Association from proceeds generated through sales of the 1999 George Washington Commemorative gold coin.

FINANCIAL REPORTING

The attached financial statements provide quarterly and cumulative program data. The Commemorative Coin Reform Act of 1996 requires us to withhold surcharges until all program costs are recovered and beneficiaries submit audited financial statements indicating funds raised privately equal maximum possible surcharges. We, again, report that the U.S. Black Revolutionary War Patriots Commemorative Coin Program closed December 31, 1998, with a deficit. The beneficiary has not submitted the required documentation and therefore does not qualify to receive surcharges. The Foundation has not told us of its plans for meeting these requirements.

YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK

Program Highlights

In commemoration of the 125th anniversary of Yellowstone as the first U.S. National Park, Public Law 104-329 authorized the issuance of 500,000 silver dollars. Product options included individual proof and uncirculated coins and a two-coin set containing both. Surcharges will be divided equally between the National Park Foundation and Yellowstone National Park.

Program Summary

The last commemorative coin of the 20th century, the Yellowstone National Park Commemorative Coin was officially introduced July 15, 1999 in an unveiling ceremony at the Department of Interior Museum. The initial mailing of coins took place June 25, 1999. Program sales efforts included a pre-issue direct mail initiative to 485,000 commemorative coin buyers on July 16, 1999, in addition to black and white and color print advertisements in the national trade press. In addition, the coins were prominently displayed in the Mint’s fall and annual Holiday Catalogs and on the Mint website at www.usmint.gov. In partnership with Unilever, a promotion was launched April 2000 which featured Yellowstone two-coin sets as prizes for purchases of Snuggle® Fabric Softener.

Sales for the Yellowstone National Park Commemorative Coin Program ended effective July 15, 2000. Sales of approximately 230,000 coins generated revenues of close to $9 million. Estimated profits of over $1.6 million exceed estimated unrecovered expenses of $114,533. Surcharge payments totaling $2.5 million were divided equally between the National Park Foundation and Yellowstone National Park. No additional coins were struck during the quarter ending September 30,2000.

LIBRARY OF CONGRESS BICENTENNIAL

Program Highlights

To commemorate the bicentennial of the Library of Congress on April 24, Congress authorized the production of 500,000 silver dollars and 100,000 gold $5 coins. Legislation permits substituting 200,000 $10 gold-and-platinum coins for the gold $5, and with the support of the sponsoring organization, we exercised the option to strike the Nation’s first bimetallic commemorative coin. Designs finalized and reviewed by the Citizens Commemorative Coin Advisory Committee (CCCAC) and the Commission of Fine Arts depict various themes emblematic of the Library of Congress including the Library’s magnificent Thomas Jefferson Building. Surcharges will be paid to the Library of Congress Trust Fund Board for bicentennial programs, educational outreach and other activities of the Library of Congress.

Marketing Activities

Available April 24, 2000, the Library of Congress silver dollar and bimetallic ten-dollar commemorative coins offer collectors the opportunity to enhance their collection with “The Coin of Many Firsts”. So titled, this program introduces the first U.S. Mint commemorative coins of the 21st century as well as the first commemorative coins to honor a library. The ten-dollar coin is the first gold and platinum bimetallic coin struck by the United States Mint. The coins were prominently featured in the Mint’s Holiday 2000 catalog, the U.S. Mint Web Site and at the annual American Numismatic Association (ANA) conference in August. The bimetallic coin was featured as a prize on a “Rosie O’Donnell Show” segment entitled “Who Wants to be a Bullionaire?”. U.S. Treasurer Withrow awarded a special plaque to John Kluge, founding chairman of the prestigious Library of Congress Madison Council, in recognition of his support for the program. Mr. Kluge purchased approximately $800,000 worth of the commemorative coins.

Analysis of Financial Position

As of September 30, 2000, sales of over 266,400 coins were realized generating revenues of nearly $19 million. Estimated profits of $3.2 million exceed potential unrecovered expenses of $374,799. Cost of goods sold totaled $8.8 million. Selling, general & administrative expenses equaled $4,092,808.

Manufacturing/Packaging Operations

A total of 6,200 acceptable bimetallic proof coins and 1,400 acceptable bimetallic uncirculated coins were produced during the quarter ending September 30, 2000. In addition, a total of 25,377 acceptable silver proof coins and 6,883 acceptable silver uncirculated coins were produced during the quarter ending September 30, 2000 representing reject rates of 3 % and less than 1% for the proof and uncirculated coins respectively.

LEIF ERICSON MILLENIUM

Program Highlights

The Leif Ericson Commemorative Coin Program was formally launched on June 21, 2000 at Smithsonian’s National Museum for Natural History where a popular Viking Exhibit was being shown. Approximately 842,000 customers, all selected based on their expected propensity to purchase, were mailed the Leif Ericson direct mail package. This was supported with direct response print advertisements in numismatic trade publications.

The second and final U.S. commemorative coin program of 2000, the Leif Ericson Millennium Commemorative Coin Program commemorates the 1000-year anniversary of Leif Ericson’s voyage to the New World in 1000 A.D. Public Law 106-126 authorizes the issuance of up to
500,000 U.S. silver dollars in conjunction with the issuance of an Icelandic 1000 krónur
silver coin. Surcharges will be paid to the Leifur Eiriksson Foundation for the purpose of funding student exchanges between students of the United States and students of Iceland.

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