WASHINGTON — The United States Mint today announced that it is discontinuing the satin finish on numismatic uncirculated coins produced for the United States Mint Uncirculated Coin Set® and other products. Instead, beginning in 2011, uncirculated–quality coins will feature a brilliant finish.
The United States Mint began using the satin finish for its uncirculated coins in 2005 to be consistent with other products in its portfolio, such as commemorative coins. The satin finish, however, highlights surface marks that inherently result from the coin–handling systems. Although the United States Mint modified the process to improve the coin appearance, there is no cost–effective way to completely eliminate the coin–on–coin contact that causes surface nicks. As a result, the United States Mint will revert back to the brilliant finish used on uncirculated coins prior to 2005. This change will result in more aesthetically pleasing coins with a finish that does not highlight surface flaws. It will only be featured on uncirculated–quality one–cent, 5–cent, dime, quarter–dollar, half–dollar and dollar coins.