Dec. 30 (Bloomberg) -- The U.S. Mint sold 65,500 ounces of American Eagle gold coins this month, the first increase since August as the price of the metal slumped.
Sales of gold coins increased 60 percent from 41,000 ounces in November, according to data on the mint’s website. American Eagle silver-coin sales rose to 2.009 million ounces from 1.38 million in November.
Gold prices have slumped as much as 21 percent since touching a record $1,923.70 an ounce on Sept. 6 as slowing economic growth sent equities and commodities tumbling. Spain said today it will cut spending and raise taxes to reduce a budget deficit that will exceed its target, highlighting the risks to growth from measures to tame Europe’s debt crisis.
“Individuals were waiting for a pullback in prices,” Scott Carter, the chief executive officer of Goldline International Inc., a Santa Monica, California-based precious- metals retailer established a half-century ago. “We witnessed a rise in retail sales.”
Silver sales were about 39.9 million ounces this year, compared with 34.7 million ounces in 2010. American Eagle gold- coin sales were 1 million ounces in 2011, compared with 1.2 million last year, according to the mint.
Gold futures for February delivery climbed 1.7 percent to settle at $1,566.80 an ounce on the Comex in New York, ending a six-session slump that was the longest since March 2009. The 10 percent decline in December narrowed the gain for 2011 to 10 percent, capping the 11th straight annual advance.
Silver futures for March delivery jumped 2.2 percent to $27.915 an ounce on the Comex, paring its decline for 2011 to 9.8 percent, the first annual drop since 2008.
--Editors: Steve Stroth, Millie Munshi
To contact the reporter on this story: Debarati Roy in New York at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Steve Stroth at email@example.com