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Mint set Sacs in circulation?


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A while back I was at the Post Office and took advantage of the vending machines to replenish my supply of spendable Sac dollars (Put in a twenty, buy five stamps, get 18 dollar coins plus change ...) A few of the coins looked shinier than I expected. They turned out to be a mixture of '02s and '03s, which of course were only released in Mint sets and bags.

 

I recycled the remaining '00s and '01s to see if the machine held any more. By the time I ran out I had a few extra stamps, but also had accumulated 3 2002-P's, 5 2003-P's, a 2003-D and 2 2004-P's. The only explanations I can come up with are that someone had either (1) paid a premium for a set or bag from the Mint, then lost interest and spent them at face value, or (2) had stolen the coins from a collector and simply put them into circulation.

 

Neither of these possibilities seem to make any economic sense. Has anyone else had a similar experience?

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Since the mint started selling the bags and rolls of Sacs, some people have been buying them, searching them for the better pieces and then sometimes spending the remainder, especially for the 2002 and 2003 issues before they began adding the extra shipping surcharge for bags. (Back then you could buy a bag of each and only pay $4.95 total for shipping.

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As others have noted above it is a little bit of both. People steal coins and spend them. I know it happened to me, and many moons ago when I worked as the "Deli guy" at a grocery store I had folks spending "odd" coins all the time. I once I had a kid pay for food with 3 Franklin halves (this was 1996). He just didn't strike me as a coin collector, but I could be wrong..needless to say I kept the coins ;) I even had a guy ask if he could spend a 1/10 oz Gold Eagle on food... I of course said only $5 worth and he got a bit pissed, so I offered to buy it for $25 (gold was only 280ish then) ...he said no. :ninja:

 

Ditto the bags and uncirc sets getting broken open. If you go to Las Vegas, or any casino really, and search some of the 50c machines you might find newer halves working through, I know I've found post 2000 halves in them.

 

I just did another several week deployment to Ecuador, and as many of you know, Ecuador uses the US dollar for currecny. The Sac is the main single dollar instrument of trade in Ecuador (with 500million beingshipped there in 2000), as they just don't like dollar bills. I saw several post 2001 Sacs in Ecuador. They were in bad shape, as are most of the Sacs due to the odd colour they turn after much handling. How did these newer sacs get there? I think that the opened bag theories noted above make sense.

 

 

Ciao, and Hook 'em Horns,

Capt-AWACS, Yankee Air Pirate

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Suspicions confirmed. Thanks to everyone!

 

... I saw several post 2001 Sacs in Ecuador. They were in bad shape, as are most of the Sacs due to the odd colour they turn after much handling. ...

Some of 'em may have been counterfeit. Found the following in CoinWorld's archives: Counterfeit Sac dollars flood Ecuador (link fixed here, too!)

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Link won't work for me :ninja:

EDIT- fixed the link http://www.coinworld.com/news/102102/News-4.asp

 

 

I wouldn't doubt it, but most of the ones I saw all looked good, but you never know.

 

I saw literally scores of fake US 19th century gold coins in the mid-east. At some gold souqs in Dubai and Riyadh you can take a genuine $20 gold piece and have it copied within a few days, and have as many made as you want, at various qualities.

 

Ciao, and Hook 'em Horns,

Capt-AWACS, Future Houston Mayor

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I just called a buddy who is doing the mission down in Manta now and told him to look out for any "fakes" or ugly Sacs. Maybe I can get one for you :ninja: in a few weeks. I might be transiting El Salvador in a few weeks and will look around the airport for any bad sacs there as well.

 

 

 

Ciao, and Hook 'em Horns

Capt-AWACS, Carpe Imperium

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I have been trying to get my hands on a counterfeit Sacagawea for over a year now! Thought I had pulled it off but apparently the deal fell through. Hope you get a bunch as I would be interested in one. From what I hear the counterfeits are coming out of Colombia? Keep us posted, if you don't mind? :ninja:

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they were made in Colombia, but spent in Ecuador as the US Dollar is the currency of Ecuador. In Ecuador all we spent were Sacs, very few one dollar bills. Sacs are everywhere. Ditto Panama and El Salvador on the US dollar, though Panama does not have that many Sacs, though I haven't been back to Panama in several years.

 

I'll try or look on my next rotation to Ecuador.

 

Ciao, and Hook 'em Horns,

Capt-AWACS, Stick forward, trees get bigger, stick back, trees get smaller

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