The new year is still young, but we already have at least one multi-million-dollar coin sold in 2020. That piece is the 1927-D Saint-Gaudens $20 double eagle, considered the rarest regular-issue United States coin struck during the 20th century. While it has a mintage of 180,000, its actual number of survivors is much, much lower. The vast majority were melted after Executive Order 6102 in 1933 recalled gold and essentially ended the gold standard. It’s possible there are just a dozen specimens in total, with seven available to the public.
The 1927-D Saint-Gaudens double eagle does not come into the marketplace very often. On only a handful of occasions in the past decade or two has the coin surfaced at public auction. But one made an appearance at the Heritage Auctions sale during the Florida United Numismatists (FUN) Show in Orland, Florida, last week.
The coin, graded MS65+ by Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS) and given a quality seal of approval by Certified Acceptance Corporation (CAC), hammered for a whopping $2,160,000, a price that includes the coin’s 20% buyer’s fee. Now among only a couple dozen or so coins to have traded hands at public auction for above $2 million, the 1927-D Saint-Gaudens $20 double eagle continues its reign as one of the most valuable and elusive of all United States rare coins.