Letter: Where’s My Silver

Hello HJL,

Just thought I’d let you know I’m a little less than satisfied with Northwest Territorial Mint. I chose them to buy silver from because I knew I could trust a company that your site promotes. While I still trust NTM I feel I should say, however, they should tighten up a little bit. I’ve made four orders so far and received one. I’m quite pleased with that order, but at the same time the turn-around is very long. It took over a month to receive, and yesterday I received an email saying my 2nd order will be delayed one month. I can only expect my remaining tw orders will be delayed as well. Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate NTM and will continue to do business with them. I was just hoping you guys could goose them a little and get them to improve the service. If I’m the only one complaining or if I am some kind of idiot, please disregard this email. Thanks for all you do and God bless. – J.W.

JWR Replies: Whenever the spot price of silver takes a dip (as it recently did twice, to $19.50 per ounce), the retailers and mints get buried in orders, and they very quickly build multi-month order backlogs. Even the U.S. mint has been slammed with orders. It regularly sells out of some products and periodically suspends sales, to allow time to catch up. See: http://www.coinnews.net/2014/01/03/us-mint-sales-updates-and-more-sold-out-products/

Like all of the other high-volume and low markup mints, Northwest Territorial Mint has suffered delays because of large order influxes. Their mint is physically limited by the speed of their machinery to how many coins and bars they can produce and ship each week, and still meet high quality control standards. But the good news is that in their four years as a SurvivalBlog advertiser, Northwest Territorial Mint has NEVER failed to fulfill an order, or welched on a promised price.

Now compare the silver mint situation to .22 rimfire ammo manufacturers and retailers–where in the past year they have widely canceled orders, rationed customers, and more than doubled prices. (In fact, during the worst of the ammo shortage crisis, some retailers quintupled their prices.) All in all, I’d say that Northwest Territorial Mint and most of the other silver mints have been far more ethical and trustworthy.

The law of supply and demand is inescapable. In times of extreme demand, manufacturers have two choices: either raise their prices or queue their deliveries. I am thankful that Northwest Territorial Mint has consistently chosen the ethical course of action.

Lastly: I must warn you and other readers: Do not do business with shady, fly-by-night companies. Buy only from reputable companies, or you face the prospect of losing 100% of what you send them. Best Regards.