The United States Mint continued to issue the annual Silver Proof Sets, which contained proof versions of all coins issued for the year with the dime, quarters, and half dollar struck in a composition of 90% silver. The period from 2010 to present saw a rapid rise and fall in the market price of silver, which served to impact product price and may have also had an impact on sales.
During this era, each silver proof set contained a total of seven different 90% silver coins. This consisted of the 90% silver dime, five different 90% silver quarters, and the 90% silver half dollar. Collectively these coins contained net silver content of 1.33823 ounces. This rather significant silver content resulted in several occasions where the sets intrinsic value began to approach the US Mint’s fixed product pricing when the price of silver was rising. In these situations, sales would be suspended and prices increased.
When the price of silver was falling, the opposite situation occurred where the sets were overpriced relative to the lower silver prices. The US Mint underwent a period of price declines for the products, sometimes after releasing the products under initially higher prices.
The many price changes and shifting collector tastes contributed to declining product sales, culminating with the 2012 Silver Proof Set with sales of just 395,443 units. After the product sold out at such as low level, secondary market prices rapidly increased and the set was viewed as a key. In the following years, product sales have rebounded solidifying the status of the modern key set.