The 2003 Silver Eagle declined in mintage by over 2 million compared to the prior year. Silver Eagle bullion coin mintages would stay in the 8 million range the for next two years, before demand began to grow substantially.
The United States Mint offered a proof version of the coin for collectors. The 2003 Proof Silver Eagle went on sale April 2, 2003 at the price of $24.00. The maximum authorized mintage for the coin was set at 750,000, the same level as the previous year. The US Mint eventually sold 747,831 coins.
Certified coin collectors will find that perfect graded proof coins in both NGC PF 70 Ultra Cameo and PCGS PR70DCAM become much more attainable than earlier years of the series. Perfect graded bullion coins are readily available in NGC MS 70, but have not been graded as such by PCGS.
The overall average price of silver during 2003 was $4.88 per ounce. Silver increased steadily during the final quarter of the year, reaching nearly $6.00 per ounce.