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Should the US discontinue pennies?I understand that Canada is going to withdraw the...

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pacorz | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted April 24, 2012 at 9:46 PM via web

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Should the US discontinue pennies?

I understand that Canada is going to withdraw the penny from circulation later this year; the withdrawal will be done in stages so that people will be able to use up/turn in pennies and not lose their cash value.

In the US, a penny now costs 2.4 cents to make, so minting them costs the government millions each year. Do you think the US should follow Canada's lead and eliminate the penny?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted April 24, 2012 at 9:52 PM (Answer #2)

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I can't see any downside to it, can you?  I suppose it's possible that all businesses would round up to the nearest $.05 increment on everything we buy, but I'm not sure how much that would matter.  And with so many transactions being conducted by plastic these days, it just seems to make sense.

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Kristen Lentz | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted April 24, 2012 at 9:54 PM (Answer #3)

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I absolutely believe the US should stop making pennies, or at worst switch to steel.  It makes no sense to continue to lose money when sensible alternatives exist.  Special interests are the reason pennies in their current composition continue to be minted, even when common sense and logic dictate the situation should be altered.

Kristen Lentz

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Kristen Lentz | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted April 24, 2012 at 10:22 PM (Answer #4)

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I can't see any downside to it, can you?  I suppose it's possible that all businesses would round up to the nearest $.05 increment on everything we buy, but I'm not sure how much that would matter.  And with so many transactions being conducted by plastic these days, it just seems to make sense.

The system Canada put into place is even more consumer friendly than the simple round everything up model that you mentioned.  Any price ending in a 1, 2, 8, or 9 will round to a zero and any price ending in a 3, 4, 5, or 7 will round to a five.

Kristen Lentz

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bullgatortail | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted April 24, 2012 at 10:25 PM (Answer #5)

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I have to agree with the previous posts. If a penny is worth one cent but it costs 2.5 cents to mint it, it is ludicrous to continue making it. Unless a cheaper metal is used or a way is found to reduce minting costs, it is best for the penny to go the way of the $2 bill.

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lmetcalf | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted April 24, 2012 at 11:20 PM (Answer #6)

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It would be strange to not have those coins around, and I actually think that pricing of products would inflate them slightly. I know that I pay a lot of attention to "a few cents here and there" when I am grocery shopping and those savings do add up in a small way each week. But even with that, I doesn't make sense to produce a coin that isn't worth its face value.

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clairewait | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted April 25, 2012 at 3:33 PM (Answer #7)

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I tend to agree that any effort this country makes in saving money is probably a good thing.  Discontinuing the production of pennies might also have the long term effect of increasing their value one day, just like the two dollar bill.

(I personally think that cash, in general, will one day become obsolete.)

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Kristen Lentz | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted May 29, 2012 at 2:19 AM (Answer #8)

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I tend to agree that any effort this country makes in saving money is probably a good thing.  Discontinuing the production of pennies might also have the long term effect of increasing their value one day, just like the two dollar bill.

(I personally think that cash, in general, will one day become obsolete.)

 

I really hope you are wrong about cash becoming obsolete, but absolutely hope it doesn't.  I think much of our nation's financial mess is due to the fact that people, and the government, don't see finances as "real" money.  Many studies have been done that show people spend less money than when they use cash.  I ran an ebay business for a while, and credit card users spent more money that people who paid with cashiers checks every time.  There is something about paying real money, or even taking the time to write out a check that makes spending the money seem more real.

 

Kristen Lentz

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