Vote Charlie!

Kill pennies and nickels

Pennies cost almost two cents to make and waste everyone’s time. We might as well stop making nickels as well, and maybe dimes.

Arguments for penny elimination:

  • Pennies cost almost two cents to produce
  • Time spent dealing with pennies worth more than the pennies
  • Pennies aren’t accepted everywhere as it is
  • Rounding prices averages the same
  • We eliminated the half cent in 1857 when it had a value equivalent to 14 cents in 2014)

Former U.S. Mint Director Philip Diehl argued against the penny in 2015, but felt the nickel could be made profitable by changing the composition. The other arguments against the penny seem to apply to nickels as well.

I don’t buy the argument companies will raise prices. Prices could be left as they are, and if a consumer feels rounding $0.99 to $1.00 for a cash transaction would be too much to bear, he can pay electronically. After combining multiple items and adding taxes, I imagine any strategy would get lost entirely.

According to a 2016 Government Executive article:

The US would be following the sensible, penny-free path carved out by countries including Sweden, Finland, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Israel, Brazil, and the Netherlands, which have similarly dropped diminutive denominations of their currencies with little noticeable impact. Britain and Norway also have eliminated their lowest-denomination coins.

Take action: Retire the Penny

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