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Why We Should Stop Making the Penny

Each year, the U.S. Mint coins 1 billion to over 10 billion pennies. That's anywhere from $10 million to $100 million worth. The cost to manufacture a penny can be nearly 2 cents (depending on the price of copper and zinc). That means the US spends $15 million to produce $10 million worth of pennies.

If you're not banging your head against your keyboard yet, then it's probably because you're already getting a headache trying to wrap your head around why we do this. Pennies are the near-useless pieces of change that you can't do much with. Henceforth, they rarely go back into circulation. The production of pennies wastes a few million dollars every year. Your 2 cents are worth more than you think. In a world where the future of personal finance looks more like easy credit cards and financial smart phone applications and less like change jars sitting on the kitchen counter, it makes no sense why the U.S. continues to produce this antiquated piece of money. Perhaps now, when our elected officials continue to fight over how best to cut spending and save money, it's time to say goodbye to the penny and let it take its permanent place in history. What do you think?  Should we give pennies the boot?

Photo credit: Shutterstock / Pete Spiro

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Logan Abbott's picture

Logan Abbott is a personal finance and credit card expert with over 5 years of experience writing about each topic. He is a graduate of the USC Marshall School of Business, and also contributes to other online finance publications. He has been quoted in the New York Times, San Diego Union Tribune, TheStreet, and more.

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