President Barack Obama in a recent Google Hangout Video Chat said that time had come to retire the U.S. penny. He added, “This is not going to be a huge saving for the government, but any time we’re spending more money on something people don’t actually use, that’s an example of something we should probably change.”
Obama also suggested that the penny is a ‘good metaphor’ for some of the larger problems facing lawmakers as they seek to reduce the deficit.
According to official US data, in 2012, each one-cent piece cost two cents to make, while a nickel cost 10 cents. The total cost of minting pennies was $58 million. Groups like Citizens to Retire the U.S. Penny want to get rid of the penny while another group Americans For Common Cents wants to keep the coin.
Though there have been efforts to pass penny-banning legislation, the political power of the penny remains strong, as Obama once joked in a Pennsylvania hall, “it keeps coming back”, according to Politico.
Canada killed its penny this year, making it one of the most recent examples of countries that stopped minting pennies, following the lead of Australia and Sweden.
Here are some of the comments people have regarding this matter on Reddit, where this topic was posted a few hours ago and got flooded with feedback:
Actually the zinc lobby (pennies are made with zinc and a thin film of copper) is currently at work furiously trying to quash this idea (for real just to be clear).
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