Pennies now cost 1.6 cents to make


Stock photo with the article appears to be of Canadian pennies, which are no more.

Almost embarrassingly for everyone, phasing out the penny was a part of the CPC “Economic Action Plan”.

To date, it remains the only tangible benefit, or difference, to Canadians from said Plan, which is otherwise almost entirely partisan advertising.


While it is not as bad as Fox News "the poor are stealing our money’ BS it is hard to get worked up about subsidizing the production of pennies or even someone scoring on scrap value metal arbitrage when I see the massive systemic wealth transfer to the most wealthy people and corporations. This is literally a penny ante problem in the grand scheme of waste and official free market obstruction and regulatory capture.


penny wise, pound foolish?


This is the sort of thing that happens when you let the king debase your coinage.


Bear in mind, there are (were?) rooms and even hallways of our Federal Reserve operations centers which were packed floor to ceiling with bags of excess dollar coins.

1 Like

Think of the retail horror of having to set prices to $X.95 if we eliminate pennies. Every consumer commodity product would lose $0.04 per sale. Should have been done 50 years ago.

1 Like

It is important that we stop producing the penny as soon as possible! Otherwise, there will continue to be the imminent risk that someone will magically congregate all pennies in circulation into a single unstable mountain, thus crushing all citizens in its vicinity.


New Zealand gets along just fine without 1¢ or 5¢ coins. Everything’s rounded to tens. Very very easy to deal with. They also get along just fine without tipping, but that’s another matter.


Here in Canada they just round off the totals to the nearest 5 cents. So they can still price it at 99c, they just charge us $1.

Bank card transactions are still to the penny, but cash gets rounded. A truly cheap person would carry enough cash to choose either based on the final total of a bill, but I for one just can’t be arsed for a few pennies. I imagine somewhere like Walmart, with its massive economies of scale, will set prices such that it rounds up more than down.


Since the coin is a symbol of its value and will be spent many times there is no reason the cost of production should relate to its face value. I would expect this audience to see that instantly. Whether we should continue to produce them is another question entirely.


Allow me to exaggerate your point: if pennies cost hundreds of dollars to make, your point would be drowned out by the cries of people demanding to know why we are spending that much money to make one penny. Obviously there is a line to be drawn somewhere, and for some people, that appears to be 1.6 cents.

1 Like

I’m not used to seeing intelligent discourse on the Internets, @timquinn and @ben_ehlers.

But I’m just glad pennies cost less than copper washers. I have a drill press and a large Jorgenson clamp, so I can drill through an entire roll in one go.

I guess you could think of it as a government subsidy for artisans…


Dollar coin info

When the melt value of a penny exceeds its face value, it begins to be an attractive, if questionably legal, form of copper ore. That happened in 2011 for pre-1982 pennies.

1 Like

Yeah. I don’t agree with much that Harpergov does, but eliminating the penny was a good decision.

Other than that, TRUDEAU 2015!

Sounds like that’s just a way of sneaking that commie metric system into The States…

I say that we should thumb our nose at the rest of the world and go with something like the old Large Canadian cents – they were 2.54 cm 1 inch in diameter.
Ah, the glory of a giant penny with “The Gipper” on one side and “The Bird” on the other.


That’s because modern-day pennies aren’t copper - they’re copper-plated zinc.

So, naturally they’re cheaper than honest solid copper. (-:

1 Like

Unfortunately, most of them are zinc. So unless it’s zinc washers (with a thin copper clad) you need, you are wasting the money.

The red bronze pennies were phased out in 1982.