StanCollender'sCapitalGainsandGames Washington, Wall Street and Everything in Between

The End Of The Dollar Coin Is Near

23 Dec 2011
Posted by Stan Collender

I'm a little late to this party, but, because of an overwhelming lack of interest, the White House on December 13 announced the end of the presidential dollar coin program. That should be the end of dollar coins in the United States for a long,long time.


As I said in late September and early October, I have a great deal of personal history with the dollar coin and am very familiar with the coin-vs.-bill cost analyses. In general, the coin is better from a budget perspective because it costs far less for the government to keep a coin than a bill in circulation.

Those savings only materialize, however, if the dollar coin is a substitute for rather than an addition to the bill. If the bill isn't eliminated or isn't used by consumers, producing a dollar coin means an additional rather than a lower expense and a larger rather than a smaller deficit. Producing a coin under these circumstances simply means more taxpayer-financed sales for the companies that produce the raw materials and equipment needed to make the coins.

After literally decades of experience with dollar coins, we now know that collectors might like them but consumers don't use them. We also know that, because it costs retailers more to get them delivered to their stores than bills, businesses are not inclined to carry dollar coins. So you can't get one and won't use it if you do.

In other words, none of the conditions that will make a dollar coin a good deal from a budget perspective will exist. As a result, the administration absolutely made the right call.

This article is very

This article is very well-written and informative.
Thanks Stan Collender.

Louer une voiture est bien pour ne payer aucun frais d'assurance ! Car la location de voiture est une revolution ! La Location de voiture est pratique pour partir en voyage.

I like dollar coins

You do not speak for me, Stan. I like the dollar coins. I use the dollar coins. I always carry enough so that I can avoid getting dollar bills in change. It does seem to be getting a bit more difficult to find a bank that carries them, and I will be very disappointed if I return to the days where my money clip feels thick but has nothing in it but a big wad of singles.

Canadian experience

In Canada (whose bills and coins nearly identical in size and denomination to ours) the government simply eliminated the dollar bill. The population had no choice. Now the Canadian coin, which has an image of a loon on the front, is known as the loonie. The term loonie has become common when discussing the international values of the Canadian dollar, as in "the loonie is up one percent against the U.S dollar today".

Maybe we should follow that example.

Exactly. Eliminate the penny

Exactly. Eliminate the penny and the dollar bill, add the dollar coin. Unfortunately, this has about the same likelihood of happening in the U.S. as the odds of John Boehner coming out in favor of greater tax progressivity, automatic voter registration, and unemployment insurance for folks looking for work who don't have a prior wage base.

Eliminate the penny and the

Eliminate the penny and the dollar bill; adopt the dollar coin.

I am not surprised that the only follow through POTUS exhibits is on his golf swing.

The zinc subsidy

Good night... Is it that hard to get rid of the penny these days? All it seems good for is wasting the tiller's time and getting thrown into the Coinstar machines at a 9% ripoff rate. Many small businesses without the automatic change dispensers seem to simply round up where I live.

As for my paper dollars, I still love them. Putting two of our female patriots on a failing coin has been an insult to them.

dollar coin

I don't understand why it is so difficult for the government to eliminate the dollar bill, when it is widely known it costs more to circulate the bill which last a couple years, when the coin would last 30 years. It also is obviously easier and lighter to carry dollar coins in your pocket than the equivalence of multiples of 4 quarters, for those who frequent vending machines.

The banks are to blame too, as many of my friends and family want to use the dollar coins, but can't get them at the banks, all the while the dollar coins sit at the Fed's vaults. Just get rid of the bills, and those coins in the vaults will come rolling out in circulation in BIG STRIDES. Problem solved.

We should have a "OCCUPY THE DOLLAR COIN" movement to force the government to eliminate the bill. We should all go to the banks in large numbers and demand the dollar coins and refuse the bills.

Dollar Coin

Put out a dollar coin with St. Gaudens double eagle design featuring the full figure of Liberty on one side and people would love it and use it.

The problem is the coin itself

It's too much like a quarter. It feels too much like a quarter in your hand, so you end up handing it over as a quarter. Annoying.

(I have heard that this design flaw originated and has persisted because the vending machine lobby didn't want a coin that didn't fit in current slots. Don't know if that's true or not.)

Make it thick like the British pound coin, or big like the loonie, and it will be used.

Get rid of both the penny and the nickel, too, and give us a $2 coin.

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