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When penny costs more than a penny

May 8, 2008 - Steve Murch
Maybe, just maybe, big government does get it. Last week, it was reported that pennies and nickels were worth less than it cost to make them. Currently, pennies cost 1.26 cents to make — a loss of 0.26 cents; nickels currently cost 7.7 cents — a loss of 2.7 cents.

Holy wow?!?!?!

It almost sounds like buying a car where the minute you drive it off the lot it’s worth less than what you just paid for it. Now that’s a real loss of income.

The Associated Press is reporting Thursday that the House voted unanimously on a plan that would change the makeup of the coins to make them worth more than they cost to make. However, every sunny day has the threat of rain.

Surprise, surprise, according to the AP story, the Bush administration — and some lawmakers — has objections. First (OK, recently; Bush has been off on plenty) he’s surprised by news that gas might hit $4 a gallon, now he opposes the U.S. mint not going in debt by cutting the cost of producing coins.

To the president’s defense, the Mint isn’t keen on the plan either. And of course his mind has been focused on getting his daughter married.

The AP story states advocates say the move would save taxpayers about $1 billion over 10 years. Hmmm, sounds like a nice stimulus package all by itself.

Of course the real question in all of this is: Would the new coins actually work in vending machines?


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