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Are You Ready to Kiss the Penny and the Nickel Goodbye?

A penny for your thoughts? Well, maybe not for long.

PennyIn 2015, the U.S. Treasury Department will begin studying “alternative options for the penny and the nickel.”

A big problem is that the cost of producing the lowest-denomination coins is now nearly twice their face value. According to the 2013 annual report of the U.S. Mint, a penny now costs 1.8 cents to make, and a nickel costs 9.4 cents to make. The Brookings Institution estimates that the difference costs taxpayers $1 billion a year. And if Canada, which eliminated its penny in 2012, is a good example, U.S. banks will save billions of dollars a year that they spend transporting, storing and counting all those pennies and nickels. 

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In truth, our lives may be a little less cluttered without all those coins rattling around in our pockets or piling up on our bedroom dressers. Even so, pennies and nickels have a certain cultural significance to those of us who grew up with them, and it’ll take some adjustment to get used to a world without them.

Here are seven things that could change with the demise of the penny and the nickel:








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