Photo: Kirsten Acuna, Business Insider
President Barack Obama is currently doing a Google+ live hangout with several citizens discussing issues he brought up in the State of the Union. One person asked why the United States hadn’t gotten rid of the penny.
The argument goes that the United States government loses money on the penny, and that other governments have killed the coin entirely to reap substantial financial benefit.
Each U.S. penny costs 2.4 cents to even make, and people use the item less and less as the transition away from cash proceeds and the one-cent piece becomes increasingly worth less as inflation continues. There has never been a coin in circulation worth as little as the penny historically, and many have argued that phasing the one cent piece out is worthwhile.
Canada recently completed the phase-out of their one cent copper, and in the coming years will see financial benefit.
Today President Obama came out in favour when responding to a question asking why the United States has not yet killed the copper:
“I gotta tell you John I don’t know […] I will tell you right now, this will not be a huge savings for government, but anytime were spending more money on something that people don’t actually use that’s an example of something we should change
“One of the things you see chronically in government It’s very hard to get rid of things that don’t wor so then we can invest in the things that do. So the penny become a good metaphor for a lot of the problems that we’ve got.”
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