Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Save the Penny

Some days I think I either live under a rock, or my news channel just doesn't report things that I actually care about.  I spend half my time online looking up stuff that you'd think they'd mention.

At any rate, the Canadian penny is now an endangered species.  The senate has recommended that the penny be removed from circulation, and that guidelines be established for rounding off purchase prices to the nearest nickel.

I am appalled.  First, because I love my pennies.  Pennies were meant for wishing wells, charitable donations (cash boxes), penny candy, and luck.  Pennies are great for nurturing a kid's love of coin collecting.  And pennies are money, too.

It annoys me when I go somewhere that has one of those "Have a penny, leave a penny, Need a penny, take a penny" dishes sitting beside the cash register.  I have a penny, almost always, and I will gladly spend it.  And even if my change is just a penny, I want it back.  You know the old adage, "Take care of the pennies, and the dollars will take care of themselves."  Well, I don't want to take care of the nickels if the shop keepers get to rip me off 3 cents for every purchase I make.  I want my pennies.

I figure if pennies are so annoying to some folks, they have the option of using debit pretty much everywhere they go.  Leave the pennies for those of us who care.

One of the reasons the government is considering taking this action, is that we Canadians hoard our pennies, so they, the government has to keep making more.  Think about that for a moment.  We are hoarding our pennies.  We must like them or something?  And why is it ok for the mint to continuously produce 'collector' coins- poppy quarters, veterans quarters, olympic quarters, provincial quarters, etc, ad nauseum, which are purposefully designed to be kept as keepsakes?  Why are the jars of quarters people are keeping not contributing to inflation?  Seriously?  This doesn't make sense.

Don't we pay enough in taxes now?  Aren't prices for everything high enough already?  Commerce got the HST, let the people have the penny!  We need a break somewhere.  In these tough economic times, arbitrarily deciding that rounding off to the nearest nickel will all 'balance out in the end' just isn't good enough.  Face reality.  The businesses will work out the prices to make sure they don't lose one red cent, while we, the consumers, will be donating to their profit line!

If pennies cost a cent and a half to produce, why not redesign them?  Make them cheaper.  Make them smaller.  But don't take them away.  Save the penny!  Contact your MP!


  1. Sadly, pennies are so worthless to most people, they won't even bother to bend over and pick them up. The only reason they are successful as a fundraiser is that people would rather dispose of them than spend them.

    Thanks to the all-time high price of copper, pennies now cost 1.5 cents each to produce....spending millions to produce pennies isn't maybe isn't the best use of our tax dollars.

    If Canada implements a rounding policy for cash payments, it will all average out! If the final total ends with .41 or .42 you will round down to .40, and if the total ends in .43 or .44 you'll round up to .45. Retailers arent going to make any money off this. Most people pay with credit or debit anyway, and rounding wouldn't apply.

  2. I meant to add...I wish more people cared about their pennies! Maybe if they did, there wouldn't be this global acceptance of credit and debt as a way of life. I try to shop with cash as much as possible. It makes me feel more connected to my money. I think people who don't use cash, don't have a clue to it's value.

  3. So, penny hoarding is a problem? Won't eliminating pennies lead to nickle hoarding? This could be a slippery slope! Dime hoarders would arise, then quarter hoarders!

    If people actually ARE hoarding/saving pennies, maybe a penny is the most they can save without ruining the budget.I have heard complaints about pennies in the US.

    Maybe we should have coins that are really worth something. We could also have coins capable of being divided, as in the past. That would solve all our problems...lol...NOT