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The E-Sylum:  Volume 10, Number 28, July 15, 2007, Article 23

DICK JOHNSON ON FUTURE COIN DENOMINATIONS

Dick Johnson writes: "Thank you, Tim Shuck, for your comments on
eliminating small coin denominations in last week’s E-Sylum. In answer
to your scenarios of purchases of 20 cents (or 60 or 70 cents) where
you have only quarters, you would lose the five cents. That is part
of the “rounding up or rounding down” in the “rounding off” process
where the smallest coin is a dime. (I like what the Canadians call
the final transaction price, the “tally amount.”)

"Five cents is a minor amount – and it would only be for a short time
– until all prices are established in multiples of ten cents. Today
the average factory worker earns $88 a day. Five cents is one-1,760th
part of a day’s wage. Not that much to get upset over. That factory
worker earns five cents in one and a half seconds. Rather
insignificant loss, wouldn’t you say? (Did you buy a lottery ticket
today? Far greater loss!)

"For the frugal person, Tim’s proposed transaction would be better
accommodated be proffering two quarters or a dollar to obtain the
exact change.

"Eliminating the cent and nickel is the first step to a complete
overhaul of our coins. The quarter would indeed be eliminated a few
years later but must remain in circulation because there would not
be enough half dollars around at first. Halves would take on far
more importance under this plan. The mint would strike halves on
presses that formerly struck cents and nickels. Meantime the quarters
would circulate in pairs.

"Tim, your sights are not raised high enough in suggesting a 20-cent
piece. (It would shortly go the way of the same coin of last century
or the 2-cent piece – abolishment – because it does not have that
much usefulness in the overall scheme of the rising economy.)

"To understand all this I must reveal more of my plan for Future Coins.
Here are the coin denominations for the greatest efficiency in American
commerce in the coming years after, say, 2010:

"Dime. Half Dollar. Dollar. Five Dollar. Ten Dollar.

"There is an optimum number of coin denominations for the most
efficient cash commerce. Think of it as the number of coin compartments
in a cash register drawer. Four denominations is too few. Six or more
is too many, as so many European countries have learned after switching
over to the euro with all their fractional denominations. Low
denomination coins in Europe are proving unnecessary – some merchants
are even refusing them – five coin denominations are the most ideal
number.

"Obviously we do not have enough high denomination coins in America,
and coins below ten cents are unnecessary in a dynamic, growing
American economy. We cannot keep on issuing the same low value coins
of 200 years ago when bread was a nickel, and today is several dollars.
The cent and the nickel are just unnecessary in the 21st century, as
was a mill coin in the 19th century.

"You may say the dollar has been devalued over 200 years but this is
countered as earnings have risen. It is relative. Eliminating the
small denominations would save billions, however!

"If I get enough inquiries asking about these proposed coins I will
reveal some characteristics about these coins in a future E-Sylum:
Size, Composition, Color and Why.  Email editor Wayne Homren or me
at dick.johnson@snet.net

"This is what you will be collecting in the future, our Future Coins.
Are you interested?"

  Wayne Homren, Editor

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