U.S. Mint tests new metal coins

January 6, 2013 in Coins, USA Coins

BY ADAM WILMOTH | Published: January 4, 2013 (

When it comes to making coins, the Mint isn’t getting its two cents worth. In some cases, it doesn’t even get half of that.

A penny costs more than two cents and a nickel costs more than 11 cents to make and distribute.

The excessive cost has left the U.S. Mint looking for new metal mixes that would be cheaper to make.

But Oklahoma City businesswoman Terry Neese said it might be time to consider scrapping at least some coins altogether.

“We need to decide whether we are going to keep the penny or not,” said Neese, who in 2005 turned down a presidential appointment to lead the Mint. “Are we going to continue to pay double or over double what it takes to make the penny? It is not wise economic policy to do that. If we can’t find the right material that would close the cost to print the penny and nickel, it’s time to walk away from those two coins.”

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