A dollar for your thoughts

Well, it looks like we’re ready to hear another round of rock vs. paper.

Or in this case, silver vs. paper.


According to this CNN.com article, Congress, who apparently has nothing better to do, has voted to begin circulation of new dollar coins. The two previous incarnations, the Susan B. Anthony and Sacagawea, were met with an air of indifference, forced to sit in bowling alley cash registers and collector’s tubes untouched.

I actually liked the idea of a dollar coin – an acceptance that led back to my short time in England, where they had not only £1 coins, but £2 coins as well. In fact, the £2 coin was a larger gold coin with a silver coin in the center – very classy. I enjoy having loose change jangling in my pocket, and Sacagawea dollars were heavy and meaty – they felt like an entire dollars worth of change.

The House of Reps voted this new coin into the mint with a 422 to 6 margin, and production is supposed to start in 2007, and will be much like the state quarters – except each dollar coin will be released with a different president on it. Four a year, until finished.

An interesting bit in the article talks about how the US Mint and Treasury actually makes money on each hoarded state quarter. To quote:

After the 50 State series launched in the late 1990s, the government discovered that an astonishing number of people were collecting each new quarter as it rolled out of the U.S. Mint, taking the pieces out of circulation.

It costs the Mint less than five cents for each 25-cent piece it produces. So in a process called seignorage, the government makes money whenever someone “buys” a coin then chooses not to spend it.

The Treasury estimates that it has earned about $5 billion in seignorage profits from the quarters so far.

That’s a lot of money being made on silly quarter designs.

Though I really shouldn’t say anything. I’ve got all of them so far. *sigh*

This was lovingly handwritten on April 28th, 2005