Should We Get Rid Of The Penny?

Have you ever stopped to think about the penny? It may seem like a small, insignificant part of our currency, but it actually has quite a bit of impact on our economy. The debate over whether or not we should get rid of the penny has been going on for some time now; both sides have valid arguments that are worth considering. In this article, we’ll explore both sides of the argument and determine if getting rid of the penny is really in our best interest.

The penny has been a part of American culture since its introduction in 1793. We’ve all seen them lying around on the ground, exchanging them at stores and banks, and even using them to add up prices in our heads. Though it may seem like an insignificant part of our currency system, there are some important points to consider when thinking about getting rid of the penny.

On one hand, supporters for keeping the penny point out that it can be used for exact change in transactions, making it easier for customers to purchase items without having to use paper money. On the other hand, those who oppose keeping the penny argue that production costs outweighs any benefits and that getting rid of it could save taxpayers millions each year. So what’s the verdict? Should we keep or get rid of the penny? Read on to find out!

Overview Of The Us Penny

The US penny is a small denomination of currency that has been around since the late 1700s. It is worth exactly one-hundredth of 1 US dollar and is composed mostly of copper and zinc. It’s also known as a one-cent coin, or simply a cent. The face of the penny usually features the profile of President Abraham Lincoln, though some varieties have other figures including Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson.

The penny has become increasingly less valuable in terms of purchasing power, due to the effects of inflation. Because it is so small, it can be difficult to use in transactions; merchants often round up or down to the nearest nickel when accepting pennies as payment. This means that people rarely use them, preferring to spend their money on items worth more than just one cent.

Though its importance has diminished over time, some people still consider the penny an important part of American culture and history – something that should not be discarded lightly.

Pros And Cons Of Keeping The Penny

Now that we have an overview of the US Penny, it’s time to explore the pros and cons of keeping this coin. On one hand, some say that getting rid of the penny would save money for the government due to its production cost exceeding its face value. This could help reduce the federal deficit. Additionally, coins are often used in vending machines and are a common form of payment for goods and services, so removing them from circulation could present challenges with consumers not having enough change available.

On the other hand, some argue that pennies are mostly nuisance items since they don’t buy much and take up space in people’s pockets. It’s estimated that Americans throw away $62 million worth of pennies every year. Furthermore, eliminating pennies would decrease demand for copper, which is a valuable resource used in many products such as wiring and plumbing components.

With both sides having valid points to consider, it raises an important question: should we keep or get rid of the penny? Ultimately, it will be up to Congress to decide if the penny should stay or go.

Arguments For Discontinuing The Penny

The penny is a coin that has been a part of American currency since the late 1700s, however, in recent years there have been arguments for discontinuing its circulation. One of the major arguments for getting rid of the penny is its lack of purchasing power. Inflation has made it so that a penny no longer goes very far and can hardly buy anything nowadays. This means it’s not worth carrying around or saving up, leading some to argue that it should be eliminated from circulation.

Another argument for discontinuing the penny is its cost-inefficiency. It costs more than one cent to make each penny because of the materials used, such as copper and zinc. Additionally, when coins are minted they wear down easily and need to be replaced often which adds to their cost-inefficiency even more. This makes the penny a financial burden on taxpayers who have to pay for more pennies than necessary just for them to stay in circulation.

Finally, supporters of removing the penny say that it would simplify transactions with cash by eliminating an extra digit from prices listed on goods and services. This would make it easier to calculate change without having to worry about breaking up large bills into smaller increments or dealing with cents at all. As such, some believe that getting rid of the penny would make transactions quicker and simpler without any major drawbacks.

Potential Implications Of Eliminating The Penny

Removing the penny from circulation has potential implications for both businesses and consumers. For businesses, there could be a shift in how they price goods and services. Currently, prices are rounded off to the nearest nickel, but there would need to be an adjustment if the penny is eliminated. This could mean rounding up or down on prices, which may have an effect on profit margins for some companies. Consumers could also experience changes depending on how businesses choose to round their pricing. If prices are rounded up more often than not, it could lead to higher costs for shoppers.

There may also be impacts on charitable organizations that rely heavily on small donations made in pennies. These organizations will likely see reductions in their funding if the penny is abolished. Additionally, many people feel that getting rid of the penny would devalue U.S currency as a whole because other coins like nickels and dimes would become even more important in comparison.

Ultimately, eliminating the penny carries some consequences that should be considered before taking such an action. The removal of the coin could have both financial and emotional implications that could affect businesses and consumers alike.

Alternatives To Replacing The Penny

One alternative to replacing the penny is to keep it in circulation but make it worth more. An idea proposed by Harvard economist Greg Mankiw suggests that the penny could be made worth 5 cents, so each penny would have five times its current value. This would help reduce the cost of producing pennies and result in fewer of them needing to be minted. Additionally, this option would not require citizens to change their habits or adjust to a new currency system.

Another alternative is to replace the penny with a different type of coin that has a higher face value. The United States has previously done this with other coins such as the half-dollar and dollar coins, and while they are not widely used, they can still be found in circulation. This option wouldn’t drastically affect people’s spending habits since the coin would still be the same size and shape as the current penny. Furthermore, it would reduce production costs since only one kind of coin needs to be minted instead of two.

The final option is to completely discontinue using pennies without replacing them with another form of currency. This plan may seem harsh, but it could ultimately save money by eliminating production costs altogether. Furthermore, prices could easily be rounded up or down depending on whether they fall above or below certain increments (e.g., $0.05). Ultimately, this solution may be more beneficial for both businesses and consumers in terms of efficiency and cost-savings over time.


To sum up, the penny has had a considerable impact on American currency. As an alternative to replacing the penny altogether, some have proposed reducing its purchasing power and making it worth more than one cent. Others have suggested rounding off prices to the nearest nickel or dime. Despite these alternatives, there are still many who believe that we should get rid of the penny all together.

Whether or not we should get rid of the penny is a highly contested issue with no clear answer. Ultimately, deciding whether or not to keep the penny must be left up to individual preference and opinion. The penny has been a part of American currency for over 200 years, and although it is often seen as an inconvenience, it also serves as a reminder of our nation’s history and heritage. Therefore, while getting rid of the penny may seem like an appealing solution in theory, its consequences may outweigh its benefits in practice.

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