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Your Take: Presidential $1 Dollar Coins

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Dollar CoinsThe sad reality that about a billion dollars in dollar coins currently sits in Federal Reserve vaults has been circulating the last week or so, a staggering sum considering we keep producing them because of a Congressional mandate. The idea behind dollar coins is simple – a coin lasts longer than a bill. We’re supposed to save money by using coins… except we didn’t do away with the dollar bill. All things being equal, people are going to prefer a lighter, foldable bill to a heavier coin. A dollar bill fits in my wallet, a coin will not. If a dollar bill exists, I won’t be using the coin. It seems like simple logic.

How often did you see the larger dollar coin with President Eisenhower? We didn’t use that, why the heck would we use one with other presidents on it?

What makes it more comedic is the sad fact that Congress thought popularity would increase if we made a lot of these coins with different presidents on it, thinking it would be as popular as the program with the quarters. Those were popular because you could collect them. There was a set number (50) and collecting them all cost you exactly $12.50. No one is collecting these coins at a dollar a pop.

I use dollar coins in very rare instances – those cases where we need a small amount of cash. We use it whenever we go to our local bagel place, when we go to the farmer’s market and when I lose bets on the golf course (I lose a lot of them but we usually don’t collect).

Do you use dollar coins? What would get you to use them?

(Photo: joshandrews)

{ 50 comments, please add your thoughts now! }

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50 Responses to “Your Take: Presidential $1 Dollar Coins”

  1. Joe says:

    It would be nice if the vending machine companies would accept dollar coins and put some notice that dollar coins are accepted on the machine. I don’t really want to gamble $1 to find out if it will work. I’m also hesitant to use the coins with cashiers because I don’t want the extra possible hassle time with uneducated cashiers.

  2. Our bill changer at work dispenses the dollar coins for change instead of giving out a bunch of quarters. This is a great idea for vending machines, but not very practical for everyday use.

  3. Dave says:

    I have the same amount of use for them as all of the other coins that the US mint puts into circulation – none. Any time I get change when I buy something with cash, the coins end up in a jar and when the jar is full, I take it to the bank and deposit it. It doesn’t matter if its a dollar coin, quarter or penny, it ends up in the jar and eventually makes its way to the bank…

  4. The Dude says:

    Nobody’s mentioned another coin that is never used – the Kennedy half dollar.

    • Robert Wayne says:

      I agree. When I go to my bank to cash my paycheck I always ask the tellers if they have any dollar coins or half dollar coins. They rarely do. How can the U.S. mint expect us to use these coins when we can’t even get them??? Unless the banks get off their rear ends and start getting some of these coins for their inventory they won’t get into circulation.

  5. MikeZ says:

    I’d use them as soon as I receive some in change. I’m one of the odd people who do NOT have a change jar at home. I always attempt to minimize the coins in my pocket whenever I pay cash for anything so I use my change first. Of course nowadays I just use credit for everything so its somewhat moot.

  6. David C. says:

    Here in fly-over country we don’t see much of the $1 presidential coins and a visit to the US Mint website reveals that these coins are available as “collector” issue at a hefty markup, or at face value in lots of $250. This doesn’t inspire the average American to put them into circulation. Americans must bid the penny and the paper dollar goodbye sooner or later.

  7. factchecker says:

    To the author, its faulty logic although sensible,

    Obviously americans prefer bills to coins especially in the summertime, but the faulty logic is lower denominations, sadly a dollar does not buy you what it did 10-15 years ago, and the penny
    is becoming so useless its lost 30x its value believe it or not folks still use it a bit, however why don’t we have quarter dollar bills,
    the quarter was worth a dollar in the 70s/80s, so any argument against it is nonsense, however folks like putting spare change in the tip jar, but much less a dollar.

    I do support keeping the dollar but maybe lower its replacement rate, since dollar bills last a few years after the banks send them.

    The penny and the useless zinc which isn’t as great as cooper and is a poison and costs more
    needs to go, only problem is folks would not be able to use the 99 price that is common, the nickel can go to but we have a 25 cents problem
    interestingly a half,2,3,20 cent and half dime existed, if we got ride of the half cent we can ride a penny and a nickel, but the latter runs in the quarter problem, instead of 1.005 1.05.

  8. Josh says:

    I use dollar coins all the time. I used to only use credit card for everything costing stores fees for the smallest purchases… I now use dollar coins for anything that I don’t feel the need to use credit for.

  9. Robert Wayne says:

    I like dollar and half dollar coins but I can’t get them!!! I go to the bank, any bank around here, and they rarely have any of these coins. The feds say they want people to use them but how can we use them when banks won’t carry them in their inventory???

  10. JP says:

    I use $2 bills, Dollar coins and half-dollars all the time. If your bank doesn’t carry them, talk to the teller that places the money order and ask them to start ordering the currency that you want.

  11. Chris says:

    I think part of the problem is marketing. Most people have never seen them and don’t even know they exist. They should have publicized them better.

  12. Scott M. Giklman says:

    I wold like to see the contiued minting of @1 coins, and the termination of printing @1 bills.

  13. Scott M. Gilman says:

    I carry them in a small coin purse and spend them all the time. Now the banks no longer have them.

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