Push to replace paper dollar revived
Coins play an important role in consumers' everyday lives. Many stash change in jars and use it at a self-service coin counting machine, while others use it regularly to complete small transactions, making it important for retailers to have their own coin counter. If a bipartisan group of U.S. senators has its way, coins could become even more important and generate plenty of interest in the coming months.
New proposal could switch dollar bill for dollar coin
A group of senators has recently made headlines with its proposal to eliminate the dollar bill and transition to a dollar coin instead. The recently reintroduced COINS Act has raised eyebrows among politicians and consumers alike, and many people have strong feelings as to why the suggestion should - or shouldn't - become a reality.
Proponents claim phasing out the dollar bill for a dollar coin makes more financial sense than leaving the American monetary system as is, especially with the national debt a prevalent concern. Lawmakers cite a report from the Government Accountability Office, which in 2012 projected replacing the dollar bill with a coin would save the country $146 million annually.
According to Bloomberg, the COINS Act would stop production of the $1 bill four years after its passage or the first year in which 600 million $1 coins are circulated. The source reported that although the GAO projects the initial switch will cost the country $531 million in the first 10 years, it would save the government roughly $4.4 billion over the next three decades.
Many hesitant about the idea
While replacing low-denomination bills with coins has worked well in Canada and the United Kingdom, there is evidence Americans wouldn't support such a change. The government has previously made attempts to introduce dollar coins, and these programs have failed as consumers rejected the new currency. The Susan B. Anthony coin and Sacagawea coin are highly unpopular, and few people actually used them to complete transactions.
If passed, business owners could see a significant increase in the number of customers completing transactions with change. This would require them to invest in a coin counter and sorter that will streamline backroom processes and ensure purchases are handled effectively and efficiently. Failing to keep up with the times and changing consumer habits could lead them to miscount or make errors.