US Mint and Treasury Department Authority for Coins

The United States Mint shows a great deal more restraint in creating and offering special numismatic products when compared to other world mints. Sometimes, this is attributed to the central role of Congress in authorizing denominations, compositions, coin designs, and specific coin programs. In many respects, the US Mint must simply carry out the requirements set out by Congress.

However, there are many areas where the Mint or the Treasury Department does have some discretion or authority with regards to coins. Based on my reading of the law or some past precedents, listed below are some things that the US Mint or Treasury Department does have the authority to do. I am not specifically recommending anything, just laying out what is possible under current law.

Coin Designs May Be Changed Once Every 25 Years

Under 31 U.S.C. § 5112(d)(2), the Secretary of the Treasury has the authority to change the design of coins, as long as the existing design has been in use for at least 25 years. With regards to circulating coins, the Secretary has deferred to Congress for the past 60 years or so and (as stated by the Mint) has no intention of changing this arrangement.

Some coin series that would be eligible for a change include the Roosevelt Dime, Kennedy Half Dollar, American Gold Eagle, and American Silver Eagle.

Some coins do have basic design requirements established by law, so in these cases the design requirements would still need to be followed. For example, the American Silver Eagle is required to have an obverse design symbolic of Liberty, while the reverse should have a design of an eagle.

Authority to Redesign the American Gold Buffalo Bullion Coins

The authorization for the American Gold Buffalo bullion and proof coins is provided under 31 U.S.C. § 5112(q). This requires that for the first year of issue, the coins should bear the original obverse and reverse designs of James Eagle Fraser from the 1913 Type 1 Buffalo Nickel.

For subsequent years, the Secretary has the authority to change the design on the obverse or reverse of the bullion coins. The design change could be made after consultation with the Commission of Fine Arts and review by the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee.

Broad Authority to Mint and Issue Platinum Coins

The authority to produce the American Platinum Eagles comes from 31 U.S.C. § 5112(k). However, rather than authorizing only this specific program, the law provides incredibly broad authority that could be used to create virtually any type of platinum coin.

The Secretary may mint and issue platinum bullion coins and proof platinum coins in accordance with such specifications, designs, varieties, quantities, denominations, and inscriptions as the Secretary, in the Secretary’s discretion, may prescribe from time to time.

This seems to allow the creation of infinite new series of platinum coins with any denomination, specifications, designs, or themes that the Secretary chooses. During the debt ceiling ordeal, someone floated the idea that the Secretary could create two $1 trillion platinum coins, deposit them at the Federal Reserve, and write checks from the proceeds.

Broad Authority to Mint and Issue Gold Coins

Under 31 U.S.C. § 5112(i)(4)(C), the Secretary of the Treasury has broad authority to prescribe procedures and specifications for the minting and issuance of new gold coins, including the diameter, weight, fineness, or design.

The popular 2009 Ultra High Relief Double Eagle Gold Coin was created using this authority.

Extend the America the Beautiful Quarters Program

When authorizing the America the Beautiful Quarters Program, Congress provided the Secretary of the Treasury with the discretion to authorize a second round of designs for the program. Each state, territory, and the District of Columbia would have a second national park or site featured on a quarter design under the same requirements as the original program. The first coin from round two would immediately follow the last coin from round one.

The Secretary may make this determination any time during the nine year period beginning after the issuance of the first America the Beautiful Quarter.

Mint Coins for Foreign Countries

Under 31 U.S.C. § 5111(a)(4), the Secretary of the Treasury may mint coins for a foreign country as long as it does not interfere with regular minting operations. The Secretary would also need to charge for minting the coins based on the cost of minting.

To my knowledge, the US Mint is not currently producing coins for any foreign countries, although they have sometimes done so in the past.

Use of Different Mint Facilities or Finishes

At various times in the past, the US Mint has created special numismatic items by producing coins at different mint facilities or with a special finish. This has created some popular or extremely rare coins and usually generated a great deal of excitement with collectors.

In 1995, the US Mint produced a limited number of Proof Silver Eagles at the West Point Mint with the “W” mint mark. During this year, the standard proof Silver Eagles were struck at Philadelphia and carried the “P” mint mark. The 1995-W Proof Silver Eagles were only included as part of an expensive set including four proof gold coins, which served to limit orders and create a low mintage rarity.

In 1996, the US Mint struck Roosevelt Dimes at the West Point Mint with the “W” mint mark to mark the 50th anniversary of the series. These coins were included only as part of the 1996 Mint Set. This mint sets was one of the most popular in years, but despite the larger mintage, the sets and 1996-W Roosevelt Dimes still carry a premium and make for an interesting issue within the lengthy series.

In 1994, 1997, and 1998, the US Mint struck Jefferson Nickels (1994, 1997) and Kennedy Half Dollars (1998) with a “matte proof finish”. These coins were only included within special commemorative coin sets.

The US Mint has continued to periodically use different mint facilities or finishes for some offerings. In recent years, we have had reverse proof Gold and Silver Eagles, as well as the collectible uncirculated Gold and Silver Eagles with “W” mint marks and Silver Eagles with the “S” mint mark.

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  1. Silver Surfing Scott says

    Any changes in design would be wilcome as long as the mint keeps to a good since of taste. I prefer coins that look more like a work of art hanging in a art gallery. The older coins depect this preference, that’s why they are more popular with coin collectors and the public. If the U.S. Mint wanted better looking coins, I think they should leave a Suggetions & Comments button on their web site, so people who care about this country, can get what they want from their U.S. Mint! Beautiful Coins!
    Bringing back solid copper coins and silver and gold percentage coins (40%-20%-10%-50%-75%) might help in sales also.
    Scott 🙂

  2. Chrome says

    Would also like to see a gold Kennedy half dollar (SMS Matte) in 2014 to celebrate the 50th and maybe final year of the series.

  3. simon says

    I second S3 – The world mint offerings have a tendency to be overly gaudy – I would prefer that the USmint keep to the themes of Liberty – Democracy – Nation – Leadership. I do purchase some world mint coins and some of my past favorites have been for example : the RCM which issued a set of coins commemorating man’s best friend – yes Canadian dogs! (my favorite is the Newfoundland.) These were issued in silver and in the 5 cents denom. ; I still have them and they are great thematic coins. Another favorite is the Einstein centennial by the German Mint which are again plain strikes on silver. I also liked and purchased the Russian Monastery series on silver. All-in-all I like all of the mint offerings like the current National Parks Quarters, specifically the 5 Oz “P,” which I sincerely hope the mint does not discontinue – I would be very disappointed if they did.

  4. Leo S. says

    Michael or anyone

    When will the Mint issue the 5 oz Parks bullion coins for 2012? The PR bird looks good but I can’t find it in bullion anywhere.

  5. says

    Good article, Michael. I don’t have a whole lot to comment on, but it was very helpful to have the exact powers the Mint has clarified. I somehow think the Secretary of the Treasury will probably not use his or her power to extend the AtB program further, though, if things continue the way they are.


    The Mint has not yet said when they will go on sale. Last year, the first 2011 bullion coins went on sale around April.

  6. Jake says

    I would like to see the Kennedy half dollar end in 2013. That would make it 50 years for the series.

  7. Matt L. DeTectre says

    Good research article. Very informative and educational. Lets do away with any more politicians from the last two hunerd yrs on coins. Lets keep it to just the founding fathers who signed the Declaration of Independence on future coins.

    “What do you get when you cross and economist with a godfather? You get an offer you can’t understand.” Peter Schiff

  8. Shutter says

    I would like the Congress and Treasury to butt out of numismatic decisions completely with the Mint becoming an independent agency again.

  9. Hidalgo says

    A few folks here say that they did not want to see so many design changes. Think about the following for the obverse of our current coins: Lincoln cent – no significant change since 1909 (102 years old); Roosevelt dime – no change since 1949 (63 years old); Washington quarter – no change since 1932 (70 years old), Kennedy half – no change since 1964 (48 years). The only coins with significant changes on the obverse side have been the Jefferson nickel and the many types of dollar coins we have seen (Ike, Susan B. Anthony, Sacagawea, and now the Presidents).

    It used to be that the reverse side would change after several decades, but within say, the past 25 years, they have changed and made coin collecting more enjoyable.

    I would like to see a change on the obverse side of some of our coins. Seeing the same profiles year after year after year gets really boring….

  10. merryxmasmrscrooge says

    I know it’s just a change in design and you say it’s boring… . But I never want to see a Reagan dime. Although I like him, he does not compare with FDR who gave us hope and guided us out of the Depression and led us to victory in WWII which wasn’t easy at all. Because of FDRs leadership, we are where we are today, and Germany is peaceful and our friend. We should never forget that.

  11. DCDave says

    I’d love to see a Reagan dime. MUCH better president than FDR.
    FDR caused most of our overseas problem and may have indirectly contributed to 9/11.
    FDR didn’t care about the European Jews. Had the opportunity to prevent the Holocaust and didn’t. He was an isolationist. Read your history books!FDR “led us to victory in WWII” because the Japanese forced our hand into the war.
    Because of FDR’s lack of leadership and vision, we now over-compensate to make sure another Holocaust doesn’t happen again by over-involving ourselves in other countries messes.
    Reagan was a real leader and brought down the Soviet Union with his visionary leadership, eliminating the constant worry of WW3 (remember?).
    Now we are just left with the international mess that FDR caused.
    Reagan deserves coinage! Our last great president since Teddy Roosevelt!

  12. fosnock says

    Please do not get into a political discussion, this blog is about coins. I can talk good and bad points about both Presidents. I do not think the mint has the fortitude to change Presidents on the coinage. The case in point is they were given the opportunity and the recommendation to place Teddy Roosevelt on the National Park Quarters, and refused to do so to avoid controversy, and I don’t know how this is controversial (Teddy Roosevelt started the National Park Service, and is the only President of the United Sates to receive the Medal of Honor)). We have people here arguing about it now, can you imagine the feedback (positive and negative) if they actually decided to do this?

  13. Shutter says

    Please do not get into a political discussion, this blog is about coins. I can talk good and bad points about both Presidents.

    Fully agree. Although, from my perspective I have something negative to say about presidents from both parties and little positive about either.

    Teddy Roosevelt started the National Park Service

    Except that he didn’t. NPS was signed into law in 1916 by Wilson. Just a bit after TR was out of office. And National Parks were created before TR (e.g. Yellowstone). He was involved in the creation of 5 national parks, 18 national monuments, and 150 National Forests. Not too shabby either.

  14. simon says

    I agree too – let’s get back to coins. That said, the presidents on current coins are all great men, all highly deserving to be remembered as such, and imprinted on the obverse of our coinage. As one of 330 million citizens I do have an opinion but it is one of many. The picture of the 2012 ASE proof (PS5) is posted on the website and looks cool!

  15. Matt L. DeTectre says

    I wll have to modify my previous comments somewhat. I am in favor or no more politicians other than signers of Declaration of Independence on circulating coins and their collector versions. I am okay with a politician on commemorative or not for circulation coins celebrating something they accomplished. I would have been good with Theo. Roosevelt on the 5 oz. ATB’s as the 5 ozers. are not circulating coins. In fact I was in favor of that and agree I don’t see what the controversy was for not using him. Seems like their was one exceptionally good reason for using him in this case.

    “Don’t glue clamps on your gold coins and hang them from your nipples
    That can harm your coin and crazy clue is hard to get off.” The Coin Expert

  16. says

    Please do not get into a political discussion, this blog is about coins. I can talk good and bad points about both Presidents.

    You have hit upon the reason why none of the obverse designs on our major circulating coins – the penny, nickel, dime, and quarter – will ever be changed. I believe some Republicans in Congress have been trying to get Reagan on a coin for years. Inevitably these attempts are blocked by political partisans who did not like his administration. If someone tried to get, say, Jimmy Carter or Obama on a coin, you would have the same result in reverse.

    I would rather our coins go back to classic-style depictions of liberty than presidents. The only president I ever thought looked any good on a coin was JFK, and even his half-dollar is beginning to get a little long in the tooth.

  17. vaughnster says

    How I yearn for the good old days when our posts centered on a new, hot upcoming product release with follow-ups on order numbers and delivery. The year is almost a quarter over and we have no clue when or if we’ll get a few “treats” from the Mint. Very disappointed.

  18. Michael says


    I didn’t include the palladium coins, since most aspects of the issuance of these coins has been specified by Congress (denomination, weight, purity, design, qualities). I was trying to outline some areas where the US Mint or Treasury Department can basically go off and do something on their own, like how they did creating the 2009 UHR.

  19. CW says

    Time for a Reagan dime. FDR has had his time and I think he is overrated personally, prolonging the great Depression. Actually, maybe an Obama dime is more appropriate…

  20. ChosenReject says

    all of these comments on politics are the exact reason the founders wanted only “Liberty” on circulating coinage.

  21. says

    I have been a coin collector for 50 years. I can remember when pocket change was a real asset to have because all denominations were relevant to everyday goods and services. Inflation has ravaged the usefulness of coins and they are an anachronism in the 21st century. Decades ago pennies were thrown away. Today people toss their coins to the street. (Something like $400,000 yearly is abandoned by airport travelers alone. The Mint’s future is to stamp a current date on a relic denomination, shuffle new designs across them every few years, and make them collectibles. They may just as well, since their function in commerce is rapidly disappearing.

  22. Brad says

    I’m the kind of guy who picks up any coins I find on the ground or floor (even pennies.) It’s an old habit that I just won’t give up. Sometimes I even come out ahead. Case in point: I’m one of the people who actually uses the “My Coke Rewards” program. You know those funky-looking codes printed under all the bottle caps and cardboard can cartons that most people ignore? Well, it doesn’t take very many of those to accumulate enough points to get free 20 oz. bottle coupons. I was redeeming one of those the other day, and even though the soda itself is free, you still have to pay the sales tax. It worked out to .13 cents. As I turned to leave the store, I found two dimes and a penny on the floor. 🙂

  23. Phil says

    To avoid political controversy and debate over which presidents should or shouldn’t be on our coins, bring back lady liberty! I believe, as did George Washington, that she should be there instead of presidents or other famous people, at least on the regular issue US coins. Our US coinage had it right until 1909, when Lincoln was the first president to be on a US coin, and since the 1940’s, lady liberty has been absent from all regular issue US coins. It might be OK to have a president or other famous person on some special commemorative, but other than that, let’s have lady liberty in some form or another, or something like a symbol of liberty such as an inanimate device (such as the 3 cent silver coins) or something like a flying eagle (such as the flying eagle cents). The coins are also much prettier and artistic that way. All of our most beautiful coins have had lady liberty or at least something other than a president on them.

  24. says


    Part of the problem is due to the persistent issue of the product schedule. The other issue is that, other than the mysterious silver eagle set, there aren’t really any “big ticket” Mint items on the way right now. In 2011 we had the continuing controversy over the 2010 AtB bullion coins (which bled over from late 2010), there were the first couple numismatic AtBs, and then later in the year you had the A25s. Nothing like this is on the horizon for 2012 except (maybe) the new silver eagle set, and some of that depends on mintage limits.

  25. stephen m. says

    Is there any news on a Silver Eagle Set? All i hear is maybe this year, could be next year and it is to honor the S. mints birthday. I wonder what the set may look like?

  26. POP says

    I would like to see the reverse of the gold AE changed. A family of eagles on something as small as a coin is just too much. Should have used the reverse from the original St. Gaudens design IMO.

  27. vaughnster says


    You’re right on the money. So far it’s been a very “blah” year with nothing to point to with the lack of a product schedule. I’m thinking of turning my resources to filling in some of the “key” holes in my books and finishing them off, which is how I got into collecting some 35 years ago….

  28. Dolores says

    Brad … you are too funny! I went to a local coin show this past Sunday. There in the back of my parked car were scattered about 20 pennies on the ground … I hesitated a lot to pick them up … but I did :0)

  29. says

    The very idea of anniversary issues for the mere existence of a bullion coin seems quite concocted and trivial to say the least. If the Mint REALLY had collectors’ interests at heart they would consider the idea of changing the design on the reverse of bullion coins (as with platinum) to make a really different collectible. Just changing the date and adding different mint marks and different finishes goes only so far. In the end you look at a set of American Silver Eagles or American Gold Eagles and realize that you just have so many duplicates of the same thing.

  30. Shutter says

    So far it’s been a very “blah” year with nothing to point to with the lack of a product schedule.

    Maybe this is the Mint’s way of quietly acknowledging “year without coins” sesquicentennial?

  31. Tim says

    Wow, I got a new El Y quarter in change and a 2009 Presidential penny. The only 2 pennies from 09 I had found in any change were the first 2. Due to the calm year of uncertainty from the Mint, this is what I am reduced to. I did however finally build a few wooden shelves on my walls to display a few items to admire. Keeping them hidden and locked up is the safest but enjoying looking at them is even better. Yes, I am well grounded in the 2nd Amendment.

  32. mjinden says

    In response to Michael’s comment:
    To my knowledge, the US Mint is not currently producing coins for any foreign countries, although they have sometimes done so in the past.

    I have toured the Denver Mint several times and recall a display of foreign coins produced by the Mint many years ago. They stopped minting foreign coins because the needed the production for U.S. coins. But in the current era they do not even mint coins 5 days a week- seems like it would be a great opportunity for the mint to increase profits through minting for other countries.

  33. Hidalgo says

    Hi Michael,

    I just saw this week’s US Mint sales figures. It shows that sales for the Infantry coins and the DOF set have slowed down significantly. Also, you said to keep an eye on the uncirculated gold SSB coin. It seems that the gold coin is selling at a pace that is slower than the Army and MOH uncirculated gold coins. What are your thoughts about buying the uncirculated SSB gold coins?

  34. G says

    @wes- I like the baby faced prez ideas. @cap- this year is so blah from the mint and yet one of the coolest foreign mint years. Something needs to be changed on the buffalo or eagle-whether it’s adding a fractional, or something- but I can’t think of any of the mint offerings this year that are worth posting about. I feel like we’re writing about 1987 or the past. Throw collectors a bone. How about something random like: only people who spent over 500$ at the mint last year have the option to purchase 1 sight unseen 1/4 proof good coin, design secret- to be delivered in December. Then they could mint random ATBs in gold and send them out randomly and mintages would be released in Feb. Who here wouldn’t buy one AND happily buy stuff from the mint to meet the quota. Keeping customers happy…

  35. fosnock says


    Thank you for the update on Teddy Roosevelt


    Maybe if inflation keeps up we will have a use for all those presidential dollars.

    I agree with a lot of the posters a reversion back to classical coin designs would be nice.

  36. Shutter says

    But in the current era they do not even mint coins 5 days a week- seems like it would be a great opportunity for the mint to increase profits through minting for other countries.

    Once you turn away a customer, it’s a lot harder to get him back. And there are more mints doing work for foreign customers than there used to be (e.g. Poland). Also, while some countries outsourcing work to foreign mints do their own design, others need the design done for them. With all the complaining about the Army coin this year, it’s easy to forget how truly ugly some coins have been. Like the USO, or Special Olympics, or Bald Eagle half.

  37. Tallon says

    OK, this is way off topic. In fact it’s the other side of the blog universe, World Mints. So, close your eyes or quickly scroll down.

    I’m trying to figure out why I can’t post on the World Mint blog. I have three comments “awaiting moderation” the oldest of which (28 hours) I would just like to be deleted because the topic has come and gone after being thoroughly discussed.

    I’m just not sure why I can post here but not at World Mints. Am I doing something wrong? (same Name and Email) Maybe the solution will be to not let me post here either.

    How did you folks get past moderation on the World Mints blog? Any help will be appreciated.


  38. Nate says

    @Tallon, it did take me awhile to get through moderation on the World Mint News Blog, but not 28 hours. I probably waited 3-5 hours before my comment came up. After the first one all comments have posted immediately. Not sure what the holdup is for you but maybe others have an idea.

  39. Tallon says

    Thanks Nate, I’ll be patient. In the mean time, as far as the US Mint offerings go, it looks like the SSB gold coins will miss a pricing step-down by a couple of bucks. By my cursory calculations, the average London fix for the week is now about $652. and not likely to get under $650 by tomorrow’s AM fix.

    In Michael’s Coin Update article, he mentioned the commemoratives had “their sales velocity slow.” My guess is this was partly due to people holding out hope for a price drop. If that doesn’t happen this week, sales may slow further in hopes of a price reduction next week. With the introductory pricing in effect until April 05, that leaves two more weeks to anticipate a price reduction.

  40. Kevin says

    Looks like the Julia Grant FS proofs have gone on backorder. Last mintage number was just under 4,000. Lowest mintage proof to date is Julia Tyler at 4,830. Grant has only been out nine months… Interesting.

  41. Paul says

    New items listed on Product Schedule

    ————————–Next Release Below————————–
    04/02/2012 America the Beautiful Quarters® Bags and Two-Roll Set – Chaco Culture (NM)
    04/05/2012 Presidential $1 Coin Rolls – Chester Arthur
    04/09/2012 2012 Chester Arthur $1 Coin Cover
    04/12/2012 2012 American Eagle Silver Proof Coins
    04/17/2012 America the Beautiful Quarters Three-Coin Set™ – Chaco Culture
    04/19/2012 2012 American Eagle Gold Proof Coins
    04/24/2012 America the Beautiful Quarters Uncirculated Coin Set™
    04/24/2012 2012 United States Mint Presidential $1 Coin Proof Set™
    04/26/2012 2012 Native American $1 Coin Rolls
    05/01/2012 2012 Presidential $1 Coin Uncirculated Set™
    05/07/2012 2012 United States Mint Proof Set®
    05/15/2012 Kennedy Half-Dollar Two-Roll Set and 200-Coin Bag
    05/21/2012 2012 United States Mint Uncirculated Coin Set®
    05/25/2012 Presidential $1 Coin Rolls – Grover Cleveland (1st term)
    06/04/2012 2012 United States Mint Silver Proof Set®

  42. VA Bob says

    Hildago – I believe folks are watching gold prices to get a good deal on the SSB gold (and the Buffalo for that matter). I know I am. As for the Infantry coin, I thought it would slow down. It may well sell out, but not anytime soon, as it is definitely a collector or “gift” coin, not really one for the flippers.

  43. beowulf says

    It appears that concept originated at a very hardcore progressive website with the following post:

    Ha ha, Perhaps I’m a RINO (I actually like Mitt Romney, thought I voted for Ron Paul in the primaries), but I am, in fact, a Republican. I posted that coin seigniorage article because I was asked to expand on some comments I had previously made. Few of the progs at that site are Democratic hacks, by and large, they think Obamacare is unconstitutional and Obama is an empty suit.

  44. Daniel says

    The Kennedy Half Dollar design has an upcoming 50th Anniversary in 2014.
    The obvious question is how will the US Mint celebrate that anniversay?
    How about reinstatement of the Kennedy Half as a true circulation coin?
    Minting a large number of circulation strikes. The US Mint could issue the 2014 Kennedy Half in either.999 or true .90 Silver strikes with all the variations of the Silver Eagle. That is Proof, Uncirculated, Reverse Proof and with W, S, P and D mint marks. There could even be special packaging and sets.

  45. Tom says

    I think that the key to the Kenndy half’s success is getting vendors to make every new machine they make, accept halves (and $2 bills), just as they did for dollar coins back in 1979. The Treasury could also order less quarters and $1 bills and let the halves and $2 bills fill in the gaps. But what would really help, is if self checkout stands at major retailers would accept and dispense $2 bills and halves as needed, and vending machines, should spit out halves as needed as well. There would be three groups of people if this happened. The complainers, who would complain about the two new denominations. The hoarders who would hoard the two new denominations. And there would be the neutral people that just figure “Whatever. It all spends the same”. Eventually, the complainers will come to accept $2 bills and halves, and the hoarders would realize the $2 bills and halves are not rare collectibles, and would start spending $2 bills and halves like any other money.

    By the way, my local Walmart’s self checkout stands accept halves $2 bills and small dollar coins, but not large dollar coins like Eisenhower dollars, which is to be expected as they are obsolete.

    One question though. Why do so many people want the half to be ended as one of our current denominations? They are fun to spend, and it is nice to have something out of the ordianary to spend every once in a while. Some people even say to quit printing $2 bills? Why? $2 bills are accepted in many vending machines and self checkouts, which give it an edge over the half, but still with the next currency redesign, the $2 bill is getting a redesign along with the $5-$100 for meaningful access for the blind and visually impaired, and I suggested to the Bureau of Engraving & Printing that they release the new $2 bill with the next new $5 bill so that vendors and self checkout companies can reprogram their machines to accept new $2 bills along with new $5 bills, and those suggestions have been passed on from the people I talk to at the BEP to the higher up people, so if this does happen, and vending machines and self checkouts do get the $2 bill upgrade, we may see an increase in their circulation. As for the half, I’m not sure, but I am trying to spark interest in the vending industry to accept halves, seeing as so many arcade games and other vending machines now require 50 cents instead of 25 cents these days.

    Also the half and the $2 bill are winning out against the dollar coin. I spent some halves at a local store, and the next time I was in that store, the guy working there said he was handing those halves out as needed, like crazy, and at that same store, I spent a bunch of dollar coins and the cashier said they were going back to the bank. I believe this is because, while the half dollar coin doesn’t have a 50 cent bill to compete with, and the $2 bill doesn’t have a $2 coin to compete with, yet the dollar coin has a $1 bill to compete with, it makes a whole lot of difference.

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