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The death of the $1 bill?

By David McMillin · Bankrate.com
Saturday, December 8, 2012
Posted: 7 am ET

As Congress looks for opportunities to save money, the Government Accountability Office recommends that lawmakers start by looking at what's in their own wallets.

A new GAO study highlights the potential cost benefits of replacing the $1 bill with a $1 coin. The extinction of the $1 bill could give the government approximately $4.4 billion worth of savings over the next 30 years. On average, the $1 bill has a lifespan of under five years while the $1 coin's durability gives it a lifespan of an estimated 30 years.

While the proposal may be cost-effective, it's not going to happen without the buy-in from a pretty important group: American consumers.

"For such a replacement to be successful, the $1 coin would have to be widely accepted and used by the public," the GAO writes.

That could be a big stumbling block. My colleague, Claes Bell, explained in a post last year that Americans tend to avoid using $1 coins. They cling to old habits, he wrote, and many of them simply refuse to fill their purses and pockets with coins.

Even if you convince consumers to use them, businesses would still need to make plenty of adjustments.

Banks, vending machine makers and others would need to find ways to replace the $1 bill with a coin.

The switch has worked in other countries, however. In Canada, the government saved $450 million in just five years by replacing the small-value bill with a coin. As headlines of the dreaded fiscal cliff continue to dominate the news, it's hard to ignore a proposal that carries great potential to cut government spending.

What do you think? Are you in favor of replacing a paper bill with a coin to save the government money?

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381 Comments
Dale Jones
December 11, 2012 at 9:24 pm

This is a cost saving measure. All we need is the banks to take in the paper bills and only give out dollar coins This should not be a choice. Every way we can save the government money is a bonus. Just do it.

Elisabeth Carpenter
December 11, 2012 at 9:22 pm

The Coin should be bigger then the old Dollar coin. It was hard to tell apart from a Quarter.
Also it should have
I believe the people would except the coin.

Elisabeth Carpenter
December 11, 2012 at 9:19 pm

THEY SHOULD MAKE IT THE SAME SIZE AS THE OLD "HALF DOLLAR".
Also it should have
I believe the people would except the coin.

dan riley
December 11, 2012 at 9:02 pm

When at a strip club where do you stick the coins?

DJ
December 11, 2012 at 8:58 pm

I wouldn't mind the switch, its working everywhere else, and that's not being a sheep its being stupid. And i agree the government will just spend it on another dumb project. But at least this will pay for it instead of being in more debt. The only bad thing about the switch would be for all the strippers out there when us guys make it rain on them HO HO Hoes.. Have a good holiday everyone!!!

Cathleen
December 11, 2012 at 8:53 pm

I'll use whatever the government chooses. Coin or paper, money is money. People won't stop spending because the coins, they won't have any choice but to use it.

colin
December 11, 2012 at 8:52 pm

England switched to the pound coin back in the eighties and the two dollar coin in the nineties plus a few other coins changed, I say it's time to wake up and move on.

richard ward
December 11, 2012 at 8:43 pm

AS LONG AS THEY = THE FEDERAL GOV. ==PUTS IN GOD WE TRUST = THEN I THINK PEOPLE WILL ACCEPT THE NEW COINS

ROY FRANZ
December 11, 2012 at 8:39 pm

I THINK THEY WOULD BE GREAT. THE SIZE WOULD BE IMPORTANT,THEY SHOULD MAKE IT THE SAME SIZE AS THE OLD "HALF DOLLAR". THE LAST DOLLAR COIN I THINK IT WAS CALLED THE ANTHONY ? was as small as a quarter and oddly shaped. "was not popular".

Harry D. Thomas
December 11, 2012 at 8:30 pm

Apologies to Karen Katz; my comments were response to Karen Daily. The fact that two Karens had addressed the issue eluded me.