Withdrawal of low-denomination coins

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The Swiss 1 Rappen coin, last minted in 2006

The withdrawal of a country's lowest-denomination coins from circulation (usually a one-cent coin or equivalent) may either be through a decision to remove the coins from circulation, or through simply ceasing minting.

Reasons[edit]

This withdrawal may be due to the high cost of production, since the coin may be worth less than its cost of production. For example, when Canada phased out its penny in 2012, its production cost was 1.6 cents per penny.[1] Other reasons include low purchasing power and low utility. Often coins are withdrawn after their purchasing power has been eroded after decades of inflation. In Switzerland, the 1 Rappen coin had fallen into disuse by the early 1980s, but was still produced until 2006, albeit in ever decreasing quantities. Conversely, the British Treasury department initially argued for the retention of the decimal halfpenny, on the grounds that its withdrawal would drive up inflation.[2]

In some countries, such as New Zealand,[3] withdrawn coins are declared to be no longer legal tender; in other countries, such as Australia, they remain legal tender indefinitely.[4]

When the coin in question is no longer minted, prices are rounded, typically through Swedish rounding.[5]

Efforts have been made to end the routine use of pennies in several more countries, including the United States.[6] Countries in the Eurozone have had different responses to the issue; according to James Debono writing for Malta Today, "scrapping the coins is considered unthinkable for Germany where both consumers and retailers are obsessed with precise pricing."[7]

Countries[edit]

Countries that have withdrawn their lowest-denomination coins include:

Country Coin(s) Year of last minting Withdrawal date Legal tender? Notes
 Argentina 1 centavo 2001 N/A Yes Not officially withdrawn
 Australia 1 and 2 cents 1991 1 February 1992 Yes Legal tender for amounts not exceeding 20 cents[4]; can be paid into bank accounts but sometimes refused
 Belgium 1 and 2 euro cent N/A 2014 Yes Remain in use at some retailers; Coins are still struck for annual coin sets[8]
 Brazil 1 centavo 2005 N/A Yes Not officially withdrawn
 Canada 1 cent 2012 4 February 2013[9] Yes
 Croatia 1 and 2 lipa 2012 N/A Yes Not officially withdrawn; since 2009, coins struck only as annual coin sets[10]
 Czech Republic 10 and 20 haléřů
50 haléřů
N/A 31 October 2003
31 August 2008
No
 Denmark 1 and 2 øre
5 and 10 øre
25 øre
1973
1989
2008
1 April 1973
1 July 1989
1 October 2008
No[11] Exchangeable at Danmarks Nationalbank for 3 years after withdrawal - now treated as scrap metal
 Fiji 1 and 2 cents 2005 13 November 2008 No
 Finland 1 and 2 euro cent N/A 2002 Yes Only a few were minted; coins are still struck for annual coin sets[12]
 Hong Kong 1 cent
5 cents
1941
1980
?
1 January 1989
No Can be exchanged or paid into HSBC bank
 Hungary 2 and 5 filler
10 and 20 filler
50 filler
1 and 2 forint
1992
1996
1999
2008
30 September 1992
30 September 1996
30 September 1999
1 March 2008
No Were exchangeable at the Hungarian National Bank until 31 December 1993.
Were exchangeable at the Hungarian National Bank until 31 December 1997.
Were exchangeable at the Hungarian National Bank until 30 September 2000.
Were exchangeable at the Hungarian National Bank for five years from the date of withdrawal[13]
 Ireland 1 and 2 euro cent N/A 28 October 2015 Yes Rounding is optional for consumers[14][15]
 Israel 1 agora
5 agorot
1991
2006
1 April 1991
1 January 2008
No Exchangeable at the Bank of Israel and commercial banks until 31 December 2010[16]
 Italy 1 and 2 euro cent N/A 1 January 2018 Yes Coins are still struck for annual coin sets
 Malaysia 1 sen 2008 1 April 2008[17] Yes
 Netherlands 1 and 2 euro cent N/A 1 September 2004 Yes Rounding is optional for retailers[18]
 New Zealand 1 and 2 cents
5 cent coin
1987
2004
30 April 1990
1 November 2006
No[3] Exchangeable at the Reserve Bank of New Zealand (but amounts over $5 must be paid into a New Zealand bank)
 Norway 1 and 2 øre
5 øre
10 øre
50 øre
1972
1982
1992
2012


1993
1 May 2012
No


Norges Bank is obliged to redeem 50-øre coins until 2022[19]
 Papua New Guinea 1 and 2 toea 2006 19 April 2007 No
 Russia 1 and 5 kopeks 2014 N/A Yes Not officially withdrawn
 Singapore 1 cent 2002[20] N/A Yes Not officially withdrawn
 South Africa 1 and 2 cents
5 cents
2002[21]
2012[22]
1 April 2002
1 April 2012
Yes
 Sweden 1 and 2 öre
5 öre and 25 öre
10 öre
50 öre
1971
1984
1991
2009
30 June 1972
30 June 1985
30 September 1992
30 September 2010
No Payable into bank accounts for several months after withdrawal - now treated as scrap metal
  Switzerland 1 Rappen
2 Rappen
2006
1974
1 January 2007
1978
No Exchangeable at the Swiss National Bank for 20 years after withdrawal
 Trinidad and Tobago 1 cent 2014 2018 No Production ceased in 2014 and lost its validity in 2018; exchangeable at the Central Bank of Trinidad and Tobago
 United Kingdom 12 penny 1983 31 December 1984 No[2] Can be paid into bank accounts at discretion of commercial banks; cannot be exchanged by general public at the Royal Mint although private companies exist which can do so
 United States of America 12 cent 1857 21 February 1857 No
 Uruguay 10 and 20 centésimos
50 centésimos
1994
2008
2005
1 July 2010
No
 Vanuatu 1 and 2 vatu 2011 31 March 2011 Yes[23]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Canada cuts costs by eliminating penny, while US still clings to iconic coin". FoxNews.com. 4 February 2013. Retrieved 12 October 2015.
  2. ^ a b "1984: Halfpenny coin to meet its maker". BBC. Retrieved 21 October 2015.
  3. ^ a b "History of New Zealand Coinage". Reserve Bank of New Zealand. Retrieved 20 October 2015.
  4. ^ a b "RBA Banknotes: Legal Tender". Rba.gov.au.
  5. ^ "Save the penny or leave the penny?". www.cbc.ca. Retrieved 2015-10-12.
  6. ^ Lewis, Mark (5 July 2002). "Ban The Penny". Forbes. Retrieved 2009-05-07.
  7. ^ Debono, James (10 April 2014). "1c and 2c coins here to stay". Malta Today. Retrieved 20 October 2015.
  8. ^ "2015 Belgium 9-Coin BU Coin Set". Retrieved 21 October 2015.
  9. ^ "Phasing out the Penny | Canada's Economic Action Plan". ActionPlan.gc.ca. Retrieved 12 October 2015.
  10. ^ "Kovanica 1 lipe, jedna lipa - katalog hrvatskog novca | KUNALIPA". www.kunalipa.com. Retrieved 2015-11-23.
  11. ^ "Say Goodbye to the Smallest Danish Coin, the 25-Øre". CoinNews.net. Retrieved 21 October 2015.
  12. ^ "Finland euro coins". Fleur de Coin. Retrieved 29 June 2017.
  13. ^ "Exchangeable cash withdrawn from circulation". Hungarian National Bank. Retrieved 20 October 2015.
  14. ^ Pollak, Sorcha (19 October 2015). "Coin rounding to begin as 1 cent, 2 cent coins phased out". Irish Times. Retrieved 20 October 2015.
  15. ^ "Rounding of one and two cent coins under way". RTÉ News. 28 October 2015. Retrieved 29 October 2015.
  16. ^ http://www.pressreader.com/israel/jerusalem-post/20100914/282102043000720
  17. ^ "Doing away with one-sen coin payment". The Star. 14 November 2007. Retrieved 20 October 2015.
  18. ^ "Rounding to multiples of 5 cents". De Nederlandsche Bank. Retrieved 20 October 2015.
  19. ^ "50-øre coin withdrawn in 2012". Norges Bank. Retrieved 21 October 2015.
  20. ^ Ang, Benson (25 June 2013). "1-cent coin headed for history". AsiaOne. Retrieved 20 October 2015.
  21. ^ "One Cent (1c)". South African Mint. Retrieved 21 October 2015.
  22. ^ "5c coin to be discontinued". The Times. 24 November 2011. Retrieved 21 October 2015.
  23. ^ "Reserve Bank of Vanuatu statement: 1 and 2 vatu coins" (PDF). Reserve Bank of Vanuatu. Retrieved 21 October 2015.