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Are pennies beneath us?

Are pennies beneath us?

LuLuGal over at How I Save Money posted recently about how she missed out on a penny. I thought it was a funny post, but the most interesting part to me was the description of the other people involved.

There was the lady who actually brushed the penny away from her, and the other lady who didn’t even notice the penny. It reminded me of someone that I used to know who would literally throw pennies away at the end of each day, because they “weren’t worth carrying around”. That used to drive me crazy, and I would fish them out of the trash.

Pennies add up. I pick them up, but I wonder if the people who don’t pick them up do so out of a fear of being seen as cheap. Would the lady in the doctor’s office who brushed away the penny have picked it up if she were alone?

View Comments (6)
  • Hey thanks for linking to the post. I had no idea other people would find the lady as funny as I did. I was just laughing at her brushing the penny away as if it was covered with germs.
    Well it probably was…but hey it is free money!

  • Pennies are as close to worthless in terms of replacement cost as pretty much anything that you come in contact with during the day. Aluminum cans are worth more than pennies are, and most people throw them away. The US government isn’t even able to manufacture and distribute them for less than $0.01 now, so every new penny that is produced is a net loss that is paid for by tax money. Most vending machines or other coin operated machines don’t take pennies any more. Studies have shown that most people never pay for anything with pennies, they just collect the pennies that they get back as change and bring them to a bank to exchange for larger currency.

    I usually walk around with a few pennies, but only so that I can pay with exact change and get bills or larger change back instead of more pennies. Eventually everyone will realize how ridiculous pennies are and we’ll get rid of them and round everything to the nearest nickel.

    PS: To lulu, I’m not a germaphobe so I don’t have a problem with them, but pennies actually are covered in germs. Money in general is very dirty, because so many people touch it and nobody washes it. If you go to Subway or some other place where the same person prepares the food that runs the cash register, normally the person will put on a fresh pair of gloves after they hand you your change, because its a health code violation to use the same gloves for both.

  • I’ve been debating the issue in my head for a couple years now and I still can’t decide whether I hate pennies. Granted, they don’t get much use apart from getting them back in change, but if the coin were eliminated, everything would be rounded to the nearest nickel, and soon people would stop picking up nickels.

  • Hey I don’t care whether they are covered in germs or not….they go in my coin jar and when it gets full that gets taken to the bank and I get a nice little surprise.

    Now I would not go out of my way to run someone over just to get a penny….but hey when you are broke money is money. Plus if I keep picking up pennies I keep the idea in my head that EVERY cent counts and that just helps me to pay my debt off faster.

    Besides, if I had to charge something on a credit card that brought my balance over the limit by one penny I do not think that Discover would say “Oh it is just a penny so let’s waive the overlimit fee”.

    I wish!

    Nope, I would still get slapped with the over limit fee. So I am still gonna pick up my grimy, filthy, germ-infested pennies. :-)

    Drop one near me and see what happens. :-) :-) :-)

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