Thursday, February 07, 2013

Canada Eliminates the Penny!

This weekend marked the last time the Canadian Mint would print and distribute Canadian pennies. They are still legal tender but will not be handed back as change when you purchase items with cash. This is expected to save the Canadian government $11 million a year and should eventually make the penny a collector's items as they will eventually be melted down and the copper reclaimed by the Mint. The process by which businesses process transactions now is a bit confusing. Any purchases made with cash that end in a .01 or a .02 will be rounded down to the nearest dollar. Any purchases that end in a .03 or .04 will be rounded up to .05 and so on. Purchases made with a card will not be rounded in any way.

This means that businesses will most likely be off several cents every day until the penny is completely eliminated from circulation due to rounding. As well, this changes the concept of 99 cent stores. Will people eventually cease to say "penny for your thoughts" or "that's my two cents" as there will now be generations of people who grow up without the penny?

I never thought about how integrated something like the penny was in our lives but this is history happening before our eyes. Just as when the dollar bill was eliminated or the toonie was introduced, it's something people have to wrap their heads around. I for one, love that we're here at this crossroads, small as it may be. It forces people to think, to adapt and to possibly change. Change like this keeps up moving forward and doesn't allow us to stagnate.

If you want a more concise delivery, check out this video by Canadian YouTuber, CGPGrey.

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