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7 Reasons to NOT Buy Copper Pennies

作者:ihpa.net 发布时间:2018-02-14

Hi, I think that comment about steel pennies is very interesting.
Did you know they already have been made? Yes, but not modern pennies, back in WWII they made pennies from steel, temporarily, instead of copper. Metals were at a premium for the war effort, and scrap metals drives were common. Scrap metals & all sorts of other things were collected by citizens & given to be used in making military equipment. Women painted lines on the backs of their calves with makeup to imitate the seams on silk stockings, since the silk was going to make parachutes & other gear for the soldiers instead of ladies stockings. Steel was important, used to make many vehicles, weapons, & such, but copper was worth more than steel, used in wiring & circuits, & alloyed to make bullet casings & other needed items. So the US mint made pennies from the less valuable steel & the copper went to the soldiers.
If you found a WWII steel penny today it would have three values. 1) the face value, 1 cent. 2) the scrap value, current price by weigh, do your own maths, but it comes to much less then 1 cent per gram & steel pennies weigh 2.7 grams. 3) numismatic value, well above the previous two values.
Why? Rarity.
Steel pennies were only made in 1943, copper pennies have been made for many years; automatically making steel pennies scarcer. They were zinc coated to prevent rusting, but the edges were often missed by the coating & they rusted anyway; how many have rusted away to nothing since WWII?. The mint destroyed large numbers of them later (turns out steel coins are problematic & people hated them), further reducing the numbers in existence. There are also 1944 steel pennies, struck by mistake when the mint returned to copper alloy for pennies (did I mention people hated the steel pennies?), these are even rarer than ’43 ones & thus worth even more. In 2008 one of these extra rare ’44 “steelies” sold for $373,750 at auction.

So what is my point?
Well say you get loads of pre-’82 “copper” pennies.
And say the melting ban is removed. So everyone & their brother starts melting down the copper pennies for scrap. Maybe in the stores there’s no big difference, plenty of post-’82 pennies in circulation to be spent. But those pre-’82 pennies, well they just keep disappearing, becoming rarer & rarer. And of course the rarer the coin becomes, the more valuable it becomes.
So when you’ve all melted down your pennies for 2 cents worth of copper, all the unmelted ones are worth even more, they’ll just go up, up, up. And when the market becomes saturated with all that new scrap copper from all those melted pennies, the more common it is, the less valuable it becomes, and the price you’re getting for those melted pennies, it just goes down, down, down.

So then the unmelted penny will be worth more than the 2 cents you want to scrap it in for, and the melted penny will be worth less than 1 cent.
And *that* is why buying pennies “for scrap” is stupid.
Even if you could legally scrap them, you would end up losing on your “investment”, due to the immutable principles of supply vs demand.

And besides all that…what’s in your bucket of pre-’82 “scrap” copper pennies?
What about “indian head” pennies, will you melt those down for their 2 cents of copper?
And 1943 copper pennies exist, too.They are ultra rare, only 40 are known to have been made when some copper blanks were accidentally left in the machines when they started striking the steel pennies.
They are so rare that some crooks even copper coat the ’43 steel pennies to make forgeries of them.
What if there’s a real one in your scrap penny bucket? Will you melt that down for 2 cents?
Will you melt down a coin worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, for 2 cents worth of scrap copper?

Better run and pour out all those pennies! Go through each one a coin at a time! Have fun spending all your time making sure you only have “worthless” pennies in your buckets!

Me? Well I’ll save my pennies. Put them away in the ol’ piggy bank, you know. Maybe I’ll hang on to the pre-82’s that come along, keep them in case you get to melt yours away, while mine really get valuable.
I’ll keep an eye out for those rare oddballs too, you never know what you’re going to get from a supermarket clerk who barely even looks at the change in the drawer when she puts it in or takes it out.
But will I go chasing them down? Nope, coz that’d be a waste of time *and* money.

And finally, remember Ben Franklin’s advice: A penny saved is a penny earned!

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