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2013-01-29 at 17:07

Goodbye penny

By Jeff Labine,
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A nickel for your thoughts?

Canada’s pennies will be phased out of the coinage system starting on Feb. 4. The federal government announced the single-cent coin would taken out of circulation because of the rising cost of production relative to the penny’s face value.

The plan is expected to save taxpayers $11 million annually.

But the removal of the penny has local business owner Mike Dziver worried.

Dziver, who manages the Hodder Greek restaurant and owns High Variety, handles cash every day as hungry patrons order something to eat. Usually the cost of a meal isn’t much more than $2 or $5.

He said the phasing out of the penny could be good or bad depending on the circumstances.

The benefits could be quicker customer service because they can round up or down to the nearest five or 10 cent. The rounding would only apply to cash transactions and would exclude cheques, debit, and credit or payment cards.

But the downside could be trying to balance the books and turning a profit, he said.

“The trouble is we’ll never be able to truly balance in a day because you will always be rounding up or down,” Dziver said.

“You’re always giving away pennies but now we’re going to have to round up or down. Canada is sort of the only one that has the penny. I guess it is sort of sad to see it go. Who knows what will be next? It could be the nickel.”

Dziver has already given his customers a heads up that the penny will be phased out. He said most don’t seem to care that much.

Most customers preferred to use their debit cards but Dziver said they had to start putting a minimum limit because so many people were using it.

Heidi Liimatainen, brand manager for the Thunder Bay Provincial Alliance Credit Union Limited, said they will be phasing out the penny starting next week. Although members can bring pennies in, the credit union won’t be distributing them.

Liimatainen said she’s optimistic that the change will be beneficial for her members.

“They don’t have to count the pennies anymore,” she said. “It’ll be easier for staff as well. We have a lot of pennies on stock and we have a lot on hand. They will now go back to the Bank of Canada. Once they are gone we will have more room here for sure.”

For more information, visit the Royal Canadian Mint’s website.


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We've improved our comment system.
SomeGuy says:
Surely this must be a Conservative/Liberal/NDP conspiracy theory to take out money.
1/29/2013 6:52:07 PM
barrows says:
So long Penny! I just gave all mine to the United Way. I had quite a few pennies from heaven cartons kickin around the house. lets help charity and the people who live here
1/29/2013 7:54:02 PM
Spartan says:
I agree with Dziver, it will be hard to balance if your rounding off. Unless you can override the till ticket and enter the new amount, you will have a hard time to balance. On the other hand, if the government got their act together and brought round down the HST to 10% then store owners could round up/down the prices to the nearest nickel and that would eliminate the pennies completely. I will miss the penny, but over all I think its a good move.
1/30/2013 12:13:14 AM
FernandoMartinez says:
Soon, Big Daddy Government will have us paying in blood because we'll be out of tax dollars.
1/30/2013 10:57:24 AM
tbayguy009 says:

'out of tax dollars'

Governments around the globe are creating 'tax' money out of thin air.

It is just an accounting game. The books show that everyone has LESS THAN ZERO tax dollars.

'We' ran out of 'tax dollors' so many years ago, I can't remember when there was hope of a government consitantly living within it's alloted revenue stream.

Like Buzz Lightyear in the movie Toy Story, government's mantra is

"To infinity and beyond"

Some call it democracy. But in really it is just vote buying. And the people love em for it.
1/31/2013 6:51:04 AM
TBDR says:
this is not some government conspiracy nor is it a cash grab. It just makes sense. The penny costs more to produce than it's face value, and we're one of the only countries in the world that still uses one. Its about time we get with the program.
1/30/2013 1:15:07 PM
nvjgu says:
No thats not right, If it's suppose to be rounded off to the nearist, then zero is the closest. So people's thoughts are worth nothing now
1/30/2013 2:20:18 PM
Chris Keller says:
Reminder to the retailers... other countries around the world have phased the penny out long time ago. The companies who sell the P.O.S systems including the simple cash registers have programs to automatically round off prices. No need to panic. losing the penny is good on the pocket material as long as the Canada doesn't introduce another coin, like a 5$
1/30/2013 2:56:32 PM
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