Over the past several months, the Coronavirus crisis has flipped the world as we once knew it, upside down. The pandemic has been responsible for causing food shortages, toilet paper shortages, business bankruptcies, putting people out of work, bringing about the worst stock market plunge in several decades, not to mention, taking countless lives. Coin shortage: what you should know.
Coin Shortage: What You Should Know
Very recently, another problem has begun to take place, and you may have already noticed it. There’s a coin shortage that’s happening nationwide due to the reduced minting of the coins and also reduced circulation and spending that has been going on. Fewer coins are reaching the public. Quarters, dimes, nickels, even pennies are harder to come by.
This is due to businesses remaining closed, and the U.S Mint is currently producing less and less coins because of the social distancing practices that allow for fewer employees. Another reason is that businesses were trying to reduce the spread of the virus by limiting cash flow. Here’s more about our nation’s coin shortage and what you should know about it.
Why is There a Coin Shortage?
There is currently a coin shortage because fewer coins are in circulation, which is attributed to the lack of spending that has taken place over the past several months. As a result of so many businesses that were closed, and remained closed due to COVID-19, it has brought the flow of coins through our economy to an almost screeching halt.
Those businesses that you often visit and spend your coins, like laundromats and carwash, have been closed, which also stopped circulation significantly.
While the U.S Mint production of coins has slowed down dramatically due to employees staying home, businesses are beginning to open back up, which has created another problem. These local businesses are withdrawing coins from credit unions and banks at an incredibly fast pace, quickly reducing the Federal Reserve’s coin levels well below a comfortable and normal level.
Banks have only been able to give businesses a fraction of the change that is normally needed in order to meet the demand of their customers.
Who is Affected the Most by a Coin Shortage?
A coin shortage affects just about everyone, one way or another. You may have stopped by at a local business where they encouraged you to use exact change, or simply use your debit/credit card. Most of them are not giving out an explanation for their shortage since they don’t want to create a cash panic.
Small businesses, such as laundromats, gas stations, and retail stores, have taken the biggest hit as of late. Their customers are not able to provide them with business since no one can seem to have two quarters they can rub together. Coin-sorting kiosks were also limited due to the risk of customers contracting covid-19.
There are several businesses that have struggled with the coin shortage and are having to round up to the next dollar in order to provide their customers with change. This is extremely painful for them, as they don’t have a dime to spare in order to remain profitable.
What is Being Done to Fix the Problem?
The Federal Reserve and the U.S Mint have addressed the public that our current coin shortage is just a temporary problem that will soon be corrected. They are both combatting the shortage by getting as many coins out in circulation nationwide as quickly as possible. They have had to establish a U.S Coin Task Force to implement this as soon as possible.
Coin companies like Coinstar have been making more frequent coin pick-ups to help get coins back into circulation faster as well.
Now that businesses have slowly begun to open back up, people are beginning to spend their money again. This will eventually help put this coin shortage behind us, but you can still do your part in the meantime. In case you missed my post Why Living With Less Might Be The Best
No, I’m not suggesting that you need to go out and make a number of large purchases to get the economy rolling again, but you can take your pocket change that’s been sitting around and exchange them for bills. Those of you who’ve been waiting to empty that piggy bank, now is the time! When it’s possible, paying electronically for a brief period of time will also help your local businesses.
What do you think about the Coin Shortage: What you need to Know? Stay safe, stay well. May God bless this world, Linda
Copyright Images: Coins Deposit photos_2318062_xl-2015, Coins Stacked Deposit photos_161657762_s-2019