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Saving Copper Pennies

Updated on May 10, 2011

Jar of pennies


Collecting Copper Pennies

When a person thinks of a penny, they usually picture them at the bottom of their wallet, laying on the ground of a parking lot, or just tossing it in the “take one leave one” jar. People don’t usually think of a penny as being worth that much of a value. But the truth is, all those pennies just lying around are worth a lot more value than someone would expect.

In 1982 the United States decided to switch from producing pennies made from copper to producing pennies made from zinc with only a copper coating. Before 1982 pennies were being made of 95% pure copper. Now, pennies are being made with 97.5% zinc and only 2.5% copper. This means, that any penny that was produced between the years 1909 to 1982 actually has significant value. If one were to melt their copper penny, the value of that right now is about .026 of a dollar, meaning that each penny is worth more than double its face value. Obviously many items that go out of production become equivalent to a certain value at some point, but right now pennies are starting to be something worth collecting.

Many people who are starting to realize the high demand for copper are starting to collect these pennies. Hobbyists are going into banks, handing in cash money and getting it changed in for pennies, then sorting them keeping the ones labeled as pre-1982 and then returning the new coins back for cash again.

Something else that people are doing is gathering their copper pennies and selling them on websites such as Ebay to make their money right away. People have figured out ways to store them and even sort pennies easily and efficiently and are making quite a good reward for collecting something so simple. It is predicted that in recent years the value of a copper penny will keep going up as more and more are collected, melted and turned into hard cash. So next time you think about throwing that penny on the ground, think twice!


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