The Romans Clipped Their Coins

right before the collapse.

The U.S. Mint is battling an unexpected consequence of the global commodities grab: There’s almost no way to make pennies and nickels for less than the face value of the coins.

Demand for the metals in our coins — pennies are mostly zinc covered in copper and nickels are, ironically, mostly copper covered in nickel — has pushed up their cost to $100 million a year each to produce, reports CNNMoney.

Now the Obama administration is trying to find even cheaper metals to cut production costs. A penny costs the mint 2.4 cents to create, while nickels cost taxpayers 11.2 cents each.

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