U.S. Mint Produces Over 6.5 Billion Coins for Circulation in First Half of 2019

by Mike Unser on July 25, 2019 · 4 comments

Pile of US coins

U.S. Mint production facilities in Philadelphia and Denver made more than 6.5 billion coins in the first half of 2019

U.S. coin production rebounded in June, topping one billion coins for the fifth time this year after plunging to a nearly five-and-a-half-year low in May.

Across a longer haul, the United States Mint pressed just over 6.5 billion coins for circulation in the first half of 2019 — a seemingly sizable tally yet it’s tracking toward a fourth straight yearly decline.

In the headline figure for June, coining presses struck more than 1.02 billion coins to mark an increase of 110.6% from May and a drop of 14.7% from June 2018.

Here’s how the month compares against others in the past year:

June 2018 to June 2019 Circulating Coin Production

Month Mintages Rank
June 2019 1,021.654 M 9
May 2019 485.24 M 13
April 2019 1,253.76 M 5
March 2019 1,054.90 M 7
February 2019 1,256.10 M 4
January 2019 1,507.30 M 1
December 2018 560.64 M 12
November 2018 1,031.24 M 8
October 2018 1,382.18 M 3
September 2018 976.82 M 10
August 2018 831.56 M 11
July 2018 1,403.16 M 2
June 2018 1,198.34 M 6

 

The Federal Reserve always orders more 1-cent coins than any other denomination even with the latest data showing it costs the U.S. Mint 2.06 cents to make and distribute each one. The bureau produced 600.8 million Lincoln cents in June, representing 58.8% of the circulating-quality coins produced for the month.

Month-Over-Month

In month-over month comparisons for coins used daily by Americans, production totals in June increased by:

  • 93.3% for Lincoln cents,
  • 134.4% for Jefferson nickels,
  • 180.3% for Roosevelt dimes, and
  • 99.3% for America the Beautiful quarter dollars.

Native American $1 Coins and Kennedy half-dollars are no longer ordered by Federal Reserve Banks but they are still made in circulating finish for coin collectors. In January, the U.S. Mint tends to strike both coins to the expected amounts needed for the entire year.

That said, the bureau’s data for February did show an increase of 140,000 in 2019-D Native American dollars. Reported mintages for the space-themed piece are at 1.54 million for Denver and 1.4 million for Philadelphia for a combined 2.94 million coins — up from last year’s dollar mintages by the added 140,000.

Mintages for the 2019 Kennedy half-dollar remained the same for a fifth straight month, totaling 3.4 million coins with equal splits between the Denver and Philadelphia Mints. Last year’s half-dollar was the most produced since the one from 2001. It saw 6.1 million from Denver and 4.8 million from Philadelphia for a combined 10.9 million coins.

Here’s a summary of all circulating-quality coins produced last month:

US Mint Circulating Coin Production in June 2019

Denomination Denver Philadelphia Total
Lincoln Cents 312,800,000 288,000,000 600,800,000
Jefferson Nickels 48,480,000 56,174,000 104,654,000
Roosevelt Dimes 91,000,000 108,000,000 199,000,000
ATB Quarters 56,000,000 61,200,000 117,200,000
Kennedy Half Dollars 0 0 0
Native American $1s 0 0 0
Total 508,280,000 513,374,000 1,021,654,000

 

U.S. Mint facilities in Denver and Philadelphia manufacture all of America’s coins for commerce. Last month, the Philadelphia Mint produced 513.374 million coins and the Denver Mint made 508.28 million coins.

Coin Production in First Half of 2019

Through the first half of this year, the Philadelphia Mint struck 3,371,694,400 coins and the Denver Mint struck 3,207,260,000 coins for a combined 6,578,954,400 coins — 5.2% fewer than the 6,939,814,000 coins minted through the first half of 2018.

This next table lists 2019 coin production totals by denomination and by U.S. Mint facility:

YTD 2019 Circulating Coin Production by Denomination

1 ¢ 5 ¢ 10 ¢ 25 ¢ 50 ¢ N.A. $1 Total:
Denver 1878.8M 290.92M 577.5M 456.8M 1.7M 1.54M 3207.26M
Philadelphia 1965.6M 348.494M 650.5M 404M 1.7M 1.4M 3371.6944M
Total 3844.4M 639.4144M 1228M 860.8M 3.4M 2.94M 6578.9544M

 

If the current production pace stretches through December, the annual 2019 mintage total would reach 13.1 billion coins. The U.S. Mint made over 13.1 billion coins for circulation in 2018.

Mintages by Unique Design

So far, the U.S. Mint has released four annually issued coins with one-year-only designs. They include:

The following table offers a breakdown of this year’s mintages by coin design:

2019 Circulating Coin Production by Design

  Denver Philadelphia Total
Lincoln Cents 1,878,800,000 1,965,600,000 3,844,400,000
Jefferson Nickels 290,920,000 348,494,000 639,414,000
Roosevelt Dimes 577,500,000 650,500,000 1,228,000,000
Lowell National Historical Park Quarter (MA) 182,200,000 165,800,000 348,000,000
American Memorial Park Quarter (MP) 182,600,000 142,800,000 325,400,000
War in the Pacific National Historical Park Quarter (GU)
San Antonio Missions National Historical Park Quarter (TX)
Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness Quarter (ID)
Kennedy Half-Dollars 1,700,000 1,700,000 3,400,000
Native American $1 Coins 1,540,000 1,400,000 2,940,000
Total 3,115,260,000 3,276,294,000 6,391,554,000

 

There are 187.4 million in quarters that the U.S. Mint has yet to officially assign to a design. These are likely War in the Pacific National Historical Park quarters.

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some guy
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some guy

What a waste, still cranking out billions of worthless pennies at a loss. They end up in the garbage. One cent is only worth 1% of what one cent was in 1909. Follow the lead of sane countries like Canada and Australia who sensibly stopped minting their worthless one-cent coins.

c_q
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c_q

just stop the lincoln cents already. Just put it in the same category as half dollars, only made for proof/mint sets. There’s trillions of them out in the wild, that should be enough.

Munzen
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Munzen

We should just bite the bullet and get rid of the wasteful coin, the same way half-cents and three-cent coins were eliminated. But so long as Congress is involved, NOTHING will change. They’re in the thrall of the zinc lobby just like they listen to the firm that makes paper for $1 bills. Plus the Illinois delegation will go ballistic over “disrespecting” Lincoln or some other grandstanding.

Actually there’s no reason the half dollar shouldn’t be brought back, though probably in a smaller size and maybe on a multi sided planchet. I’m just old enough to remember before 1964 when halves circulated regularly; you hardly ever got piles of quarters in change and no one thought twice about using halves. In retrospect the Mint made two monumental blunders by not resuming the Franklin design and not switching to cupronickel in 1965.

Chas Barber
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And you know only 2,100,000,000 were cents!