The US Mint has updated coin production figures through to April 2009, and the data indicates a further slide for circulating change.
Rather than offer a hodge-podge of numbers that make it difficult to see and compare mintage levels for modern coinage, the included charts visually show trends for a quick analysis.
The US Mint has already said fewer coins will be struck this year. Had the Mint remained silent, it would still be a simple deduction to realize that 2009-dated pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters should be much, much scarcer.
In looking at the graphs, Kennedy half-dollars are on par with 2008 and prior years. On the other hand, the final totals for Native American and Presidential $1 coins will surpass 2008 figures should the production pace continue at the same rate.
Does this mean the circulating demand for new $1 coins is higher than smaller change? After all, there are almost as many 2009 $1 coins now minted as there are with 2009 nickels and dimes combined.
Trying to judge true transactional demand for coins can be tricky. During these more difficult times, Americans are throwing tons and tons of older, saved change back into circulation. Obviously, US Mint circulating production figures for this reason alone are not telling which coins are the most popular with the public.
However, from a collector’s perspective, the latest numbers are very meaningful irregardless to the fact that only 1/3 of the year is complete.
Penny, Nickel, Dime, Quarter and $1 Coin Production Charts (1999-2009)
3-D charts compare which Mint facility produces the most coins of a type by a given year. The control panel in lower left may be used to stop or move slides.
Notice how total coin production is declining compared to numbers from the turn of the century. Also, outside just a few peaks and valleys, Philadelphia and Denver do follow general trends in production pace.
For more detailed US Mint production numbers, visit the CoinNews page, Mint Circulating Coin Production Figures (1999-2009).
To learn why the Mint is cutting 2009 coin production, read the CoinNews article on the Mint’s stoppage of dimes and nickels.