The United States Mint this year has struck more coins for circulation than in any year since 2001, according to production data the agency published on Thursday, Dec. 10. The figures also reveal mintages for the new quarter commemorating Saratoga National Historical Park in New York.
Coining presses did slow in November from their furious pace in October. More than 1.24 billion in pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters rolled out of U.S. Mint coining presses last month compared to the over 1.75 billion coins in October, the highest month on record since CoinNews started tracking the data in 2007.
In headline percentage comparisons, the total dropped 29.1% from the previous month yet surged 29.9% from the same month a year ago. Here’s how the month stacks up against others in the past year:
2014 – 2015 November Coin Production Figures
|November 2015||1,245.73 M||10|
|October 2015||1,757.64 M||1|
|September 2015||1,476.37 M||7|
|August 2015||1,142.46 M||11|
|July 2015||1,665.76 M||4|
|June 2015||1,673.95 M||3|
|May 2015||1,459.86 M||6|
|April 2015||1,696.56 M||2|
|March 2015||1,403.44 M||8|
|February 2015||1,277.96 M||9|
|January 2015||1,539.15 M||5|
|December 2014||878.84 M||13|
|November 2014||958.78 M||12|
Pennies cost the U.S. Mint about 1.7 cents each to make and distribute but the Federal Reserve always orders more of them than any other denomination. In November, the U.S. Mint produced 691.6 million Lincoln cents, representing 55.5% of the circulating-quality coins made for the month.
In month-over-month comparisons for coins used every day by Americans, November saw:
- 27.3% fewer Lincoln cents,
- 35.5% fewer Jefferson nickels,
- 32.9% fewer Roosevelt dimes, and
- 27.2% fewer America the Beautiful Quarters.
Presidential $1 Coins, Native American $1 Coins and Kennedy half-dollars are no longer ordered by Federal Reserve Banks but the United States Mint continues to strike them for coin collectors. In January, the U.S. Mint produced 2015 Kennedy halves in amounts needed for the entire year. That is typically how it works for Native American $1 Coins but in March their number grew slightly. In September, the Mint made a modest correction to the number of Presidential $1 Coins.
Here’s a summary of the coins actually produced last month:
US Mint Circulating Coin Production in November 2015
|2015 ATB Quarters||106,800,000||116,600,000||223,400,000|
|Kennedy Half Dollars||0||0||0|
|Native American $1s||0||0||0|
U.S. circulating coin production plants are located in Denver and Philadelphia. Last month, the Denver Mint made 618.86 million coins and the Philadelphia Mint struck 626.87 million coins.
Year To Date
For the January to November period, the Denver Mint made over 8.2 billion coins while the Philadelphia Mint pressed more than 8 billion coins. Their combined output tallies to 16,338,910,000 coins for a 31.7% increase over the 12,404,920,000 coins minted through the same months in 2014. It’s the most for a year since the 19.4 billion coins in 2001. Last year’s 12-month total reached just over 13.28 billion coins. This next table lists year to date totals by denomination.
YTD 2015 Circulating Coin Production by Denomination
|1 ¢||5 ¢||10 ¢||25 ¢||50 ¢||N.A. $1||Pres $1||Total|
The U.S. Mint’s monthly pace averages to almost 1.5 billion coins. Stretched through 12 months, the agency is on track to make over 17.8 billion coins in 2015. In all likelihood, the annual total will come within the 17 to 17.5 billion range since production usually slackens in December as coining presses changeover for the next year’s coinage.
Mintages for NY’s 2015 Saratoga National Historical Park Quarter
Mintages for the Saratoga quarter are 215.8 million from Denver and 220.6 million from Philadelphia for a combined 436.4 million. That’s the lowest of the five quarters for 2015 but it still ranks seventh highest in the thirty America the Beautiful Quarters released since the series start in 2010.
Saratoga quarters entered circulation beginning on Nov. 16 and the U.S. Mint began selling rolls and bags of them on Nov. 30. The next quarter is scheduled for release in February 2016. Its design commemorates Shawnee National Forest in Illinois.
The following table offers a breakdown of this year’s mintages by coin design:
2015 Circulating Coin Production by Design
|Homestead National Monument of America Quarter||248,600,000||214,400,000||463,000,000|
|Kisatchie National Forest Quarter||379,600,000||397,200,000||776,800,000|
|Blue Ridge Parkway Quarter||505,200,000||325,600,000||830,800,000|
|Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge Quarter||206,400,000||280,800,000||487,200,000|
|Saratoga National Historical Park Quarter||215,800,000||220,600,000||436,400,000|
|Kennedy Half Dollars||2,300,000||2,300,000||4,600,000|
|Native American $1||2,240,000||2,800,000||5,040,000|
|Harry S. Truman $1||3,500,000||4,900,000||8,400,000|
|Dwight D. Eisenhower $1||3,646,000||4,900,000||8,546,000|
|John F. Kennedy $1||5,320,000||6,160,000||11,480,000|
|Lyndon B. Johnson $1||4,200,000||4,900,000||9,100,000|
Coin production figures in this coin news article are based on data aggregated from the U.S. Mint webpage at: http://www.usmint.gov/about_the_mint/?action=ProductionFigures.