The pace of producing United States coins for circulation slowed in August to an eight month low after jumping to a six-month high in July, the latest manufacturing figures from the U.S. Mint show.
Snapping a string of three monthly increases above the one billion level, the Mint struck 831.56 coins last month for declines of 40.7% from July and 28.8% from August 2017.
Here’s how the month compared against others in the past year:
August 2017 to August 2018 Circulating Coin Production
|August 2018||831.56 M||12|
|July 2018||1,403.16 M||3|
|June 2018||1,198.34 M||7|
|May 2018||1,291.76 M||6|
|April 2018||878.74 M||11|
|March 2018||902.924 M||10|
|February 2018||1,066.51 M||9|
|January 2018||1,601.54 M||1|
|December 2017||762.86 M||13|
|November 2017||1,346.26 M||4|
|October 2017||1,423.54 M||2|
|September 2017||1,316.22 M||5|
|August 2017||1,167.48 M||8|
The Federal Reserve always orders more 1-cent coins than any other denomination even as it costs the U.S. Mint 1.82 cents to make and distribute each one. The Mint produced 461.6 million Lincoln cents in August, representing 55.5% of the circulating-quality coins produced for the month.
In month-over month comparisons for coins used daily by Americans, production totals in August declined:
- 41% for Lincoln cents,
- 40.1% for Jefferson nickels,
- 42.4% for Roosevelt dimes, and
- 37.3% 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-quality for coin collectors. In January, the U.S. Mint tends to strike both coins to the expected amounts needed for the entire year.
Higher Kennedy Half-Dollar Mintages
That said, the U.S. Mint in February did produce 1.8 million more 2018-D Kennedy half-dollars. Then in March it struck another 3.2 million from Denver and 1.2 million more for Philadelphia. No more have been pressed since then.
Mintages for the half-dollar are at 5.4 million from Denver and 4.8 million from Philadelphia for a combined 10.2 million coins — the most since 2001 and more than doubling those made in 2017. Last year’s release ended with splits of 2.9 million from Denver and 1.8 million from Philadelphia for a combined 4.7 million coins.
Here’s a summary of all coins produced for circulation last month:
US Mint Circulating Coin Production in August 2018
|Kennedy Half Dollars||0||0||0|
|Native American $1s||0||0||0|
U.S. Mint facilities in Denver and Philadelphia manufacture all of America’s coins for commerce. Last month, the Denver Mint made 394.72 million coins and the Philadelphia Mint made 436.84 million coins.
Year-to-date figures at 4,423,020,000 coins from Denver and 4,751,514,000 coins from Philadelphia total to 9,174,534,000 coins, marking an 8.4% reduction from the 10,010,480,000 coins minted through the same time last year.
This next table lists 2018 coin production totals by denomination and by U.S. Mint facility:
YTD 2018 Circulating Coin Production by Denomination
|1 ¢||5 ¢||10 ¢||25 ¢||50 ¢||N.A. $1||Total:|
The 2018 monthly average of about 1.15 billion coins tracks over 12 months to roughly 13.7 billion coins. In 2017, the U.S. Mint produced over 14.8 billion coins for circulation — the third quickest for a year since 2001, after the more than 16 billion coins were made in 2016 and the over 17 billion coins were made in 2015.
Mintages by Unique Design
The U.S. Mint so far this year has released five 2018-dated coins with one-year-only designs. They include the:
- 2018 Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore quarter for Michigan, released on Feb 5.
- 2018 Native American $1 Coin, released on Feb. 15.
- 2018 Apostle Islands National Lakeshore quarter for Wisconsin, released on April 9.
- 2018 Voyageurs National Park quarter for Minnesota, released on June 11.
- 2018 Cumberland Island National Seashore quarter for Georgia on Aug. 27.
Mintages for the 2018 Native American dollars are 2.1 million from Denver and 1.4 million from Philadelphia for a combined 3.5 million coins. Last year’s release ended with splits of 1.54 million from Denver and 1.82 million from Philadelphia for 3.36 million coins.
This last table offers a breakdown of this year’s mintages by coin design:
2018 Circulating Coin Production by Design
|Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore Quarter (MI)||182,600,000||186,714,000||369,314,000|
|Apostle Islands National Lakeshore Quarter (WI)||213,400,000||223,200,000||436,600,000|
|Voyageurs National Park Quarter (MN)||197,800,000||237,400,000||435,200,000|
|Cumberland Island National Seashore Quarter (GA)||0||0||0|
|Block Island National Wildlife Refuge Quarter (RI)||0||0||0|
|Native American $1 Coins||2,100,000||1,400,000||3,500,000|
Production figures for August include 111.4 million quarters that have yet to be officially assigned to a design. These are a portion of Cumberland Island quarters that started circulating on Aug. 27.