The pace of producing United States coins for circulation rose for second straight month in October after slowing to an eight-month low in August but it ran a bit slower than a year earlier, according to manufacturing figures released this month by the U.S. Mint.
Mint figures also offer first-time mintages for Georgia’s Cumberland Island quarter, the fourth of five 2018-dated quarters with unique designs.
More than 1.38 billion in cents, nickels, dimes, and quarters were pressed for circulation last month, lifting the year-to-date total to over 11.5 billion coins.
In headline comparisons, the amount of circulating coin produced in October increased 41.5% from September and dipped 2.9% from October 2017. Here’s how the month stacks up against others in the past year:
October 2017 to October 2018 Circulating Coin Production
|October 2018||1,382.18 M||4|
|September 2018||976.82 M||9|
|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||8|
|January 2018||1,601.54 M||1|
|December 2017||762.86 M||13|
|November 2017||1,346.26 M||5|
|October 2017||1,423.54 M||2|
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 820.6 million Lincoln cents in October, representing 59.4% of the circulating-quality coins produced for the month.
In month-over month comparisons for coins used daily by Americans, production totals in October increased:
- 46.1% for Lincoln cents,
- 42.3% for Jefferson nickels,
- 49.9% for Roosevelt dimes, and
- 5.4% 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 make both coins to the expected amounts needed for the entire year.
Higher Kennedy Half-Dollar Mintages
The U.S. Mint in February did strike 1.8 million more 2018-D Kennedy half-dollars. Then in March it made 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 October 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 647.42 million coins and the Philadelphia Mint made 734.76 million coins.
Year-to-date figures at 5,540,960,000 coins from Denver and 5,992,574,000 coins from Philadelphia total to 11,533,534,000 coins, marking a 9.5% reduction from the 12,750,240,000 coins minted through the same time last year.
This next table lists 2018 coin production totals by denomination and by U.S. Mint production facility:
YTD 2018 Circulating Coin Production by Denomination
|1 ¢||5 ¢||10 ¢||25 ¢||50 ¢||N.A. $1||Total:|
The 2018 monthly average of nearly 1.15 billion coins tracks over 12 months to about 13.8 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.
Cumberland Island Quarter Mintages
The U.S. Mint has released six 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, released on Aug. 27.
- 2018 Block Island National Wildlife Refuge quarter for Rhode Island, released on Nov. 13.
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.
The U.S. Mint this month published Cumberland Island quarter mintages for the first time. They came in at 151.6 million from Denver and 138 million from Philadelphia for a combined 289.6 million quarters. If this total remains unchanged, it will be the lowest for a quarter design since the first one released for 2014. That said, it’s nowhere near mintage lows in the quarter series.
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)||151,600,000||138,000,000||289,600,000|
|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 October include 66.6 million quarters that have yet to be officially assigned to a design. These are likely a portion of Block Island quarters that started circulating Nov. 13.