Pour one out for the penny
March 29, 2012 3:36 PM   Subscribe

5 years after a think tank study (PDF) recommended its retirement, Canada says goodbye to the penny. Previous penny pinching 1 2
posted by yellowbinder (103 comments total) 13 users marked this as a favorite

 
Crap. Now that means we'll never do it, here in the US, because we'd hate to look like we're following in Canada's footsteps.
posted by gurple at 3:43 PM on March 29, 2012 [12 favorites]


Finally! I have a huge chest (well, an old sewing box, actually) full of the damn' things that I can't wait to get rid of. Perhaps some deserving cause?
posted by HarrysDad at 3:44 PM on March 29, 2012


Now that means we'll never do it, here in the US

Retiring the dollar bill would help bring the U.S. into the modern era, which is to say 1987.
posted by one more dead town's last parade at 3:47 PM on March 29, 2012 [6 favorites]


I remember when they abolished 1c and 2c coins here in Australia, in 1992. Now I wish they'd get rid of 5c coins.
posted by robcorr at 3:48 PM on March 29, 2012 [5 favorites]


Charities are welcome to take advantage of the penny's withdrawal to increase their fundraising through penny drives.

Neat! I wonder how much this sort of thing will bring in!
posted by Scientist at 3:48 PM on March 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


Farewell, you little wobbly table shim and tonearm weight.
posted by davebush at 3:53 PM on March 29, 2012 [8 favorites]


Huzzah! When is US going to follow suit?
posted by Mental Wimp at 3:54 PM on March 29, 2012


THIS ALL PART OF A CONSPIRACY TO DEVALUATE CANADIAN TIRE MONEY.
posted by Smart Dalek at 3:55 PM on March 29, 2012 [27 favorites]


And suddenly, all the prices of everything are carefully recalibrated to end in 0.03 so we round up more often.
posted by jeather at 3:58 PM on March 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


jeather, you only buy one single item at a time? really?
posted by wilful at 3:59 PM on March 29, 2012


And suddenly, all the prices of everything are carefully recalibrated to end in 0.03 so we round up more often.

If only it were possible to buy more than one item at a time.
posted by yoink at 4:00 PM on March 29, 2012 [3 favorites]


Just get rid of the nickel at the same time. Then all the gas stations can have two superscript 9s on the end of every price.
posted by meinvt at 4:01 PM on March 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


We need to get rid of five cent pieces and completely recoin in Australia. Australian 50c coins are ridiculously sized. And we should have $5 coins.
posted by wilful at 4:01 PM on March 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


Neat! I wonder how much this sort of thing will bring in!

The article suggests "Canadians could be hoarding several billion pennies," so potentially several tens of millions of dollars.

As an aside, "hoarding" doesn't seem like quite the right word. It makes it sound like Canadians sleep on giant piles of pennies like dragons or something, which was not a behavior I observed during my couple of visits, although maybe they're really good at hiding it for tourists...

And suddenly, all the prices of everything are carefully recalibrated to end in 0.03 so we round up more often.

That would only work for things normally purchased singly, as others have mentioned. And customers could retaliate by paying with a card, which would eliminate the round-up and cost the merchant a fee.
posted by jedicus at 4:01 PM on March 29, 2012 [12 favorites]


THIS IS ALL PART OF A CONSPIRACY TO MAKE US BUY MORE THAN ONE THING.
posted by yellowbinder at 4:01 PM on March 29, 2012 [11 favorites]


When is US going to follow suit?

When hell freezes over. It's a socialist tax scheme. Pennies have always been good enough, you urban metrosexual!
posted by tyllwin at 4:01 PM on March 29, 2012 [7 favorites]


Hey, you guys have a different Queen's head on the penny, what's with that? We could save money by just doing one portrait and sharing it about you know?
posted by Jehan at 4:03 PM on March 29, 2012


If it weren't in the bloody budget I'd be calling April fools on this.
posted by Decimask at 4:07 PM on March 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


The real problem will be in thought-purchasing: you'll have to buy them five at a time. It's hard to imagine that won't dilute overall quality.
posted by yoink at 4:07 PM on March 29, 2012 [24 favorites]


So, Canadians and Australians, what's it like to live in a country that governs through common cents, anyway?

rim shot

Seriously, this American would like to know. Healthcare, currency that's actually worth the metal it's printed on...*sighs wistfully*

posted by misha at 4:07 PM on March 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


I'm guessing that this means I'll eventually stop "accidentally" getting Canadian pennies as change.
posted by jabberjaw at 4:08 PM on March 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


It's going to be hell for retailers at first. Most people will get it, or not care. But get one loud crank at the cash register demanding to know why their purchase is $17.83 if they use debit and $17.85 and it's going to be a bummer.

Australians, is everything rounded to the nearest $0.05 or just cash transactions?
posted by thecjm at 4:09 PM on March 29, 2012


I'm guessing that this means I'll eventually stop "accidentally" getting Canadian pennies as change.

After a huge increase in 'accidents' I'm sure...

Still trying to figure out how I got this blasted 10p I keep pulling out thinking it's a Quarter...
posted by pupdog at 4:09 PM on March 29, 2012


And we should have $5 coins.

Is money worth that little to Australians? I still find $2 coins to be somewhat over valued for pocket change. Not so bad on balance, but $5 would be just plain crazy.
posted by Chuckles at 4:10 PM on March 29, 2012


Just like only Nixon could go to China, only a Republican president would be able to deprive seniors of their precious pennies, nickles and dimes, without causing Seniorgeddon
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 4:11 PM on March 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


This is, like, the second thing Harper's done that I think is a good idea, and I can't remember the first.
posted by The Card Cheat at 4:14 PM on March 29, 2012 [5 favorites]


THIS ALL PART OF A CONSPIRACY TO DEVALUATE CANADIAN TIRE MONEY.

Didn't your mother tell you never to accept paper nickels...or something like that...
posted by Alexandra Kitty at 4:15 PM on March 29, 2012


Is money worth that little to Australians?

To this one at least, yes. That's not to say I'm massively rich, but our wages are high and so are our prices.
posted by deadwax at 4:15 PM on March 29, 2012


I'll gladly trade all the shiny American pennies I can find for single payer healthcare.

MEMAIL ME, CANADIANS!
posted by mccarty.tim at 4:17 PM on March 29, 2012 [4 favorites]


We don't really need coins, other than perhaps a quarter and dollar for machines, because that's all they are functionally good for. Cashiers spend too much time and make too many mistakes the old way. Change for future cash transactions can be given in credit slips for the next visit, just like a receipt.
posted by Brian B. at 4:18 PM on March 29, 2012


Is money worth that little to Australians? I still find $2 coins to be somewhat over valued for pocket change. Not so bad on balance, but $5 would be just plain crazy.

That's about the purchasing power of a quarter in the mid 60s. Somehow they survived.

The thing that drives me crazy is this desire to make dollar and multi-dollar coins weighty and impressive. Make them small, thin and light and everybody's happy. No one needs their wallet to feel like a sack of doubloons.
posted by yoink at 4:18 PM on March 29, 2012 [4 favorites]


This is only a distraction in my quest to re-introduce the ha'penny and the farthing here in the U.S.
posted by longsleeves at 4:22 PM on March 29, 2012 [4 favorites]


A penny for my thoughts on this, but only if use you use a credit card.
posted by notme at 4:23 PM on March 29, 2012


Australians, is everything rounded to the nearest $0.05 or just cash transactions?

Just cash transactions.

I would love it if we got rid of five cent pieces. I pay for almost everything with cash, and they end up breeding in my purse like little mice.
posted by Georgina at 4:23 PM on March 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


I'm guessing that this means I'll eventually stop "accidentally" getting Canadian pennies as change.

They're more valuable, so why complain?
posted by one more dead town's last parade at 4:27 PM on March 29, 2012 [4 favorites]


Of course, the penny's end is getting all the attention, while Canada will now push old age benefits to the age of 67, but hey, whatever!
posted by mightygodking at 4:28 PM on March 29, 2012 [24 favorites]


And we should have $5 coins.

God no. I end up with heavy pocketfuls of loonies and toonies as it is. I don't need my fivers turning into coins instead of bills, too.
posted by asnider at 4:28 PM on March 29, 2012 [3 favorites]


I hate -- I mean, really hate -- to admit it, but this is one thing, possibly the only thing, that the Reform Party got right.
posted by Shepherd at 4:29 PM on March 29, 2012


The Film Board of Canada should fund a patriotic remake of Millions to mark this transformative coming of age moment for this daring young country
posted by Bwithh at 4:30 PM on March 29, 2012


Also, because of the whole "rounding up" thing, I might as well pay exclusively with debit, except in the (probably rare) case where things will "round down." In that case, cash is king.
posted by asnider at 4:31 PM on March 29, 2012



Australians, is everything rounded to the nearest $0.05 or just cash transactions?


Just like how the Canada treasury says it should be, there is no change in prices, when you get to the register your total purchases are rounded off if you're paying cash. Actually some supermarkets round down every time.


Is money worth that little to Australians? I still find $2 coins to be somewhat over valued for pocket change. Not so bad on balance, but $5 would be just plain crazy.

Our PPP/Big mac index is roughly enough the same. I think we should have 'silver' 10c, 20c, 50c coins in appropriate sizes, and 'gold' $1, $2, $5 coins in equally appropriate sizes. Change would be easier that way, a $5 note is getting too small for much.
posted by wilful at 4:34 PM on March 29, 2012


Also, because of the whole "rounding up" thing, I might as well pay exclusively with debit, except in the (probably rare) case where things will "round down." In that case, cash is king.

In a world where I literally would not bend over to pick up a penny, I find this an odd concern in the first place--but I can assure you from having experienced this in other countries, there's really no way for shops to effectively game this unless they can rely on you buying only one item per visit.

I'm always struck by the fact that people don't realise that all this does is return us to the situation we used to live in before inflation eroded the value of our currency. Back when a penny had the purchasing power of a nickel (which is not all that long ago) do you think people agonised about shops pricing items so that they could round up to the value of a whole penny? Because the situations are identical.
posted by yoink at 4:38 PM on March 29, 2012 [5 favorites]


I'm guessing that this means I'll eventually stop "accidentally" getting Canadian pennies as change.

That's probably how they'll get rid of them- smuggle them over the border, sprinkle them on our sidewalks and in our "take a penny" cups, find US pennies to take in exchange to turn in for $$, leave us with the problem of dealing with their damn pennies. Bastards.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 4:38 PM on March 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


Bummer for all those people who like to play penny slot machines, then, eh? I suspect the casinos might suffer a bit without those penny slots. Not that I'm pro-gambling, just saying.
posted by Lukenlogs at 4:40 PM on March 29, 2012


Thanks largely to this thread I've just walked over to the only machine on campus that still takes 5¢ coins &, through the power of 30 of the little shiny buggers, bought a Coke.
posted by Pinback at 4:43 PM on March 29, 2012


I have no idea how these Canadians got their pennies wedged into their slot machines, or why.
posted by uosuaq at 4:44 PM on March 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


I suspect the casinos might suffer a bit without those penny slots.

I don't think I've ever seen a penny slot in a casino that actually takes pennies. A paper dollar just gets you a hundred plays.
posted by smackfu at 4:45 PM on March 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


This blows my mind. I love counting out our loose change, and we regularly build up a good pub session's worth. Can't you take your pennies down the bank and exchange them for notes?
posted by lucidium at 4:48 PM on March 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


Australia makes plastic money. Canada makes plastic money. Australia gets rid of the 1¢ piece. Canada gets rid of the 1¢ piece.

The question now is this: When do we get to stop tipping?
posted by Sys Rq at 4:53 PM on March 29, 2012 [7 favorites]


It makes it sound like Canadians sleep on giant piles of pennies like dragons or something

Years of napping have left me with this beautiful verdigris waistcoat, though I have trouble with a small hole under my left arm.
posted by bonehead at 4:58 PM on March 29, 2012 [12 favorites]


When do we start hanging little corks around the edges of our tuques?
posted by Flashman at 5:05 PM on March 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


I hate -- I mean, really hate -- to admit it, but this is one thing, possibly the only thing, that the Reform Party got right

I'm still in favour of an elected Senate, at least on paper, even though it'll never happen.
posted by asnider at 5:06 PM on March 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


THE TORIES ARE LEAVING US PENNILESS!
posted by mazola at 5:09 PM on March 29, 2012 [13 favorites]


"It's going to be hell for retailers at first."

I worked retail during both the loonie conversion as well as the GST introduction and it was challenging, but people handled it pretty well. The dollar bill drawer became the loonie slot, vending machines all had to change, etc. People were generally patient as you figured out how to do the GST on your POS. Things went smoother than I expected. And that was before the wider use of debit and credit cards when cash was queen.
posted by acheekymonkey at 5:10 PM on March 29, 2012


The Card Cheat writes "This is, like, the second thing Harper's done that I think is a good idea, and I can't remember the first."

He got rid of that big waste of money in the form of a gun registry. And of course the change in retirement age though 67 isn't enough and I expect it to be bumped at least once more before I receive whatever meagre benefits they are still handing out at that time.

Brian B. writes " Change for future cash transactions can be given in credit slips for the next visit, just like a receipt."

Ya, that's what we need; pieces of paper that are just like money but can only be spent in one store. And they'd be for weird denominations so keeping track would be bothersome. Canadian tire money is bad enough and I go there all the time. I couldn't imagine dealing with the dozens of different slips I'd acquire over the course of a couple months to places I might never go again.

yoink writes "No one needs their wallet to feel like a sack of doubloons."

I wish they'd bring out plastic or composite coins but I imagine they'd be either too easy to counterfit or they'd be to expensive. Though a $5 dollar coin made of cultured marble with a clear window containing a holographic queen's portrait or maple leaf would be cool as hell.
posted by Mitheral at 5:19 PM on March 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'd pay five bucks for one of those.
posted by box at 5:23 PM on March 29, 2012 [3 favorites]


THE TORIES ARE LEAVING US PENNILESS!

Nah ... penny wise and pound foolish.



it was begging me to do it
posted by squeak at 5:24 PM on March 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 5:32 PM on March 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


The US will never move to dollar or two dollar coins because then we'd have to pay strippers a living wage.
posted by The Whelk at 5:36 PM on March 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


The US will never move to dollar or two dollar coins because then we'd have to pay strippers a living wage.

Or at least provide a healthcare system that would be able to provide treatment for the bruises.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 5:44 PM on March 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


It makes it sound like Canadians sleep on giant piles of pennies like dragons or something

If this were true, I would visit Canada much more often.
posted by GenjiandProust at 5:53 PM on March 29, 2012


You can have my pennies... oh wait, there's a King Edward!
posted by ovvl at 6:04 PM on March 29, 2012


This is kinda brilliant. All this talk about the penny has completely masked discussion on any issues of real importance involving the budget.

If nothing else, you have to admire their cunning.
posted by blue t-shirt at 6:07 PM on March 29, 2012 [3 favorites]


THIS IS ALL PART OF A CONSPIRACY TO MAKE US BUY MORE THAN ONE THING.

I bought a package of Fun Dip in 1994, and I've only bartered since.
posted by cmoj at 6:07 PM on March 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


But how will my father demonstrate that he loves me if he can't fill my giant milkshake glass with pennies?
posted by jacquilynne at 6:08 PM on March 29, 2012


The robocons' long-term plan is obviously to collect all the pennies and melt them down to repair our beleaguered submarines. #pennyconspiracy
posted by oulipian at 6:08 PM on March 29, 2012


Hey, you guys have a different Queen's head on the penny, what's with that? We could save money by just doing one portrait and sharing it about you know?

Is one of your coins older than the other? The queen's been on the coins for a long time, and they update her portrait every few years.
posted by oulipian at 6:10 PM on March 29, 2012


As an aside here, the new Canadian $100.00 bill has a cool security feature. There's a maple leaf right above the big "100" - when breathed on, it releases the odor of...wait for it...maple syrup.
posted by davebush at 6:25 PM on March 29, 2012 [4 favorites]


I bought a package of Fun Dip in 1994, and I've only bartered since.

That's not how I remember it.
posted by fundip at 7:05 PM on March 29, 2012 [3 favorites]


it releases the odor of...wait for it...maple syrup.

I was sure you composed that for alt.rumors, but I looked it up anyway, and... really? What?
posted by Ella Fynoe at 7:05 PM on March 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


That would only work for things normally purchased singly, as others have mentioned. And customers could retaliate by paying with a card, which would eliminate the round-up and cost the merchant a fee.

Sure, and it won't work for some stores, but a small store that knows which things are purchased singly? I mean, it's fine, I pay by credit wherever I can because I get points back, and in the scheme of things it's unlikely to cost me as much money as my time is worth even to write these two comments, but I still think this is going to, in the aggregate, increase prices.

No one needs their wallet to feel like a sack of doubloons.

Still bitter they didn't call the toonie the doubloonie? I know I am.
posted by jeather at 7:06 PM on March 29, 2012


First they came for the hay pennies,
and I didn't speak out because I didn't care for half cents,
Then they came for the pennies,
and I didn't care because all they did was collect in a drawer,
Then they came for the nickels...
...
...

posted by JoeXIII007 at 7:12 PM on March 29, 2012


I still haven't recovered from the loss of the halfpenny. This may kill me.
posted by lesbiassparrow at 7:18 PM on March 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


But doesn't the fact that you have to add sales tax on top of the retail pricing (from the link, I am assuming that retail prices in Canada do not include sales tax, like in the US; please correct me if I am wrong) blunt the efforts of businesses trying to increase prices? That is, you could end all your prices in 0.03, but there are going to be differing sales taxes on $1.83 vs. $10.13 vs. $999.93, and this is assuming of course that all these items are bought singly, and I'm skeptical that there are items that are overwhelmingly bought singly. (Newspapers? But those are generally priced on the paper anyway.)

In any case, from south of the border, I'm in support of this effort! I don't think I've paid with a US penny in YEARS; I collect them in a jar at home and take them to the bank about once a year to redeem their value.
posted by andrewesque at 7:22 PM on March 29, 2012


and... really? What?

Yep, it's true. I've done it myself.
posted by davebush at 7:32 PM on March 29, 2012


The US will never move to dollar or two dollar coins because then we'd have to pay strippers a living wage.

Come to Canada and see how our strippers deal with coins. It can be...um...interesting.



If you can make the toonie stick to her vulva before it falls into the bucket you win a poster. Seriously.
posted by asnider at 7:41 PM on March 29, 2012


Yep, it's true. I've done it myself.

I've tried breathing on the tree a couple times now and it always smells like cheap scotch and desperation. Maybe I'm doing something wrong.
posted by Justinian at 7:52 PM on March 29, 2012 [3 favorites]


New Zealand has gone to the .10, and indeed the 10 cent pieces now look (and act) like pennies. I think it makes the rounding in the head easier, too. I think Canada should consider getting rid of the 5 cent piece at the same time - make the jump all at once!
posted by Metro Gnome at 7:55 PM on March 29, 2012


This is kinda brilliant. All this talk about the penny has completely masked discussion on any issues of real importance involving the budget.


That's how these assholes work - do you remember the 2010 budget? Probably not, as the papers and t.v. news spent the week talking about the "proposal" to change the lyrics to O Canada.

March 2011 had an earthquake and Charlie Sheen so I'm not sure if they released their own distraction or not.
posted by davey_darling at 8:45 PM on March 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


Personally I'm more interested in the 5% cut to health care spending (despite promises not to cut health spending) and the 19,000+ public service jobs that are being axed. But you know, pennies and shit.

Next I expect we'll have C30 passed, and then on to American style copyright law! Oh boy!

I can't believe my country-mates actually gave these assholes a majority.
posted by WinnipegDragon at 8:55 PM on March 29, 2012 [3 favorites]


"We don't really need coins, other than perhaps a quarter and dollar for machines, because that's all they are functionally good for."
A dime can sometimes sub for a screwdriver.
posted by Cranberry at 9:28 PM on March 29, 2012


Hey, Amercians. Did you realize that dollar bills have their own PAC, paid for by the paper industry?

Right now, they're plastering DC with an ad blitz, attempting to convince policymakers that dollar bills are a good ol' Baby Boomer American Tradition that can never be dispensed with. I think they're currently occupying all the ad space at Metro Center Station.
posted by schmod at 9:30 PM on March 29, 2012


Schmod - I was just thinking about how much I love dollar coins, and switching to them is basically the closest thing to a free money saving lunch we have...
posted by stratastar at 10:04 PM on March 29, 2012


^Australia makes plastic money. Canada makes plastic money. Australia gets rid of the 1¢ piece. Canada gets rid of the 1¢ piece.

The question now is this: When do we get to stop tipping?


When Canada follows Australia's lead and adopts a federal minimum wage of $15.51 an hour instead allowing Ontario and Quebec to pay a lower minimum wage to tipped employees? (Yes, I know it's much worse in the US. Do you want to suck as much as the US, Canadians? No, I didn't think so.)
posted by gingerest at 10:21 PM on March 29, 2012


Things this thread has made me want to do:

Roll up a homebrew Penny Dragon for D&D where the PC's have to slog their way a dungeon and fight said dragon, only to get get his hoard of pennies worth ...$234.47.

Make me realize that not only do I want my wallet to feel like a sack of doubloons, but I want to dress like Scrooge McDuck, or at least a pantsless version of Uncle Pennybags from Monopoly while doing so.

Petition the US treasurey to make baron flavored currency to one up the Canadian $100 bill.
posted by KingEdRa at 10:51 PM on March 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


Consider, my American friends, that this is what a Canadian right-wing majority does with its first budget.
posted by mek at 12:40 AM on March 30, 2012


The CBC and NFB also had their budgets cut. :(
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 12:49 AM on March 30, 2012 [2 favorites]


The penny dropped, eh?
posted by ironjelly at 2:33 AM on March 30, 2012


Just get rid of the nickel at the same time. Then all the gas stations can have two superscript 9s on the end of every price.

That's a very interesting point. Isn't eliminating the penny a huge win for gas/oil companies? They're already making tons of unearned money by rounding up to the nearest penny after each fill up. Now they get to round up to the nearest nickel?
posted by RonButNotStupid at 5:06 AM on March 30, 2012


The budget also loosens environmental regulation and has provisions to further bully organizations who don't jive with conservative ideology:

"...the budget promises to sic tax auditors on charitable organizations that engage in political activities, particularly those that receive funds from what the government likes to call foreign socialist billionaires.

We can bet that the right-of-centre Fraser Institute, which uses its charitable status to rage against social programs, won't be affected by this. But environmental charities that oppose the Northern Gateway pipeline almost certainly will."

From Thomas Walkom in today's Toronto Star
posted by beau jackson at 7:04 AM on March 30, 2012 [2 favorites]


Having moved from New Zealand (where the 1, 2 and 5c coins have all been abolished) to Canada, I applaud this move. Now if only the could make the coin sizes proportional to their value - I'm looking at you nickel and dime!
posted by piyushnz at 7:05 AM on March 30, 2012


They're already making tons of unearned money by rounding up to the nearest penny after each fill up.

That's the wrong way to think about it. What they are really doing is sacraficing thousands of cents on every fill for marketing.
posted by Mitheral at 7:53 AM on March 30, 2012


thousands Thousandths
posted by Mitheral at 8:27 AM on March 30, 2012


Petition the US treasurey to make baron flavored currency to one up the Canadian $100 bill.

Do barons taste differently than other humans? Are kings richer in flavour than barons? Are peasants a bit gamey?
posted by asnider at 8:41 AM on March 30, 2012


Isn't eliminating the penny a huge win for gas/oil companies? They're already making tons of unearned money by rounding up to the nearest penny after each fill up. Now they get to round up to the nearest nickel?

I don't think either of those things are true. They have to round down just as often as they round up, and that will still be the case after dropping the penny.

When a store sells only discrete units of stock, it may occasionally be possible to manipulate the rounding effect: If there are usually just one or two items per transaction, and all prices end in 9 or 4, the total will round up more often than down. For gasoline this is impossible because it's a continuous quantity and there's no reason for someone to buy exactly 1 litre. Even if you happen to buy an exact number of litres, it's always more than 1 or 2 at a time.
posted by Pre-Taped Call In Show at 8:46 AM on March 30, 2012


Petrol has always been sold at a price ending in some fraction of a cent for as long as I can remember here in Australia even before the elimination of 1c and 2c coins. Normally .9 but occasionally .7 or something at independents.
posted by onya at 12:15 PM on March 30, 2012


The CBC and NFB also had their budgets cut.

Like every other part of the civil service, and by about the same fraction of their budget. The big loser afaikt is Agriculture cut 10% this year. Though at CEAA, the environmental review agency, it looks like the cuts will be very, very deep.

Put your hands in the air like you just don't care, for less food inspection!
posted by bonehead at 12:24 PM on March 30, 2012


As a consumer, I pay for everything I possibly can with my credit card. (And yes, I'm a good boy and keep it paid off.) It's far more convenient for me, I dislike carrying a lot of cash around, and I really hate carrying coinage. My pockets are already full of gadgets and keys, the last thing I need is a half-pound or more of loose metal clanging around in there as well.

As a merchant, I hate that behavior. (Yes, I know this means I'm crazy.) Every time I take a card, it costs me a fee. It drives me nuts when someone wants to put $1.29 on their card, but I can't complain because I do the same or worse at times. On top of that, it's against the TOS of most card processors to charge a fee for payment by debit or credit. You can't penalize card users, so you penalize everyone by marking up everything and then offering a "cash discount".

Having said all that, I would love to go to a cashless system. I wouldn't have to carry a large sum of cash on hand for each register, employees wouldn't have to waste time counting (and re-counting if an error is found) cash drawers each night, and errors in change-making would be eliminated. Now if we could just get card processors to stop screwing merchants at every turn, we might get somewhere!

To me and a lot of other people I've talked with, coins seem like "dead" money. I have a jar on my desk at work where I toss my pocket change after I've gone out for lunch or whatever. Over time, it builds up. One of my cash drawers was running out of coins and I didn't have anyone free to go to the bank, so I figured hey, good chance to cash out some of that desk jar. Turns out there was over eighty bucks in there. Eighty bucks that I'd basically written off, because eww, coins, and I'd always just toss them in there and forget about it. (On the flipside, I now have spending cash for Emerald City Comicon this weekend!)
posted by xedrik at 12:48 PM on March 30, 2012


Credit card companies seem to be actively encouraging using them for small purchases with the roll out of tap and go proximity card readers. My solution for making use of accumulated coinage is to use the self-service checkout at the supermarket and feed it all in then pay the balance on the card.
posted by onya at 2:43 PM on March 30, 2012


davebush: Farewell, you little wobbly table shim and tonearm weight.

This entire sentence is just fantastic. I had to say it aloud once or twice because it had such a great sound and shape to it. Thank you.
posted by moss at 12:29 PM on March 31, 2012


Our government is classy. Formalized fisticuffs "for charity." An outstanding idea, I'm sure. Leader-class sophistication, no?
posted by davidpriest.ca at 9:43 PM on March 31, 2012


Eh, I thought that was sorta different and amusing, and it's not like either of them are exactly part of the current government anyway. Brazeau is a Senator which makes him completely useless, and Trudeau is a Liberal, and they aren't even the opposition right now. I'm not a fan of boxing in general, but I am a fan of politicians who aren't just old white lawyers with giant sticks up their asses.
posted by jacquilynne at 7:43 AM on April 1, 2012


I don't see anything terribly wrong with a third party MP and a senator having a charity boxing match. Everyone would smile if they did it on skates and called it hockey.
posted by jeather at 7:46 AM on April 1, 2012


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