Are You Saving Your Nickels?

Discussion in 'Money, Investing & Precious Metals' started by UncleJoe, Feb 2, 2010.

  1. UncleJoe

    UncleJoe Well-Known Member

    Legislation to change the metal composition of nickels is on the table. If it goes through (which in all likelihood it will) nickels produced before the change will begin to disappear just like silver coins did.

    Coin Composition Change Included In Obama's 2011 Budget

    By Alec Nevalainen
    February 02, 2010

    This section appears in the Terminations, Reductions, and Savings portion of the budget. This document can be found at

    One omission from the proposed composition change is the Presidential and Native American Dollars. Either they are satisfied with the current composition or they were left out inadvertently (which I can understand, the Presidential dollar program is easily forgettable).

    Full text from page 100:

    Department of the Treasury

    The Budget proposes to provide the U.S. Mint with greater flexibility in the material composition of coins to reduce its losses on some coins and the production costs associated with volatile metal prices.


    The Mint's primary cost driver is the price of metal, a factor over which it has no control. Daily spot prices of copper and zinc, the Mint's two main metallic materials, have fluctuated in excess of 100 percent, and the price of nickel by 500 percent in recent years.¹ This contributes to volatile and negative margins on both the penny and nickel: in recent years the penny has cost approximately 1.8 cents and the nickel approximately 9 cents to produce.² Costs have exceeded the value of these two coins by over $100 million in prior years. Through its gains on other coins, the Mint annually returns hundreds of millions of dollars to the Treasury General Fund (GF) and is funded by the Mint Public Enterprise Fund. ...

    Stash away your nickels now.
  2. Lake Windsong

    Lake Windsong Well-Known Member


    Interesting... thanks for the info. My dad always taught us from a young age to look at the dates on coins before we rolled them up or spent them. We'd go through piles of change, trying to be the kid with the most 'special coins'. I get strange looks from people when I look at the dates of loose change when making everyday transactions. :) I'm glad he taught us from an early age, I've found several buffalo nickels as well as lots of 'junk silver' just from following his advice.

  3. mdprepper

    mdprepper I sold my soul to The_Blob. He had candy...

    Stupid question.

    Should I be saving the currently in use nickles (go to the bank and get rolls) or ones that are pre-19??

    I alwas try to save old coins (because my son likes them) but was unaware of the composition of the coins.
  4. TechAdmin

    TechAdmin Administrator Staff Member

    I guess I'm starting to collect nickels now.
  5. catsraven

    catsraven Meoww

    Hmm I have three rolls of nickels. Im going to save them unless I desperately need them.
  6. Ponce

    Ponce Well-Known Member

    My last buy was of 50 rolls of nickels ($5,000).........before that about 30 more.

    I have been keeping all my loose change for the last 33 years and up till now have 5 five gallons plastic containers full of coins and dollar bills..... there should be another 20 bricks of nickels in there.

    Why all my loose change???????? simple.....coins are made by the US Treasury and the fiat paper dollar by the Federal Reserve........which one do you think has better chance of surviving?

    Lots of reasons to keep your loose change.......tell you later.
  7. james_black

    james_black Active Member

    Thanks you for the article UncleJoe. I need to get some "change" now.
  8. UncleJoe

    UncleJoe Well-Known Member

    Sorry md, I missed your comment.
    Any nickels in circulation before the change is made, which looks like sometime in 2011. Once the new composition goes into circulation, the old ones will begin to disappear just like silver coins did in 1965.
    As others here have said, I have been buying nickels from the bank. When I go to the bank to cash a check, I will ask the teller for $10-$20 in rolled nickels instead of all paper bills.
  9. Ponce

    Ponce Well-Known Member

    Very good Uncle Joe..............

    "The coins of today in the future will be what the silver coins of yesterday are today"... Ponce
  10. UncleJoe

    UncleJoe Well-Known Member

    :confused: :confused: :confused:

    My bank has $2 rolls. 50 rolls would come to $100. What am I missing?

    md, Something I should have mentioned; nickels stamped between 1942 and 1945 (war nickels) contain 35% silver so you may want to keep those separate from the rest. :)
  11. Concerned_ Citizen

    Concerned_ Citizen Well-Known Member

    An 18 wheeler
  12. Expeditioner

    Expeditioner Well-Known Member

    Okay so what are all your reasons for keeping loose change?????
  13. ironhat

    ironhat Prodigal

    Yes, and what is the silver content of non-war nickels? Greater I would suppose.
  14. UncleJoe

    UncleJoe Well-Known Member

    0% silver 75% copper 25% nickel
  15. ironhat

    ironhat Prodigal

    Thanks, UJ. That was a quick comeback. Where do I find the percentage of silver in current and older US coins?
  16. Ponce

    Ponce Well-Known Member

    Hi, sorry it took me so long to come back........

    About loose change, back in Germany from 1918 to 1923 the German government had 178 printing house printing the paper fiat but none the coins so that the coins and the OLD PAPER FIAT was able to retain its value.

    This little old lady with a bathtub full of coins was able to live like a queen and with no worries at all.

    Me? I started to save all my coins just for the hell of it and now I am glad that I we all know it cost the US government more to produce the penny and the nickel than the actual value of the coins themselves, thanks to the metal, and soon they will change all that with new coins.

    In nickels alone I hold about 80 bricks plus about 20 or 30 more in loose change, for someone who collects coins they would have a ball checking all my coins :wave:
  17. UncleJoe

    UncleJoe Well-Known Member

  18. beericus

    beericus Well-Known Member

    Hmm, this is very interesting. I also have been collecting coins, i never spend change when i buy something. I always pay in bills, and pocket the change, when i get home at night i empty all my change out in to a pasta sauce jar. Once its full i cap it, and store it.

    Why do i do this?? Well it started back ten years or so i guess. Id save up a gallon jar of them, then take it to the bank and deposit it into my money market, it would be about $500.00 at a time, nothing major just another form of saving.

    Then after 911, and all the other crud we don't need mentioned here, i figured if there was ever a run on banks or atm's, that me and Mrs Beericus could sit at home and not have to rush out to try to get money. Also, change is heavy and harder to steal.
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2010
  19. It will be many many years before "pre 2011 nickels" become rare or hard to find in change unless the price of precious metals really goes nuts. In 1982 they changed the composition of pennies. They went from 95% copper/5% nickel to 97.5% zinc/2.5% copper. The metal content of modern pennies is only worth about half a cent. It's the production costs that drive the price to the government above the face value of the penny. The metal content of the old copper pennies make them worth about 2.5x face value just in metal.

    Every now and then I'll get a brick of pennies ($25 worth) and go through them to look for really nice BU coins, copper coins, wheat pennies and other oddities. I'd say that about 25-30% of every box are old copper pennies. They're common but they're a pain to sort through unless you really like that sort of thing. Silver quarters and dimes are much more rare but they're easier to sort through because you can just "edge check" them. Silver coins are silver on the edge. The versions currently in circulation are brown on the edge. Just consider yourself lucky if you find one or two in an entire box of rolls.

    Putting aside a few boxes of nickels right now can't hurt. If nothing else just don't cash in your change until you've taken out all of the nickels. At least the new nickels are easily distinguishable from the old ones so you'll only be sorting through the last few year's of nickels if you decide to do some sorting in 10 years.