1p RIP?

19 September 2016
1p RIP?

Are we going to be waving goodbye to the humble one pence piece? We did it with the halfpenny, but then again, people got hysterical when we started getting charged 5p for a plastic bag down the shops.

We just don't know how anyone'll react to this.

It could be happening though, according to a person who definitely knows about money - Bank of England governor Mark Carney.

He's said that we could see an end to the 1p coin, and post-Brexit, it is plunging in value. Over in Canada, they recently got rid of their lowest value coin, and we could do the same.

Carney was answering a question posed by children, who wanted to know what the point of 1p coins are.

He said: "That's a question for the Royal Mint because we produce the bank notes."

"I will say that in a number of other countries, because the penny isn't used very frequently – and to be honest, I rarely see them myself – they have done away with the penny, so in Canada, New Zealand and Australia, they've done away with the penny or the equivalent."

"What they did in each of those cases is they gave people the opportunity to donate the existing pennies to charity as a transition, and it was very successful - but it's a decision for other people and they're still very much legal tender and can be used to buy things."

Does he think getting rid of pennies is a good idea though? He replied: "At some point."

This would be a headache for 99p shops, although, you could still pay for things contactlessly, or whatever. Or they could turn themselves into 98p shops, but it seems unlikely they'll drop their prices, rather than raise them.

Either way, there's still 11.2 billion pennies in the UK, so getting rid of them all will be a massive job.

TOPICS:   Economy

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