A number of readers have noted the action by the U.S. Mint to outlaw the melting down or bulk export of coins. This has come about because the value of the precious metals contained in coins now exceeds their face value. The Mint would rather not have to replace pennies (at a cost of 1.73 cents per) or nickels (at 8.74 cents). The expectation is that Congress will mandate new compositions for some U.S. coins in 2007.
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