According to an estimate by recycling and waste management company Covanta Holding Corporation, Americans literally throw away $62 million dollars a year worth of spare pocket change. Covanta offered CBS News a theory along with the estimate “that the coins are probably tossed accidentally.”
With an average yearly inflation rate calculated by most economists of about 2% since 1913 when the Federal Reserve first began issuing banknotes and coins produced by the U.S. Mint, a pocket full of change has never been worth less than it is now, so it’s no wonder Americans aren’t being so careful with their change and even just throwing it out.
What are you supposed to do with pennies and nickels? Dimes? There’s not a thing you can buy with those, and they make too much noise jingling around for something worth so little. All you can do is save those up in a big plastic container for a year, marvel how heavy the thing is when it’s full, and then pour in your buckets full of junk metal for a coin counting machine to issue you a nice, crisp banknote for $20.