Mint explores ways to boost use of golden dollar

The U.S. Mint will consider cutting the number of Susan B. Anthony dollars in circulation as part of a plan to boost use of the golden dollar coin, Mint Director Henrietta Holsman Fore told a Senate panel on Friday.

Popular with collectors and profitable for the government, the golden dollar has yet to make a dent in daily commerce, where the dollar bill is used in more than 90 percent of all $1.00 transactions. A variety of problems--including how golden dollars are distributed and their resemblance to the Susan B. Anthony dollar--have kept retailers from embracing the coin, Fore said.

"Not only can it be difficult to get rolls of golden dollars; sometimes it is difficult to get golden dollars at all," she said in testimony before the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on the Treasury. Some convenience stores have special coin dispensers that cannot use dollar coins, and the Federal Reserve--which distributes currency to banks--is unable to separate golden dollars from Susan B. Anthony dollars in its coin shipments.

Susan B. Anthony dollars are easily confused with quarters and unpopular with retailers. The golden dollar bears the likeness of Sacagawea, the Shoshone woman who helped Meriwether Lewis and William Clark explore the American West. It has a smooth edge, making it easily distinguishable from other coins by touch alone.

On March 31, the Mint halted nearly all production of the golden dollar for the rest of 2002 because of lagging demand from retailers and the economic recession. The Mint still plans to produce at least 10 million golden dollar coins for collectors this year.

The Mint will study ways to get the coin in the hands of more retailers, according to Fore. They will also look at reducing the number of Susan B. Anthony dollars in circulation or developing a process to automatically separate the two coins, which could be expensive, she said. The Mint also plans to step up advertising for the golden dollar. The agency has reached an agreement with NASCAR that will allow the coin to be dispensed at NASCAR racetracks. Nine minor league baseball teams already use the golden dollar at concession stands in their ballparks. But few federal agencies distribute the dollar, according to Fore.

"If every defense installation across the country used golden dollars in their cash registers at base exchanges, military banks and credit unions…the golden dollar would circulate more widely and be used more regularly," she said.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
Close [ x ] More from GovExec

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Forecasting Cloud's Future

    Conversations with Federal, State, and Local Technology Leaders on Cloud-Driven Digital Transformation

  • The Big Data Campaign Trail

    With everyone so focused on security following recent breaches at federal, state and local government and education institutions, there has been little emphasis on the need for better operations. This report breaks down some of the biggest operational challenges in IT management and provides insight into how agencies and leaders can successfully solve some of the biggest lingering government IT issues.

  • Communicating Innovation in Federal Government

    Federal Government spending on ‘obsolete technology’ continues to increase. Supporting the twin pillars of improved digital service delivery for citizens on the one hand, and the increasingly optimized and flexible working practices for federal employees on the other, are neither easy nor inexpensive tasks. This whitepaper explores how federal agencies can leverage the value of existing agency technology assets while offering IT leaders the ability to implement the kind of employee productivity, citizen service improvements and security demanded by federal oversight.

  • IT Transformation Trends: Flash Storage as a Strategic IT Asset

    MIT Technology Review: Flash Storage As a Strategic IT Asset For the first time in decades, IT leaders now consider all-flash storage as a strategic IT asset. IT has become a new operating model that enables self-service with high performance, density and resiliency. It also offers the self-service agility of the public cloud combined with the security, performance, and cost-effectiveness of a private cloud. Download this MIT Technology Review paper to learn more about how all-flash storage is transforming the data center.

  • Ongoing Efforts in Veterans Health Care Modernization

    This report discusses the current state of veterans health care


When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.