Coin production at the U.S. Mint fell by 40 percent from November to December to 431.78 million coins as only cents, nickels and dimes were struck during the last month of the year.
But this was enough to push overall Mint output in calendar year 2011 to over 8.2 billion coins, keeping the recovery from the 2009 low of 3.548 billion pieces on track. In 2010 total output was 6.37311 billion coins.
The overall increase in production in 2011 amounts to 28.67 percent from the level of 2010 and up a whopping 131.11 percent from the 2009 low point, which was a 50-year low.
Nearly five billion cents were produced in all of 2011, evenly divided between the Philadelphia and Denver Mints.
Nickel production did not quite reach 1 billion coins for 2011, stopping at 990.24 million pieces. For this denomination, though, Denver outproduced Philadelphia 540.24 million to 450 million pieces.
Annual dime production exceeded 1.5 billion fairly evenly split between the two coining facilities.
Quarter production weighed in at 391.2 million coins, but that beat the combined dollar output of 374.92 million. Of that dollar total, 297.36 million had Presidential portraits and 77.56 million were of the Native American design.
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Half dollar output was once again limited to what collectors would buy. This figure was 3.45 million coins.
In 2012 with the suspension of the production of dollar coins for circulation, the individual Presidential and Native American dollar production numbers will resemble this year’s half dollar production total.
Unless another recession hits the U.S. economy, coin production in 2012 is expected to rise further despite the decline in dollar coins.