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Does $5 a roll for cents make sense?

Because federal offices in Washington, D.C., including Mint headquarters were closed for four days this week, it is a small triumph that the introduction of the new 2010 cent with the Shield design went off without a hitch yesterday in Springfield, Ill.

Everybody who wanted the new coins were able to buy 2-6 rolls of the coins, which were struck at the Philadelphia Mint, in even dollar amounts and once everyone was satisfied, those who wanted more could make multiple passes through the line.

A buyer on the spot was offering $5 a roll to those who had stood in line and gotten the coins for face value. That’s a nice profit. There is no way to know how many of the coins he was able to purchase.

How long can the secondary market keep prices that high? Time will tell.

Rumors swirl of scarcity but they all seem to trace back to people who are trying to sell the coins at high prices to collectors who for whatever reason don’t want to wait for normal banking distribution to occur.

Today is actually Abraham Lincoln’s 201st birthday and Monday we officially celebrate it along with George Washington’s birthday (which is actually Feb. 22).

What would Lincoln make of all this?

He would probably be pleased to know the Union is preserved and he is still remembered.