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Good start for circulation coins

Coin production at the U.S. Mint began in 2011 on a fairly routine note. That is a good thing because in January of 2010 coin demand was still on the floor after having been knocked out by the Great Recession.

In January of this year, the production of 764.73 million coins was more than three times the 218.41 million struck in January 2010.

Interestingly, the numbers of Presidential dollars and Native American dollars struck in January 2011 are down slightly for the former and quite a bit for the latter.

The Presidential total so far in 2011 is 72.66 million compared to 74.48 million last year. For Native American coins, the total of 6.3 million is well below last year’s 25.2 million.

Dimes and quarters were produced at a rate where total production for the year can easily top a billion each. For nickels 93.12 million were coined while for dimes the number is a larger 130 million pieces.

Unlike last year, quarters got on the board right away with an output number of 61.2 million pieces. That is not terribly high, but it is a lot more than zero.

Cent output of 398 million pieces might indicate that the Mint expects to strike almost 5 billion pieces this year. That would be up substantially from the 4 billion struck in 2010 – and a good sign for the economy overall.

The year 2011 might just be remembered as the year that normal times, prosperity even, returned to the United States.