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Meanwhile, in the real world

The world may be worrying about the U.S. government’s ability to create money out of thin air at the moment, but one portion of the money machine, the U.S. Mint, is more firmly anchored in the real demands of commerce.

If businesses need new coins, businesses get new coins. If they do not need them, the coins are not made. Simple.

The release of the Mint’s October production numbers shows that it is on track to strike just over twice as many coins this year as it did in 2009.

Now whatever anyone might be experiencing regarding rising prices, it would seem we can all agree that prices have not doubled since last year, so there must be some real business going on out there in the nation’s shopping malls. That is great news after a recession.

The Mint struck 730.22 million coins in October. That is up from 690.02 million in September. The rise broke a three-month streak of declining numbers.

So far this year, the Mint has struck almost 5.8 billion coins. It is on track to strike over 7 billion in the calendar year if the trend holds.

Production of cents alone now stands at 3.6 billion, more than the 3.5 billion coins of all denominations struck last year.

With economic news seemingly going from hot to cold and then back again almost faster than a 24-hour news cycle, it is reassuring that at the very real level of coins in the cash register, economic conditions seem brighter.