Hold on to your change

Economic shutdowns that began in March have started resulting in coin shortages.

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Nationwide, businesses are asking customers to pay with card, pay with exact change and even bring in coins to exchange for bills. This is because of a COVID-19-spurred coin shortage, writes Idaho Press reporter Rachel Spacek, and Treasure Valley residents are feeling the pinch on their pennies, nickels and dimes.

The coin shortage began this summer as businesses closed their doors amid the pandemic. The business closures slowed or stopped the circulation of coins throughout the economy, Zions Bank Region President Toni Nielsen said.

Also, the U.S. Mint, which manufactures the nation’s coin supply, decreased its coin production to implement social distancing and protect its workers.

You can read Spacek's full story here at idahopress.com (subscription required), or pick up today's print edition of the Idaho Press; it's on the front page.

Betsy Z. Russell is the Boise bureau chief and state capitol reporter for the Idaho Press and Adams Publishing Group. Follow her on Twitter at @BetsyZRussell.

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