What is a dollar worth? Not much according to the latest Treasury release. Treasury released the actual cost of the metals used to make the currency.
The Australian $1 coin comprises
92% copper, 6% aluminium and 2% nickel.
It weighs in at around 9 grams and the cost of the materials to mint the coin as of mid-November 2011 was 6.58 cents.
In the 50c coin the cost of metal is 5.53 cents.
In the 20c coin the cost of metal is 11.29 cents.
In the 5c coin the cost of metal is 2.83 cents.
The $2 cost of metals to mint the coin is worth less than the $1 at 4.82 cents.
The information which the Royal Australian Mint considered confidential was supplied by the Treasury department in response to a question in parliament.
The only Silver coin released for circulation as part of the Australian currency was the 1966 round 50c piece. With a silver content of 80% it was one of the highest value coins in circulation at the time.
The silver content was more than double that of the US equivalent coin the Kennedy Half Dollar.
The silver price doubled during the release dates of the coin and by 1968 had risen to 76c worth of silver in every coin. The Commonwealth treasurer at the time, Mr Billy McMahon advised Federal Parliament of the fact and the process of withdrawing the coins was begun.
Large quantities of the 1966 50c round were produced and because of the silver price rise at the time the coin was horded by a lot of people. They are today easy to find and quite common, more or less bullion style coins moving with the silver price.
Trust and confidence determines the value of modern coins as the silver has long disappeared from circulating coins.
If you have any ideas on the metals you would like to see our coins made from, leave a comment.