Thursday, September 2, 2010

Save Money, Spend Money, and nickels

Today I am just ticked off.  We are told to save money.  We are told to buy tangibles.  All I want to do is to keep us as self sustaining as possible, but also to keep us as comfortable as possible. 


Much has been said about saving nickels.  The government is going to be changing the composition of nickels next year.  We need to save nickels because the value of the copper in nickels is greater than the face value of the nickel.  You've got to be kidding.  Save nickels because of the copper value?  If saving coin for copper value is something that we need to do then we should be saving pennies.  After all, according to a penny is worth 2.26 cents and a nickel is worth 5.44 cents.  To look at this equally for those mathematically challenged folks, let's take ten cents worth of pennies and ten cents worth of nickels.  Ten pennies will get you 22 cents if you sold them for the copper.  Two nickels will get you almost 11 cents.  I'll go for saving pennies if I want to put my money into copper!


I am saving silver.  I can't afford to save gold.  I am buying silver coins, not silver bars, actual money.  A dime costs $1.40 or about 14 times its face value.  It may go up, it may go down.  I could go to Starbucks and buy a coffee for five dollars.  I'd rather buy 3 dimes and make myself a good cup of coffee at home.  You should be able to buy something each week.


California has a stupid law!  If you buy coins you get charged sales tax of almost 10%!  On the other hand, if you spend $1500 on the coins it is not considered purchasing coins but purchasing bullion.  There is no tax on this if it's over $1500. 


This isn't why I'm ticked off.  It's because of one of my relatives.  Fortunately not one who live with me but one, I'm sure, who will want to return home if TSHTF.  This relative, and family, has been on welfare for a couple of years.  They also receive food stamps.  After being out of work for a while, the person finally got a job.  No, that's not why I'm ticked off.  I'm very happy that they are finally getting off their rear and taking care of themselves.  I found out the government is still paying food stamps.  Not the $650 but now "only" $400 a month.  They are also receiving $500 a month in transportation allowance to get to and from the new job.  (I was told it's taking about $100 a month for gas so they are pocketing the rest)  They also get some of the welfare for another few months.  When not working, their take-home between food stamps and welfare was $1500 a month.  Now, with the job, their take-home with food stamps, welfare, transportation allowance, and pay is $2800 a month!  That's almost double.  I should be thrilled but I'm not. 


I'm not ticked off that the government is still dolling out money even though his work take-home is $1600 a month ($100 more than he got doing nothing, which is why a lot of welfare people don't work.  They figure if they work they will only earn $100 and they won't be able to pay video games all day long because they actually have to do something useful.).  I'm very pleased that they are working because their net take home after travel expenses is exactly the same as if they sat on their rear at home and just collected welfare.  They know that they will get raises and at some point will be making a lot more than what they'd get from the government.  I'm ticked off because for the past two years they've lived on $1500 a month and now that they make almost double they come up with excuses why they can't save any money.  Come on!  For the next six months the government is going to give them this extra money.  Save some!  Invest some!  They tell me that they need to buy things first.  So what did they buy?  A new 52 inch television.  They spent $400 on their child's birthday party.  They go out to eat. 


I can understand not wanting to put the money into the bank to save it and earn interest.  Right now, I have an account at the bank that is earning ¼ of 1 percent in interest.  If I kept $1000 in the bank for an entire year I'd get $2.50 in interest.  What a joke!  So spend the money if you don't want to save it.  But on something that will last, or something that will provide you with security for your future.  I, on the other hand, still save money.  If you don't save your money you won't be able to purchase a piece of property.  So put some money into the bank or hide it under the mattress. Save your nickels and pennies. 


  1. A note on why you should save nickels over penny's -

    Today's penny's - starting in 1983 - are made of zinc - not copper. So - unless you want to get thousands of penny's, search through them all, separate the copper from the zinc - stick with nickels.

    So - to sum it up 95% copper pennies are now circulating with 97.5% zinc pennies. They are also about four times as bulky (per dollar of face value) as nickels.

    Take care -


  2. You are right about the pennies, so I suppose if you don't want to sort through your jars of pennies, then save nickels! Thanks for pointing this out.