US Mint Might Stop Making Pennies, AISI Praises Strong Steel Statements

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The American Iron and Steel Institute praised strong statements from eight nations meeting in Brussels to deal with the steel overcapacity crisis. The U.S. Mint might stop making pennies.

Wither the Penny?

The Wall Street Journal’s Nick Timiraos reported that in a March memo to President Barack Obama, Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew said he planned to suspend production of the venerable penny.

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Pennies fall out of circulation almost immediately, forcing the U.S. Mint to continually stamp out more, and they cost almost twice as much to produce as they’re worth, according to the most recent data from the U.S. Mint.

American Steel Organizations Applaud Overcapacity Statement

The American Iron and Steel Institute today said that a joint statement by eight governments on steel overcapacity issued yesterday at a meeting of most major steel producers in Brussels is an “important demonstration that many major steel-producing nations are united in their commitment to take action to address the global steel overcapacity situation that is negatively affecting the world’s steel industry.”

The statement was issued by the U.S., Canada, the European Union, Japan, Mexico, the Republic of Korea (South Korea), Switzerland, and Turkey as a result of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development’s High-Level Meeting on Excess Capacity and Structural Adjustment in the Steel Sector this week.

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It follows a strongly worded statement from the Department of Commerce and U.S. Trade Representative on Monday criticizing China, and other countries, for their unwillingness to work to address the overcapacity issue while at the OECD meetings.

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