The penny was discontinued on Feb. 4, 2013, and more than four billion of the copper coins have been removed from circulation (valued at approximately $40 million). The Royal Canadian Mint estimates that approximately 6 billion pennies were in circulation when production of the coin stopped in 2012.
The savings from annual production costs are estimated at approximately $11 million per year as the production and distribution costs of a single penny was 1.6 cents.
The mint estimates that more than 35 billion pennies have been produced since 1908. The last penny was produced on May 4, 2012 where approximately 199 million pennies were made in 2012.
Where are the estimated 2 billion pennies that are still out there? It is anyone’s guess – some being kept as tokens of the past, some at the bottom of collection jars, and some still being used to exchange change at retail transactions.