Date of Award

Spring 5-7-2022

Document Type

Honors Project

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Political Science and International Affairs

Department Chair or Program Director

Cooperman, Rosalyn

First Advisor

Surupa Gupta

Second Advisor

Rosalyn Cooperman

Major or Concentration

Political Science


Since the 1980s, the debate about the one-cent piece’s production and use has been discussed throughout relatively recent Congressional history; and has involved economic, financial, industry-based, as well as numismatic groups to weigh in on the topic. The question arises: Why have other countries successfully changed their lower-denomination currency and converted their economic system into one that incorporates cash-rounding while the United States has struggled to do so?

By observing international examples of the obsoletion of low-denomination coinage and the implementation of cash-rounding, the proposed economic and financial reform has proved to work as an economically-sound alternative to the current system. Due to industry-based lobbying efforts and growing partisanship within Congress, legislative productivity has decreased across most proposed legislation. The debate about the one-cent piece is one topic that has become stagnant within Congressional committees.