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Mar 29, 2012 9:56 PM by Jacqui Heinrich

Canada to rid itself of the penny

TORONTO (AP) - Canada has announced it is scrapping the penny.

The humble one-cent piece is set to disappear from Canadian pockets, a victim of inflation.

Canadian Finance Minister Jim Flaherty announced in the federal budget on Thursday that the Royal Canadian Mint will strike the last of the little coins this fall.

The budget says the cost of minting a penny has risen to 1.6 cents or $11 million a year. The budget says some Canadians consider the penny more of a nuisance than a useful coin.

Pennies will still be legal tender, but as they slowly vanish from circulation, prices will have to be rounded up or down.

Twitter was abuzz with the news within minutes of the announcement. For every cry of indignation, another comment would appear praising the government for being so penny wise.

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