Sunday, January 27, 2008

Pennies Are Precious

I know a lot of people who disdain change, especially pennies. Granted, at 1/100th of $1, the penny hardly gives its owner significant purchasing power. But with mountains of pennies and with the power of compounding interest, every penny saved adds up over time.

I have a big jar in my bedroom into which I toss all my change. Because I don't make all that many cash transactions, this tends to accumulate slowly. Yesterday I rolled up all my pennies, nickels, and dimes (quarters get eaten by laundry machines). Some of you are undoubtedly rolling your eyes at this, but I don't mind it. I actually enjoy the tactility of it, and it's a bit like "finding" money. I know there are machines and such for the home or at supermarkets, but I'm a fan of the classic stack 'em-and-roll 'em technique. I just cranked some tunes and spent an hour rolling up all my spare change. I'm always surprised by how much is there. This time it came out to $42.50. This is probably about six months' worth of accumulated change. Again, you might scoff at this amount, and it certainly doesn't amount to the down payment on my future condo, but it's a nice wage for an hour's work. It's "found" money, and better to put it to work rather than let it sit under cushions, in drawers, strewn about the house, or lying on the street. It also happens to represent 42.5% of my automatic monthly savings contribution - nothing to sneeze at. This is a good example of investment snowflaking.

I'm going to stick it in my savings and let time do the rest.

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