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Ottawa to come out with a $1 coin -- to save money

Canada hopes to have learned from the bad experience of the United States with its Susan B. Anthony $1 coin when it introduces a new $1 coin next January. As with the US, Canada expects by replacing $1 bank notes with $1 coins to save costs -- some $175 million over 20 years.

Paper currency wears out within a year and must be constantly replaced. Coins last 20 years.

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But when the Susan B. Anthony coin was introduced in 1979, many Americans avoided it. They complained that it was too close in size to the 25-cent coin and similar in color.

Tons of Susan B. Anthonys now clutter the vaults of the US Treasury.

The new Canadian $1 coin is just a touch larger than the Canadian quarter. But it will be 11-sided and gold-colored, made of aureate bronze plated on pure nickel.

This should make it quite distinguishable from other Canadian coins.

Further, if Canadians find the $1 coin weighing down their pockets and purses, they have the option of using $2 bills. In the US, the next highest bank note to the $1 bill is the $5 note. The US $2 bill was discontinued several years ago.

Unless the Canadian government gets an ugly surprise, it expects to withdraw $1 bank notes from circulation completely within three years.

And the government will no longer consider $1 bank notes to be legal tender after four years.

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