Australian Lefty on Politics, Governance, Science and Info Management

Recession indicator for the illiterate

Posted by Dave Bath on 2009-01-21

Typical “official” recession indicators look at GDP, but don’t adjust for population growth or shrinkage.  It’s per-capita activity that is the better indicator of pain!

But even without wading through figures, or reading the news, or watching TV, there is a rough indicator of how tight things are… look at the 50 cent pieces in your pocket during the week.

How many of those would be of real interest to numismatists (or if you are illiterate, coin-collectors)?

I’m not talking about the useless ones that have been minted over the last few years, but the significant ones, including:

  • The 1970 "Captain Cook", the first commemorative 50 cent piece.
  • The "Charles and Diana"
  • The 1977 "Silver Jubilee" (which tarnishes a lot because it has lots of silver)
  • A round 50c piece, not the 12-sided modern shape (which must score quadruple points at least).

Any other instances you can think of?

If you notice any of these appearing in your pocket, it means things are so tight people are raiding their "special money" caches.

Apart from the round one, in the last week I’ve had each of the coins on the above list handed to me.  This hasn’t happened in a long time, probably not since "the recession we had to have".

Has anyone else had more of these appearing in their pockets than usual?


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