Slaton, Texas Man Deposits 500 Pounds Of Pennies At His Bank, Gets $816

A Slaton, Texas man turned six decades’ worth of (literal) penny-pinching into $816, depositing some 500 pounds of pennies that he’d been saving for 65 years at Prosperity Bank, The New York Daily News is reporting.

Ira Keys, 81, said that when he started earning money at age 17, his father gave him a valuable lesson about saving money.

“He says, ‘Whatever you do son, save your money.’ Back when I started in ’52, I didn’t have a lot of money, so I saved pennies and I just kept saving them.”

While saving pennies for 65 years may have meant that Mr. Keys lived up to his Old Man’s expectations, and then some, from a financial standpoint, it doesn’t seem to have made much sense: his net gain for six decades of saving pennies works out to about $12.50 per year. But as Benjamin Franklin said, a penny saved is a penny earned.

Of course, in bringing his pennies to the bank – in coffee cans – Mr. Keys almost cost himself that much money, and more, in damage to his vehicle.

“I like to have broke the springs on that little-ole pickup.”

Personal banker Kari Lewis tells KCBD (Lubbock) that having 500 pounds of pennies show up at her workplace is a little unusual, to say the least. She says employees spent over an hour counting and sorting the pennies.

“We ended up with $816 in pennies. Not a typical day at the bank, at all.”

Lewis also mentioned how pennies seem worthless – at least, taken one at a time.

“We take pennies for granted. You see them on the ground and you’re kind of like, ‘Oh, I’m not picking that up,’ but for him to collect it for years and years was pretty amazing.”

In fact, as far as the government is concerned, pennies are less than worthless. Minting a penny costs 1.6 cents – so it’s actually costing the government to mint pennies, according to this Inquisitr report. They’re anachronistic; they’re a nuisance; and the only reason anyone uses them is to keep from getting more (ever given a store employee some bills and a few pennies for your purchase in order to keep from having to carry around a bunch of change?).

Mr. Keys says he plans to use the proceeds from his pennies to do some home improvements. He also says that he still has more pennies to bring in – “a ton,” as he says. And he probably means a literal ton – $3,246 – considering he wasn’t joking when he brought in 500 pounds of pennies to his bank.

[Image courtesy of: 2thesource]