Swiss 2-rappen: why shunned?

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Swiss 2-rappen: why shunned?

Beitrag von villa66 » Di 17.09.19 17:39

This notebook entry for a Swiss 2-rappen…anyone have an idea why the 2-rappen was treated so poorly?

x: Switzerland’s 2-rappen reached its end with these 1974-dated pieces. No more 2-rappen pieces were struck, and those outstanding (of 1948-74) were demonetized on 1 January 1978. In a departure from the usual 20-year redeemability period for obsolete denominations, these pieces were redeemable at the Swiss National Bank only until 30 June 1979. I got tickled reading the SNB on this very abbreviated redemption window; here from its website (in 2015): “The worthless 2-centime coins might possibly have collector’s value. Unlike numismatists, antique shops or banks, the SNB does not deal in worthless coins.” Beautifully circular! (08)

The discontinued 1-rappen wasn't afforded this kind of disrespect. I wonder what made the 2-rappen different?

:) v.

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Re: Swiss 2-rappen: why shunned?

Beitrag von Mynter » Do 10.10.19 17:53

I could imagine that the answer is that " Money costs money ". Under this title " Geldgeschichtliche Nachrichten " in october of 1968 published a note on the productioncosts of the swiss coin wich I came across by pure incidence when I was scimming through my archive on the search for something else.
Regarding to Geldgeschichtlche Nachrichten in 1967 the mintingcosts where as follows :
1 Rappen @1,9 Rp a piece
2 Rappen @ 3,3 Rp
5 Rappen @2,5 Rp
10 Rappen @ 3,4 Rp
20 Rappen @4,2 Rp
1/2 Fr ( silver ) @41 Rp
1 Fr ( silver ) @ 75,8 Rp
2 Fr ( silver ) @159,4 Rp
5 Fr ( silver )@ 226,2 Rp

Compare the costs for the silver to the allaged costs for the proposed nickelcoins ( 1968 ) :
1/2 Fr ( nickel ) @ 4 Rp
1 Fr ( nickel ) @ 5,9 Rp
2 Fr (nickel ) @ 10 Rp

So perhaps the Swiss simply wanted to do away with one of the two denominations with productionprices over facevalue, and for being able to give correct change the 1 Rappen was sufficient? This could explain why the 2 Rappen was discontinued in 1974 but perhaps also why it was demonitised just 3 years later. I can imagine that a denomination not struck any more but legal tender still over the years would become somewhat of a phantom. Old supplies run out, fresh suppies are not to be gotten. Commerce and the public wonder if those ghosts really exists ( hence the italian 20 lire we discussed in summer ).In the sober eyes of a Bankauthority thuch " ghosting " is of no use and just a distraction, so perhaps it is for a best than to make a clear cut rather than let time settle the issue ?
Grüsse, Mynter

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Re: Swiss 2-rappen: why shunned?

Beitrag von villa66 » Fr 25.10.19 08:12

Many thanks, Mynter, for this excellent and thoughtful reply. (I’m sorry I didn’t see it and get back to you sooner.) The comparison of production costs was especially illuminating.

I think maybe you’re right about the Swiss authorities just wanting a clean break. Besides, with the low face value of the 2-rappen, even with an abbreviated turn-in period no one stood to lose much.

On the the Italian 20-lire, which you mentioned, I gathered some of my ideas and continued that thread. #8 seemed to suggest a new question about the 2-rappen….when and for what was it last useful as an individual coin? Even older ones that I’ve seen don’t exhibit much wear. (But of course the examples I’ve seen—almot by definition—have had their circulating careers cut short.)

Thanks again….

;) v.

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