U.P. bank speaks on national coin shortage, encouraging people to take loose change to their bank

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IRON MOUNTAIN, Mich. (WJMN) – It may seem like change is everywhere, like the bottom of your purse, stuck in-between the cushions of the couch or around you car. There is actually a national coin shortage going on right now and one U.P. bank tells Local 3 News this is uncommon.

“The federal government is short on the coin right now, because I believe that people weren’t able to go into bank lobbies and turn in coins, so they became short on it,” said Sherry Huettl, Teller Supervisor/CSR, First National Bank and Trust.

First National Bank and Trust in Iron Mountain says it’s ripple down effect starting at the federal government.

“So basically what they’ve had to do is limit the amount of currency of their coins that they’re able to give to their correspondent accounts,” said Matthew Lutz, Chief Financial Officer, First National Bank and Trust. “So our correspondent account was where we ordered all of our coin from, they were dropped down to only 9,200 in coin they are able to get per week. Which is 3.5 percent of what they normally get. So they had to in essence turn around and then limit how much they’re able to give to each of the banks so we’re only able to get one box per week which is way less than we normally get so then we have to turn around and limit what we give to our customers.”

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell tells the Associated Press that he is hopeful the shortage will end soon.

“With the partial closure of the economy, the flow of funds through the economy has stopped,” Powell said. “We are working with the Mint and the Reserve Banks and as the economy re-opens we are starting to see money move around again.”

First National Bank and Trust says they’ve been talking to other banks and stores around town and they’re all feeling the impact of this shortage. They say there is a way people can help.

“We’re encouraging all individuals to try to bring in their coins that they have at home if possible,” said Lutz. “I mean every little bit helps. So the more we can get into circulation, the more we can help our customers.”

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