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Coin shortage starts to show in Delaware

“Quarters seem to be the most in demand coins with a limited amount in circulation,” said Rebecca Acevedo of WSFS bank.

Got coins?

If you do, Delaware banks and retailers want you to spend them or bring them in.

A nationwide shortage of coins has institutions such as Food Lion in Milford posting signs at the register asking customers to consider paying in exact change or alternative tender.

Chase Bank has posted signs in their banks warning customers that it might need to limit the amount of coins they can be given.

Both Chase and WSFS are asking customers to bring in coins for deposit so they can be put back into circulation.

“Quarters seem to be the most in demand coins with a limited amount in circulation,” said Rebecca Acevedo, director of communications for WSFS bank.

Even so, many retailers say they weren’t aware of any problems. A quick survey of cigarette outlets, pawnshops, print shops, locally owned grocery stores and even specialty collectable coin stores showed all the workers there surprised at the news.

The shortage came to light last month when the Federal Reserve released a statement saying fewer coins were being circulated.

Food Lion stores in Delaware are asking customers for exact change.

A side effect of the economic shutdown caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, it reflected lower numbers of hand-to-hand cash transactions. In addition, the banking agency said, the production of coins from the U.S. Mints also has slowed because of the coronavirus.

One business that’s very aware of the coin shortage is Produce junction in Dover.

“This week we were only allowed $80 in quarters,” said a manager, who asked not to be identified because he is not authorized to speak on behalf of the company. The company doesn’t worry about other change because all of its prices end in a denomination payable by quarters.

Notices about exact change are most likely at high-cash transaction businesses such as grocery stores, gas stations, and banks.

Acevedo, director of communications for WSFS bank, said her bank like others has instituted limitations on coin orders while trying to balance inventory and supply, and making sure customers have the coins they need.

WSFS, like others, is asking clients who have a lot of coins to make appointments to drop them off at open banking offices. It’s best to make an appointment, she said, rather than just walk in.

Some banks, like Chase, prefer the coins to be rolled.

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