Public: Currency: Coin: Retirement
Subtractax   (+2, -2)  [vote for, against]
First E-penny, then no more. Redesignate teller software to subtract tax from items sold rather than calculate and sum taxes as an addendum.

I know a shop keeper who does this (like the "$1" stores).

Menu items are priced accordingly, but are easy to comprehend and to figure. Standard menu, you see: eggs 50¢, toast 50¢, corned beef $1.50, coffee $1.20 -- your breakfast = $3.70. I tip 30¢ out of $4.00 (of course I'm kidding !). Simple, I don't give a wit about the "tax", which by standard methods would be 23¢ and costing me $3.93. The restaurateur, as depicted, takes $3.49 as opposed to $3.70 and pays to our government 22¢ versus 23¢

Not likely to create a stir about the bottom line, naturally, but builds a ton of good will.   If subtractax were widely implemented, 1¢ use would drop significantly. First impact would be at the till side (consumer tender), soon after would be an impact on the cashier side (bank exchange).
-- reensure, Feb 07 2006

Shop in Europe, where the sales tax (VAT) is included in the marked price, which I think is all that you are proposing here. I'm calling this one Widely Baked.

(And I think your math is wrong: $3.49 + 22¢ = $3.71.)
-- DrCurry, Feb 07 2006

Well, math isn't what this is about so although I did notice the error I didn't mess with it: $3.70 * 1.06 = $3.9220 (or ~23¢ tax added) and the same $3.70 / 1.06 = $3.4906 (or ~21¢ tax not added). Thanks for noticing.
-- reensure, Feb 08 2006

//Shop in Europe// Likewise in Australia where it's illegal (in general) to quote before-tax prices.
-- spidermother, Feb 09 2006

I don't get out much, so I'll look at some circulars from Europe and Australia. Is there the same problem there with the penny as is rumored in our USA (not that I personally have a problem with the penny, not that I would care particularly if it were to go away)?

Also, are prices generally posted with zero "0" the last digit in the price, or are 1-4 or 6-9 predominant? Looking at Coles, I see lots of 9s, as in 3.49, 4.99 -- At ASDA I see lots of 8s, as in 1.98, 9.28 -- but there's not tax added at the time of sale? Also, are cashless transactions now the majority of sales?
-- reensure, Feb 09 2006

No, our one and two cent coins were retired several years ago, and the smallest legal tender denomination is now 5c. All transactions are rounded to the nearest 5c, although even that amount seems fiddly now.
-- spidermother, Feb 09 2006

God! No one expects you to do the math in your head, do they? If I tried that, I would appear evil and mean to the button-pusher at the register. Something tells me a discussion of rounding would earn me a personal visit at tillside by that store's manager, to get me to calm down.
-- reensure, Feb 09 2006

The local organic shop where I work part-time has an oldish cash register that doesn't do the rounding automatically. The rounding is on the final figure (not item by item) so it's really trivially easy. Our prices are mostly whole dollars or multiples of 50c. We (at said shop) think that prices ending in .98 etc are patronising: "We think you are so stupid that you will think $4.99 is significantly cheaper than $5.00" is not a message we want to send. Weighed goods are entered to the nearest 1c. And we only got an EFTPOS system about a month ago - before that all transactions were cash, cheque, or various forms of barter - yes, that shop is a beautiful little island of olde-world properness.

In supermarkets it's all seamless and automated. The rounded price appears on the register display, and the last entry on the docket is "rounding +2c" or some such. No-one has to do anything in his/her head, and the mindless musac seems tailor made to that end. And at least in supermarkets, I think cashless sales are the majority. In any case, as a consumer one doesn't need to think about the tax (GST - Goods and Services Tax, essentially the same as Europe's VAT) at all.
-- spidermother, Feb 09 2006

Sounds like your shop is my kind of place. I like the people immensely who run the lunchbox I referenced in my Idea, both for the reason stated and also for how quick they are to count the change in your hand while you do and give you the "thumbs up" for your 98¢ on the $1. I'd have to agree this idea seems widely baked. At least I'm getting an idea now why in some cultures odd numbers are considered lucky.
-- reensure, Feb 09 2006

A lot of people don't know this: in the UK all prices *must* be advertised as inclusive of VAT (sales tax), whereas in the USA since there is no regulation in this area, everyone advertises their prices before tax.

So Britain has basically already implemented this idea.
-- gtoal, Feb 10 2006

random, halfbakery