This is how much businesses earn when they don't give you exact change

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This is how much businesses earn when they don't give you exact change


SO, you're done eating at your favorite restaurant and paid a total of P199 for your meal. After handing the waiter your two P100 bills, he then tells you, "Sorry, ma'am, but we don't have a P1 coin for your change."

Who cares, it's just P1.00 -- you don't have enough time to argue so you just walk away and leave the restaurant.


What the BSP says

According to ABS-CBN's Failon Ngayon TV program in its July 4 episode, it's common for business establishments and drivers of public vehicles to argue that they do not have enough coins to give their consumers.

Deputy Director for the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Grace Malic, however, said that this is not a valid argument for not giving an exact change as there are enough coins in circulation, in fact, a total of around 23 billion pieces of coins is in circulation all over the country.


How much do they earn?

Mike Untalan of the United Filipinos for Consumers and Commuters said that businesses can earn as much as P100,000 a year just by not giving their customers exact change for purchases, additional income that is usually not declared by said businesses.

Example: A customer paid P199 for his meal in a restaurant, but did not receive his exact change of P1.00. If the restaurant averages a total of 500 customers a day, then it gets an additional income of P500 per day -- an amount of money which is even higher than the daily salary of a minimum wage worker. Below is a computation how much the restaurant may get in a year's time because of this practice.
P500 x 7 days  = P3, 500 a week 
P3,500 x 4 weeks = P14,000 a month 
P14,000 x 12 months = P168,000 a year

Surprised? But here, we're just talking about a single, stand-alone establishment with an average of only 500 customers a day.

What if it has an average number of a thousand customers a day? And more, what if it has multiple branches citywide? Or nationwide maybe? Just do the math.


What the government says

USEC Vic Dimagiba of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) commented that these additional money are income that businesses are not supposed to earn. While it's good if they declare these in their gross income and pay the necessary taxes, "pero ba't naman tayo mamimigay, eh pera yun, eh," he added.

Meanwhile, Representative Mark Villar has already filed a new bill called the "Exact Change Act," which will penalize establishments who are not giving the exact change to their customers.

Once passed into law, a violation shall penalize the establishment an amount of P500 for the first offense, P5,000 for the second offense, P15,000 for the third offense and P25,000 for the fourth offense plus the revocation of its business permit,


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