Today, who wants to keep the penny, and why? The pro-penny group Americans for Common Cents is reportedly funded by the zinc lobby. That stands to reason, since the penny has been 95 percent zinc since 1983. Coinstar, Inc., is another avid backer of the penny. They make the automatic coin counting machines you sometimes see in supermarkets. The two sometimes have a hard time presenting a common front. Americans for Common Cents claims that 66 percent of Americans favor keeping the penny. However, Coinstar’s polling shows that 31 percent of those polled want to keep the penny only if it can be made of something cheaper than zinc, which now pushes the cost per coin well over one cent. According to their numbers, only a minority want to leave the penny as it is.