ST. LOUIS, MO. (KTVI) - For 76 years they were a staple of banks and credit unions. Everyone from Bing, Bob, the Lone Ranger and Superman were behind savings bonds.
'I had savings bonds I got one every year for my birthday or Christmas growing up,' says Aaron Shively. 'I ended up turning them in.'
'No I've never given any,' says Bill Adams. 'I just don't think there a good investment right now. Especially right now with interest rates the way they are they are terrible.'
'My children have all received them,' says Christine Nolan. 'What is your opinion? I can't find them. They're in safety deposit box someplace.'
That`s one reason the Treasury Department is shifting from paper to electronic.
They estimate 16 billion worth of unredeemed bonds are floating around somewhere out there.
'It seems like something my parents thought about with savings bonds,' says Chuck Pass.
'These are something from a bygone era?' asks Patrick Clark.
'Absolutely,' says Pass. 'For my kids I never thought about it at all.'
If you want to give a bond for a birthday, a newborn or a graduation you`ll have to buy through treasury direct, a web based program offered by treasury`s bureau of public debt.
'The Treasury Department estimates they'll save 70-million dollars over the next five years because they won't be printing and mailing for storing the bonds,' says Patrick Clark. But, somehow, something seems to be lost.'
'Well since we don't buy a lot of savings bonds and we do a lot online it would probably be okay with my family,' says Tammy Geiger. 'But I can see where it might not be convenient for other families.'
Only 44% of Americans aged 65 to 73 have broadband and Americans 74 and older, only 20%.
Meaning, Meemaw and Peepaw probably won`t be buying bonds.
'But I think this will discourage people from doing that just because,' says Christine Nolan. 'There's a large percentage of population baby boomers who don't have access, don't care to have access or don't know how.'
And the Treasury Department might want to consider that mature adults might not be buying bonds that mature.
Patrick Clark, News 11.
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