Though it is regularly minted, it is not made in large quantities (approximate annual average production of 150,000), and since 2004 has only been available to the public directly from the mint. It is very rare to encounter this denomination in everyday transactions, since there seems to be the mistaken belief among many Canadians that the coin itself is rare and thus of value in excess of 50 cents. Most times, when a 50-cent piece is exchanged in a transaction, it is saved by its recipient. People quite commonly, upon being presented with 50-cent pieces, question the legality of the coin, because of the non-circulating status of the denomination. The coin occupies a similar status to that of the United States half-dollar coin. Newer vending machines do not generally accept it, even when they accept coins of both higher and lower value, but many older machines that were retooled to accept loonies will misidentify a 50-cent piece as a loonie, thus allowing the value of the coin to be doubled.