New bills will make counterfeiting more difficult
Allan Paquet of the Bank of Canada shows some of the features of the new $100 bill, to be released in November, to Marie MacDonald and Kim Sears, employees with the Town of Amherst. Brad Works - Amherst Daily News
AMHERST - There are 1.5 billion bank notes in circulation in Canada today - about 50 for each of us - and, starting in November, they will last longer and be harder to counterfeit.
"These new bills are more secure, durable, cost effective and better for the environment," said Allan Paquet, a senior analyst with the Bank of Canada, as he displayed the new tender to small crowds of curious onlookers Monday at the Amherst Centre Mall. "All five bills now in use will be replaced in phases starting with the one hundred."
Following the one hundred's November release, new 50- and 20-dollar bills will be introduced next year, with the 5- and 10-dollar bills following in 2013. The one thousand dollar bill has been out of circulation since 2000.
It costs 19 cents to produce one of the new polymer notes with the transparent window. The old bills were produced for about 10 cents each. Paquet said it will all work out in the wash, where the new bills will, coincidently, fare much better than their paper contemporaries.
"These new bills will last at least 2.5 times longer and that's a conservative estimate," said Paquet. He added they will also be recycled at the end of their life-cycle.
Perhaps even more beneficial, at least to Canada's economy, the new bank notes are harder to counterfeit.
"It will be very difficult to copy," said Paquet, before adding: "But someone will always try."
Anything that will get counterfeit cash out of circulation is welcome news Amherst police constable Tom Wood.
"We're quite excited about this," said Wood. "We often see counterfeit bills - usually in waves."
In addition to making the policing of fake cash easier, Wood said the new notes would make the lives of those working in the retail sector better as well.
"A lot of clerks that we deal with feel pressure," said Wood. "You have to hold the current bills up to the light and a lot of people don't like to do that in front of their customers. With this new bill, it will be easier and more discreet. In this case the security features are right there, not hidden somewhere in the bill."
And what does the public think?
"There's certainly a ‘wow' factor," said Paquet, who is touring most of Atlantic Canada's major cities and towns with the promotional display.