View Full Version : New $50 bills

09-30-2004, 12:03 AM
Wel, as many of you heard today, the US Mint will be printing a new $50 bill. Supposedly it will be harder to counterfeit. I find it interesting that we're just now adding color to our money. Europe has used color for years. Anyways, I still bet people find a way to counterfeit it, but it's nice to see that the US govt. is doing something to crack down on this. I guess the only real way to solve counterfeiting would be to coin everything. But there would be a huge outcry over that. What do you guys think?

"Color highlights redesigned $50 bills
By Don Mecoy
The Oklahoman

The Oklahoma City Federal Reserve branch started shipping newly redesigned $50 bills Tuesday. Money matters
Martha Washington is the only woman whose portrait has appeared on U.S. paper currency.

"In God We Trust" first appeared on U.S. coins in 1864. Almost a century later, Congress adopted it as the official national motto. Its use now is required on all coins and currency.

Since 1866, U.S. law has prohibited the use of any living person on currency.

Portraits of the same historic figures have been used on U.S. currency notes since 1929.

A stack of currency one mile high would contain more than 14.5 million notes.

You would have to double-fold a U.S. currency note about 4,000 times before it would tear. Currency paper is composed of 25 percent linen and 75 percent cotton.

"We're paying them out today," branch spokeswoman Trisha Thompson said.

Any commercial bank, savings and loan or credit union that orders $50 notes from the Federal Reserve will have their order filled with the new notes. Large commercial banks near the Federal Reserve cash office in downtown Oklahoma City are most likely to get the new bills first.

The most striking new feature is the inclusion of red and blue designs that give the impression of a waving American flag behind President Ulysses S. Grant's portrait, which has grown and escaped its oval border to extend to the bottom of the bill.

Scott Thomas, an Edmond coin dealer and president of the Oklahoma Numismatic Association, said he likes the new design.

"It's about time we had some color on our notes. They've been green and black for years and years and years," Thomas said.

American currency has a well-earned reputation as being among the most bland in the world, Thomas said.

"I'm all for doing something for our currency to make it look nice," he said. "It needs some more color, more pizzazz."

The new fifties contain many of the security features unveiled in the new series of $20 bills that were issued late last year, including:

A watermark bearing a faint image of President Grant that appears on either side when the bill is held up to the light.

The numeral "50" printed on the front with color- shifting ink that changes from green to copper when you tilt the bill.

A security thread woven into the bill to the right of Grant's image containing the words "USA 50" and a small flag. The thread glows yellow under ultraviolet light.

Subtle colors -- red, blue and purple -- on the front and back of the bill.

It will take a while for the new $50s to show up in significant numbers. There are about 1.2 billion $50 bills in circulation worldwide. The Federal Reserve expects to release more than 76.8 million of the new notes in September and October.

Based on their five-year life span, the average $50 bill circulates much more lightly than most other bills. By comparison, $20 bills last about two years on average and smaller bills are generally worn out within 16 to 22 months.

The Federal Reserve plans to issue a redesigned $10 note next year, followed later by a new $100 bill. The government has no plans to redesign the $5 note, and the $1 and $2 notes will not be changed.

The Federal Reserve wants to redesign bills every seven to 10 years to thwart advancing digital technologies that have made counterfeiting easier, Thompson said.

Jill Barrowman, Union Bank branch manager in Oklahoma City, said Tuesday that her customers weren't seeking the new $50 bill, but probably will after they see media reports.

"Normally they're all up on that because they bug us about the new quarters and the new nickels and all that," Barrowman said. "

Joe Schmoe
09-30-2004, 06:01 AM
One thing that bothers me is that the mint is depending on these new tricks to fight conterfitting, while letting the general print quality go down.

They no longer rely on tight engraving with quality printing to differentiate our money. The new bills have bleeds in the colors & edges are no longer as sharp as they were in previous bills.

So, the new money is glitzier, but of lower quality. I suspect that they have fewer rejects & that actually saves money when making money.

I mourn the lack of quality in our new cash.

09-30-2004, 06:35 AM
I guess it really doesn't matter to me that much, because I very rarely see a $50 bill. I don't even know whose picture is on it. Now, I can tell you what is on a $1 bill and $5 bill, because that's usually all I ever see.

09-30-2004, 08:19 AM
Ulysses S. Grant, 18th President of the United States and former Commander of the Union forces in the Civil War. He received Lee's surrender ending the war (but we all know that the last Confederate General to surrender was Stand Watie here in Oklahoma).