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Currency printing | How to print money or banknotes
Paper currency originated in China over a thousand years ago. Nowadays it is used all over the world and is gradually being replaced by debit and credit cards, e-payments, and polymer banknotes. This page focuses on the process of printing currency.
Who prints money
As you can imagine there aren’t that many facilities that are allowed to print currency. This always happens either in a state-owned printing plant or one that is supervised by the government.
- Euro banknotes are printed by a number of national banks but also by certified printers, such as Royal Joh. Enschedé, (Haarlem, Holland), F. C. Oberthur (Chantepie, France), De La Rue (Gateshead, UK) and Giesecke & Devrient (Munich & Leipzig, Germany).
- In the USA, all paper money is printed by the Bureau of Engraving and Printing in two production facilities in Washington, D.C., and Fort Worth, Texas. The Bureau is part of the Department of the Treasury of the federal government.
- British banknotes are printed by De La Rue, a British company with several production facilities in the UK for printing currency, passports, tax stamps, cheques, and other secure documents.
- Indian currency is printed by SPMCIL or Security Printing and Minting Corporation of India Limited.
- Chinese banknotes are printed by Banknote Printing and Minting Corporation (BPMC), the largest currency printer in the world with 18000 employees working in 10 production sites. BPMC also printed or still prints banknotes for Bangladesh, Brazil, India, Malaysia, Nepal, Poland, Sri Lanka, and Thailand.
Paper money versus polymer banknotes
Banknotes are not printed using the same type of paper that is used for magazines or newspapers. They are printed on a substrate that consists of purely cotton (e.g. the Euro banknotes) or a mix of 75% cotton and 25% linen. Additional materials are often added as a security measure. These can be colored fibers or a security thread made of metal or a polymer.
Instead of using cotton and linen as the base material, there is a trend to use a synthetic substrate instead. These are the advantages offered by polypropylene banknotes:
- Plastic banknotes are more durable since they are more difficult to tear and more resistant to folding.
- The notes repel dirt and moisture so they don’t soil as easily. The polymer is also more resistant to micro-organisms.
- Because bi-axially orientated polypropylene (BOPP) is more rigid, the banknotes work better in ATMs and automated sorting operations.
- Plastic currency is up to twice as expensive to produce but the bank notes last two and a half to four times longer than notes printed on cotton paper. The notes can be recycled so there is also an ecological advantage.
- The new banknotes are more difficult to counterfeit. In Canada, a pioneer in the use of synthetic currency, the number of reported counterfeits dropped by 74%.
Examples of polymer banknotes
In 1982 the American Bank Note Company printed the first plastic banknotes using DuPont’s Tyvek polymers. Australia was the first country to use polymer notes for general circulation from 1992 onwards.
In June 2016 the Bank of England introduced its first banknote printed on a polymer substrate. The five-pound note is called ‘The New Fiver’ and features a portrait of Winston Churchill. The new notes are printed by De La Rue, as can be seen in this ‘Making of’ video.
All modern banknotes incorporate multiple anti-counterfeiting measures. For high denominations up to 50 such elements can be used. Many of these techniques are well known but some are secret. These are some of the techniques used to secure banknotes:
- special papers – there are paper mills that uniquely produce substrates for printing money.
- watermarks – images or patterns that are caused by variations in thickness or density of the paper
- special inks – some inks change color depending on the angle you observe from
- invisible inks – these inks are invisible to the eye but light up under fluorescent or UV light
- rainbow printing – two or more inks are applied on one printing plate so that color gradually fades from one color to another, as shown on the visum below
- holograms – text and/or images have a 3D appearance
- elaborate engravings such as guilloches and microtext
- raised print
- a checksum or serial number
- security thread – a metal or plastic wire
- see-through window – polymer notes can have a transparent section
A short history of banknotes
The world’s first paper money was created in China during the Tang Dynasty (618–907) by merchants who wanted to avoid the heavy bulk of copper coinage. From 1023 onwards the Chinese central government produced their own paper money using woodblock printing.
The first European banknotes were issued in Sweden by Stockholms Banco, the precursor to Sveriges Riksbank, the central bank of Sweden. Each note was signed by hand by 16 prominent and trustworthy officials, to overcome objections that paper money would lead to the downfall of the Swedish monetary system. Within months other European governments and merchants also issued paper money. A lot of the early notes soon devalued because there was no legal framework to guarantee the value of the currency and almost everyone could issue banknotes.
In 1695 the Bank of England was the first to initiate the permanent issue of banknotes. Initially, these banknotes were handwritten but by 1745, standardized printed notes ranging from £20 to £1,000 were being printed.
In 1862 the United States issued their first one-dollar bill in order to make up for coin shortage and to finance the Civil War.
Polymer banknotes were first developed in Australia. They were first issued as currency in 1988.
The largest banknote ever was the Chinese 1 Kwan, printed in the 14th century, measuring 9×13 inches.
The first US paper notes were printed in denominations of 1 cent, 5 cents, 25 cents, and 50 cents. Apparently green ink was used on the first one-dollar bill because it stuck best to the paper.
The first US 1 dollar bill (source: Wikimedia)
Green is of course still used today in dollar bills. In 2014 there were 2278400 one-dollar bills in circulation, which was close to 40% of all the banknotes. The average production cost of a US banknote was 10 cents. Bills are composed of 25% linen and 75% cotton. According to the US Federal Reserve, the average lifespan of a $1 note was just 18 months back in 1990. By 2012, it had grown to 70 months because the replacement rate was slowed down.
A US banknote can be folded back and forth 4000 times before it tears.
Other sources of information
- Follow the #MoneyFact hashtag on Twitter if you’re interested in all kinds of trivia about money.
- A list of companies that are allowed to print banknotes can be found on Wikipedia.
- Lots of images of security techniques can be seen in this glossary.
NOVA Online | Secrets of Making Money | The Currency Paper
Anatomy of a Bill: The Currency Paper
Currency paper has a unique feel and is extremely durable. Is it really
‘paper’ in the traditional sense? There are no wood fibers or starch in
currency paper. Instead, like high quality stationery, currency paper is
composed of a special blend of cotton and linen fibers. The strength comes
from raw materials continuously refined until the special feel of the currency
is achieved. People who handle money on a regular basis, such as bank tellers,
can easily determine if a bill is counterfeit by this distinctive feel. The
characteristic yellowish-green tint of U.S. currency is another distinctive
feature which is, in fact, hard for color photocopiers to accurately match.
Red and Blue Fibers
Red and blue fibers have been a longtime ingredient of U.S. currency paper.
Special features like these fibers are embedded in currency paper to ensure
that reproduction is difficult. While some counterfeiters attempt to draw
these fibers onto the surface of the bill, close inspection reveals the absence
of the authentic embedded fiber and the clear presence of crude lines drawn on
Security threads, which now run the width of the currency, are not a new
invention. In some early versions of paper currency, thin security threads
were added to paper. In these currencies, the number of threads in the paper
represented a specific denomination. Security threads help prevent
counterfeiters from raising notes—bleaching out the paper of a low
denomination and printing a higher denomination onto the authentic paper. The
new threads were first added to U.S. currency in 1990 and have recently been
improved. In the redesigned notes, a security thread will appear in a
different location depending on the denomination. The thread for the new $100
bill carries the words “USA 100” and can only be seen with transmitted light,
which makes photocopying impossible. In addition, the new security threads
glow red when held over ultraviolet light.
For the 1996 series a watermark was added to the paper. This is also not a new
invention. Watermarks were first used in the late thirteenth century in the
handmade papers of Italy. They have long been used to mark important
documents, and have appeared on a variety of foreign currency. Watermarks
can also be found as part of any high quality stationery. Even Ben Franklin’s
stationery had its own personal watermark. The watermark is created during the
paper making process and is caused by variations in the density of the paper.
As light passes through these tiny variations in thickness, it creates
different tones. When held up to transmitted light these varying tones
form a clear image—and in the case of the new $100, a second image of Ben
Anatomy of a Bill: The Printed Elements
What Material Is Used To Print Currency? » Science ABC
As the old saying goes, “Money makes the world go round,” so whether you’re a capitalist robber baron or a minimum-wage workingman, it’s hard to keep cash off your mind. All around the world, human beings earn, spend and seek money in all of its various forms.
When you open your wallet, it’s always nice to see a thick stack of crisp bills ready to be spent on whatever your heart desires, but at first glance, paper bills don’t seem like the best choice as currency. Normal paper can be easily ripped, spilled on, crumpled, worn down etc., yet around the world, paper money is the popular choice!
This leads to an obvious question…. what kind of material is actually used to make currency?
Short answer: Cotton and linen, but the story doesn’t end there…
The History of Paper Money
Like so many modern inventions that we take for granted, the first form of paper currency actually originated in China more than 1,000 years ago, during the Tang Dynasty. Folded banknotes were widely used for more than 500 years in that ancient nation, centuries before the trend ever caught on in Europe. Most of these early banknotes were exchange notes or private bills denoting a certain amount of credit, but the purpose was generally the same.
In the United States, paper money first appears in the late 17th century, and the first “dollar bills” were printed about 70 years later. However, there was very limited regulation or consistency between many of these paper bills, making counterfeiting a rather common problem. Furthermore, the American Revolution was a very uncertain time, and this led to huge fluctuations in the buying power of this currency. Following that tumultuous time in American history, the government stopped printing paper currency, but banks, individuals and merchants began using the technique and printing their own versions of currency, resulting in hundreds of different forms of currency in the United States by the time the Civil War began.
Realizing the need to standardize the nation’s currency, the government once again stepped in and began printing money in varying denominations, and linked the value of the money to a certain weight in gold, according to the Coinage Act of 1873. The nation returned to a silver standard in 1934, and then abandoned it in 1963. Many countries around the world have had similarly complicated relationships with paper money and its “actual value”. However, while the history of paper money is interesting, the manufacturing process to produce such incredibly durable bills is even more intriguing.
Building the Dollar Bill
While every national currency looks slightly different, the standards for production are relatively similar. First and foremost, paper money isn’t actually paper at all, but a substrate composed of cotton fiber and linen. The specific ratios of materials may differ between national mints and independent producers, but most currencies contain roughly 70-95% cotton. Some of the less common materials in currency are wood fiber, animal glue, aluminum chloride, and melamine formaldehyde resin, among others. This composition gives currency the unique “feel” of paper, while also making it extremely durable and strong.
For example, a normal sheet of paper, made from the cellulose of wood pulp, will break down and begin to tear relatively quickly when it is handled roughly, folded or exposed to the elements. However, most forms of currency around the world are designed to take a beating without being compromised. Considering that the paper substrate for the currency of more than 100 nations comes from the same company (De La Rue plc from the UK), it is safe to assume that all currency has a bit of toughness to it.
However, the main producer of the “paper” for US currency is the Crane Paper Company, who watermarks and security marks the paper before delivering it to the Treasury Bureau of Engraving and Printing. More specifically, colored fibers are inserted into the pulp before it is pressed, in order to make counterfeiting even more difficult. You can hold the bills up to light (in the US, every bill except $1) and see these fibers to determine if a bill is legitimate. The bills below do not pass this test…
After arriving in stacks of 20,000 sheets, the paper is recorded and then put through the printing process. Black, green, metallic and color-shifting ink is used during the intaglio printing process to firmly stamp the images on the bill. The combination of inks in various layers has made counterfeiting these bills an incredibly difficult process, and most other nations in the world have similar anti-counterfeiting measures in place. The exact “recipe” of most currency is actually a very well-guarded secret, for obvious reasons, since counterfeit currency remains a real problem in many parts of the world.
Clearly, the government spent a lot of time and money coming up with a stain-resistant, tear-resistant and weather-resistant blend of paper and ink in order to ensure that the bills don’t need to be replaced every few years. In fact, US currency can be folded approximately 4,000 times before it will tear, meaning that most bills can stay in circulation for 4-10 years. $100 bills, which don’t get used quite as often, can have a lifespan of 15 years or more!
The Next Generation?
The United Kingdom, Australia and Canada have taken currency production to the next level by recently releasing rip-proof currency that is made of plastic polymer, instead of cotton fiber. This super-durable currency can be wiped clean, go through a laundry wash cycle or be completely soaked in sweat without showing any signs of wear. These bills are projected to last for far longer and significantly minimize the need for destroying damaged or unusable notes.
So, the next time you come back from an international jaunt and open your wallet, pay close attention to the different colors, designs and sizes of the currency you’re carrying. Also, be happy that paper is made of such tough stuff, making it a lot easier to keep your cash safe! If you’re still struggling to avoid ripping up your bills or lighting them on fire, just move to Australia. Good luck trying to destroy those bills!
Buying, Selling, & Redeeming
I have some currency that was damaged. My bank will not exchange it for undamaged currency. What can I do?
Information on how to redeem mutilated currency is available through the Bureau of Engraving and Printing.
How do I purchase sheets of uncut paper currency through the mail?
The Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP) has been selling uncut sheets of currency since October 26, 1981. These sheets and other currency related products can be purchased online at the BEP’s web site, www.moneyfactory.gov. Information on how to order by phone or fax is also available at that site.
Does the Treasury Department sell shredded paper currency? Where can I buy it?
Yes. The Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP) destroys currency notes that are found to be imperfect during the printing process. The BEP packages small bags of shredded currency from the destroyed new currency, and sells these bags as mementos to visitors at the BEP’s Washington , DC and Fort Worth , TX Visitor Centers. The BEP also sells five pound bags of shredded currency through the mail. Orders can be placed on the BEP’s website, www.moneyfactory.gov or by calling 1-800-456-3408.
The Federal Reserve System destroys worn currency notes at some of its various banks located throughout the country. Shredded currency is available only from certain Federal Reserve Banks. They sell it only under contract to buyers who will purchase the entire residue for at least a one year period. It is not readily available for distribution or for sale in small quantities to individuals because of operational difficulties and excessive administrative work for Federal Reserve Banks.
The Treasury Department approves the use of shredded currency in certain circumstances. One permitted use is recycling it (mixing it with other materials) to form a useful manufactured product such as roofing shingles or insulation. In addition, the shredded currency may be placed in firmly sealed containers as novelty items like pens, ornaments and jewelry. However, the Treasury will allow companies or other parties to sell the shredded currency in its original form or where it is readily not recoverable.
I have an old currency note. Can you tell me what it is worth? I would like to sell it.
The Treasury Department does not render opinions concerning the numismatic value of currency notes, and will redeem only those notes issued by the United States Government. Any such redemption would be only at the face value of the notes. If you wish to have the currency mentioned in your letter appraised, We can only suggest that you contact several currency collectors and dealers. Listings are available in the telephone directory under the headings of COINS and HOBBIES.
Currency dealers and collectors consider the condition, series date, denomination, production totals, and other factors when evaluating currency notes to figure out their numismatic value. Each note is different from every other. In addition, grading is not an exact science, varying from dealer to dealer. Therefore, it is possible to have the same note appraised at different values. There is sometimes a wide range (both above and below the market price) in the values that they quote when buying and selling currency notes. This also may be due to the dealer’s current inventory and the availability of similar notes in the marketplace.
I have a $1,000 currency note from the Bank of the United States. It is dated December 15, 1840 and has the serial number “8894.” Can you tell me what it is worth now and where I can cash it in?
Currency notes from the Bank of the United States are something that we have seen many times. Our office receives many inquiries concerning the authenticity of these notes. It is important to note, first, that the Treasury Department did not issue notes intended for circulation as currency until 1862. This being the case, these notes are not obligations of the United States Government.
You may be interested in a brief history of the Bank of the United States. Our research has shown that the “first” Bank of the United States was founded in 1791 and existed until 1811; the “second” bank operated from 1816-1836. The United States Government held 20 percent of the Bank stock, named five of the 25 trustees, and granted the charter to the Bank.
In 1836, however, President Andrew Jackson vetoed a bill to renew the Bank’s charter, withdrew United States Treasury funds from the Bank, and ceased all United States Government involvement in the Bank’s operations. In 1837, the trustees of the Bank secured a charter from the State of Pennsylvania. Then, they paid the United States Government for its outstanding interest and swapped old stock for new stock on a one-to-one share basis. The Bank’s name changed to the Bank of the United States of Pennsylvania.
After 1837, the history of the Bank was very rocky. On February 4, 1841, the Bank closed its doors. This action left many creditors, including the London Merchant Bank, Baring Brothers, and the Rothschild family, with over $25 million in claims. They were lucky to receive one-third value for their claims.
Because the Treasury Department did not issue these notes, we have no way of verifying their authenticity or figuring out their value. It is likely, though, that the is part of a series of antiqued reproductions issued in various denominations and forms for use in advertising campaigns. The most popular of these bear the serial number 8894. These notes are so widespread that they were the subject of an August 5, 1970, article in COIN WORLD.
I have some old silver certificates. How can I trade them in for silver dollars?
On March 25, 1964, C. Douglas Dillon, the 57th Secretary of the Treasury announced that silver certificates would no longer be redeemable in silver dollars. This decision was pursuant to the Act of June 4, 1963 (31 U.S.C. 405a-1). The Act allowed the exchange of silver certificates for silver bullion until June 24, 1968. This was the deadline set by the Congress. Since that date, there has been no obligation to issue silver in any form in exchange for these certificates. You may be interested to know that the Congress took this action because there were approximately three million silver dollars remaining in the Treasury Department’s vaults. These coins had high numismatic values, and there was no way to make an equitable distribution of them among the many people holding silver certificates.
Silver certificates are still legal tender and do still circulate at their face value. Depending upon the age and condition of the certificates, however, they may have a numismatic value to collectors and dealers.
I have some old gold certificates and would like to trade them in for gold. What should I do?
Gold certificates were withdrawn from circulation along with all gold coins and gold bullion as required by the Gold Reserve Act of 1934. Gold certificates circulated until December 28, 1933. That is when the President ordered private owners of gold certificates to deliver their notes to the Treasurer of the United States by midnight on January 17, 1934. It was then illegal to hold gold certificates. C. Douglas Dillon, the 57th Secretary of the Treasury, removed the restrictions on the acquisition or holding of these notes on April 24, 1964.
Under 31 U.S.C. 5118(b) as amended, “The United States Government may not pay out any gold coin. A person lawfully holding United States coins and currency may present the coins for currency . . . for exchange (dollar for dollar) for other United States coins and currency (other than gold and silver coins) that . . .” citizens may lawfully own. Although gold certificates are no longer produced and are not redeemable in gold, they still maintain their legal tender status. You may redeem the notes you have through the Treasury Department or any financial institution. The redemption, however, will be at the face value on the note. These notes may, however, have a “premium” value to coin and currency collectors or dealers.
Crane has provided the paper for U.S. money for centuries; now it’s going global
Correction: An earlier version of the article incorrectly said that current chief executive Stephen DeFalco is the first person outside the Crane family to lead the company. He is the third non-family member at the helm. This version has been corrected.
The story of how a family-run company became the linchpin of currency in America — and increasingly the world — is steeped in the lore of the midnight ride of Paul Revere.
The legendary patriot stabled his horses at the Massachusetts paper mill run by Thomas Crane, a staunch supporter of independence from Britain. So it was only fitting that Revere turned to him for a way to assure colonists taking up arms in the American Revolution that they would be paid.
Crane accepted the challenge and crafted bills of credit for the soldiers that bore the motto “Issued in defence of American Liberty” — giving birth to what is now a multibillion-dollar global industry.
For seven generations, the Crane family and its eponymous company have been the sole supplier of the special blend of linen-and-cotton paper that gives U.S. money its distinct feel. Repeated attempts by competitors to dethrone Crane have failed. It has survived attacks by counterfeiters, coins and credit cards.
Now, this all-American company is undergoing a revolution of its own, fighting to make its name in the multibillion-dollar market for manufacturing currency. It has 1,400 employees and has made its international headquarters in Sweden. It supplies paper to Mexico and Thailand, prints bank notes for Tanzania and sells high-tech 3-D security features to South Korea and Lebanon — making it one of the fastest-growing players in the insular and intensely competitive business of making money by making money.
“In order to survive, we had to become global, and we had to become a technology leader,” said Lanse Crane, former chief executive and sixth-generation family member. “That’s where there was opportunity, and that’s where at the end of the day we really staked our future.”
A rise and fall
Crane enjoyed its golden era in the decades after World War II.
The company’s heavy-weight cotton paper dominated markets that demanded high-quality material. Architects used its drafting paper to draw blueprints. Wall Street turned to Crane for stock certificates. Businesses bought carbon copy paper and official letterhead. Even Queen Elizabeth II used it to send dispatches.
At that time, Crane employed roughly 1,000 people and operated six mills along the banks of the Housatonic River, whose headwaters lay in the Berkshire Mountains, not far from Crane’s headquarters. Currency paper was a small but stable part of the company’s business. It didn’t make much money, but it was a tremendous source of pride for the family.
Though Thomas Crane made history by printing the first colonial currency in Massachusetts, the enterprise did not blossom until a century later when the United States moved to a single system of paper money and put out a call for suppliers. Twenty-six-year-old Murray Crane traveled to Washington with a mission to win that business — and unknowingly laid the foundation for the company’s future.
“It had to be huge,” said Peter Hopkins, a consultant to Crane and its de facto historian. “It was a big, big deal.”
Crane never let go of its early lead in the currency business and vigorously defended its monopoly. As the process grew increasingly specialized, it became harder for other companies to enter the market. U.S. money is now printed on a blend of 75 percent cotton and 25 percent linen that once relied on scraps from the denim industry. The paper is crafted to ensure the surface stays smooth and the material is durable. A normal sheet of paper can be folded about 400 times before it breaks; a dollar bill must withstand at least 8,000 folds.
International powerhouses such as De La Rue in England and Giesecke & Devrient in Germany began eyeing the United States in the 1980s. Improved technology was enabling counterfeiters, and the foreign companies promised enhanced security features that threatened to outpace Crane’s capabilities. Lawmakers questioned the company’s long-standing monopoly, leading to congressional hearings and federal investigations.
A 1987 law sponsored by longtime U.S. Rep. Silvio Conte protected Crane. Its headquarters lay within his Massachusetts district, and he counted the family among his close friends. The legislation prevented companies with foreign ownership from supplying paper for U.S. currency and also limited any contracts to four years, making the bids less attractive to domestic competitors.
“We don’t take that relationship ever for granted,” said Stephen DeFalco, Crane’s current chief executive. “We’re every day trying to rewin that business.”
The contract was a lifeline for Crane by the 1990s. Technology was eroding its other businesses: Copy machines made carbon paper obsolete. Computer design software replaced blueprint paper. Company letterhead and stock certificates were going electronic.
By the time Lanse Crane took over in 1995, revenues were down as much as 50 percent, and profit margins were shrinking. Currency was Crane’s last hope — but it would still require reinvention.
Expanding their market
To do a better job at home, Crane looked abroad.
Currency production is a niche industry, partly because of the inherent security issues and partly because it’s essentially a zero-sum market. There are a limited number of countries and currencies, so winning new business almost always means displacing someone else.
Rick Haycock, president of Currency Research, which develops industry conferences, estimated between 130 billion and 160 billion bank notes are printed across the world each year.
Many governments handle the process themselves. Some places, such as Australia, not only manufacture their own money but also print other countries’ currencies as well — turning them into yet another source of competition. Commercial production accounts for about 15 to 20 percent of currency production, Haycock estimated, but the share is growing as security demands increasingly high-tech products. He estimates the revenue of commercial printers and suppliers is between $5 billion and $7 billion.
“The technology of a bank note has actually changed quite dramatically and quite significantly over the past 20 years,” he said. “The cost of keeping up with that has also been quite significant.”
Lanse Crane spent more than a year traveling the world to find an opening for the beleaguered company. The opportunity emerged in 2001 when Sweden’s Riksbank decided it could no longer handle its own currency production. Officials arrived to scope out Crane’s suburban Massachusetts headquarters on Sept. 10 — and wound up staying for nearly a week after the terrorist attacks grounded air travel. But the time provided the Swedish central bankers and the Crane family a chance to bond, and the trip ended with an agreement that gave the company entry to the world stage.
The deal turned Crane from a family papermaker into a global printing press. In the States, Crane was responsible only for making currency paper. The contract with Sweden required Crane to both manufacture and print the kronos — and not just for Sweden, but also for a portfolio of other countries that used the printing facilities at Tumba Bruk.
“It’s a manufacturing business,” Lanse Crane said. “You want to be able to run that machine around the clock. That’s where you get your efficiencies.”
Currency has now grown to 80 percent of Crane’s business with 50 countries, though the company doesn’t release revenue figures. It remains the sole supplier of currency paper domestically but is still a small player internationally. Since Crane is privately held, it does not disclose revenue figures, but Haycock estimated its market share at about 2 or 3 percent.
“What we could provide up to that point was trust, reliability, consistent quality. . . . But the demands were changing,” said Lanse Crane, who began wearing both the American and Swedish flags on his lapel after the acquisition. “We had to raise our game to be a world-class supplier.”
Taking Crane international transformed not only the company’s business model, but its culture as well.
There were complicated tax implications, at home and abroad. The Swedish printing plant was unionized, presenting a new labor challenge. Working within the European Union required new governance and operational strategies.
And after generations in the business, some members of the Crane family were ready to cash out. The pipeline to lead the company was dwindling as the Cranes perused other fields, such as wildlife conservation and cross-country ski racing, instead of paper-making.
Lanse Crane realized that the final step in the company’s revolution was to hand over the reins.
“For me, sitting in the CEO’s chair, I could see that the business needed it,” he said.
Lanse began scouting for outside investors, and his successor, Charlie Kittredge, finished the process. In 2008, after a quarter-century of family ownership, private-equity firm Lindsey Goldberg acquired a 49 percent stake in the company for an undisclosed sum. Kittredge remained on the board of directors, which now consists of family members, representatives from Lindsey Goldberg and outsiders.
Since then, the company has had to defend itself from both old-school and high-tech threats. It successfully fought several efforts to replace the dollar bill with a $1 coin, including a lobbying effort dubbed “Americans for George.” Recently, the Federal Reserve issued a report that deemed the dollar bill “currently the more efficient payment instrument compared with the $1 coin.”
Meanwhile, the company used cash from the buyout to invest in cutting-edge technology that it hopes will spark another revolution in currency: three-dimensional money.
Crane acquired two Georgia laboratories that create microscopic lenses. When combined, the lenses create the illusion of 3-D movement on static surfaces that is tough for counterfeiters to replicate. The company debuted the technology in Sweden with a strip in the center of the bill embedded with images of a crown and the denomination that appear to move when the bank note is tilted. After several delays, the motion strips appeared stateside on the newly designed $100 bill this fall.
“You don’t stay in business for over 200 years by ignoring trends,” DeFalco said. “This was like Star Wars versus the stuff they had been doing.”
DeFalco took the helm of Crane in 2011, the third person outside the family to hold that position. Though he had little experience in currency production, DeFalco had been an executive at several medical technology firms and experienced firsthand the rapid pace of innovation.
Since his arrival, the company has moved into manufacturing technical materials from products other than cotton that are used in energy, water and environmental filtration. This year, it doubled the size of its “nonwoven” production facility and the number of employees. Though the division is still just a sliver of Crane’s overall business, it is growing fast — much like the currency did back in the 1800s.
“There’s this kind of picture of Crane: It’s an old family-owned company, always gets the contract,” DeFalco said. “There’s another part of Crane, which is probably a more modern version, that says a company that came from family values and believes in customer service, has reinvented itself.”
How Banknotes Are Made (The 5 Stages)
Banknotes can be made using polymer or specially blended paper through an intricate, safe and thorough process. Here is some insight into how banknotes are made.
This article is about the production of modern banknotes, the types of materials used, the inks, the logos, and so forth. We will also take a look at the process of making paper money.
What materials are banknotes made from? You will be surprised that the “paper” used to make banknotes is actually more than paper, as it is made of a special blend of cotton and linen. The banknote paper for US currency notes, for example, is 75% cotton and 25% linen. It is this blend of the two natural materials that makes paper money so durable. That is why banknotes survive even a thorough washing without tearing up, when you forget one in your pockets.
Polymer Currency Notes
Not all currency notes are made with the above-mentioned paper. For example, in the UK, currency notes are made with polymer, which is more durable and counterfeit-proof than paper money.
Polymer banknotes are made with a thin film of strong, durable plastic. It is said that this material allows the manufacturer of the banknotes to include clear portions in the note that cannot be counterfeited easily. Where paper money is more attractive to dirt, grease, and moisture, it is the exact opposite for the polymer notes since they can resist dirt very well. Thus, they are considered cleaner and safer.
In the UK, £10 polymer note will be introduced into circulation in the summer of 2017. A twenty will follow by 2020 and a fiver is already in circulation. At least in the UK, soon paper money will be phased out by polymer money.
1. Production Process
The production process of paper money is extensive, but we will be covering some of the more important stages. Every stage of the production is secured and strictly controlled. Every note that goes into production, even the ones that spoil must be accounted for at the end of the process.
2. The Design Stage
Artwork, graphic design, and the inclusion of all security features that must appear on a note occur at this stage. Once the design is created, it is submitted to the authorized parties for approval. Once approved, the banknote will go into the plate making stage.
3. Plate Making Stage
This is an intricate and long process involving things like color separation. The digital proof prints produced in the design stage are sent to high precision equipment that will make the mother plates that will be used for intaglio printing, where the ink that can be found below the plate’s surface is used for the printing. From these mother-printing plates, the final printing plates are made.
4. The Printing Stage
Once the plates are ready, it’s time for the printing of the currency notes. Here, many things happen, but the first is that a polymer or paper substrate is selected depending on the currency note that is under production. Then the substrate sheets are subjected to a high-speed rotary process that will print multi-color background designs and tints both on the front and backsides of the sheets depending on the designated design.
Then comes the intaglio printing at the back where the substrate sheets come into contact with the printing plates at high pressure and ink is transferred to the paper or polymer to make 3D fine lines, which can be felt by hand. These lines are also letters, but ones that can only be seen under magnification. The substrate sheet then undergoes another round of intaglio printing, this time on what will be the front-end of the banknote.
5. Varnishing and Finishing
Once the printing is complete, the sheets are varnished to make them more secure. They are then are stacked in hundreds for cutting. After cutting, each note is passed through a quality control section where it is inspected for defaults. The approved notes are counted, stacked into bundles of thousands, and stored so they are ready for delivery.
How paper money is made / Habr
Last time Geektimes published an article about the history of paper money. The Chinese were the first to use cellulose fibers to produce a lightweight analogue of metallic money. Paper is used for the same purpose today. Of course, the complexity of the technological process of producing paper money has increased significantly, modern money paper is not at all what was used in China or any other country 100-200 years ago.
Flax and cotton are usually used for the production of banknotes.The cellulose content in the final product is about 95-97%. The production process begins with loading cotton (we are talking about several tons of cotton fibers) into the boiler. Here the raw material is kept under very high pressure. After that, the finished mass of fibers is poured into a tank, where clarification and cleaning are carried out. After that, the mass is subjected to pressing, placing it in softeners. The next step is to add a special paint that changes the shade of the paper while it is still wet. At this stage, the creation of recognition watermarks is also in progress (more on them below).
Sheets with protective fibers and watermarks are sent to drying, after which the paper is rolled into rolls. Each roll can weigh several tons.
In addition to paper, the production of paper money also requires special dyes, chemical compounds, and sophisticated equipment. Domestic “Goznak” purchases ink for banknotes from the Swiss company SICPA (makes special protective printing inks, inks for sealing products, develops coding systems for excisable goods).According to representatives of “Goznak”, due to the growth of the Swiss franc, the costs of producing domestic banknotes are growing quite rapidly.
But Swiss paint has always been considered the highest quality. The cost of purchasing ink in the manufacture of banknotes in Europe and the world on average accounts for about 60% of the total costs for the purchase of components and the production of banknotes.
It is interesting that there are several ways of producing paper money, not all countries print money using the same method.
As for paper, one of the main requirements for this material is durability. Money must be durable so that it does not deteriorate too quickly. The main indicator of the durability of money is its resistance to fracture and tear. Paper bills are constantly folded and unbent, pulled by the corners and other parts. Therefore, they should not be torn. The tensile strength is determined on a dynamometer. This characteristic is expressed in the calculated length in meters of a strip of paper, with a gap due to its own weight.For money paper, this figure is thousands of meters (more than for ordinary paper).
In order to ensure high quality and durability of the printed pattern, the money paper must have the required degree of whiteness, opacity, smoothness and lightfastness. This paper should not change its color under the influence of external factors (sunlight, for example).
In Russia, paper for money is supplied by only two enterprises. These are the St. Petersburg Paper Mill of Goznak and the Krasnokamsk Paper Mill of Goznak.
Paper money usually has several degrees of protection. Among others, watermarks are used, which can also serve as a kind of decoration. They create watermarks while the paper is still being cast. The pattern is obtained by changing the thickness of the fiber layer along the plane of the bill. It is not easy to create a beautiful and clear watermark; it requires precise modern equipment. In some cases, the watermark is combined with the design of the bill itself.
In the production of banknotes, there is usually a watermark workshop, where a large number of highly qualified specialists work.In particular, these are engravers who transfer artists’ drawings onto stamps and a metal mesh of the so-called dendirol shaft. Sometimes the patterns are transferred to the mesh of the cylinder of a cylinder mold machine. Dendirol is an equalizer, which is installed on the mesh of the machine, and when rotating, forms an imprint of its watermark on the paper web. This method is commonly used to create paper with a common watermark. If an artistic local sign is needed, it can be obtained by hand casting or using a cylindrical boom machine.In this case, the drawings of the sign are stamped on the grid of the cylinder, and when the sheet of paper is formed, all the conditions are created that make it possible to obtain a multi-tone artistic sign. Banknotes in many countries also have special protective (often colored or metal) fibers.
The watermark must be clearly visible on all banknotes, and be absolutely identical for all banknotes of the same circulation. Faking a watermark is not easy, especially for portraits.
Throughout the entire circulation period of paper money, their identity must be ensured.In practice, this means that if a bill, a sample of a banknote has been valid for several decades, then the money that was produced in the last years of the validity of this bill must be identical with the money that was issued at the very beginning of the period. True, during this period, some changes may be made – for example, new protections are added. The decision to modify the appearance of the banknotes is taken by special authorities, all changes are recorded. In Russia, such control is exercised by the Bank of Russia.
Development of banknote
The creation of banknotes is a very complex and rather lengthy process, in which specialists from different fields are involved. These are financiers, artists, and specialists from Goznak (in the case of Russia) who are actively involved in the process of creating new money. After the customer (state) has outlined all the necessary criteria for making a bill, artists and engravers begin their work.
A sketch is created first – it is developed taking into account all the criteria of technological production capabilities, with the help of which future money will be printed in the future.One of the main requirements for paper banknotes is the demonstration of the ownership of the developed banknote to the manufacturer state. This is done by introducing elements of the unique symbols of the state. They can be state symbols, text, portraits of people famous in this state. Usually, large denominations of banknotes have a much more complex pattern and number of degrees of protection than small ones.
After the sketch is ready, the specialists create a printed project with special printing forms that allow you to replicate the bills in the future.Specialists of the highest class take part here, including photographers, engravers-artists, etchers, engravers-stampers, designers. In the case of Russia, these personnel are trained only by Goznak. The modern process of money production includes, without fail, computer technology. As soon as the first printed draft of the new banknote is ready, it is sent to a special commission for study and approval. If the received version is approved, then the production of special forms for the circulation of money begins.
There are four main printing methods used in the process of printing paper money. These are offset, intaglio, typographic and Oryol printing. The most demanded and used are intaglio and Oryol printing methods. Interestingly, the Swiss company KBA-NotaSys SA produces about 90% of all printing and press machines for the production of banknotes in the world market. These machines, in particular, are used at Goznak.
Despite the fact that this printing method was developed in 1891, it is still used today.The name of the printing process comes from the name of Goznak’s specialist Ivan Orlov, who developed this method. Then, for printing bills by typographic method, it was necessary to prepare a separate printing form for each of the colors of the bill drawing. Each mold was imprinted on a piece of special paper. The coincidence of the lines and borders of the paint using this method was not ideal, since even the use of a computer and industrial systems does not give an ideal result, let alone the technology of the late 19th century.
Ivan Orlov managed to introduce a special elastic roller with a soft structure and intermediate shapes. At the same time, each form has its own drawing for each of the colors on the original. When printing, such a template transfers its own fragment to the desired place on the assembly shaft, and already from the shaft, the full palette of colors is transferred to the assembled general form, where the entire drawing of the original is displayed in full.
The advantage of the method is that it allows drawing on banknotes with almost jewelry accuracy, with the coincidence of all the boundaries of the drawings and lines.In addition, the method allows, during just one pass of the sheet through the printing unit, to create the necessary fragment of the drawing, which corresponds to the original with almost 100% accuracy. It is difficult for a counterfeiter to repeat such accuracy, although, of course, there are specialists of the highest class.
With the help of offset printing, a so-called background grid and a number of additional elements are usually created. In small banknotes, the main pattern is sometimes applied using offset printing.Since the transfer of ink from the printing plate to the paper is carried out through an intermediate offset cylinder, the image itself on the printing plate is made straight, not mirrored.
Interestingly, with this method of printing, the regular and white-space elements of the form are in the same plane. But the surfaces of the elements have different physical and chemical properties. So, the printing elements are hydrophobic, they hold the ink well, repelling moisture. Whitespace, on the other hand, is hydrophilic, absorbing water but repelling paint.
Banknote inks are generally classified into three color groups. This is the blue group, red and yellow. For each group, a special form is made using a photographic method. The ink from the plates is first transferred to the rubber coating of the cylinder, and already the cylinder prints the pattern on the paper.
This is how US dollars are printed:
This is another common method of printing bills. It has been known for a long time, and for banknotes it was first used in 1887.In this case, specially made forms of steel or nickel are used for printing.
These forms are almost perfectly polished plates, on which the desired pattern is applied using a special press. The original form is made by hand using the engraving method. In Russian, there is a special term for the original form. This is the “original stamp”. When printing banknotes using this method, details of the engraving installations create complex patterns for banknotes. These patterns are composed of a large number of lines.After the etching process, an element of the general image appears, which is placed on the bill.
These elements, in combination with hand engraving and applied font, form a single image of the banknote. This image, after production, is replicated for the printing process. True, this requires high-precision equipment, as a rule, it is a high-frequency machine and an automated electroplating line.
According to experts, the main advantage of intaglio printing is that it can reproduce a wide range of bright colors for printing.If you use different depths and widths of the pattern, you can achieve a wide variety of colorful effects, often three-dimensional.
Ink is applied to printing plates using prepared rubber templates. She goes to engraving and whitespace. After that, the paint is erased from these elements, and the form is ready for drawing on paper. The drawing is applied by applying the form to the paper under high pressure. Metallographic printing is divided into two types.This is intaglio printing, when images are transferred from a printing plate, on which the printing elements are significantly deepened in relation to the blank. And letterpress printing, when the printing elements on the forms are located above the blanks. Letterpress printing is used for drawing on large banknotes, serial numbers and a number of important elements of small and large denominations.
After the bills are printed, the uncut sheets are sent to a special workshop, where they are cut into individual bills.After that, the money is counted with the help of a machine and packed, they are sent to “free float” around the country and abroad.
Money printing and money paper. How bills are made.
What type of printing products do you think is the most widespread in the world? No, not flyers or even newspapers. The most popular type is paper money. Of course, everyone is primarily interested in the financial side of the issue. But the way money is printed is also quite curious.
Money paper. Wear resistance
Plain paper, of course, is not suitable for printing money. And we are not talking about watermarks now. Each bill in its life is constantly crumpled, erased, moistened, exposed to a lot of various influences. Therefore, money paper must be incredibly durable and durable.
In the manufacture of such paper, natural cotton fibers are used, and before printing money, this paper undergoes a number of tests.The first test is to determine the abrasion resistance of the paper. On special folding machines, paper for money is folded many times. For example, the stationery we are used to, loses its properties and begins to tear after a few bends. Money paper, on the other hand, can withstand thousands of folds.
The next challenge facing money paper is tear resistance. This indicator is checked using a dynamometer. It shows how many meters of its own weight the paper can withstand until it breaks.For an ordinary sheet, this figure is no more than 300 m, but paper for money holds up to several kilometers of its own weight.
Do you know why watermarks on banknotes are almost impossible to counterfeit? Because they are not some special type of printing, but are created in the manufacture of the paper itself for money. This process is technologically very complicated and in our country only two paper factories are engaged in the production of such paper: in St. Petersburg and Krasnokamsk.Of course, both of these enterprises belong to Goznak.
Print money. What paints are used
Special requirements are imposed on inks for printing money. In addition to being resistant to abrasion and fading, they should glow under a certain spectrum in detectors that determine the authenticity of banknotes. The composition and manufacturing technology of ink for printing money is strictly classified. It is only known that they are not produced in our country and that Goznak purchases them in Switzerland.
Ways of printing money
Money is printed using 4 different printing methods.The usual pattern is applied by an offset method, metallography is responsible for drawing a depression on the banknotes. Such a unique method as Oryol printing allows you to join the thinnest lines of different colors without gaps and overlaps. It is impossible to achieve such accuracy by any other method. And, finally, “letterpress” printing – with its help, serial numbers are printed with convex to the touch.
The printing of money is wholly and entirely under the jurisdiction of the State. But if you need to print any other printing products, create original business souvenirs or, for example, print on plastic – contact Factoria LLC by phone or on the website in the “Contacts” section.
90,000 What are banknotes made of? | Publications
Paper is known to have been invented in China. Therefore, the first paper money appeared in the East. In Western countries, they came into circulation at the end of the 17th century. Their distribution is associated with the formation of the capitalist system. Accelerated economic growth required a more convenient form of money circulation. And the paper bills just fully met the requirements. During the 18th century, they became widespread in all European countries (in Russia – during the reign of Catherine II from 1769), and by the end of the 19th century they began to dominate the whole world.However, paper money had an undoubted disadvantage: having a high speed of circulation, it was dilapidated and completely unusable literally six months after its release. Today this problem is being solved by improving the “paper” material for banknotes. For example, the American dollar is 75% cotton, 25% linen, and besides, the banknote fabric is reinforced with synthetic fiber. For a dollar to break, it needs to be bent several thousand times. But the cash in Australia, China, Brazil, Northern Ireland, Romania and many other countries is completely made of special thin plastic.It takes a lot of effort to crush them. In addition to strength, all modern paper money has a high degree of security. This role is played by watermarks, special threads and fibers, metallized ribbons, embossed patterns, holograms, micro-fonts and other tricks that complicate the printing of fakes. But American Express protects its customers not only from counterfeiting, but also from theft. On the bills of their traveller’s checks, made in accordance with all the rules of printing banknotes and also having many security features, the buyer puts his signature.To pay with them or exchange them for cash, the owner will have to sign the check again in the presence of the cashier. In addition, every check purchased is entered into the American Express global database. Therefore, even if the check is lost or damaged, it can be restored, as a rule, within 24 hours. This means that the painstaking work of forging that kind of money simply does not make sense.
What is paper and polymer money made of and how is it protected
The next argument in favor of polymer money is that they seem to be more difficult to counterfeit.Most of their security elements match paper money. But making replicas of protective signs on plastic is more difficult, another technology.
What are these protective signs? The entire composition, for obvious reasons, is kept secret. We can look at the typical common elements. The first group consists of elements with optically variable characteristics. Their meaning is that the image changes when external conditions (angle of view, amount of light) change.
The simplest example is a very thin layer of gold foil.In reflected light, it has a golden color, in refracted light it looks green. The diffraction grating also belongs to the elements with optically variable characteristics, it includes fine patterned lines (up to 12,000 per centimeter) coated with aluminum. From different angles, this gives a whole range of shades.
Another often used method of protection is the impregnation of a part of the banknote with compounds that change color when exposed to ultraviolet radiation. In euros, a composition based on europium (white-silver metal) is used.In the periodic table, it belongs to the group of lanthanides. Many lanthanides fluoresce in UV light. At this moment, the electrons go into an excited state until they lose excess energy and return to their original position. This transition with the emission of visible light is called fluorescence.
It is not entirely clear whether the choice of europium for the euro was deliberate or just coincided. In any case, the exact composition of the mixture based on it, used in banknotes, remains a secret. It is believed that it is mixed with two molecules of beta-diketone, which are responsible for the red hues.The sources of other colors have not yet been identified.
Most likely, more and more countries will soon switch to plastic money. Therefore, it is useful to know in general terms the chemistry of the manufacturing process and the main characteristics.
What to do with damaged money
Time and chance are merciless in relation to money: banknotes become dilapidated, dirty, torn and gradually fail, that is, they lose their solvency. For forgetfulness, paper money is washed along with jeans, used as paper for random notes, stamped on them and constantly passed from hand to hand.Let’s figure out which bills can still be paid in the store, which ones will have to be changed at the bank, and which ones have already served their term and have lost their solvency.
Where to go with damaged money?
Damage to a coin or banknote does not mean that it automatically “breaks down”. There are three options:
- The damage is not severe, the money is still solvent.They should be accepted in stores and in banks.
- The damage is significant, money cannot be used to pay for the purchase, but it can be exchanged at the bank for new banknotes or coins.
You just need to come to the bank cash desk. If the cashier has confirmed that the banknote or coin is solvent, then they will be exchanged for new ones, issued in cash, or money can be credited to your account. Sometimes an exchange will require additional expertise at a Bank of Russia institution, and you will have to wait for an official opinion on solvency.
- The damage is so severe that a banknote or coin ceases to correspond to the signs of solvency – money cannot be paid off and it cannot be changed either.
To understand how to handle a damaged coin or banknote, you need to assess the extent of the damage. You can do this yourself.
On the money scuffs and dirt
Contamination is the most common reason for the shortened life of a banknote.Most often, paper money is withdrawn from circulation and destroyed because it decays and becomes dirty – this is a kind of natural aging of bills.
If a banknote is scuffed, dirty, or has small, localized stains, such as oil or paint, but the images are clearly visible, it may still be accepted at the store.
Where to carry? To the store. You can safely pay with them.True, if the banknote has serious scuffs or a rather large stain on it, then such a banknote can only be exchanged at a bank.
The life of banknotes largely depends on their denomination – the lower it is, the faster the banknote decays. On average, one hundred ruble notes have a short century – one and a half to two years, but a five-thousandth banknote can circulate for five years.
There are foreign symbols on money
The idea of writing your phone number on a banknote and putting it in a book may seem romantic, but in fact, using the banknotes as paper for notes and messages, you shorten their life.According to the rules, if there is an extraneous inscription of two characters or more on a banknote, or a drawing, an imprint of a stamp, it is considered dilapidated and sent for destruction.
Where to carry? You can go shopping with this bill and it will be accepted at the store. But the age of such a bill will be short-lived – as soon as it gets into the bank, it will be taken out of circulation and destroyed.
If you happen to have a banknote bearing the Goznak marks “Sample”, “Test”, other similar inscriptions or perforations made by the manufacturer, you will have to leave it as a souvenir or throw it away – such banknotes are insolvent, they will not be exchanged at the bank.
But if you find a manufacturing defect on a banknote (although rarely, this happens), then it can be changed.
Paper is a short-lived material, so quite often banknotes have “wounds” of different calibers, both compatible with the life of money and not compatible:
- Small punctures present
Where to carry? To the store.Such damage is not dangerous. True, if the diameter of the puncture is large enough, then the banknote will also be withdrawn from circulation.
- Not enough corner or edge
Where to carry? You can still pay with such a bill, so feel free to go to the store with it. But if the area of the lost corner or edge was significant, then it is better to immediately go to the bank with a banknote.
- A significant part is missing
For example, the money was seriously burned, got into acid or soaked and lost some of the fragments.
Where to carry? Definitely to the bank. If for some reason the money has suffered, you also have the option to exchange it. To do this, you need to carefully collect all the remaining fragments and take them to the bank for examination. The original damaged banknotes that have retained the area required for exchange will be exchanged for new banknotes. This verification can take a significant amount of time, but it will cost you completely free. It is better to confirm the case of a fire, in which money was damaged, with an appropriate certificate.
If less than 55% of the banknote remains, then it can no longer be exchanged.
- There are tears
Where to carry? And you must accept such a bill in the store. True, if the tears are large enough, then it is better to go to the bank with it.
- The note was torn into pieces
Where to carry? To the bank.If a banknote is completely torn or cut, it can be glued and taken to the bank for exchange. It is necessary to collect at least 55% of the total area of the banknote from the pieces, and it is important that all the pieces belong to the same banknote.
You can collect a Frankenstein banknote if you have two damaged banknotes of the same denomination and they fold into one banknote according to the pattern. The main condition is that each of the parts must be at least 50% of the total area of the banknote.Such a bill will be changed for you at the bank.
But a banknote that has lost its front or back side, that is, stratified, cannot be exchanged.
- Money colored
If you accidentally wash your banknotes with your belongings, money can stain.
Where to carry? The painted bill must be taken to the bank, where it will be changed to a new one.The same can be said for other types of random staining.
But if the banknote is in special paint, which is used by banks when transporting money, so that they are not stolen, then it will not work to exchange it. That is why the banknotes painted with paint, most likely, will not be exchanged immediately – the cashier can send such banknotes for additional examination in order to establish the type of paint.
What about the coins?
Metal coins last longer than banknotes and may be less likely to accidents.But if there is still damage, you must follow the following exchange rules:
- If the original shape has not changed and there are only minor scratches or abrasions on the coin, it can be used for payment.
- If a coin is bent, flattened, filed, there is a hole on it, but at the same time it has retained at least 75% of its mass, then such a coin will be changed at the bank.
- If the coin has melted or changed color (the temperature or aggressive environment is to blame), you can change it.But only if it is possible to establish that the coin was issued by the Bank of Russia.
- The coin is completely without an image and part of the coin will not be accepted from you even for exchange.
Money out of circulation
Money that has gone out of circulation (for example, Soviet rubles) loses its function – it cannot be paid in a store or exchanged in a bank. They can be left as a keepsake.
Saying goodbye to cash: how to prepare a business for a world without paper money
While some countries are banning cryptocurrencies, others are exploring the possibility of introducing digital currencies.In the meantime, one revolution in the sphere of money circulation has practically taken place – people are less and less likely to use paper money, preferring plastic cards and other methods of digital payments. In some countries, paper money has practically been abandoned. Why might paper money disappear and how will it affect your business?
In the not too distant future, digital currencies may become the only means of financial exchange. The Swedes hardly ever use paper money now.You can buy a sandwich, pay for parking or rent an apartment in the Netherlands only by bank transfer. The National Bank of Denmark decided to transfer the issue of the Danish krone to the Finnish Mint. India, Estonia and Japan are considering creating their own cryptocurrencies.
Sweden and paper money
Now in Sweden the number of banknotes and coins in circulation is at the level of the early 1990s.
It all started with a robbery of a money vault in Stockholm on September 23, 2009. Seven robbers were arrested, but the stolen $ 6.5 million was never found. Since then, the amount of cash in the country has been rapidly declining.
Any payment in Sweden can be made using a bank card or the Swish mobile app linked to the country’s largest banks.More than 50% of Swedes use it.
Church donation can be made through the Swish app. It is reported that the amount of donations has increased: now they are not limited by the amount of small change in the pockets of parishioners.
A poll on the eZonomics website, conducted by financial conglomerate ING, showed that 38% of respondents are ready to completely switch to cashless payments.Moreover, of 34% of users who said they rarely use cash, 78% said they intend to use it even less in the future.
Benefits of digital money:
no need to give customers change;
the likelihood of robberies decreases;
more difficult to evade taxes and conduct illegal transactions;
the costs of printing, counting and transporting money are reduced;
any transaction can be traced.
Smartphones have made cashless payments available everywhere. “When faced with a choice of what to put in a pocket, phones are replacing wallets and cash for many,” said Scott Schober, president of Berkeley Varitronics Systems, author and cybersecurity expert.
Money transfer apps like Venmo, Robinhood, and even Snapchat are transferring money to the social realm, taking advantage of the Millennials’ penchant for constant resource sharing.
Even where cash has traditionally been all about cash, such as flea markets and vending machines, the reluctance of entrepreneurs to accept cashless reality harms their bottom line. In Russia, a boom in contactless payments is predicted by 2020. So far, supermarkets and fast food restaurants work best with this service.
Major payment systems such as Visa are encouraging small businesses in every possible way to move away from cash in their business transactions.The financial giant has already offered restaurants $ 10,000 for refusing to accept cash. Businesses that are reluctant to embrace change run the risk of lagging behind rivals leveraging fintech’s advances.
“Many small businesses will never deal with cash throughout 2017,” says commercial lawyer Daniel Faizakov. “And if it goes on like this, they probably won’t have to.”
Which is more harmful to the environment – plastic or paper? | World Events – Estimates and Forecasts from Germany and Europe | DW
In order to combat plastic, German supermarkets stopped offering free plastic bags a few years ago: instead, customers can buy paper ones.However, are they as safe as they seem at first glance? DW looked at whether paper and cardboard are actually less harmful to the environment than plastic products, and if there is an alternative to wood products.
Planets’ green lungs may disappear
According to the German organization Forum for the Environment and Paper (FÖP), one in five trees on the planet are cut down for paper production. At the same time, wood is supplied not only from the so-called sustainably managed forests, which are exploited in compliance with a number of principles – in particular, ensuring their safety and restoration.
Jungle cleared in Brazil
“For example, in Brazil, pulp concerns are planting forests on agricultural land that people need to grow food,” says Evelyn Schönheit, a spokesman for the organization, environmentalist. As a result, people are forced to move to other areas, where they often clear the jungle to create agricultural land, she said. And this, in turn, leads to the extinction of many species of plants and animals, the expert notes.
The area of the jungle, the planet’s green lungs, which is central to the fight against climate change, continues to shrink. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change estimates that about 20 percent of global CO2 emissions are due to deforestation and its impacts. The environmental organization Greenpeace also emphasizes that 80 percent of all primeval forests on the planet have already been destroyed, and 40 percent of the rest are under threat. According to the FÖP, 13 million hectares of forest are destroyed every year worldwide.
Germany is the world leader in paper consumption
The growth of paper consumption is largely driven by online trade
At the same time, paper consumption in the world continues to grow rapidly. In 1980, the world’s population as a whole consumed about 170 million tons, and in 2017 – over 423 million tons of this material.
At the same time, Germany became the world leader in paper consumption per capita: in 2018 this figure was 241 kg.In unflattering statistics, Germany has overtaken even the United States, which took second place in the list: for one American a year, 211 kg of paper and cardboard are used up. FÖP explains that although the FRG mainly uses wood from Scandinavia, a quarter of the pulp comes from Brazil.
Although the consumption of offset paper for printing books or magazines has been declining in recent years, the same cannot be said for packaging materials such as disposable paper dishes or food packaging.The explosive growth of online commerce is also contributing to a large part of the consumption of paper, with the size of parcel packages often significantly larger than the content.
Should I carry food in paper bags ?
The brown color of the bag is not yet sustainable
FÖP fears that the poor image of plastic could also lead consumers to increasingly use paper as packaging material.Meanwhile, reusable plastic is far less damaging to the environment than paper – at least if it’s not recycled.
One of the negative examples environmentalists call paper bags, which can be purchased in many German supermarkets. Their brown color does not mean they are made from recycled paper. Quite the opposite: the German environmental organization Deutsche Umwelthilfe (DUH) explains that extra long and strong cellulose fibers are used for the production of these bags.
As noted by DUH, such fibers can only be obtained from fresh wood using a variety of chemicals. Because paper grocery bags need to be durable, they consume a large amount of raw material, resulting in increased CO2 emissions during transportation. As a result, the production of one paper bag is more harmful to the environment than a plastic one: the balance will only change if the paper bag is reused.
Grass and hay paper of the future ?
But is there an alternative to wood? Currently, there is a lot of research on this topic. In addition to bamboo, which is considered a fast-growing material, there are also hopes for materials such as grass or straw.
In the future, grass paper and cardboard can be used primarily as packaging material. “The production of cellulose granules from grass requires almost no chemicals,” says Almut Reichart, an expert at the Federal Environmental Protection Agency (UBA).However, this material also has one drawback – it is much less uniform than wood fibers, it has dark spots. Therefore, according to Reichart, grass is not suitable for the production of offset paper.
Waste paper is a valuable raw material
Another advice from experts is to completely switch to paper made from waste paper. The fact is that recycled paper saves not only wood. It uses 70 percent water and 60 percent less energy to make paper than making paper from fresh pulp.
In addition, environmentalists recommend limiting paper consumption – for example, printing on both sides of the sheet, using reusable bags instead of paper bags and washable rags instead of paper towels. And a sticker on your mailbox with the words “Please, no advertising” may help to get rid of the abundance of paper leaflets in it.
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How to abandon plastic in everyday life
Find an alternative to plastic
Plastic waste is the scourge of our time.He littered both land and the world’s oceans. All this makes people look for alternatives to plastic. Many companies are phasing out products from circulation. The European Union plans to ban plastic disposable plates, forks, knives, and drinking straws. A selection of DW is about how each of us can contribute to solving a global problem.
How to Avoid Plastics in Home
For those who are too lazy to cook
The takeaway service appeared in the 1970s in the USA and quickly gained popularity all over the world.How convenient it is: after work I went to a fast food diner, bought a hot dish in sealed plastic packaging and at home, comfortably sitting in front of the TV, enjoyed its taste and aroma. Or ordered takeaway. DW tip: If you are too lazy to cook, go to a cafe with friends.
How to give up plastic in everyday life
The trouble with sportswear
One of the sources of pollution in the world’s oceans is washing. Microscopic particles of plastic released during it enter the ecosystem through the sewer pipes.A serious environmental pollutant is sportswear, which is usually made from polyester, nylon, and other man-made fabrics. DW tip: Buy clothes made from sustainable, natural materials.
How to avoid plastic in everyday life
There is an alternative. A special bag is often used for washing delicate fabrics. A Berlin firm has developed a bag that not only protects such clothing from damage, but also filters out plastic particles from synthetic fabrics.According to the manufacturer, they remain in the bag and can be disposed of after washing. DW tip: take a look at this kind of product!
How to avoid plastic in everyday life
The right toothbrush
A toothbrush is a storehouse of germs and bacteria. Dentists recommend changing it every three months. This is so, but by following this advice, we make a significant contribution to the total amount of plastic waste, because toothbrushes are usually made of plastic.DW tip: When shopping for a toothbrush, look for products with a wooden or bamboo body and natural bristles.
Avoiding plastic in everyday life
For cleaning the auricles
The life of the cotton swabs with a plastic rod used for cleaning the auricles is much shorter than that of toothbrushes: they are designed for single use. Needless to say, such products only increase the amount of plastic waste on Earth.DW tip: Replace plastic sticks with paper or bamboo sticks.
How to give up plastic in everyday life
Microparticles of plastic are found in many face and body care products – creams, shampoos, toothpastes, shower gels. Together with tap water, they end up in rivers, seas and oceans, where they poison fish and animals. DW Tip: When choosing cosmetics, pay attention to its composition and make sure that it does not include polyethylene (PE), polypropylene (PP), polyethylene terephthalate (PET).
How to give up plastic in everyday life
Another reason to give up a car
No car can do without tires. Everyone knows this. But not everyone thinks about how toxic rubber pollutes the environment. In Germany, for example, where the automotive industry is at the forefront of the economy, used tires are the main source of microplastics. In Germany, about 120 thousand tires are sent to the landfill per year. DW tip: Walk more!
How to avoid plastic in everyday life
Alternative to plastic dishes
Disposable plastic dishes are widely used at family picnics and at mass celebrations.