Treasury Secretary Paulson announced sweeping changes to US currency today including that the US Treasury was prepared to bring back the $500 Bill, and perhaps even the $1000 as a measure to get consumers buying again.
"Let's be frank," the Secretary said, "the dollar doesn't buy what it used to, and therefore either does the $100. When we last printed the $500 and the $1000, the $100 was worth $867 in today's dollars, and that gap continues to grow. Already we have a currency gap with the rest of the world. The 500 Euro bill has been available since the Euro inception and the 100 British pound note is worth more then $200 US. "We can ill afford American's being treated a second class citizens abroad. We are also prepared to relaunch the $1000 bill at a later date if needed."
President Bush was quoted to say, "Secretary Paulson knows currency, he studied it, he understands it, heck he even has some!," the President said with a laugh. "All kidding aside, we will not let our greenbacks go the way of the yen. We will maintain the spending power and availability of cold hard cash."
When asked you would be featured on the bill, Secretary Paulson said that for the first time, two great American's will be featured on one bill. George Washington will be featured with Abraham Lincoln. The famous photo by Nathan Frost that hangs in the National Gallery entrance will be the basis for the new Bill portrait. "No other photo capures these two men in all of their glory and we believe the larger portrait to be a significant counterfeit fighting tool."
Other changes announced but not yet formalized include the potential end of the penny, wider distribution of the 50 cent piece and the classification of the dollar in a coin only.
Wow...big changes! I am glad they are bringing the $500 back as we are on a cash envelope system and it will be more convenient for us. I am not wild about the dollar coin thing though, but I guess it was inevitable.
How about you? How will this impact you?