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Euro banknote counterfeiting declines in first half of 2016

Categories : Cash is trust
August 15, 2016
Tags : Banknotes, Central Bank, Counterfeiting, Security features
The number of euro counterfeits has declined by 27% compared to the same period last year.
European Central Bank - Directorate General Communications

331,000 counterfeit euro banknotes were withdrawn from circulation in the first half of 2016:

•  Around 80% of the counterfeits were €20 and €50 banknotes
•  All euro banknotes can be verified using the “feel, look and tilt” method
•  Euro banknotes continue to be a trusted and safe means of payment

Some 331,000 counterfeit euro banknotes were withdrawn from circulation in the first half of 2016, 25% fewer than in the second half of 2015, the European Central Bank (ECB) announced today. The number of counterfeits remains very low in comparison with the increasing number of genuine banknotes in circulation (over 18.5 billion during the first half of 2016).

The half-yearly trend is shown below:

The Eurosystem has a duty to safeguard the integrity of the euro and continue improving banknote technology. The Europa series will make the banknotes even more secure and help maintain public confidence in the currency.

A breakdown, by denomination, of the total number of counterfeits withdrawn from circulation in the first half of 2016 is provided below.

During that period:

•  The €20 and €50 notes continued to be the most counterfeited banknotes. Compared with the figures for the second half of 2015, the proportion of counterfeit €20 notes decreased and that of counterfeit €50 notes increased. Together, they accounted for 79.8% of the counterfeits;
•  Most (97.6%) of the counterfeits were found in euro area countries. Only around 1.7% were found in EU Member States outside the euro area and less than 0.7% were found in other parts of the world.

The new €50 banknote, with its innovative security features, will be launched on 4 April 2017. Banknote equipment manufacturers and other suppliers will continue to receive support from the Eurosystem in adapting their machines and authentication devices to the new banknote. If their equipment is still unable to accept this banknote, operators/owners should contact their suppliers or manufacturers without delay.