The design of the Bank of Canada's new polymer banknotes is causing problems with bank machinery.
The new $100 polymer bills released this month are purported to be more durable and secure, but the plastic currency is already garnering criticism just weeks before circulation due to the cost they may cause small businesses.
The Bank of Canada announced new polymer bank notes in June 2011. The first bill, the $100 note, will be released Nov. 14.
The bills are being touted as a more convenient currency because the added security features makes it much more difficult to counterfeit.
However, Ted Brosnan, president of John Poulet Cheque Writer Service, said that the new bills will not initially make life any easier, especially for small businesses.
"It's because of the design of the bills," Brosnan, whose company sells currency counters, told CTV Toronto.
The new bills have a large transparent window that makes the currency undetectable in counters and even some ATMs, he said.
"Probably 99 per cent of the market uses money counters with optics," Brosnan explained, adding that the machines won't register a bill in the counter if the sensor doesn't pick it up.
"Because the one side is clear, the machine doesn't see anything and registers an error."
He said that this means almost every bill counter used by bank tellers and many businesses will need to be replaced.
"Some smaller financial institutions are in the position where they have to replace their ATMs as well as their money counting machines, in that case it can be a large expense that they haven't counted on," he said.
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Polymer bills could cause businesses headaches
Wayne Homren, Editor
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