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The E-Sylum: Volume 14, Number 50, December 4, 2011, Article 15

INK RUBS OFF CANADA'S NEW POLYMER BANKNOTE

It doesn't take long for the public to test the limits of a new banknote. Here's a story about what happen when you run one of Canada's new polymer $100 bills. Thanks to Coin Update for publishing the link. -Editor

Polymer banknote erased The Bank of Canada's new $100 polymer note has undergone rigorous testing. It has been subjected to extreme heat and cold. Run through washing machines and is touted to last two-and-a-half times longer than paper notes. But one thing the Bank of Canada's staff of scientists may not have checked when testing the notes is busy hands.

A new $100 note was brought into the Journal Pioneer office this week by a local resident. He said he received the bill from a friend who had written someone's name on it. He began rubbing at the pen ink to remove it and discovered the images on the $100 polymer note came off as well. He said after about 15 minutes the bill was nearly unrecognizable.

Portraits of prime minster Robert Borden disappeared, as did the Peace Tower. Julie Girard, currency spokesperson for the Bank of Canada, said extreme care is taken when developing new notes and that rubbing a bill between someone's hands is beyond what the bill was designed for. It's not what is considered "normal wear and tear."

"What we ask Canadians to do is to treat these new notes as they would the paper notes that all of us are used to using," Girard said. "This wear and tear that I have noticed on the note is not, that I can see, normal wear."

While these bills will be handled on many separate occasions by shoppers, merchants and banks, Girard said this is what is considered normal.

"They will (be handled) and under the normal handling of passing a note back and forth the notes will last. But if it's rubbed for a long period of time, for 15 minutes, rubbing it for 15 minutes continuously, is not a normal use of the note and it will potentially wear faster," Girard said. "If Canadians use them the way they should . . . they are actually the most secure notes in the world." The Bank of Canada goes to great lengths to insure new notes are secure and durable, she said.

"When we put out a note it's a process that doesn't take months, it actually takes years," Girard said. "At the Bank of Canada we have scientists. We have chemists. We have physicists. We have all kinds of specialists who work on the development of the bank note and they're part of our research and development team."

You can do this with other types of banknotes, too. Some people will rub off a note and print it with a version of a higher denomination. It's hard to raise a $100, though. -Editor

To read the complete article, see: Careful with that new bill (www.journalpioneer.com/News/Local/2011-12-01
/article-2822658/Careful-with-that-new-bill/1)

Wayne Homren, Editor

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