Newly Designed $100 Bills Begin Circulation

| by Will Hagle

The new face of the $100 bill, an updated design over 10 years in the making, is finally scheduled to begin circulating throughout the United States and the rest of the world. The bills had originally been expected to begin circulating much earlier, but a printing delaypushed back production over two years. The Federal Reserve Board citing a “sporadic creasing of the paper during printing” as a reason for the delay, according to the Los Angeles Times. 

The updated version of the $100 bill is slightly more colorful than its predecessors, as it includes a long, purple ribbon that runs the length of the bill, adjacent to Benjamin Franklin’s head. This ribbon contains tiny imprints of bells that, when titled, change to imprints of "100." The new bills also feature a large quill, a golden inkwell and a bell next to the ribbon. When the inkwell and bell are tilted, they turn green (and fade into the background of the bill). 

These new features are attempts at making the $100 bill more difficult to counterfeit, an ongoing quest for the Federal Reserve. The bills are the next in the line of revamped, more colorful versions of bank notes that the government has been printing throughout the past several years. The base of the design is still largely green, but these new Benjamins have much more color than other bills currently in circulation. The most striking difference is undoubtedly the security ribbon. 

As per U.S. law, old versions of the Benjamins will remain legal tender. However, many institutions, especially those overseas, may be wary of anything besides the new design, especially in areas where counterfeiting runs rampant.