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FAQs: Currency


Denominations

What denominations of currency are in circulation today? Will any new denominations be produced?

What was the highest denomination of United States currency ever produced?

What denominations of currency notes is Treasury Department no longer printing?

Did the Treasury Department ever produce $1 million currency note? I have one I want to know about.

Why did the Treasury Department remove the $2 bill from circulation?


Question What denominations of currency are in circulation today? Will any new denominations be produced?

Answer The present denominations of our currency in production are $1, $2, $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100. The purpose of the United States currency system is to serve the needs of the public and these denominations meet that goal. Our present currency in circulation satisfies the public at large, and the Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP) has no plans to change the denominations in use today.

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Question What was the largest currency denomination ever produced?

Answer The largest denomination of currency ever printed by the Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP) was the $100,000 Series 1934 Gold Certificate featuring the portrait of President Wilson. These notes were printed from December 18, 1934 through January 9, 1935 and were issued by the Treasurer of the United States to Federal Reserve Banks only against an equal amount of gold bullion held by the Treasury Department. The notes were used only for official transactions between Federal Reserve Banks and were not circulated among the general public.

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Question What denominations of currency notes is the Treasury Department no longer printing?

Answer On July 14, 1969, David M. Kennedy, the 60th Secretary of the Treasury, and officials at the Federal Reserve Board announced that they would immediately stop distributing currency in denominations of $500, $1,000, $5,000 and $10,000. Production of these denominations stopped during World War II. Their main purpose was for bank transfer payments. With the arrival of more secure transfer technologies, however, they were no longer needed for that purpose. While these notes are legal tender and may still be found in circulation today, the Federal Reserve Banks remove them from circulation and destroy them as they are received.

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Question Did the Treasury Department ever produce a $1 million currency note? I have one that I want to know about.

Answer We receive many inquiries asking if the Treasury Department ever produced a $1 million currency note. People have sent in copies of these notes. We have found that they are nonnegotiable platinum certificates known as a "One Million Dollar Special Issue." These notes were from a special limited copyrighted art series originally sold by a Canadian firm for $1.00 each as a collectible item. They are not official United States currency notes manufactured by our Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP). As such, they are not redeemable by the Department of the Treasury.

You may be interested to know that the BEP learned of these certificates in the spring of 1982. All related correspondence was forwarded to the United States Secret Service to decide if there were any violations of Federal currency laws. The Secret Service subsequently advised, however, that these certificates did not violate any United States law.

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Question Why did the Treasury Department remove the $2 bill from circulation?

Answer We receive many letters asking why the $2 bill is no longer in circulation. Contrary to the impression of many people, the Treasury Department did not stop circulating the $2 bill. On September 12, 1996, Robert E. Rubin, the 70th Secretary of the Treasury, was presented with a new series $2 bill. The Series 1995 notes were printed at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing's (BEP) Western Currency Facility and bear the seal of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.

Two Dollar Front

Two Dollar Back

The $2 bill remains one of our circulating currency denominations. According to BEP statistics, 590,720,000 Series 1976 $2 bills were printed and as of February 28, 1999, there was $1,166,091,458 worth of $2 bills in circulation worldwide.

The key for successfully circulating the two-dollar bill is for retailers to use them just like any other denomination in their daily operations. In addition, most commercial banks will readily supply their retail customers with these bills if their customers request them in sufficient volume to justify stocking them in their vaults. However, neither the Treasury Department nor the Federal Reserve System can force the distribution or use of any denomination of currency on banks, businesses or individuals.

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