Back in the old days, it was the U.S. Treasury that issued new currency designs, but yesterday three government agencies - the U.S. Treasury, the Federal Reserve Board, and the Secret Service - unveiled their design of a $100 U.S. note. As with recent releases of our new currency, the new $100 note is keeping up with design trends in general, adding more bold colors to the bills.
Here's the released image of the new bill. Ben's image is not only larger than on our current bill, but it even appears that he's put on some weight.
New U.S. $100 note: front
There's the bright green seal and bill number looking nice and fresh... and green is the new black, you know. The inkwell is a smart copper with matching feather quill. Notice the Bell in the Inkwell; it is a security feature of the new bill. It changes from copper to green when you tilt the note, a feature that makes it seem that the bell is appearing and disappearing like a ghost. The '100' mark in the lower right corner changes to green when it's shifted too. Franklin would have loved it!
The blue vertical rectangles to the right of Benjamin Franklin are off-center, appearing in their randomness that the printer was running out of ink. However, they are quite intentional. This is a new 3-D Security Ribbon that contains images of 100's and bells, visible upon waving the bill.
New U.S. $100 note: back
The $100 currency still has the old security features, including the watermark of Franklin on both sides of it. There is a new large gold numeral 100 on the back of the bill, which will help visually impaired persons recognize its value.
Microprinted areas can be found in various places on the front of the bill, as is the security thread visible when illuminated by UV light from both sides of the light. Raised printed on Ben Franklin's shoulder also provides security against counterfeiting.
The new $100 note will not be released until February 2011, but if you want to see the neat security feats (and the new bold colors) up close and personal, I strongly recommend going to the New Money interactive web site. At least bookmark it for the future so you can learn how to protect yourself from counterfeits.