Country braces itself for new dollar note

For Sharon, who trades foreign currencies on the local parallel market, getting hold of a new $100 note is a matter of urgency. Without it, she won’t be able to tell whether notes she’s given are genuine or not. One mistake with a note of this magnitude could lead to huge losses for her.

The newly introduced $100 US Federal Reserve bill has awakened fears of counterfeit, as unscrupulous people capitalise on the lack of awareness about the security features of the new note.

Since the introduction of the $100 note last month, the central bank has done nothing to educate the public about the new note, despite the fact that the US dollar has been legal tender in Zimbabwe since 2009.

There have been numerous cases of fake notes circulating in the country whenever a new foreign bill is introduced, and it is important for business people, retailers and consumers to carefully understand the features of the new bill.

According to the Federal Reserve: “Distance, demand and the policies of individual financial institutions will be the deciding factors in how quickly redesigned $100 notes reach the public, both in the US and international markets.”

The new bill has a design that makes it easier to authenticate but difficult to duplicate. The note has a blue 3D security ribbon with an image of bells and 100s, as well as a colour-changing inkwell. Other features such as the watermark have been returned on the note.

The old and new notes are both legal tender, and there is no need to replace old $100 notes with new ones.

“The best way to determine whether a note is genuine is to use the security features, such as watermark and security thread,” says the Federal Reserve.

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