The Strategist

A Record Number of Counterfeit Euro Found in the Euro Area in 2015

01/22/2016 - 16:48

The Eurozone has never experienced such an influx of counterfeit banknotes as in 2015. In total, the number reached 899,000, said on Friday, January 22, agency dpa, citing data from the European Central Bank. Almost 11 percent of this number was found by the police, trading companies and banks in Germany - which is also the highest rate since 2002, experts of the German Federal Bank (Deutsche Bundesbank) said.
The growing number of counterfeit money in circulation within the Eurozone makes European Central Bank take retaliatory measures, stressed member of the board of the Bundesbank Carl-Ludwig Thiele. In November 2015, it released a new 20-euro banknote with a much higher level of protection. 5- and 10 euro banknotes were put into circulation prior to that; the first - in May 2013th, the second - in September 2014. In 2017, it is planned to release a 50-euro bill. Old banknotes will be gradually withdrawn from circulation.

The new 20-euro bill has advanced holograms and complicated features of authenticity. These measures are designed to hinder the possibility of forgery.

For the first time the banknote features the so-called phantom view - if you look at the banknote against the light, the picture of window on the front side gets transparent, and a portrait of the mythical Europe emerges on the paper. The shining number "20" changes color from emerald green to dark blue depending on the angle of view. ‘ECB’ lettering is now translated into nine languages, while only five were used in the previous samples.

Counterfeiters specializes in euro cash often fake 20-euro banknotes - they account for almost half of the total volume of counterfeit money in the world turnover.