The Federal Reserve on Friday, October 1, said the new $100 bill which features a fresh design and a range of enhanced security features will not rollout next February as planned. A production issue has surfaced.
The notes were scheduled to launch into circulation on February 10, 2011. The $100 is the highest denominated U.S. banknote, with an average of 184,000 printed each month since March 2010. That volume, in part, and the need to build an inventory prior to release are factors in delaying the redesigned $100.
"The Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP) manufactures Federal Reserve notes and has identified a problem with sporadic creasing of the paper during printing of the new $100 note, which was not apparent during extensive pre-production testing," the Federal Reserve Board said Friday. "As a consequence, the Federal Reserve will not have sufficient inventories to begin distributing the new $100 notes as planned."
The $100 bill is targeted the most by counterfeiters, and it is the last American banknote to receive a facelift. There are a number of security additions in its redesign, including two new features: the 3-D Security Ribbon and the Bell in the Inkwell. These security features are easy for consumers and merchants to use to authenticate their currency.
The blue 3-D Security Ribbon on the front of the new $100 contains images of bells and 100s that move and change from one to the other as the note is tilted. The Bell in the Inkwell on the front of the bill is another new security feature. It changes color from copper to green when the note is tilted, an effect that makes the bell seem to appear and disappear within the copper inkwell.
The board said the BEP is working to resolve the problem, and a new issue date would be announced "as soon as possible."