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Paper Or Plastic


paper or plastic  

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  1. 1. do you think it would be a good idea to print money on plastic rather than paper, it would last longer



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Not only are “polymer banknotes” (according to the linked wikipedia article above, when Australia was preparing to circulate a full set of them (1993-1996), their PR experts decided that “plastic” was a bad “brand name”, so promoted and the alternative “polymer”) a good idea, they’ve been in circulation for about 30 years. The early ones were prone to their ink smearing, so weren’t very popular, but by 1988, those technical problems had been fixed.

 

I’d enjoy seeing my local US bills in polymer, or getting my hands on some souvenir foreign polymer bills. I hear they’re pretty, and have features like substrate images and transparent windows with diffraction gratings, to make them difficult to counterfeit. Money that make rainbows – how cool it that? B)

 

I can only think of a couple of downsides to polymer bills:

 

The polypropylene of which these bills are made is synthesized from petroleum, a non-renewable resource, vs. paper bills, which are typically mostly of cotton and other renewable plant matters. Polypropylene is easily recyclable, however, lessening this drawback.

 

Polypropylene melts at a fairly low temperature (130 to 170 C). Though much higher than commonplace unintentional ovens like cars in the sun (which max around 95 C), There's still a small safety risk, in unusual situations, about burning your skin with the melted stuff, lending new meaning to the term “sticky money”. :o

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Guest MacPhee

Not only are “polymer banknotes” (according to the linked wikipedia article above, when Australia was preparing to circulate a full set of them (1993-1996), their PR experts decided that “plastic” was a bad “brand name”, so promoted and the alternative “polymer”) a good idea, they’ve been in circulation for about 30 years. The early ones were prone to their ink smearing, so weren’t very popular, but by 1988, those technical problems had been fixed.

 

I’d enjoy seeing my local US bills in polymer, or getting my hands on some souvenir foreign polymer bills. I hear they’re pretty, and have features like substrate images and transparent windows with diffraction gratings, to make them difficult to counterfeit. Money that make rainbows – how cool it that? B)

 

I can only think of a couple of downsides to polymer bills:

 

The polypropylene of which these bills are made is synthesized from petroleum, a non-renewable resource, vs. paper bills, which are typically mostly of cotton and other renewable plant matters. Polypropylene is easily recyclable, however, lessening this drawback.

 

Polypropylene melts at a fairly low temperature (130 to 170 C). Though much higher than commonplace unintentional ovens like cars in the sun (which max around 95 C), There's still a small safety risk, in unusual situations, about burning your skin with the melted stuff, lending new meaning to the term “sticky money”. :o

 

Why should we use paper, or plastic, banknotes at all? Couldn't we use coins. Coins are stronger than flimsy paper. Paper money soon gets creased, and worn out, whereas good solid metal coins last much longer in circulation.

 

Here in the UK, we long ago replaced our paper "one-pound" notes, by "one-pound" coins. These coins give every satisfaction. They are neat and easy to handle. Much better than the old banknotes.

 

However, in the US, you're still sticking to the paper "One-Dollar Bills". These Bills, seem hardly justified nowadays. Given that the dollar has reduced in value so much. Does one dollar really merit an expensively colour-printed, serial-numbered paper banknote?

 

Why don't you mint a "one-dollar" coin instead?

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However, in the US, you're still sticking to the paper "One-Dollar Bills". These Bills, seem hardly justified nowadays. Given that the dollar has reduced in value so much. Does one dollar really merit an expensively colour-printed, serial-numbered paper banknote?

 

Why don't you mint a "one-dollar" coin instead?

We have.

 

The US treasury has tried, time and time again, to circulate a $1 coin, and everytime, it’s been unpopular to the point of hatred, and either discontinued, or scaled back due to returns from banks. We currently have the Sacajawea dollar in circulation, but I’ve not seen one in years. I’ve heard rumors they’re being bought up and stored by the Federal Reserve bank, and exported to a couple of S. American countries that use US currency either more than their own, or officially.

 

Why Americans seem to hate $1 coins is something of a socio/psychological mystery to me. I always liked them. The Sacajawea dollar is, IMHO, beautifully designed (I found the Susan B. Anthony dollar of 1979, despite it’s cool lunar surface back, an aesthetic failure).

 

The biggest complaint I’ve heard, repeated since the SBA dollar, is that the dollar coins are too similar to our $0.25 “quarters”, and people too often accidentally handed over $1 when they thought they were handing over $0.25. Since the main reason pre-1979 $1 coins weren’t popular is said to be that they were too big, I’m not sure much can be done about that.

 

Some of the appeal of $1 coins is that they can be used in vending machines. However, inexpensive, reliable bill receivers have been available on these machines for 20+ years, negating that advantage. In my experience, It’s more common to find a US vending machine that accepts $1 bills than one that accepts $1 coins.

 

Another factor may be one of apparel and accessories. In the US, nearly all males carry a bill-fold wallet, almost always in a back pants pocket. I’ve noticed this seems less the case outside of the US. There even seems to be a major criminal sub-profession in many major European tourist destination dedicated to parting American tourists too dumb to read a “what not to do when traveling” guide from their fat, ***-packed wallets and all the goodies held within.

 

Here in the UK, we long ago replaced our paper "one-pound" notes, by "one-pound" coins. These coins give every satisfaction. They are neat and easy to handle. Much better than the old banknotes.

I’ve a funny story about £1 coins.

 

Some years ago, I spent a few days in London before returning to the US. Since currency exchanged is a hassle in the US (few banks will do it, and special merchants often charge exorbitant fees), I’ve long been in the habit of trying to spend all but a token of my foreign cash before boarding the plane for home. This time, I found myself at London Heathrow hours before my flight with pocket heavy with coin. Spotted a video arcade with some cool-looking game (the details of which I’ve long since forgotten) that accepted £1 coins, I proceeded to play it, dying and inserting coins to continue over and over for the good part of an hour. At some point, I recall thinking “these UK video games are great! You get lots of play for a quarter” Only after I spent my last £1 coin did I realized I’d just spent £20 to 40, thinking I’d spent $5 to 10.

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i voted mabe[sic].

 

i see canada is soon releasing their first polymer banknote in a $100 denomination. :clue:

 

one thing i haven't seen mentioned in articles on these is the cost of production. even with a longer life, if polymer notes cost enough more than paper notes then longer life may have little to no economic advantage.

 

then there is the matter of vending machines. do we get rid of papernote reading ones and make all new polymer reading ones, or do we make all new dual-readers, or do we double down & have both? then too, there are the machines in banks that count notes which have the same complication. more expense, more resources used.

 

and how will creasing a polymer note affect its useability in vending and counting machines? time will tell i guess. :twocents:

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Why should we use paper, or plastic, banknotes at all? Couldn't we use coins. Coins are stronger than flimsy paper. Paper money soon gets creased, and worn out, whereas good solid metal coins last much longer in circulation.

 

Here in the UK, we long ago replaced our paper "one-pound" notes, by "one-pound" coins. These coins give every satisfaction. They are neat and easy to handle. Much better than the old banknotes.

 

However, in the US, you're still sticking to the paper "One-Dollar Bills". These Bills, seem hardly justified nowadays. Given that the dollar has reduced in value so much. Does one dollar really merit an expensively colour-printed, serial-numbered paper banknote?

 

Why don't you mint a "one-dollar" coin instead?

 

Metal coins are more expensive for government to make than plastics.You have to dig the metal ore from mineral,mining is more expensive.Thats why I think,other good solution could be printing plastic coins.Plastic coins are reasonably more wear resistant than paper and costs cheaper than metal coins.

Moreover hologram security codes and symbols can be printed on plastics unlike metal coins.

 

Considering all three options,I think Plastics coins are best option.

Edited by Aman Shah
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It’s true that, considering only material and manufacturing costs, plastic coins are much cheaper than metal ones, even if the metal coins are made of less expensive metals than they traditionally, and at present, mostly now, are. (eg: steel rather than primarily copper/nickel/zinc alloys).

 

However, the economics and practical use of coins is more complicated than a simple comparison of the net cost of making them reveals. Coins are a kind of good, supplied sold by governments to banks, who need them to satisfy the needs of their customers. Somewhat counter-intuitively, when even a small fraction of coins are removed from circulation by collectors, either serious or casual ones, banks must buy more of them from the government mints, increasing demand and selling price. Governments can, therefore, actually profit from the sale of very popular coins. This is a complicated subject, usually included in the subject “seigniorage”.

 

Practically, there are problems with plastic coins:

 

One, familiar to observant children and adults who’ve played with them is they’re much lighter – about 6 time - than their metal equivalents. They won’t even feed successfully through most coin vending machines (if you try this, be sure to clear a single plastic coin immediately with a metal one, or you can jam the machine until a technician clear it). This means that, if their owners chose to accept the new plastic coins, nearly all vending and coin handling machines would need to be replaced with redesigned ones capable of handling both metal and plastic coins. If the new plastic coins aren’t convenient to use – for example, don’t work in most vending machines – customers will refuse to accept them from merchants, who will refuse to accept them from banks, who will refuse to buy them from mints, and the coin will fail and stop being minted in large numbers.

 

Another, familiar only to people with the audacity to try passing “play money” off as real, is that most merchants and customers intuitively consider plastic coins “fake”. So, if they are introduced, likely many will suspect people using them of attempting fraud. I imagine nothing makes a coin unpopular like getting into an argument, possibly one involving police, over it!

 

To the best of my knowledge, not nation has ever issues plastic coins, so there are no stories about problems with them. There are many stories about problems using unpopular metal coins, such as this one at a survivalist forum, recounting a store refusing to accept a US SBA dollar coin.

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cosidering that we view money as "immutable" ie once a dollar is printed it stays in circulation, i think plastic would be a neat shift. though i think you still need to back currency by some type of commodoty for it to be truly viable.

one idea i heard in that direction would be backing it by energy - batteries.

(either that or engage in 0 interest loans, read my post on currency in that regard.)

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