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42 Interesting Money Facts

42 Fun Facts About Money That Will Surprise You

Money Is a Part of Our Everyday Lives. In Fact, It Can Be Said That It's the Number One Topic in the World Today. Money Affects Everything From Relationships to Politics & Even Religion. Here's Some Money Trivia That Will Make You the Most Interesting Guest at Any Dinner Table.

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Money is a topic that many people have strong opinions on. Some love it, and some hate it. Money can be the root of all evil or the source of happiness and prosperity. But what are some facts about money? Is there anything you didn’t know about this abstract concept?

Here are 42 interesting facts about money that’ll surprise you.

Fact #1: UK Coins Can Be Combined to Reveal a Secret Shield Design

UK coins can be stacked so that they form the shape of the shield design from the Royal Coat of Arms1.

uk coin 2

Fact #2: Global Debt Is Now Almost 2.5 Times Greater Than the World’s Total Stockpiles of Money

This is an astronomical figure and a sign that there could be some significant financial shocks in the future.

global debt

Fact #3: Our Bank Notes Aren’t Made From Tress

Trees aren’t cut down to make our bank notes. They’re made from cotton and linen fibres.

no trees

Fact #4: Star Wars, Pokémon, & Frozen Coins Are Legal Tenders on the Island of Niue

Niue2 is a small island country located in the South Pacific Ocean. It has just one store, and it accepts all three of these coins as payment for goods.

star wars

Fact #5: The New English £5 Note Can Play Vinyl Records

This is the first banknote to be printed on polymer, which means it can play vinyl records.

Play Vinyl

Fact #6: The New English £5 Note Contains Traces of Animal Fat

The new English £50 note contains traces of grease, the rendered fat from animals such as cows or pigs.

animal fat

Fact #7: North Korea Is the Largest Counterfeiter of US Dollars

North Korea is the world’s largest counterfeiter3 of US dollars. Estimates say they have produced more than $45 million worth of fake currency, making them a serious threat to global stability and security.

counterfeit

Fact #8: Emerich Juettner Was a Pro at Counterfeiting

German forger Emerich Juettner was the most prolific counterfeiter in history. He’s estimated to have produced around £150 million worth of forged banknotes.

Emerich Juettner

Fact #9: You Can Make Your Worn Out Money Crisp Again

You can make your worn-out money crisp again by soaking it in Coca-Cola. The acid from the drink will cause a chemical reaction that makes the paper look new.

Crisp Again

Fact #10: Money Is Recycled When Worn Out

Recycling is a crucial part of modern life, but it’s even more critical for money. Money has to be recycled every 18 months or so because the ink starts to wear off from handling and contact with other pieces of paper.

Recycled

Fact #11: Money Is Dirty

Paper money is a breeding ground for bacteria. The average banknote carries over twenty types of disease-causing microbes, with high levels of staphylococcus and ecoli found on them.

Money Facts

Fact #12: Germans Used Money as Wallpaper to Stay Warm

During the First World War, Germans used paper money as wallpaper to help keep their homes warm. They would tear up pieces of banknotes and cover windows with them for insulation.

wallpaper

Fact #13: Only 8% Of the World’s Currency Is Physical Money

Most of the world’s money is digital. We use debit cards and online banking systems to purchase most of our goods and services.

Physical Money

Fact #14: The Ink Used to Print Money Is High Tech

The ink used to print money is high-tech. It contains metal and polymer particles that most counterfeiters can’t detect, which helps maintain the integrity of our currency.

High Tech Ink

Fact #15: Money Engravers Are Extremely Skilled

Money engravers are skilled craftsmen who need to be able to interpret the complex designs of banknotes. They can’t just copy them; they have to create something original that’s true to the original design.

engraver

Fact #16: Pennies in Your Garden Deter Pests

Pests like snails and slugs love to eat your plants, but pennies can deter them. The copper in the coins repels these pests because they don’t like the bitter taste.

Pennies In Garden

Fact #17: A Penny Costs More to Manufacture Than It’s Worth

A penny costs more to produce than the coin is worth, which means it’s constantly being created and then recycled. The metal in a single penny has over one cent worth of value.

pennies

Fact #18: The Romans Were the First to Stamp the Image of a Living Person on a Coin

Emperor Gaius Julius Caesar Augustus was the first to have his likeness stamped on a coin.

romans

Fact #19: The Study or Collection of Money Is Called “Numismatics”

The study or collection of coins and banknotes is called numismatics. Numismatics has been going on for centuries.

Numismatics

Fact #20: The First Paper Money Was Made in China Over 1,000 Years Ago

The first paper money was made in China over 1000 years ago. Known as “flying cash,” this form of currency could be folded or cut up into small pieces for easy transportation and use – perfect if you’re on the go.

first paper money

Fact #21: Some Countries Share a Currency

In some cases, two or more countries share a currency. For example, the Euro is used in seventeen European Union member states and five other neighboring nations.

Shared Currency

Fact #22: Icelanders Are the World’s Most Avid Card Users

Icelanders Use Debit & Credit Cards The Most. Iceland has a population of 320,000 people, and yet they use their cards for 80% of all transactions.

credit cards 1

Fact #23: The Country With the Worst Inflation in the World Is Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe has experienced hyperinflation4, which means its currency is worth so little that it’s essentially worthless. The inflation rate in Zimbabwe reached a staggering 89,700% per month.

inflation rate

Fact #24: Tea Bricks Were Used as Money in Siberia Until the WW2

In the 1800s, tea bricks were used as money in Eastern Siberia. These bricks would be traded for other goods and services only – they weren’t legal tender.

tea bricks

Fact #25: Queen Elizabeth II Holds the Record for Appearing on More Currency Than Any Other Person

Queen Elizabeth II has appeared on more currencies than any other person. She’s featured on the 50-cent coin in many countries and has had her face printed on millions of banknotes.

Queen Elizabeth

Fact #26: Over 170 Different Currencies Are Used Around the World Today

There are over 170 different currencies used around the world today. In other words, you need to know what currency is being accepted in a country before deciding on where you want to go.

Different Currencies

Fact #27: Early Romans Used Salt as a Form of Money

Early Romans used salt as a form of money. They would trade it for items they needed or wanted, and the word “salary” actually comes from this practice.

Salt as Money

Fact #28: The First Coins Were Made About 2,500 Years Ago

The first coins were made around 2500 years ago and used by the Lydian civilization in Turkey. There are many theories as to why they started using money. One theory is that these coins served a ceremonial function.

First Coin

Fact #29: Pablo Escobar Had so Much Money Lying Around That Rats Ate Approximately £1 Billion

Pablo Escobar was a Colombian drug lord who had so much money that he couldn’t spend it all. When the DEA raided his house, they found £200 million in cash alongside thousands of shopping bags full of clothes and shoes.

Fact #30: The Largest Denomination Ever Printed Was in Hungary in 1946

The largest denomination ever printed was in Hungary in 1946. It’s a 20 pengo banknote, and its worth is equivalent to roughly £30 today.

Largest Denomination

Fact #31: The Word “Cash” Originated in Ancient China

The word “cash,” as in currency, originated from ancient China. This is because they would often barter for goods and services using small copper coins known as cash or kai (which was short for the old Chinese words meaning “to scrape together”).

the word cash

Fact #32: The Word “Cent” Derives From Latin

When referring to a coin or 100th of a unit, the word cent is derived from the Latin word “centum.” In other words, it’s worth one-hundredth of what something costs.

The Word Cent

Fact #33: The Term “Cash Cow” Originated From Early Forms of Currency in the Form of Livestock

The term “cash cow” actually originated from early forms of currency in the form of livestock. For example, if someone had a goat that gave milk, they would say it was their cash cow because they could sell its milk and earn money.

cash cow

Fact #34: Sea Shells Were Once Commonly Used as Money in Many Parts of the World

Seashells were once commonly used as money in many parts of the world, including India. The earliest recorded use of the shell currency was by traders on the island of Yap5.

seashells

Fact #35: The Average Adult Has Between 8 & 10 Credit Cards

The average adult has between eight and ten cards. Most people don’t like to use more than two or three at any given time.

Average Adult Credit Card

Fact #36: Walter Cavanagh Has More Than 13,000 Credit Cards

Walter Cavanagh is a Guinness World Record holder who has more than 13,000 credit cards. He’s been collecting them since the early 1970s, and they’re all different colors!

walter

Fact #37: 95% Of the Notes Printed Each Year Replace Those Already in Circulation

Only around 5% of the notes printed each year are brand new. The rest replace those already in circulation.

Money Facts

Fact #38: Paper Bills Are Made of 25% Linen & 75% Cotton

Bill paper is made of 25% linen and 75% cotton. The Bureau of Engraving & Printing6, which produces the notes, uses cellulose fibres to create this solid yet flexible material.

Money Made of Cotton

Fact #39: Ridges on Coins Have a Purpose

Ridges on coins have a purpose, and it’s not to make them more accessible for people to hold. This design feature was added to discourage coin clipping.

Fact #40: 85% To 95% Of Paper Money Contains Traces of Cocaine

85% to 95% of paper money contains traces of cocaine. In its early days, US currency was made with a mix of cotton and linen from the southern United States, where drugs were grown.

Paper Money Contains

Fact #41: 7 Tons of Ink Is Used to Print Money Every Day

Every day, about seven tons of ink is used to print money. This tells you just how much paper currency we’re talking about.

Tons of Ink

Fact #42: Coins Can Last an Average of 30 Years in Circulation

Coins can last an average of 30 years in circulation. The cash you see is usually made with a metal alloy mix of copper and nickel (nickel being the primary constituent).

coin circulation

Common Questions

How Is Money Created?

Who Determines the Money Supply?

What Is Legal Tender?

What Is Currency?

How Does Inflation Happen?

In Conclusion

It’s hard to imagine a world without any money. The emergence of new technologies will likely change how we interact with cash and credit cards in the future.

Whether you think this is good or bad news, one thing is for sure- our relationship with money has changed dramatically over time and that trend won’t stop anytime soon.

References

  • www.moneysmartguides.com/fun-facts-about-money-i-bet-you-didnt-know
  • www.seriousfacts.com/money-facts/
  • mediafeed.org/100-fascinating-facts-about-money/
  • shorelinecu.org/hometown-rewards/the-hometown-kids-club/fun-money-facts/
  • www.lovemoney.com/gallerylist/61505/29-surprising-facts-about-the-worlds-money
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