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The US Department of the Treasury has announced that a redesigned $10 bill – complete with splashes of orange, red and yellow to offset the traditional green – will go into circulation early next year.

The government unveiled the new bill design yesterday, with Treasury Secretary John Snow saying that “thanks to the changes we've made in currency design, thanks to aggressive law enforcement led by the U.S. Secret Service and thanks to an informed public, we've been able to stay ahead of the counterfeiters.”

The $20 bill got a makeover in 2003 and the $50 was redesigned in 2004 – though the colors vary from denomination to denomination to make it easier to identify bills.

There reportedly are no plans to redesign and add color to the $1, $2 or $5 bills.
KC's View:
The decision not to redesign anything smaller than the $10 bill may send the unintended message that there’s little you can buy for that amount of money.

We actually think it is sort of amusing that the government thinks that people will be able to differentiate between the bills because they have different color splashes – as opposed to, say, because they have different big numbers located on each side of the bill.

Here’s a test. Quick, without looking: what are highlight colors on the $20 and the $50 bills?


(Not a test we passed, by the way.)