Circular
Treasury, Federal Reserve, Secret Service Issue Report on Counterfeit U.S. Currency Abroad
October 27, 2006
Circular No. 11820

To All Depository Institutions and Others Concerned
in the Second Federal Reserve District:

The Treasury Department, the Federal Reserve Board and the Secret Service have issued their third collaborative report on the use and counterfeiting of U.S. currency abroad. The report revealed that while more than half of circulated U.S. banknotes are held in other countries, counterfeiting incidents remain low.

Residents of countries with unpredictable political and economic conditions have used U.S. currency as a means of reliability for decades. The report estimated that as of December 2005, about $450 billion of the $760 billion in circulation is held abroad.

The international popularity of U.S. currency makes it an obvious target for counterfeiters. But the report estimates that of U.S. notes in circulation abroad and at home, only about one note in 10,000 is counterfeit.

The report attributes this low level of incidents to extensive U.S. data gathering, education efforts, law enforcement and communications with banks around the world.

See the attached press release for full details.

Press release
Joint report

Public Information
general.info@ny.frb.org
(212) 720-6130