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New $100s Present Opportunities
By Ed Zegers, Bank Note Reporter
June 24, 2013

This article was originally printed in Bank Note Reporter.
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After conducting a routine search of $1 Federal Reserve Notes for star replacement notes, I received 20 of the $100 FRNs (currently in circulation) at the time of my exchange. In the past, I just went to another bank and bought more singles to search. However, as I looked at those 20 $100 notes, I tried to picture the future. I saw color $100 notes, like the $5s, $10s, $20s, and $50s. I also began to recognize that there is one whale of an opportunity coming in October. Yes, the new and colorized $100 FRNs series is again scheduled for release to the public by the Federal Reserve. This time, it is for Oct. 8.

To review the present situation, you will remember that once-upon-a-time, back in 2010, those colorized NexGen $100s were scheduled to be released into circulation, but just prior to the specified release date, the discovery of a production problem at the Bureau of Engraving and Printing created a delay. Some of the notes had been inspected and were found to have folds where there should be none.

This being the case, it was decided to hold off on the public release until the cause of the creasing problem was found and corrected. Then, when BEP began the series 2009 production process again, it prudently decided to identify the second printing of NexGen $100s printed as series 2009a.

To identify all new $100 notes produced after the critical delay, BEP changed the series designations on both the older notes (still in production) and the newer NexGen $100s. The oldest went from series 2006 into series 2006a and the newest, NexGen, went from series 2009 into series 2009a. Both series are being printed as of this writing.

Also, as time passes, lives change. So when the U.S. treasurer decided to leave his post and change jobs a few months back, this threw another monkey wrench into BEP plans. You see, when the signatures on the money change, so does the series.

Now the dilemma is: How long can we wait for the newest series to be added into the mix and production schedule? Will NexGen $100s be in series 2009b, or will BEP designate series 2013? We will all wait breathlessly for that answer.

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I am not into collecting $100 star notes. However, I did some research about these two series from the available data at and documented some very intriguing data for collectors and speculators alike.

There are four charts I have created supporting to my own interests, star replacement notes. • Chart 1 is for the series 2006 stars the BEP produced (series is completed and available now).

• Chart 2 is for the series 2006a stars (old-style), which are still being printed and released as needed and/or required, and also available now.

• Chart 3 shows NexGen stars for series 2009 produced and stored with errors/problems. This series is now completed and is no longer in production, but I believe they will be released to the public in October, as originally ordered by Congress.

• Chart 4 holds the data for the production problem-corrected series 2009a of NexGen $100 stars. BEP has told us that this series should also hit the streets in October 2013. None have ever been released for circulation.

Here is what makes such an interesting and speculative time. If Treasury and BEP decide to switch plans again and issue a new series (2009b or 2013) before October with the signature of the new treasurer, then we could yet have another series of NexGen star $100 replacements notes to look for, bringing the count of unissued NexGen $100 series to watch for to three. This event is unique and unheard of in U.S. currency production history.

This also raises another question: What will happen for all of the other denominations?

Fortunate, or unfortunate, for the collector is the fact that the three above are all $100 notes and that will represent a lot of money to invest in a collection or for speculation.

I hope you all will give this some thought and watch for opportunities to present themselves. It could mean a better retirement for some.

Oh, I almost forgot to mention that the BEP is now using “LEPE” production for the $1 notes. This is the new printing/production machinery that prints 50 notes per sheet rather than the old 32-note-per-sheet C.O.P.E. More on this later because this changes the way we look at and understand U.S. currency production.

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