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Your money: plastic bank notes and shorter holds on cheques

Australian plastic banknotes in use for decades.

The Bank of Canada will begin circulating a new $100 polymer bank note in November 2011, with a polymer $50 note to follow in March 2012.  More details on the security features, themes and designs of these denominations is to be unveiled in the spring of 2011. The remaining denominations – the $20 note, followed by the $10 and $5 notes – will be unveiled and issued by the end of 2013.

With the introduction of the polymer bank note series, the Bank’s main focus continues to be security. “Canada’s new bank notes will have innovative security features that are easy to verify,” said Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of Canada. “The leading-edge technology in these notes will expand the frontiers of bank note security.”

In addition to enhancing security, the new bank note series is to be easier to verify, more economical and have a reduced environmental impact. The Bank of Canada evaluated a number of options before deciding on a new suite of security features and on the use of polymer material – which is expected to last at least 2.5 times longer than the current cotton-paper bills.

To prepare for the new notes, the Bank is working closely with financial institutions and manufacturers of bank note equipment to ensure a smooth transition to polymer. Law enforcement agencies and retailers will also be important partners as the Bank introduces the polymer series.
“With these new notes, the Bank of Canada will provide Canadians with a durable, high-quality, secure form of payment that they can use with confidence,” added Governor Carney.
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Meanwhile,  Wednesday’s proposal by the Canadian government to change banking regulations to shorten cheque hold periods has Prince Edward-Hastings Member of Parliament, Daryl Kramp’s full approval and support.

“If you take your pay cheque into the bank you shouldn’t have to wait seven days to get any of your money”, said Mr. Kramp. “It’s your money and you should have access to it”.

Yesterday’s proposal made by the Conservative government would see two new regulations:

The Access to Funds Regulation would reduce the maximum cheque hold period from seven to four days for cheques under $1500. Moreover, the change would provide consumers with immediate access to the first $100 deposited by cheque.

The Negative Option Billing Regulation would require banks to obtain consumers’ express consent before providing a new optional product or service.

“Our government is taking action to protect consumers and allow them faster access to their own money”, said Mr. Kramp.

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