The $100 bill could be the most endangered U.S. bank note
Feb. 16, 2016 7:12 p.m. ET
The $100 bill is America’s most popular currency denomination. It also could be the most endangered.

Why Larry Summers wants to kill the $100 bill

Published: Feb 16, 2016 11:39 a.m. ET

Get rid of the $100 bill. Heck, maybe get rid of the $50 bill, too.

So says Lawrence Summers, a former economic adviser to President Obama and ex-Treasury secretary.

Summers points to research showing that corruption is aided by paper currency in larger denominations, such as Uncle Sam’s $100 bill and the 500-euro bill ($557 U.S. equivalent).

How so? It’s easier for criminals and terrorists to move lots of cash illicitly in large bills. A million dollars in €500 bills weighs just 2.2 pounds, Summers writes in a blog post on the Washington Post website. The same amount of money in $20 U.S. bills weighs 50 pounds.

Summers says the U.S. government should stop issuing new $100 bills and perhaps take the old ones out of circulation. He implied that use of a $50 bill should also be examined.


He took particular aim at the resistance of Luxembourg to ending the €500 note, saying the tiny country has a “long and unsavory tradition of giving comfort to tax evaders, money launderers, and other proponents of bank secrecy.”

Also read: ECB may finally deal a deathblow to the €500 bill

On its website, the U.S. Treasury says it does not have “any plans to change the denominations in use today.” The government now issues $1, $2, $5, $10, $20, $50 and $100 bills.

The biggest bills ever produced for public circulation were $500, $1,000, $5,000 and $10,000 notes. But they were mainly used by banks and were phased out in 1969.

Several hundred $10,000 bills still exist and would be honored by the government, but they are held by collectors. A $10,000 bill in pristine condition can fetch $100,000 or more.

Getting rid of the $100 bill, or even the $50, won’t eliminate crime and corruption but would make it harder for criminals to launder money, Summers argues. “It may not be a free lunch, but it is a very cheap lunch,” Summers wrote.

Workers use loupes and blown-up sections to compare counterfeit hundred-dollar bills with a legitimate sample. North Korea allegedly counterfeited the $100 bill on a widespread basis before its 2013 redesign.

Larry Summers, the father of NEGATIVE INTEREST RATES, is so against a free society and looks upon us as dumb cattle to be herded and corralled for his pleasure. His ideas are just beyond belief.

Now Mr. Pro-Government-Anti-Democracy is advocating killing the $100 bill. He is moving to electronic money so that government can get all the taxes it ever dreamed of. We are rapidly being converted from milk cows to just beef cows.

This is creating a completely totalitarian future. With people like this who never had a real job but knows how to dictate to the world, our future looks very bleak.

Summers actually reveals this is really about taxes by arguing that the U.S. government should stop issuing new $100 bills and recall the old ones out of circulation. Keep in mind the government will comply because this is the balloon he is floating at their direction and the press cheers our demise. There is nobody in the press willing to call him out. They prefer to lick the ground he walks on. They give him air-time because that is their role.