50 Euro banknote is most popular target of counterfeiters

In the first half of 2007 the German Bundesbank confiscated 20,540 counterfeited banknotes which is an increase by about 4% in comparison to the first half of 2007. In Germany the banknote most counterfeited is the 50 Euro banknote. There has been an increase in the number of forged 100-Euro and 200-Euro banknotes. The forged notes of these three most targeted banknote groups combined account for more than 80% of the total number of forgeries.

“Fortunately there are just about five forged banknotes per every 10.000 inhabitants each year which is a figure that is far below the average value of the Eurozone”, says Dr. Hans Reckers, who is the Bundesbank director responsible for coins and banknotes. Says Reckers: “In the year 2007 the Bundesbank recorded about 40.000 counterfeited Euro-banknotes which is a significant decrease as compared to the previous year.” However, given that in particular higher denominations were forged, the damage caused rose to 3.8 million Euros.

On an international level the number of forgeries confiscated in 2007 amounted to 296,000 counterfeited banknotes. If one compares this number with the number of genuine banknotes circulating (on average 11.4 billion), then it turns out that the percentage of forged banknotes is insignificantly small.

The majority (96%) of forgeries seized internationally in the second half of 2007 were confiscated in member countries of the Eurozone, even though this percentage is slightly smaller than in recent years. About 3.5% of forgeries were discovered in EU member states which do not belong to the Eurozone, and all the remaining forgeries were detected elsewhere in the world.

The mostly forged banknote at an international level was once again the 50-Euro-banknote. The 20 Euro, 50 Euro and 100 Euro denominations forged accounted for about 88 % of all counterfeited banknotes.

However, in particular with regard to 20-Euro and 200-Euro banknotes there are significant differences compared to Germany: While in Germany the 20-Euro-forgery accounts for 12.1% and the 200-Euro forgery for 25.2% of all counterfeited banknotes, the figures at an international level are 27.5% and 9% respectively. GERMAN