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Managing the circulation of banknotes

By Helen Allen and Andrew Dent


Issuing banknotes is one of the Bank of England’s best known and most recognisable functions. To maintain confidence in the physical currency, genuine notes must be available to meet public demand. This article explains how the note circulation is managed to maintain this confidence. The Bank’s role in this has changed considerably over the past 50 years with technological innovations and as the involvement of the commercial sector has grown. The Bank’s response to future developments will continue to be consistent with its objective of ensuring the availability of genuine notes of good quality in a balanced mix of denominations.

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  2. (2009). Banknotes in circulation: still rising. What does this mean for the future of cash?’, available at speech417.pdf.
  3. (2010). Banknotes: meeting demand’, available at speech435.pdf.

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