$100,000 Dollar Bill: It’s Real, But Not For You

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The largest transaction note to ever be invented in the U.S was the 100,000 dollar bill.  It was commissioned in 1933 by President Roosevelt during the Great Depression.

At the time, the  U.S. economy was undergoing a recession. Thus, this banknote was primarily printed so as to manage economic situations and prevent their currency from further depreciating in value.

What Led to the Invention of the 100,000 Dollar Bill?

  • Low Bank Deposits

Due to the economic recession, money was scarce. The recession forced the government to look for a drastic way of improving cash flow within banks. The 100,000 dollar banknote was thus invented to enable financial institutions to transact with each other without running out of funds.

Reduction in Tax Collection by the Government

The great depression that occurred in 1929 devalued currency to the extent that most people preferred making barter trade. Bartering was preferred to the formal means of exchanging commodities using money.

As a result, fewer funds were flowing into the state reserves through taxation, and this affected administrative functions. To ensure government offices didn’t collapse due to lack of revenue, the 100,000 dollar banknote was introduced.

Who Could Use the $100,000 Dollar Bill?

Authorities strictly regulated the 100,000 dollar bill, and only Federal Reserve Banks were allowed to transact it.

Each bank issued with the bill was also expected to have a similar amount of gold kept with U.S. Treasury. Even rich people who had equivalent sums of cash during this time weren’t allowed to carry the $100,000 bill.

What Does the $100,000 Dollar Bill Look Like?

The bill features an image of Woodrow Wilson, who is America’s 28th president. Woodrow held office between 1913 and 1921. He is also renowned for being among the founders of the League of Nations. Essentially, this is the organization that later became the United Nations (UN).

$100,000 Dollar Bill Wrap-Up

In summary, the 100,000 dollar bill is a rare note that was invented during the Great American Depression of 1929. The banknote was only meant for use by Federal Reserve Banks, and it was mainly introduced to help stabilize the economy.

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Hi, I'm GP. A personal finance expert with a mission to help Entirely Money readers break free of money worries. Combining a finance-focused education background (B.S. in Finance and MBA with Finance focus) with over 15 years of personal and corporate finance experience to help you achieve your financial best life!