B1 Intermediate US 203 Folder Collection
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The Bank of England has been issuing banknotes for over 300 years. They were initially IOUs
for gold deposited at the Bank. People then used these notes to pay for things, knowing
they were backed by 'The Promise' to pay the equivalent value in gold. That is no longer
possible. So what gives banknotes a value today?
This bank note promises to be worth £20 but the note itself only cost a few pence to make.
So what is it that gives it that face value? In a word - trust. We trust that banknotes
can be exchanged for things we want to buy. We trust that they will be accepted by others
for their face value. In effect, we trust The Promise that this note is worth £20.
Maintaining the value of money is one of the most important jobs of the Bank of England.
It starts by ensuring that genuine banknotes are very hard to copy to stop the chance that
fake notes could undermine trust in the real thing. Counterfeit notes are worthless. It's
the Bank's job to make life difficult for counterfeiters.
All notes are printed on specially developed materials that are not only hard wearing but
also gives them a unique feel. They also have a range of security features
including holograms, metallic threads, watermarks and raised print.
All this is very hard to reproduce and makes the notes extremely difficult to copy. But
it also makes it easy for everyone to see and feel whether a note is real or not. And
this, of course is vital if the note is to retain its value.
But this is only one way in which the Bank protects the value of our money.
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The role of the Bank of England - Part 1: Money

203 Folder Collection
Amy.Lin published on September 27, 2019
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