New Australian banknotes draw criticism upon release

Yesterday, the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) unveiled the design for its new $5 banknote, which immediately drew mixed reactions on social media.

Between the assertive petitioning of Sydney Morning Herald columnist Dominic Knight and the harsh words from economist and former budget advisor Jason Murphy, Australians are sharing their thoughts on the new design.

The new note, which will enter circulation Sept. 1, keeps the key aspects of the existing series – things like colour, size and people portrayed – but includes a new “tactile” feature to help those with impaired vision distinguish between different denominations.

“Innovative new security features have been incorporated to help keep Australia’s banknotes secure from counterfeiting into the future. As can be seen in the images, these include a distinctive top-to-bottom window,” said Glenn Stevens, bank governor. “Each banknote in the new series will depict a different species of Australian wattle and a native bird within a number of the elements. On the $5 banknote, these are the Prickly Moses wattle and the Eastern Spinebill.”

 

Representatives from the bank added the designs are the “culmination of a process of extensive consultation with subject-matter experts and the cash-handling industry, as well as qualitative research involving focus groups.”

Despite the extensive research – alas, even with the most extensive research – you can’t make everyone happy.

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