Cash-Loving Switzerland Wins Banknote of Year for 50-Franc Bill

Updated on
  • Maldives, Argentina, Scotland were runners up in 2016 contest
  • International Bank Note Society has annual award for notes

The Swiss National Bank’s 50-franc ($50) bill was named banknote of the year by a group of international connoisseurs, beating out 18 competitors including the Bank of England’s controversial polymer note as well as ones from the Seychelles and Macedonia.

The runners-up in “very tight voting” were bills from the Maldives, Argentina and Scotland, according to a statement from the International Bank Note Society on Tuesday.

SNB’s 50-franc banknote.

Photographer: Michele Limina/Bloomberg

The SNB’s 50-franc note, designed with the theme of wind and depicting a dandelion, mountains and a paraglider, was introduced last April, the first in a new series that features nature rather than portraits of famous men and women. A new 20-franc bill is due to be unveiled next month.

The award is a feather in the cap of the cash-loving Swiss, who have declined to give up their most valuable 1,000-franc bill despite international criticism.

“We’re happy about it,” SNB spokesman Walter Meier said of the citation.

Founded in 1961, the non-profit IBNS seeks to advance the study of knowledge of paper currency around the world. It has more than 2,000 members.

    Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal. LEARN MORE