13 March 2008
The NEW Color of Money
The U.S. Bureau of Engraving and Printing is issuing a “NEW” design for the $5 Bill today. The “NEW” $5 Bill will have many of the features we have seen in the past such watermarks and security threads. You will notice a second watermark is added in this new bill to go with the enhanced portrait of Abraham Lincoln but the most notable change is a LARGE 5 on the back of the bill in purple. The USBEP calls this the Low-Vision Feature. “The large, easy-to-read number "5" in the lower right corner on the back of the bill, which helps those with visual impairments distinguish the denomination, is now enlarged in the new $5 bill design and printed in high-contrast purple ink.”
I am not sure who is making the design decisions in Washington DC these days. This new Low-Vision feature is just ugly. Take a look at the purple color, the scale and sans serif font choice of the 5. I think a black would have worked for the 5. I know green would have worked (a dark green for contrast of course). Some how I am also sure the scale issue could have been resolved so the visually impaired could still see a 5. How about a font that compliments the currency’s design and does not look like it was cut and pasted from a Euro bill? I remember when U.S. currency was known as “green backs”. Maybe I am dating myself with that term and will be thankful for the new design when my vision fails for the LARGE PURPLE backed 5. Until then, I hope this design will not bring the dollar down further on the world market. I was hoping for a trip to Europe soon.