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The U.S. dollar, referred to as the USD, is the staple of the financial system and is used in virtually every corner of the globe. Beyond being one of the world’s biggest currencies, the greenback has some interesting hidden gems you may not have heard of before. Below are five fascinating facts about the USD you probably didn’t know.

5 Things You Didn’t Know About the USD

The USD is part of 87% of all currency trades

You read that number correctly. Of the more than $5 trillion in daily forex turnover, the greenback is on one side of the trade 87% of the time. That’s more than double the euro, which is the second-most traded currency.[1] These numbers are courtesy of the Triennial Central Bank Survey conducted by the Bank for International Settlements.

The USD is a truly global currency

There’s about $1.54 trillion worth of U.S. currency in circulation around the world. More than two-thirds of all $100 bills are held outside the United States.[2]

Dollar bills are made of cotton & linen

Believe it or not, the dollar bill can be folded at least 8,000 times, which is about 20 times more than a regular sheet of paper. These special powers come from the fact that the dollar is made up of 75% cotton and 25% linen.[3]

You have the USD to thank for the Secret Service

Today, the Secret Service is known for safeguarding the life of the U.S. President. However, when it was first established back in 1865, its intent was to fight counterfeit money. At the time, about one-third of all bills were thought to be fake.[4]

There’s a $100,000 bill

Yup! You read that right. The largest U.S. bill ever printed is way bigger than you think. Back in 1934, a bill worth $100,000 was printed. It featured President Woodrow Wilson and was actually a Gold Certificate, which was used for transactions between Federal Reserve banks.[5]

[1] The Economist (14 September 2013). Global foreign exchange turnover.

[2] Jeff Desjardins (6 July 2017). “38 incredible facts about the modern US dollar.” Business Insider.

[3] Jeff Desjardins (6 July 2017). “38 incredible facts about the modern US dollar.” Business Insider.

[4] The Huffington Post (17 August 2017). “10 Surprising Facts About the Dollar Bill And U.S. Currency.”

[5] Vicki Passmore (23 November 2010). “10 Fascinating Facts About U.S. Currency.”

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