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“It’s All About The Benjamins”

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

When U.S. rapper Puff Daddy released his hit single “It’s All About the Benjamins” in 1997, he was way ahead of his time. Back then, the $100 bill the song refers to was only the third most popular dollar note, trailing the ubiquitous $1 dollar note and the $20 dollar note in terms of circulation, but 20 years and several nicknames later, Diddy’s prophecy would eventually be fulfilled.

However, as Statista's Felix Richter notes, according to Federal Reserve data quoted by the IMF, the $100 bill became the most circulated currency in the world in 2017, overtaking the $1 bill for the first time ever. What’s even more interesting though, is the fact that an estimated 80 percent of the 13.4 billion $100 notes in circulation are held outside the United States, compared to “just” 60 percent of all 43 billion U.S. dollar bills.

Infographic: It's All About the Benjamins | Statista

You will find more infographics at Statista

So what makes the $100 bill so popular in and especially outside the United States? Apart from political and monetary instabilities driving demand for U.S. dollars, especially in large denominations, as a safe-haven currency, i.e. a stable and secure asset, Harvard University’s Kenneth Rogoff has another theory:

“Worldwide, high-value currency notes are mainly used to avoid taxes and regulation, and for illegal activity,” he observes. “Apartments and houses in major cities all over the world are paid for with suitcases of cash every day, and it is not because the buyers are afraid of bank failures.”

All of which is odd… because we were led to believe that Bitcoin (and the rest of the corrupt cryptos) were entirely responsible for all fraud around the world…

Mnuchin believes that cash is not laundered like Bitcoin is…

After Mnuchin clearly said that Bitcoin’s vulnerability to money laundering is the main reason for the Treasury to regulate it tightly, CNBC’s host Joe Kernen questioned his point in an interview on Squawk Box on July 18.

Kernen argued that Bitcoin and other existing currencies’ capabilities to be used for nefarious activities cannot be a reason for banning them, noting that “cash is laundered all the time.” Mnuchin did not back off from his position, replying that such a statement is not accurate.

“I don’t think that’s accurate at all, that cash is laundered all the time,”

The Secretary elaborated that the U.S. has the strongest anti-money laundering (AML) system in the world, adding that the government combats “bad actors in the U.S. dollar every day to protect the U.S. financial system.”

Following the interview, Kernen expressed sarcasm about Mnuchin’s idea that cash has not been laundered all the time, but the authorities are combating illicit activities in its system. He tweeted:

“‘The existing system has never been used for illicit activities but we're going to make sure crypto is isn't used for illicit activities like the current system.’ Got it.”


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