Counterfeit and damaged money statistics
The Bank of Lithuania publishes statistics on counterfeit and damaged money. The information is updated every six months.
In the first half of 2021, the Bank of Lithuania examined and withdrew from circulation a total of 459 euro counterfeits (428 banknotes and 31 coins) – 28% less compared to the second half of 2020, which saw 638 counterfeits detected.
Obviously counterfeit euro banknotes – the so-called movie money – have remained a relevant issue in 2021 and account for approximately 40% of the total number of counterfeit banknotes received. However, the Bank of Lithuania has observed an increase in counterfeits that are similar to the “movie money” but carry different inscriptions in various languages. Even though such replicas can be labelled as a souvenir or an unlawful reproduction, the Bank of Lithuania experts remind that such banknotes do not fulfil the criteria of lawful reproductions of euro banknotes, as defined in Article 1(1) of the Decision of the European Central Bank of 19 April 2013 on the denominations, specifications, reproduction, exchange and withdrawal of euro banknotes (ECB/2013/10). Pursuant to Article 2(2) of this decision, such reproductions are deemed unlawful and their production, possession, transportation, distribution, sale, promotion, imports to the European Union and use or attempts to use in transactions are prohibited.
Counterfeit euro banknotes and coins in Lithuania
As in 2020, €50 notes continued to be the most counterfeited banknotes, accounting for 44% of the total number of counterfeits found. However, the Bank of Lithuania also noted an increase in €500 counterfeits, which accounted for 18% of the total.
Counterfeit euro banknotes in Lithuania by denomination (H1 2021)
According to the data from the European Central Banks, a total of 167,000 counterfeit euro banknotes were found in the first half of 2021. €20 and €50 notes continued to be the most counterfeited banknotes, accounting for 34% and 33% of the total, respectively.
The number of counterfeited banknotes decreased by 24.1% compared to the second half of 2020 and by 30.4% compared to the first half of 2020.
The Bank of Lithuania not only evaluates counterfeits, but also exchanges worn and damaged euro and litas banknotes or coins.
Exchanged banknotes and coins
A total of 6,069 damaged or worn banknotes and coins were exchanged at the Bank of Lithuania at the request of natural and legal persons in the first half of 2021, the total value of which reached around €270,000.
Banknotes brought by residents for exchange may be torn, mouldy due to improper storage conditions, decayed or burnt in furnaces and accidental fires. People sometimes find hidden and forgotten money under the floor, in door stands or old furniture. More information about the services can be found here.