MEMBERS of the pubic have been warned to beware of about 119,663 pieces of fake and counterfeit N500 and N1000 denominations currently in circulation in some parts of the country.
Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) dropped the hint yesterday in its Annual Report Currency Operations for 2018 as posted on its website.
According to the report, these counterfeit notes were nominally valued at about N100 million.
The report further stated that though these fake currencies were recorded in 2018; they have not been completely mopped out of public domain.
However, stating that the ratio of counterfeit notes to the volume of banknotes in circulation was 18 pieces per million, compared to 16 pieces per million banknotes discovered in 2017, CBN noted that the figure indicated a decline of 1.30 per cent in volume and an increase of 5.77 per cent in value when compared with 118,126 pieces with a nominal value of N93.43 million recorded in the corresponding period of 2017, adding that N500 and N1000 denominations remained the most commonly counterfeited banknotes to account for 65.29 per cent and 34.49 per cent respectively of total counterfeit notes discovered.
However, the regulatory bank said that to preserve integrity of banknotes in circulation, it partnered with Bankers Warehouse PLC and security agencies in a bid to intensify efforts at mitigating incidences of counterfeiting during the period under review.
Currency- in-Circulation (CIC) grew by 0.8 percent to N2, 329.7 billion as at December 2018 ending, although slight decline in the CIC-GDP ratio reflected increased usage of e-payment products such as electronic payments card. But this growth reflected high dominance of cash in the economy and an increase in economic activities.
“A breakdown of the CIC indicated that in terms of volume and value, the proportion of higher denomination banknotes (₦100, ₦200, ₦500 and ₦1000) in total, rose from 41.9 to 44.3 per cent and 96.9 to 97.6 per cent, respectively.
The lower denomination currency notes continued to be preponderant in terms of volume, constituting 55.7 per cent of the total. In value terms, it constituted 2.4 per cent of the total banknotes. The ratio of CIC to nominal GDP, which measures the moneyness of the economy, fell slightly by 0.1 per centage point, to 1.8 per cent in 2018,” the report continues.