Paper Money

Canada's $10 note wins IBNS honors for 2018

The Bank of Canada’s new $10 note has won the International Bank Note Society Banknote of the Year award for 2018. 

The win snaps Switzerland’s two-year winning streak, although its 200-franc note with a raised hand on the face managed to finish second. More than 150 new notes were issued last year, but only 10 percent of them were considered new enough to be nominated. 

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The IBNS says the Canadian note dominated the voting, restricted to its members, from the start. 

It is the fifth note in a row containing polymer to get the award. Canada switched to polymer in 2011, but this is the first Canadian issue with the vertical format, which the Bank of Canada says will be continued on the next four denominations it revises. 

The face of the purple note has a portrait of Viola Desmond, often called Canada’s Rosa Parks. After her arrest for refusing to change her seat in a movie theater, she became an icon of the social justice movement and a leader in the fight for racial equality. She is also the first Canadian woman to appear on a circulating note. All other women were English royalty. 

The back shows the Canadian Museum for Human Rights in Winnipeg, Manitoba. 

The note was printed by the Canadian Bank Note Co.

Following Canada and Switzerland, the other top vote recipients were Norway for its 500-krone note with a rescue ship, Russia’s 100-ruble note commemorative celebrating World Cup soccer, and the Solomon Islands $40 with a man blowing a conch shell.

The IBNS comments that Canada is no stranger to the competition. It also took first place in 2004’s inaugural competition, placed second in 2011, 2012, and 2013, and finished third last year. 

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