Philippine Peso Coins and Banknotes

Philippine Coins and Banknotes

Code for the Blind - 200 Peso Bill

The 200 peso bill is the first Philippine banknote to implement a feature that is meant to aid visually impaired people in handling paper bills. Blind people can usually tell the difference between the older banknotes just by feeling the prints which are usually embossed. However, as the banknotes wear out, they become more and more difficult to distinguish.



The code for the blind on the 200 peso banknote is strategically located on the upper left corner of the banknote. It is purposedly raised so that the blind can still feel it even after some wear. This feature also helps to discourage counterfeiting since it is quite costly to emboss prints.

Hopefully very soon, all banknotes would incorporate a feature that would aid blind people to distinguish between them.

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Philippine Banknotes

Security Feature: Microprinting

Let me share a few secrets. Current Philippine banknotes conceal a trivial security feature. Microprinting on the 1000, 500, 200, 100,and 50 peso banknotes may at first seem like any of the many criss-crossing lines, but upon closer examination, they reveal words.

Microprinting is extremely difficult to accomplish in printing presses and other printing methods readily available to the public. Thus, the very small text in micrprinting are good indicators that a banknote is genuine.

The 1000 peso bill repeats: "Central Bank of the Philippines." Part of the text is even printed with optically variable ink (OVI).

The 500 peso bill also repeats: "Central Bank of the Philippines."

The 200 peso bill repeats in two different parts of the note: "Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas."

The 100 peso bill repeats: "Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas."

The 50 peso bill repeats: "Gusali ng Pambansang Museo"

Can you guess where these microprints are located? I asked my friends and they had the hardest time looking for these words in the banknotes they handle everyday.


UPDATE: If you give up in looking for the microprints, I have indicated their exact locations in this post.

1 Peso Coin - American Occupation

One Peso Coin
American Occupation (1905)
photographs courtesy of www.philippinecoins.com

Obverse: Lady Liberty striking an anvil with a hammer with a volcano (Mt. Mayon) erupting in the background, "One Peso", "Filipinas"
Reverse: arms of the US Territories, "United States of America", year mark

Shape: round
Edge: reeded
Material: silver
Designer: Melecio Figueroa

The coin in the image above is very expensive! It's selling for $4000!

The figure of Lady Liberty striking the anvil with a hammer is supposed to depict the work done by the Americans in creating a progressive Philippines. Many suspect that the lady in the figure is actually Blanca, the daughter of the designer.

Arms of the Commonwealth

This is a broadwinged eagle, sitting atop a shield divided into two registers. The upper register has 13 stars, and the lower register has 13 vertical stripes.

50 Centavo Coin - American Occupation

Fifty Centavo Coin
American Occupation (1908)
photographs courtesy of www.philippinecoins.com

Obverse: Lady Liberty striking an anvil with a hammer with a volcano (Mt. Mayon) erupting in the background, "Fifty Centavos", "Filipinas"
Reverse: arms of the US Territories, "United States of America", year mark

Shape: round
Edge: reeded
Material: silver
Designer: Melecio Figueroa

The figure of Lady Liberty striking the anvil with a hammer is supposed to depict the work done by the Americans in creating a progressive Philippines. Many suspect that the lady in the figure is actually Blanca, the daughter of the designer.

Arms of the Commonwealth

This is a braodwinged eagle, sitting atop a shield divided into two registers. The upper register has 13 stars, and the lower register has 13 vertical stripes.

20 Centavo Coin - American Occupation

Twenty Centavo Coin
American Occupation (1903)
photographs courtesy of www.philippinecoins.com

Obverse: Lady Liberty striking an anvil with a hammer with a volcano (Mt. Mayon) erupting in the background, "Ten Centavos", "Filipinas"
Reverse: arms of the US Territories, "United States of America", year mark

Shape: round
Edge: reeded
Diameter: 20.5mm
Material: silver
Designer: Melecio Figueroa

The figure of Lady Liberty striking the anvil with a hammer is supposed to depict the work done by the Americans in creating a progressive Philippines. Many suspect that the lady in the figure is actually Blanca, the daughter of the designer.

Arms of the Commonwealth

This is a braodwinged eagle, sitting atop a shield divided into two registers. The upper register has 13 stars, and the lower register has 13 vertical stripes.

2000 Peso Bill - Commemorative Banknote

Two-thousand Piso Commemorative Banknote


Obverse: President Joseph Estrada being sworn into office in front of the Barasoain Church in Malolos, Bulacan with his wife Loi Estrada, scroll with the Malolos Constitution, seal of the Central Bank
Reverse: Re-enactment of the proclamation of Philippine Independence at the Aguinaldo Shrine in Kawit, Cavite during the Philippine Centennial Celebration with President Fidel Ramos and his wife Amelita Ramos, Philippine Centennial Commission logo

Length: 216mm
Width:133mm
Composition: 20% abaca, 80% cotton fiber
Pieces Issued: 300,000

Text
Obverse:
"Ang panunumpa sa tungkulin ni Pangulong Joseph E. Estrada sa Simbahan ng Barasoain, Malolos, Bulacan, noong ika-30 ng Hunyo, 1998", "Simbahan ng Barasoain, Lunduan ng Unang Demokratikong Republika sa Asya", "Malolos Constitution 1898", "Republika ng Pilipinas", "Dalawang Libong Piso", "Ang salaping ito ay bayarin ng Bangko Sentral at pananagutan ng Republika ng Pilipinas"
Obverse: "Pagdiriwang ng Sentenaryo ng Kalayaan sa Kawit, Cavite na pinangunahan ni Pangulong Fidel V. Ramos nnong ika-12 ng Hunyo, 1998", "Sentenaryong Salapi", "Dalawang Libong Piso"

The security features of this banknote include a 3-dimensional cylinder mould-made portrait watermark of the two presidents, and the years 1898-1998, iridescent band, color-shift windowed security thread, latent image, and perfect see-through register.

10 Centavo Coin - American Occupation

Ten Centavo Coin
American Occupation (1919)
photographs courtesy of www.philippinecoins.com

Obverse: Lady Liberty striking an anvil with a hammer with a volcano (Mt. Mayon) erupting in the background, "Ten Centavos", "Filipinas"
Reverse: arms of the US Territories, "United States of America", year mark

Shape: round
Edge: reeded
Diameter: 11.0mm
Material: silver
Designer: Melecio Figueroa

The figure of Lady Liberty striking the anvil with a hammer is supposed to depict the work done by the Americans in creating a progressive Philippines. Many suspect that the lady in the figure is actually Blanca, the daughter of the designer.

Arms of the Commonwealth

This is a braodwinged eagle, sitting atop a shield divided into two registers. The upper register has 13 stars, and the lower register has 13 vertical stripes.

5 Centavo Coin - American Occupation

Five Centavo Coin
American Occupation (1903)
photographs courtesy of www.philippinecoins.com

Obverse: figure of a man seated beside an anvil and holding a hammer with a volcano (Mt. Mayon) erupting in the background, "Five Centavos", "Filipinas"
Reverse: arms of the US Territories, "United States of America", year mark

Shape: round
Edge: plain

Diameter:
21.2 mm (1903-28)
19mm (1930-45)
Weight: 77.16 grains (1903-28)
75.16 grains (1930-45)
Composition: 75% copper, 25% nickel (1903-41),
65% copper, 12% nickel, 23% zinc (1944-45)

Designer: Melecio Figueroa

The dimensions of this coin were changed in 1930. When the size of the 20 centavo coin was reduced, it had about the same size as the 5 centavo coin. Because of the losses because of the confusion between the two coins, the 5 centavo coin was reduced in size.

The figure of the man in the obverse is an allegory for the hard work being done by the Filipinos in building their own future.

Arms of the US Territories

This is a braodwinged eagle, sitting atop a shield divided into two registers. The upper register has 13 stars, and the lower register has 13 vertical stripes.

1 Centavo Coin - American Occupation

Half Centavo Coin
American Occupation (1911)
photographs courtesy of www.philippinecoins.com

Obverse: figure of a man seated beside an anvil and holding a hammer with a volcano (Mt. Mayon) erupting in the background, "Five Centavos", "Filipinas"
Reverse: arms of the US Territories, "United States of America", year mark

Shape: round
Edge: plain
Material: copper

Diameter:
24mm
Weight:
40 grains
Composition:
95% copper, 5% zinc and tin (1903-1941); 95% copper, 5% zinc (1903-1941)

Designer:
Melecio Figueroa

The figure of the man in the obverse is an allegory for the hard work being done by the Filipinos in building their own future.

Arms of the US Territories

This is a braodwinged eagle, sitting atop a shield divided into two registers. The upper register has 13 stars, and the lower register has 13 vertical stripes.

1/2 Centavo Coin - American Occupation

Half Centavo Coin
American Occupation (1903)
photographs courtesy of www.philippinecoins.com

Obverse: figure of a man seated beside an anvil and holding a hammer with a volcano (Mt. Mayon) erupting in the background, "Five Centavos", "Filipinas"
Reverse: arms of the US Territories, "United States of America", year mark

Shape: round
Edge: plain
Material: copper

Diameter:
17.8mm
Weight:
30 grains
Composition:
95% copper, 5% zinc and tin

Designer:
Melecio Figueroa

The minting of this coin was only until 1904. The small size and value of the coin made it unpopular to the public. Proofs were struck until 1908. I personally find it weird why they would bother making a coin of this value.

The figure of the man in the obverse is an allegory for the hard work being done by the Filipinos in building their own future.

Arms of the US Territories

This is a braodwinged eagle, sitting atop a shield divided into two registers. The upper register has 13 stars, and the lower register has 13 vertical stripes.

50 Centavo Coin - Commonwealth


Fifty Centavo Coin
Pilippine-American Commonwealth (1944)


Obverse: Lady Liberty striking an anvil with a hammer with a volcano (Mt. Mayon) erupting in the background, "Fifty Centavos", "Filipinas"
Reverse: arms of the Philippine-American Commonwealth, "United States of America", year mark

Shape: round
Edge: reeded
Diameter: 27.0mm
Material: silver
Designer: Melecio Figueroa

The figure of Lady Liberty striking the anvil with a hammer is supposed to depict the work done by the Americans in creating a progressive Philippines. Many suspect that the lady in the figure is actually Blanca, the daughter of the designer.

Arms of the Commonwealth

When the Philippines became a US Commonwealth, the arms of the Commonwealth were adopted in the reverse of the coins. Compared to the arms of the US Territories, this seal is composed of a much smaller eagle with its wings pointed up, perched over a shield with peaked corners, above a scroll reading "Commonwealth of the Philippines". It is a much busier pattern, and widely considered less attractive.

20 Centavo Coin - Commonwealth



Twenty Centavo Coin
Philippine-American Commonwealth (1944)

Obverse: Lady Liberty striking an anvil with a hammer with a volcano (Mt. Mayon) erupting in the background,"Fifty Centavos", "Filipinas"
Reverse: arms of the Philippine American Commonwealth, "United States of America", year mark

Shape: round
Edge: reeded
Diameter: 20.5mm
Material: silver
Designer: Melecio Figueroa

The figure of Lady Liberty striking the anvil with a hammer is supposed to depict the work done by the Americans in creating a progressive Philippines. Many suspect that the lady in the figure is actually Blanca, the daughter of the designer.

Arms of the Commonwealth

When the Philippines became a US Commonwealth, the arms of the Commonwealth were adopted in the reverse of the coins. Compared to the arms of the US Territories, this seal is composed of a much smaller eagle with its wings pointed up, perched over a shield with peaked corners, above a scroll reading "Commonwealth of the Philippines". It is a much busier pattern, and widely considered less attractive.

10 Centavo Coin - Commonwealth


Ten Centavo Coin
Philippine-American Commonwealth (1945)

Obverse: Lady Liberty striking an anvil with a hammer with a volcano (Mt. Mayon) erupting in the background, "Ten Centavos", "Filipinas"
Reverse: arms of the Philippine-American Commonwealth, "United States of America", year mark

Shape: round
Edge: reeded
Diameter: 16.5mm
Material: silver
Designer: Melecio Figueroa

The figure of Lady Liberty striking the anvil with a hammer is supposed to depict the work done by the Americans in creating a progressive Philippines. Many suspect that the lady in the figure is actually Blanca, the daughter of the designer.

Arms of the Commonwealth

When the Philippines became a US Commonwealth, the arms of the Commonwealth were adopted in the reverse of the coins. Compared to the arms of the US Territories, this seal is composed of a much smaller eagle with its wings pointed up, perched over a shield with peaked corners, above a scroll reading "Commonwealth of the Philippines". It is a much busier pattern, and widely considered less attractive.

5 Centavo Coin - Commonwealth



Five Centavo Coin
Philippine-American Commonwealth (1945)

Obverse: figure of a man seated beside an anvil and holding a hammer with a volcano (Mt. Mayon) erupting in the background, "Five Centavos", "Filipinas"
Reverse: arms of the Philippine-American Commonwealth, "United States of America", year mark

Shape:
round
Edge:
plain
Diameter: 18.5mm
Material: nickel
Designer: Melecio Figueroa

The 1/2 centavo, 1 centavo, and 5 centavo coins of the American Series show a Filipino man kneeling against an anvil, with a hammer resting at his side. He is on the left side (foreground), while in the right side (background) there is a simmering volcano, Mt. Mayon. This figure is an allegory for the hard work being done by the Filipinos in building their own future.

Arms of the Commonwealth

When the Philippines became a US Commonwealth, the arms of the Commonwealth were adopted in the reverse of the coins. Compared to the arms of the US Territories, this seal is composed of a much smaller eagle with its wings pointed up, perched over a shield with peaked corners, above a scroll reading "Commonwealth of the Philippines". It is a much busier pattern, and widely considered less attractive.

1 Centavo Coin - Commonwealth

One Centavo Coin
Philippine-American Commonwealth (1944)

Obverse: figure of a man seated beside an anvil and holding a hammer with a volcano (Mt. Mayon) erupting in the background, "One Centavo", "Filipinas"
Reverse: arms of the Philippine-American Commonwealth, "United States of America", year mark

Shape:
round
Edge:
plain
Diameter: 24.5mm
Material: copper
Designer: Melecio Figueroa

The 1/2 centavo, 1 centavo, and 5 centavo coins of the American Series show a Filipino man kneeling against an anvil, with a hammer resting at his side. He is on the left side (foreground), while in the right side (background) there is a simmering volcano, Mt. Mayon. This figure is an allegory for the hard work being done by the Filipinos in building their own future.

Arms of the Commonwealth

When the Philippines became a US Commonwealth, the arms of the Commonwealth were adopted in the reverse of the coins. Compared to the arms of the US Territories, this seal is composed of a much smaller eagle with its wings pointed up, perched over a shield with peaked corners, above a scroll reading "Commonwealth of the Philippines". It is a much busier pattern, and widely considered less attractive.