Eesti Pank issued 217 million euros of cash in the first quarter
Eesti Pank issues banknotes and coins into circulation in response to demand. The central bank issued more than 217 million euros of cash into circulation in the first quarter of 2021, as more than 215 million euros of banknotes and 2.1 million euros of coins were issued. Banknotes worth 158 million euros were returned to the central bank with 1.8 million euros of coins.
Net issuance for the quarter as a whole, which is the difference between banknotes issued and returned, was 42% of the amount in the same quarter of 2020, partly because of the restrictions on retail businesses. Demand was again largest for 50-euro banknotes, which made up around 80% of all the banknotes issued by Eesti Pank. Of the coins issued in the first quarter, 34% were one and two-cent coins.
There are 711 ATMs in Estonia, of which 209 accept cash depositing. There are also 29 bank offices where over the counter cash transactions can be made. Cash was withdrawn from ATMs on 5.4 million occasions in the first quarter of 2021, for a total value of more than 764 million euros, which is 18.7% fewer withdrawals and 15.7% less value than in the first quarter of last year. Cash to the value of 413 million euros was deposited in ATMs in the first quarter.
Exchanging Estonian kroons for cash
Eesti Pank continues to exchange Estonian kroons in notes and coins for euros. There were 85 exchange transactions with kroons in the first quarter at a value of around 41,500 euros. There are still 28.5 million banknotes and 320 million coins that have not been returned from circulation, with a total value of 44.4 million euros. Some part of the kroons cash that was in circulation has been permanently lost over the years or has been destroyed, but the facility for exchanging kroons for euros remains open.
Expert cash analysis at Eesti Pank
Eesti Pank exchanges damaged euro banknotes and coins. Expert analysis was carried out 35 times in the first quarter of 2021 as 472 banknotes were examined for authenticity and were classed as damaged notes. Banknotes are exchanged when more than 50% of them remains. Damaged banknotes are removed from circulation and are destroyed. The Estonian Forensic Science Institute registered 67 counterfeit euro banknotes in Estonia in the first quarter, the majority of which were 10 and 50-euro notes. There were also 17 counterfeit coins discovered in the quarter. The number of counterfeits discovered in Estonia is negligible both in absolute terms and in relation to the number of genuine notes and coins issued into circulation.
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