Business

Australia's central bank admits 'responsibilty' for typo in millions of bank notes

Reuters

Millions of 50 Australian dollar bank notes, each worth around ¥3,800, have an embarrassing typographical error that was overlooked by the country’s central bank before they were printed and circulated.

The goof first became known Thursday when a listener on radio outlet Triple M sent the station a magnified photo of the Reserve Bank of Australia’s (RBA) new AU$50 note highlighting the word “responsibility” misspelled as “responsibilty” three times.

The AU$50 currency is the most widely circulated in Australia and accounts for nearly half the total value of other bank notes in use, according to the RBA.

The note came into circulation on Oct. 18 last year, with new security features designed to deter counterfeiting and with tactile elements for the visually impaired. It sports a headshot of Edith Cowan, who served from 1921 to 1924 as the first woman elected to an Australian legislature.

The typo appears in an excerpt of Cowan’s maiden speech to Western Australia’s parliament, which features several times on the note and reads: “It is a great responsibilty to be the only woman here and I want to emphasize the necessity which exists for other women being here.”

The spelling “responsibilty” instead of “responsibility” in the quote is as the note reads.

A bank spokeswoman wrote in an emailed statement that it “is aware of it and the spelling will be corrected at the next print run.”

The bank said in its latest annual report that its note printing subsidiary delivered 227 million Australian bank notes in 2017-18, including around 184 million new series AU$50 bank notes.

The RBA did not immediately respond to questions on exactly how many of the new notes are in circulation, or whether they would be withdrawn as a result of the spelling error.