Standard Chartered yesterday announce worlds first ever HK$150 banknotes, printed by Standard Chartered Bank (Hong Kong) to celebrate its 150-year presence in the city, are likely to spark a frenzy from collectors and speculators. The commemorative banknotes will be legal tender in Hong Kong but no one in his right mind would try to buy anything with them. One coin dealer predicts that anyone who gets his hands on a set of 35 uncut Hong Kong $150 dollar notes will be able to rake in HK$100,000 for them - and their value will continue to soar. Standard Chartered began operations in Hong Kong in 1859, six years after it was founded, and is the oldest of the three note-issuing banks in the city. The other two are HSBC Holdings Plc and the Bank of China Ltd.
The front of the banknote, designed by Austrian graphic designer Henry Steiner, who has designed banknotes for Standard Chartered since 1975, features a satellite image of Victoria Harbour with the lender's corporate blue and green as the main color tones. The back features eight Hong Kong people from different generations looking at the city's evolution. The banknotes will be offered in three different packages. These are single HK$150 notes at HK$280, "four- in-one uncut" notes at HK$1,888 per set, and "35-in-one uncut" notes at HK$18,888 per set.
"By design, we want the banknote to be unique and the only one of its kind. We want it to represent the spirit of the city," the bank's Hong Kong chief executive Benjamin Hung Pi-cheng said yesterday."By design, we want the banknote to be unique and the only one of its kind. We want it to represent the spirit of the city," the bank's Hong Kong chief executive Benjamin Hung Pi-cheng said yesterday.
Coin expert Chan Wing-fai, from Gold Field Coins and Stamps Company in Lam Tin, believes the uncut notes will be sold out at lightning pace. He predicts the four-in-ones may end up selling for up to HK$10,000 and the 35-in-ones at up to HK$100,000. His company has already received orders for the notes, and 90 percent of clients so far are from the mainland, with some from Canada and the United States. He has been able to sell the four-in- ones at around HK$4,000 and the 35-in- ones at HK$40,000. Chan believes the singles can sell for up to HK$350.
Standard Chartered has also selected 100 notes with special lucky serial numbers for public bidding and another 10,000 pieces for which the public can pick a serial number of their choice. Some notes bearing what are considered lucky serial numbers, such as 888888, are to be auctioned in October with a minimum bid of 3,000 Hong Kong dollars per note. Money from the sale of the notes is to go to local charities in what Standard Chartered has described as a "creative tribute" to the people of Hong Kong.
Source: thestandard.com.hk, economictimes.
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