Between tourism dollars, souvenirs, and the purchase of nachos, hot wings, and party dip, a lot of cash is expected to change hands when pro football’s top teams face off on the gridiron in Houston. Here are five fun facts about Federal Reserve notes to help you warm up for the big game.
1. Last year the Fed processed enough cash to cover about 72,000 football fields.
In 2016, Federal Reserve Banks in 28 locations nationwide processed more than 31 billion notes deposited by financial institutions. Each note measures 2.61 x 6.14 inches. A football field, excluding end zones, is about 48,000 square feet.
2. The Fed processes 900 notes during a 30-second commercial, on each machine.
Watching the big game for the commercials? During a 30-second spot, a single high-speed processing machine at a Federal Reserve Bank can count and authenticate 30 notes per second to ensure they’re genuine and fit to reenter circulation.
3. In 2016, the Fed destroyed currency equivalent to the weight of 44,000 linebackers.
Reserve Banks shred notes that are too worn or damaged for public use in order to maintain the quality of currency in circulation. Each note weighs approximately 1 gram. The Fed destroyed 5 billion notes in 2016. Assuming the average pro football linebacker weighs 250 pounds, currency destroyed by the Fed in 2016 is equivalent to the weight of almost 44,000 linebackers.
4. New notes printed in 2017 would stretch the length of 10 million football fields.
The Federal Reserve Board of Governors ordered 7.1 billion new notes from the U.S. Treasury’s Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP) for 2017. An official football field is 120 yards. If you were to line up all of the notes from the Fed’s 2017 print order lengthwise, they would be almost 10 million football fields long.
5. New currency and k-balls in Houston brought to you by the letter K.
The manufacturer will ship new kicker balls, each marked with the letter k, directly to host-city Houston to use in the kicking game. Know what else is represented by the letter k? The 11th Federal Reserve District, which includes Houston. In fact, all Federal Reserve notes released into circulation by the Dallas Fed are marked with 11K.
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The views expressed here do not necessarily reflect the views of the management of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco or of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.