New £1 Coin Released in the UK

Category : Business

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. circulation / ˌsɜr kyəˈleɪ ʃən / (n) – the state of being available to be used and passed

    Every decade, new bills are put into circulation.

  2. counterfeit / ˈkaʊn tərˌfɪt / (n) – an imitation or fake copy of something

    The police found that the money in the bag were counterfeits.

  3. forge / fɔrdʒ / (v) – to make a copy of something to fool someone

    He forged his boss’ signature to get more money from the customer.

  4. lettering / ˈlɛt ər ɪŋ / (n) – written or printed letters

    The lettering on the invitation was printed in gold ink.

  5. valid / ˈvæl ɪd / (adj) – legally acceptable

    They have a valid contract with another company.


Read the text below.

The UK government released new and more secure £1 coins.

A 2015 survey conducted by the Royal Mint, the body that produces British coins, revealed that one out of 40 £1 coins in circulation was a counterfeit. In response, the UK government commissioned the designing of new £1 coins that would be difficult to forge.

The new coin has 12 sides and is composed of two metals. Only weighing 8.75 grams, it is thinner, larger, and lighter than the old coin. In addition, the new coin has several features that protect it from imitation.

These security features include special markings, such as an image that changes when viewed from different angles and very small letterings. However, the feature that makes it very difficult to copy is an invisible code on the surface of the coin. The code is printed with a pigment that cannot be seen without special tools. It can only be read when viewed under special ultraviolet light installed in specific fake coin detectors.

A total of 1.5 billion units of the new coin will gradually enter circulation. The new coin was initially released through 33 banks and post offices throughout the United Kingdom.  Two of these banks are in Northern Ireland, three are in Wales, and seven are in Scotland. The old coins will continue to be valid until October 15 of this year. Beyond this date, shops will no longer accept them, and consumers will have to exchange their old coins in banks.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

• What are the disadvantages of releasing new coins?
• Which businesses will be most affected by the release of new coins?

Discussion B

• What are the negative effects of having counterfeit money?
• What can money designers do to prevent criminals from forging money?

Category : Business