A BBC story by Dominic Casciani reports that “more than 90% of the 500 euro notes that are provided in the UK have actually gone into the hands of serious organised criminals.”
A story by James Boxell in the Financial Times headlined “UK bars €500 note imports over crime fear” says banks and currency exchanges will be banned from importing the denomination. It isn't clear if individuals may still import €500 notes. Boxell reports that “... it has not been criminalised and people will still be able to pay them into UK bank accounts.”
Strangely, Boxell's report says that although the finance industry doesn't mind the restriction “... there were some objections from banknote makers.” Really? I would suspect banknote makers would applaud the new move, as criminals will now need five times as much of their product!
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