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Mexican peso
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Mexican peso

The peso is the currency of Mexico. It is divided into 100 centavos. The symbol used for the peso is "$", while centavos are represented by "¢". Its current ISO 4217 code is MXN (prior to 1993 the code "MXP" was used).

Table of contents
1 History
2 Current system
3 See also
4 External link

History

The peso was originally based on imperial Spain's silver dollars, the renowned pieces of eight of pirate literature and Hollywood swashbucklers.

The name peso means weight, and this is a reference to the principal characteristic of the coin. The silver mines of Mexico supply ample sources of pure silver and, more importantly, the peso was the first coin to have a border that made it easy to detect if the coin had been tampered with. It was a common practice to cut or wear down the edges of gold and silver coins, thus obtaining raw precious metal. Since the peso was a coin of pure silver with an exact weight, it became very popular.

Current system

On 1 January 1993 Mexico adopted a new currency, the nuevo peso ("new peso", or MXN). The new peso was equal to 1000 of the obsolete MXP pesos. The change was necessitated by the violent and massive devaluations the currency had suffered over the previous quarter century.

On 1 January 1996 the modifier nuevo was dropped from the name and new coins and banknotes – identical in every respect to the 1993 issue, with the exception of the now absent word "nuevo" – were put into circulation. The ISO 4217 code, however, remained unchanged as MXN.

Coins

The coins currently in circulation have face values of 5¢, 10¢, 20¢, 50¢, $1, $2, $5, and $10. Coins worth $20 and $50 also exist and are legal tender, but they were not included in the 1996 issue and they are both extremely rare and largely disliked by users. All the coins incorporate design elements from the Aztec Calendar.

  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
Value Coin Description
Diameter: 5.5 mm. Weight: 1.58 g.
Edge: no milling.

Metal: stainless steel

10¢ Diameter: 7 mm. Weight: 2.08 g.
Edge: no milling.

Metal: stainless steel

20¢ Diameter: 9.5 mm. Weight: 3.04 g.
Edge: scalloped.

Metal: 92% Cu, 6% Al, 2% Ni

50¢ Diameter: 12 mm. Weight: 4.39 g.
Edge: scalloped.

Metal: 92% Cu, 6% Al, 2% Ni

$1 Diameter: 11mm. Weight: 3.95 g.
Edge: no milling.

Metal: bimetallic
 outer: stainless steel
 inner: 92% Cu, 6% Al, 2% Ni

$2 Diameter: 13 mm. Weight: 5.19 g.
Edge: no milling.

Metal: bimetallic
 outer: stainless steel
 inner: 92% Cu, 6% Al, 2% Ni

Design: outer ring depicts "ring of days" from Calendar.

$5 Diameter: 15.5 mm. Weight: 7.07 g.
Edge: no milling.

Metal: bimetallic
 outer: stainless steel
 inner: 92% Cu, 6% Al, 2% Ni

Design:outer ring depicts "ring of serpents" from Calendar

$10 Diameter: 18 mm. Weight: 11.18 g.
Edge: milled (special 2001 millennium issue has inscription on edge).

Metal: Bimetallic:
 outer: 92% Cu, 6% Al, 2% Ni
 inner: 65% Cu, 10% Ni, 25% Zn (early editions, prior to 1995, had silver instead of this alloy)

Design: inner circle depicts Tonatiuh from centre of Calendar.

$20 Metal: bimetallic:
 outer: 92% Cu, 6% Al, 2% Ni
 inner: Silver

Design: depicts Miguel Hidalgo. Two special 2000 variants feature: New fire ceremony; Octavio Paz.

$50 Metal: bimetallic

Design: depicts Heroic Cadets of Chapultepec.

Banknotes

Banknotes are issued in denominations of $20, $50, $100, $200, and $500. A $10 note existed during the early days of the changeover; while still legal tender, they are no longer printed and it has been a long time since anyone got one in their change.

These banknotes depict the following figures from Mexican history:

See also

External link