This $20 note is worth more than 3,700x its original value, because of bananas
The reason? A Del Monte banana sticker. Yes, really!
Imagine getting a $20 note from a cash machine and noticing a printing error. You'd probably shrug, ignore it and carry on spending it, assuming it was only worth $20. Well, that would've lost you a LOT of money, as this particular note is now worth well over 3,700x its original value!
The story begins with a college student from Ohio doing just that, but thankfully he realised that one of his bills had a Del Monte banana sticker on it. Nothing too strange there, but he then noticed that the sticker was UNDERNEATH the serial number.
Thankfully, he realised that this meant the bill was worth a significantly larger amount of money than the $20 printed onto it. Naturally, he put it on eBay, which sold at the time for around $10,000 - an impressive amount!
However, it is now up for sale with Heritage Auctions in Dallas, Texas, and going for significantly more. Currently, the website is accepting offers to the new owner to the tune of $514,000 or more. For a $20 note. Has the world gone completely mad?
The bill in question. Image courtesy of Heritage Auctions
The reason for this incredibly inflated value is due to the rarity of printing imperfections, as explained by Heritage Auctions: "Most obstructions fall off shortly after printing, leaving behind a blank area of paper lacking the design, but errors with objects that 'stick' to the note and enter circulation are very rare."
"When this note was printed at the Fort Worth Western Currency Facility, it went through the first and second printings normally before the Del Monte sticker found its way onto the surface. The sticker's placement is ideal, as it covers part of the second printing details and is overlaid by part of the Treasury Seal and the right serial number from the third printing."
So, was it sabotage? Well, not quite. But the auction house does suggest some form of foul play as to why this unusual bill was ever printed in the first place, saying the well-timed sticker placement was "probably the result of some very bored or creative employee."
Imagine if you were the employee that caused this error - they're probably kicking themselves for not taking the bill for themselves! So, if you want a $20 bill worth over $500,000 - you know where to find one!