Currency and Coins: Which Presidents Are On U.S. Money?

Presidents’ Day 2013 falls on Monday February 18th this year, so in honor of the holiday NerdWallet did what any true nerd would do: research how our historical leaders came to be on our money.

The Treasury.gov Resource Center says, “Our records do not suggest why certain Presidents and statesmen were chosen for specific denominations.”  Is that really so? We look into their likely reasoning in the infographic below.

NerdWallet breaks down which presidents are featured on U.S. currency – including small bills, coins, and rare denominations – and why.  Enjoy these Presidents’ Day 2013 facts from the NerdWallet team:

Monetary Policy: Why Currency Matters

Not only do consumers like you and me use it to buy and sell goods, but at a higher level the government uses it to moderate the economy through monetary policy.

Since fall of 2012, the Fed has been engaging in a large round of quantitative easing (nicknamed QE3) to keep interest rates low and help the economy recover, it says.  This means lots and lots of money printing is in the works, which will likely increase inflation but is aimed keeping both the unemployment rate and spurring further growth.

Learn more about currency and monetary policy:

  • What is QE3 and how does it work – will it hurt investments?
  • NerdWallet also recently explored whether we are in a currency war with China and other countries.

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Presidents on your Money

  • Orly

    While informative, this article does not explain Andrew Jackson’s uncanny resemblance to Hugh Grant. Please research that next.

  • L

    Great stuff! To be honest I have never understood why Salmon P. Chase merits a bill with his face on it…

  • Snort Hole

    They’re just gonna be mean to me.

  • monica

    wow

  • JerP

    If the US paper currency was going to undergo a major overhaul, this is who I would select to appear on the bills. Something of a new wave movement, with some twentieth century presidents on the common bills, but all founding fathers on the larger bills and rare bills.

    $1 – Franklin D. Roosevelt

    $2 – John F. Kennedy

    $5 – Woodrow Wilson

    $10 – Harry S. Truman

    $20 – Abraham Lincoln

    $50 – George Washington

    $100 – Benjamin Franklin

    $500 – James Madison

    $1000 – Thomas Jefferson

    I also think that the $1000 bill should go back into circulation (because these days $1000 is not much for some people), but none of the higher value bills.

  • timmy

    Where is Ike? Come on! Has he been that successfully erased from America’s memory? That’s what he gets for being a decent man!

    • TLCEAGLE

      Too recent?

  • jp

    Eisenhower silver dollar, Kennedy half dollar.