A Beginner's Guide to Buying US Large-Sized Paper Money

It may seem funny to see money for sale, as you have to spend money to then receive money. However, these are large notes that are considered vintage and are sometimes very rare. If you enjoy collecting paper money, you can find a great assortment of US currency on eBay.

Types of affordable large US currency for sale

Some of the large-sized denominations that were once printed are no longer in circulation. This makes them rarer and subsequently more expensive. Beginning after the Civil War, there were seven different types of banknotes printed. With all of the different notes floating around in the 1800s and early 1900s, counterfeit money was easy to create. That's why we now have a standard system. Here are the six different types of reasonably priced large US currency you may see:

  • Federal Reserve Notes - These are most similar to what we use now.
  • Federal Reserve Banknotes - These were regional notes.
  • United States Notes - These bills were issued by the US Treasury instead of by the Federal Reserve.
  • Silver Certificates - You could redeem these certificates for actual silver.
  • Gold Certificates - These bills were very coveted, as they could be cashed in for real gold.
  • National Banknotes - These were issued by private banks, and each bank could design them as they wished.
Understanding the PMG grading scale

When you look at old paper money for sale, you will often see a series of letters and numbers somewhere in the description. For instance, it might say PMG-VF 25. The letters PMG stand for Paper Money Guaranty, the standard for grading paper money. The VF portion stands for the short description assigned to this bill. In this case, VF means Very Fine. The number indicates how many points the bill received on the 70-point scale. 70 is the highest score, while any scores lower than 4 will not receive a number grade but will be assigned a NET rating.

Can you spend large-sized paper money?

From 1862 to 1923, the printed money in the US was much larger than it is now. The size of a dollar bill printed currently is 6.14 inches long and 2.61 inches wide. Large-sized dollar bills are 7.4218 long by 3.125 inches wide. Regardless of the size, the government says that all paper money printed after 1861 is valid. This means you can spend those bills if you want to. However, most people use these bills just as a collection or a hobby and do not intend to spend them.

Content provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute investment advice.