Blowing Benjamins? Billion dollar printing blunder

100 Dollar Bill

A printing error at the D.C. location of the Bureau of Engraving and Printing has created billions of botched hundred-dollar bills. This is the latest error that has prolonged the new bills' distribution since its initial 2011 release date.

The much-anticipated new hundred-dollar bill will not be in circulation just yet. Set to release in early 2011, the new crop of Benjamins have encountered printing problem after printing problem, prolonging their distribution.

But the latest blunder, the New Yorker reported on Tuesday, might be the most costly yet.

According to the Bureau of Engraving and Printing, their D.C. factory location produced a botched batch of more than 30 million hundred-dollar bills-that makes for a useless 3 billion dollars.

The latest printing error, called 'mashing,' results when too much ink is applied to the paper and does not fit within the marked parameters, making for imprecise details on the bill's artwork.

The Federal Reserve, which deemed the batch unacceptable, is returning the bills and demanding for a refund, but it's the taxpayers who are also paying for the printing error.

The process of producing and transporting the corrected bills to replace the botched batch as well as disposing of the defective dollars will be financed by taxpayer money.

The Bureau's director, Larry Felix, has pressured the second printing location, in Fort Worth, Tex., to accelerate its production to meet its distribution deadlines.

Read the full New Yorker story here.

-By Natalie Sportelli, Special to

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