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Retooled $10 bill debuts with new security features

WASHINGTON -- ''We the People" started getting a lot more circulation yesterday with the introduction of the new $10 bill.

The Constitution's opening phrase is printed in red on the new bills and the Federal Reserve began shipping the first of an expected 800 million of them this year to commercial banks.

In addition to red, the new $10 bill features splashes of orange and yellow -- all part of the effort to thwart counterfeiters.

The colorized $10 joins the $20, the first bill to get a color makeover, in 2003, and the $50, which was colorized in 2004.

Officials from the Treasury, Federal Reserve, and Secret Service put the first new $10 bill into circulation at a brief ceremony at the National Archives.

US Treasurer Anna Escobedo Cabral, whose signature appears on the currency, said the government plans to redesign currency every seven to 10 years because ''staying ahead of would-be counterfeiters is a top priority."

The new $10 bill still features Alexander Hamilton, the nation's first Treasury secretary, on one side, and the Treasury building on the other. But those two images are joined by the Statue of Liberty's torch and ''We the People" in red, along with small yellow 10s and a subtle orange background.

The colorized $10 bill also continues three security features from an earlier makeover: a plastic security thread to the right of Hamilton's portrait imprinted with the words ''USA TEN," a watermark image of Hamilton, and ink that makes the ''10" in the right corner switch from copper to green color when the bill is tilted.

The $100 bill is the next denomination scheduled to receive a dash of color, but that may not occur until 2007 or later.

There are no plans to colorize $1 bills, which account for 45 percent of the bills printed, or the $5 bill.

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