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As Phony As a ...


Taco Bell is lobbying the Federal Reserve to put more $2 bills in circulation, reports Sudeep Reddy at the Wall Street Journal's Real Time Economics blog.

Is the campaign for real? The fast-food chain's tongue appears to be pretty firmly in cheek in a full-page ad it ran in USA Today. The ad declares that with the new $2 meal deals Taco Bell is offering, "we want to make sure there are enough $2 bills in circulation to meet the pending demand. So Taco Bell is asking the Federal Reserve to circulate more $2 bills (millions of them if you can)."

But then there's the matter of the petition Taco Bell has put up on its Facebook page asking its fans to push the Fed to circulate more $2 bills. An at least serious-looking company statement notes:

The scarcity of the $2 bill in circulation and the lack of public awareness for it have inspired urban legends about its existence. The petition provides a unique way for fans of Taco Bell to be introduced to the $2 bill, or get reacquainted with it...

As Reddy notes, the petition is unlikely to be effective. The only real way to get the Fed to circulate more of any kind of currency is for consumers to use it more often, and request specific denominations from their banks.

Tom Shoop is vice president and editor in chief at Government Executive Media Group, where he oversees both print and online editorial operations. He started as associate editor of Government Executive magazine in 1989; launched the company’s flagship website, GovExec.com, in 1996; and was named editor in chief in 2007.

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