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Australia 50 Yrs Decimal Currency

2016 Proof One Dollar reverse 2016 Proof One Dollar obverse

2016 Proof One Dollar

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In 2016 the Royal Australian Mint released a full set of six pieces to commemorate fifty years since the introduction of decimal currency in Australia. The obverse of each of these pieces includes an internal Australian pre-decimal coin design underneath an Ian Rank-Broadley portrait of HM Queen Elizabeth II. This one dollar piece includes the Australian Coat of Arms design by Kruger Gray as featured on a number of pre-decimal coins. Gray's initials can be found behind the Emus neck (see image below). The obverse legend states "ELIZABETH II AUSTRALIA 2016 FIFTY YEARS". The reverse features the standard one dollar design by Stuart Devlin.

Initials (K.G) of designer Kruger Gray on the obverse of the 2016 (50 Years of Decimal Currency) Proof One Dollar coin. Initials (K.G) of designer Kruger Gray on the obverse of the 2016 (50 Years of Decimal Currency) Proof One Dollar coin.

The Australian pound came into being in 1910 and lasted until 1966. The currency was awkward, with each pound being subdivided into 20 shillings each of 12 pence. In the 1950s the economic importance of switching to a decimal currency became heavily discussed. The key argument was that the pound made financial transactions unnecessarily difficult, it was calculated that this difficulty caused the loss of more than 11 million to the Australian economy every year. After much political debate, the 14th of February 1966 was chosen as Changeover Day - when the new Australian decimal dollar took over.

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