Topic: Gold Flag, Flying Loon and Polar Bear Notes  (Read 7484 times)
  • Very Senior Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5,013
« on: March 10, 2009, 09:08:11 am »

Gold Flag, Flying Loon and Polar Bear Notes

One has probably seen many of these notes for sale on eBay beginning in 2007. There are three main notes:

"Polar Bear" 1986 $2 Note

"Flying Loon" 1973 $1 Note

"Gold Flag" 1967 $1 Note

"Year of the Dog" 2002 $5 Note

While each of these notes are legal tender and are authentic banknotes, neither the Bank of Canada nor the Royal Canadian Mint issued them with the overprinted markings. These have been added to the notes after being introduced to circulation and are thus NOT official markings from the Canadian government.

The original, unaltered notes have a catalogue value of approximately CAD$5.00, yet the modified notes have been sold to innocent, uninformed consumers and collectors for over USD$100.00 in some cases.

Also seen recently are "gold flag errors" whereby the gold flag appears elsewhere on the note, on either side, but out of its usual position. Be equally wary of these notes. It is simply an attempt to sell them for a higher price.

One reputable coin and banknote dealer had the following to say about these notes:
"Any good printer can add such trash to a banknote."

The Bank of Canada replied to another collector's inquiry with the following:
Thank you for your letter. The Bank of Canada shares your concern. We are well aware of this situation, and the matter has been directed to the bank's legal department.

You are quite correct in that the Bank of Canada has never issued or authorized the issue of "gold flag" or other likewise additionally adorned bank notes. Although experienced numismatists and collectors may be aware of this type of fraud and know enough to stay clear, many "novice" collectors are not and may be tempted with what they are led to believe is a great deal.

The Bank of Canada does not endorse or in any way acknowledge the legitimacy of the claims put forward by the sellers of these tampered "gold flag" notes.

Thank you for your concern.


(Name removed)

Musée de la monnaie| Currency Museum
Banque du Canada| Bank of Canada (Ottawa)
tel: (613) 782-7004
fax: (613) 782-7761

Do not get fooled by the claims of rarity in the auction listings! These notes are aftermarket forgeries and are barely worth their face value.

These notes are a waste of your hard-earned money. They will NEVER appreciate in value and are not collectible.

Putting it plain and simply, selling these notes and alleging that they are rare and special is fraud. Investigate for yourself and don't get caught up in the false hype.

(Note: There are several eBay sellers selling these items. Many of them do not know or realize the true story behind these notes. This guide is not meant to discredit any seller or comment negatively about any seller. This is about the notes, and only about the notes. Also, several sellers have begun openly stating that the overprints are added by a third-party company.)

Life Member of CPMS, RCNA, ONA, ANA, IBNS, WCS.
President, IBNS Ontario Chapter.
Treasurer, Waterloo Coin Society.
Show Chair, Cambridge Coin Show.
Fellow of the Ontario Numismatic Association.
  • Guest
« Reply #1 on: May 15, 2011, 09:25:31 pm »

I found this post very informative and educational. Great work.
« Last Edit: May 15, 2011, 09:28:29 pm by coinsoldier »

Login with username, password and session length