Latvian lats

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Latvian lats
Latvijas lats (Latvian)
1Lats salmon.png
The standard version of the Ls 1 coin depicted a salmon
ISO 4217
CodeLVL
Unit
Plurallati (nom. pl.) or latu (gen. pl.)
Symbol𝓛𝓈‎ (first lats) Ls (second lats)
Denominations
Subunit
1100santīms
Plural
 santīmssantīmi (nom. pl.) or santīmu (gen. pl.)
Symbol
 santīmss
Banknotes
 Freq. usedLs 5, Ls 10, Ls 20, Ls 50, Ls 100
 Rarely usedLs 500
Coins
 Freq. used1 s, 2 s, 5 s, 10 s, 20 s, 50 s, Ls 1, Ls 2
Demographics
ReplacedLatvian ruble (1 LVL = 200 LVR)
Replaced byEuro (1 EUR = 0.702804 LVL)
User(s)None, previously:
 Latvia
Issuance
Central bankBank of Latvia
 Websitewww.bank.lv
Valuation
Inflation-0.4%
 SourceECB,[2] April 2013
EU Exchange Rate Mechanism (ERM)
Since2 May 2005[1]
Fixed rate since1 January 2005
Replaced by euro, non cash1 January 2014
Replaced by euro, cash1 January 2014[3]
1 € =Ls 0.702804 (Irrevocable)
This infobox shows the latest status before this currency was rendered obsolete.

The lats (plural: lati or latu (if the number can be divided by 10), ISO 4217 currency code: LVL or 428) was the currency of Latvia from 1922 until 1940 and from 1993 until it was replaced by the euro on 1 January 2014. A two-week transition period during which the lats was in circulation alongside the euro ended on 14 January 2014.[3] The lats is abbreviated as Ls[4] and was subdivided into 100 santīmi (singular: santīms; from French centime), abbreviated as an s after the santīm amount.[5]

The Latvian lats has been recognized as one of the 99 entries of the Latvian Culture Canon.[6]

First lats, 1922–1940[edit]

The 𝓛𝓈 5 coin, used before World War II, became a popular symbol of independence during the Soviet era. The coin was designed by Rihards Zariņš.
𝓛𝓈 20 banknote issued 1935 (obverse).

The first lats (symbol: 𝓛𝓈) was first introduced on 3 August 1922, replacing the Latvian ruble at a rate of 𝓛𝓈 1 = Rbls 50.[7] The lats was pegged against the gold standard from its introduction until 1940.[8]

On 17 June 1940, Latvia was occupied by the USSR. After the dismantling of the Bank of Latvia and its replacement with the Latvia Republican Office of the Gosbank on 10 October, the Soviet ruble was introduced alongside the lats on 25 November 1940 at par, although the real monetary value of the ruble was about a third of the lats. Thus both wages and prices were gradually raised to devalue the lats from June to November 1940. To lessen the effect of the exodus of goods sent by Soviet occupational personnel to the USSR, taking advantage of the new exchange rate, buyer limits for various goods were introduced.[9]

Although the Soviet authorities initially pledged not to abolish the lats, it was taken out of circulation without prior warning at 13:05 on 25 March 1941, simultaneously nationalising all deposits larger than 𝓛𝓈 1000. A part of the Latvian gold, silver and currency reserves were sent to Moscow at the start of the occupation.[10][11]

Coins[edit]

Coins were issued in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 santīmu, 𝓛𝓈 1, 𝓛𝓈 2 and 𝓛𝓈 5. The 1s, 2s and 5s were in bronze (Cu, Sn, Zn), the 10s, 20s and 50s were nickel, while coins of 𝓛𝓈 1 and above were struck in silver, with a purity of 83,5 percent.[12]

Banknotes[edit]

The Latvian Bank issued notes from 1922 in denominations of 𝓛𝓈 20, 𝓛𝓈 25, 𝓛𝓈 50, 𝓛𝓈 100 and 𝓛𝓈 500. They also issued 𝓛𝓈 10 notes which were 500 ruble notes overprinted with the new denomination. The government issued currency notes from 1925 in denominations of 𝓛𝓈 5, 𝓛𝓈 10 and 𝓛𝓈 20.

Second lats, 1993–2013[edit]

The lats was reintroduced on 5 March 1993,[13] replacing the Latvian ruble, which continued to circulate and kept validity until and including 30 June 1994[14] at a rate of LR 200 being equivalent to Ls 1. The Ls 5 banknote was introduced first, and the last banknote to be introduced was the Ls 500 banknote on 20 July 1998.[15] The lats was replaced on 1 January 2014 by the Euro, at the rate of Ls 0.702804 to €1. The second lats can be exchanged to euros at the official rate at the Bank of Latvia's cashier's office in Riga.[16]

Until the end of its circulation in January 2014, lats was the fourth highest-valued currency unit per face value, after the Kuwaiti dinar, Bahraini dinar, and the Omani rial. The Ls 500 note was the world's third most valuable banknote after the $10,000 Brunei/Singaporean dollar note and the 1,000 Swiss franc note.[17]

Coins[edit]

Coins were issued in denominations of 1s, 2s, 5s, 10s, 20s and 50s, Ls 1 and Ls 2. Besides standard coins in the list below and coins for collectors, the following coins were also issued: three commemorative circulation coins were issued in denominations of Ls 2, Ls 10 and Ls 100 (the latter two of which were, respectively, silver and gold), a Ls 100 gold bullion coin, and a series of limited design Ls1 coins twice a year from 2004 to 2013, and once in 2001 and 2003.

The initial standard Ls 2 coin was issued only once in 1992, it was a copper-nickel coin of 6g and measured 24.35mm in diameter.[18] It was gradually replaced in circulation from 1999 with the below bimetallic coin due to counterfeiting issues.[19]

The standard coins were designed by Gunārs Lūsis and Jānis Strupulis.

Current standard series
Image Value Value in euros (€) Composition Diameter Weight Edge Issued Description
1santims 2005.png 1 s €0.014 copper-clad iron 15.65 mm 1.60 g Smooth 1992, 1997, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2008 Obverse: The small coat of arms of Latvia, inscription LATVIJAS REPUBLIKA and the date of issue.
Reverse: denomination, ethnographic sun ornaments joined by five arches symbolizing a day of work.
2santimi 2006.png 2 s €0.028 copper-clad iron 17.00 mm 1.90 g 1992, 2000, 2006, 2007, 2009
5santimi 2006.png 5 s €0.071 copper / nickel / zinc alloy 18.50 mm 2.50 g Smooth 1992, 2006, 2007, 2009 Obverse: The small coat of arms of Latvia, inscription LATVIJAS REPUBLIKA and the date of issue.
Reverse: denomination, ethnographic sun ornaments joined by five arches symbolizing a day of work.
10santimu 1992.png 10 s €0.142 copper / nickel / zinc alloy 19.90 mm 3.25 g 1992, 2008
20santimu 1992.png 20 s €0.285 copper / nickel / zinc alloy 21.50 mm 4.00 g 1992, 2007, 2009
50santimu 1992.png 50 s €0.711 copper / nickel alloy 18.80 mm 3.50 g Reeded 1992, 2007, 2009 Obverse: The small coat of arms of Latvia, inscription LATVIJAS REPUBLIKA and the date of issue.
Reverse: pine sapling, which symbolizes Latvian forests and the denomination, separated by a horizontal line.
Edge: reeded.
1Lats salmon.png Ls 1 €1.423 copper / nickel alloy 21.75 mm 4.80 g Plain and lettering: LATVIJAS BANKA ♦ LATVIJAS BANKA ♦ 1992, 2007, 2008 Obverse: The large coat of arms of Latvia, inscription LATVIJAS REPUBLIKA and the date of issue.
Reverse: leaping salmon, which symbolizes the waters of Latvia, and denomination.
2Lati 1999.png Ls 2 €2.846 Inner: copper / nickel / zinc alloy
Outer: copper / nickel alloy
26.30 mm
(inner: 18.21 mm)
9.50 g
(inner: 4.50 g, ring: 5.00 g)
Reeded and lettering: LATVIJAS BANKA ♦ LATVIJAS BANKA ♦ 1999, 2003, 2009 Obverse: The large coat of arms of Latvia, and on the ring inscription LATVIJAS REPUBLIKA and the date of issue.
Reverse: A cow, which symbolizes the Latvian countryside, and denomination.
Relative size of coins

1santims 2005.png 2santimi 2006.png 5santimi 2006.png 10santimu 1992.png 20santimu 1992.png 50santimu 1992.png 1Lats salmon.png 2Lati 1999.png

Banknotes[edit]

All banknotes are 130 × 65 mm in size. They were printed by Giesecke & Devrient GmbH in Germany and were designed by Imants Žodžiks and Valdis Ošiņš.[20]

Current Series
Image Value Value in euros (€) Main Colour Description
Obverse Reverse Obverse Reverse
Latvia-2007-Bill-5-Obverse.jpg Latvia-2007-Bill-5-Reverse.jpg Ls 5 €7.11 Green Oak tree Woodcarving of a sun on a distaff
Latvia-2008-Bill-10-Obverse.jpg Latvia-2008-Bill-10-Reverse.jpg Ls 10 €14.23 Purple River Daugava Latvian brooch (sakta)
Latvia-2007-Bill-20-Obverse.jpg Latvia-2007-Bill-20-Reverse.jpg Ls 20 €28.46 Brown Traditional house Woven linen
Latvia-1992-Bill-50-Obverse.jpg Latvia-1992-Bill-50-Reverse.jpg Ls 50 €71.14 Blue Sailing-ship Keys (Historical seal of Riga)
Latvia-1992-Bill-100-Obverse.jpg Latvia-1992-Bill-100-Reverse.jpg Ls 100 €142.29 Red Krišjānis Barons Lielvārde Belt (Lielvārdes josta)
Latvia-1992-Bill-500-Obverse.jpg Latvia-1992-Bill-500-Reverse.jpg Ls 500 €711.44 Grey Latvian folk-maid Ornamental brass crowns

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "ECB: Euro central rates and compulsory intervention rates in ERM II". European Central Bank. 2 May 2005. Retrieved 9 June 2014.
  2. ^ "ECB: Inflation and the euro". European Central Bank. Retrieved 9 June 2014.
  3. ^ a b Eglitis, Aaron (9 July 2013). "Latvia Wins Final EU Approval to Adopt Euro on Jan. 1 Next Year". Bloomberg. Retrieved 9 June 2014.
  4. ^ "2 lats (Ls 2 in short)". Latvijas Banka. Retrieved 5 November 2022.
  5. ^ "1 santims (1 s in short)". Latvijas Banka. Retrieved 5 November 2022.
  6. ^ "Latvian National Currency – the Lats". Latvian Culture Canon. Retrieved 6 May 2020.
  7. ^ Kristīne Ducmane, Anda Ozoliņa (2013). Naudas Laiki Latvijā (in Latvian). Lauku Avīze. p. 147. ISBN 978-9984-878-84-3.
  8. ^ Lucas, Edward (18 November 2013). "Lat it be". The Economist. Retrieved 8 July 2018.
  9. ^ "Sava nauda savā Latvijas Bankā IV". lvportals.lv (in Latvian). Retrieved 8 July 2018.
  10. ^ "History of money in Latvia". eiro.lv. Retrieved 8 July 2018.
  11. ^ "History of the Bank of Latvia". Bank of Latvia. Archived from the original on 9 February 2021. Retrieved 8 July 2018.
  12. ^ Kristīne Ducmane, Anda Ozoliņa (2013). Naudas Laiki Latvijā (in Latvian). Lauku Avīze. p. 163. ISBN 978-9984-878-84-3.
  13. ^ Ēvalds Vēciņš, Dzintars Rubenis, Gunārs Rolands Grīns (2002). Nauda Latvijā XX gadsimtā : Katalogs I daļa 2. sējums (in Latvian). Riga: Zvaigzne. p. 79. ISBN 9984223450. OCLC 45699853.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  14. ^ Ēvalds Vēciņš, Dzintars Rubenis, Gunārs Rolands Grīns (2002). Nauda Latvijā XX gadsimtā : Katalogs I daļa 2. sējums (in Latvian). Riga: Zvaigzne. p. 81. ISBN 9984223450. OCLC 45699853.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  15. ^ Ēvalds Vēciņš, Dzintars Rubenis, Gunārs Rolands Grīns (2002). Nauda Latvijā XX gadsimtā : Katalogs I daļa 2. sējums (in Latvian). Riga: Zvaigzne. p. 61. ISBN 9984223450. OCLC 45699853.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  16. ^ "The Cashier's Office". Bank of Latvia. Retrieved 8 June 2020.
  17. ^ Karaian, Jason (31 December 2013). "One of the most valuable banknotes in the world is about to vanish". Quartz. Retrieved 9 June 2014.
  18. ^ 2 Lati
  19. ^ Divlatniekus ar govs attēlu vairs nedod apgrozībā
  20. ^ "Banknotes of the Bank of Latvia". Bank of Latvia. Retrieved 2 January 2018.

External links[edit]