Japanese Invasion Money Part 6: Philippines (by Bill Myers)

** NOTE: This post is still being verified and updated. Its out here because the Philippines JIM notes are the most common and popular. Since this series of JIM is complex and contains counterfeits and multiple series issues. Check back for more information regularly.

The Philippines fell to the Japanese in 1942. The Japanese released three issues of JIM for use there. The Philippine JIM series is complex, like Malaya. There are many varieties and an interestingseries of counterfeits, as well. There are specimens of many notes and these will not be listed. The first series notes were lithographed and only of fair quality. They were produced in fractional and peso notes. All the notes have red block letters (PA) or fractional block letters (P/AA). The issues in denominations of 50 centavos and higher have a quatrefoil (flower with four petals) watermark. Fractional notes are available in 1, 5, 10 and 50 centavos denominations. The face of the notes has “THE JAPANESE GOVERNMENT” and the denomination spelled out and in repeating numerals. The 50 centavos also has a plantation vignette on the right of the face. The backs have repeating numerals on an ornate design. There is no watermark.

The CENTAVOS varieties are:

  • 1 CENTAVOS
    • block letters
    • fractional block letters
  • 5 CENTAVOS
    • block letters
    • fractional block letters
  • 10 CENTAVOS
    • block letters
    • block letters, on the face-upper left outline of “T” in “CENTAVOS” is missing
    • fractional block letters
  • 50 CENTAVOS
    • block letters
    • counterfeit

The peso notes come in denominations of 1, 5 and 10 pesos.  The face has “THE JAPANESE GOVERNMENT”, as well as the denomination spelled out and in numeral form repeated around the bill.  The 1 peso has a plantation scene on the left of the face, “ONE PESO” in the center and “1” on the right.  The 5 pesos has the Roman numeral “V” on the left, the plantation scene in the center and “FIVE” on the right.  The 10 pesos note has the Roman numeral “X” on the left, TEN PESOS in the middle and the plantation scene on the right.  The back of all the notes has an ornate design, with the denomination both spelled out and in numeral form.

The PESO varieties are:

  • 1 PESO
    • block letters, 26-28mm from top of frame on right
    • block letters, 17-20mm from top of frame on right
  • 5 PESOS
    • block letters, orange back
    • block letters, yellow-gold back
    • counterfeit
  • 10PESOS
    • block letters
    • counterfeit

Counterfeit notes were made by the Allies.  They were to be supplied to the Philippine guerrillas fighting the Japanese.  Only the first issue of JIM was counterfeited.  Ten million pesos were ordered, and 8.3 million pesos were made available for distri-bution. The diagnostic points for counterfeit detection are: (See diagrams.)

50 centavos – small break in curved line below upper right “50” on face (continuous line on genuine notes) 1 peso – two veins of leaf emerging from upper left border on the face are joined (separated on genuine notes) 5 pesos – two lowest lines in curved ornament below upper right “5” touch outer line of ornament on the face (separated on genuine note) 10 pesos – on the back of the note, a small nipple extends up at intersection of “1” and “0” in “10” in upper left corner (absent in original notes). Channel between “P” and “E” of PESOS on center back is short and blunt, long and sharp on genuine notes.

The second series from the Philippines are the Rizal Monument notes. The notes come in denominations of 1, 5, 10 and 100 pesos. These notes were well-printed and have an engraved face and lithographed back. They all have a vignette of the Rizal Monument, “THE JAPANESE GOVERNMENT”, a banana tree watermark and the denomination printed and in numeral form on the face. On the back of all the notes you will find the denomination spelled out and in numeral form, as well as in Roman numeral form for the 10 peso. The notes have red block numbers and serial numbers. (After block 81, the 1 peso notes have two block numbers only.)

A 5 Peso Japanese Note

Replacement notes have a “1” in the first position of the serial numbers, instead of a “0”. On the face of the 1 and 5 pesos notes is the Rizal Monument on the left, the numeral and printed denomination in the center and the watermark, with a faint overprint of the denomination, on the right. The face of the 10 pesos has “10” on the left with the watermark, “TEN PESOS” in the center, and the Rizal Monument on the right.

The face of the 100 pesos has the watermark on the left, with a faint “ONE HUNDRED” overprint, “100” in the center and the Rizal Monument on the right.

A 100 Pesos Japanese Note

The RIZAL peso varieties are:

  • 1 PESO
    • block number
    • serial number
    • replacement: block number
    • replacement: serial number
    • block number only
    • block number only, inverted watermark
  • 5 PESOS
    • block number
    • serial number
    • replacement: block number
    • replacement: serial number
    • block number, watermark on left
    • serial number, watermark on left
  • 10 PESOS
    • block number
    • serial number

The last series are the Inflation Issues. These notes, which were poorly executed, are in values of 100, 500 and 1,000 pesos. The 100 pesos note is very rare. Both sides of these notes are lithographed and they have block letters but no serial numbers. The face of all the notes has “THE JAPANESE GOVERNMENT” and the denomination spelled out and in numeral form. On the 100 peso note, “100 PESOS” is found in the center, with “100” repeated on an ornamental design around the edges on the face and back of that note. The face of the 500 pesos has the watermark on the left with a faint “FIVE HUNDRED” overprint, “FIVE HUNDRED PESOS” below “500 PESOS” in the center, and the Rizal Monument on the right. The back has the denomination spelled out in the center and “500” in the four corners on an ornate design. The 1,000 pesos note has “1000 PESOS” in the center with “1000” repeated in the corners on an ornamental design, on the face and back. The back also has the leaves of a plant on the right and left of the denomination.

The INFLATION peso varieties are:

  • 100 PESOS
    • block letters, no watermark
  • 500 PESOS
    • block letters, banana tree watermark on left
    • block letters, quatrefoil watermark
    • block letters, “utsu”(copy) stamped on back
  • 1,000 PESOS
    • block letters, no watermark, no ink soak through
    • block letters, no watermark, soaking through of ink  from face to back.

A 500 Pesos Japanese Note
A 500 Pesos Japanese Note

 
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