Viva the big bill, as it has emerged that 65% of all the money in circulation in Spain is in the form of 500 euro notes.
The latest figures from Spain’s Central Bank and the European Central Bank showed that there are now 112 million of the largest denomination euro notes in the country. Of all the 500 euro notes in existence, 26.6% are in Spain; they are worth a total of 209.7 billion euros.
Experts said that, to an extent, that is because of tax evasion, with many payments for property being made partly under the table in cash.
They also pointed out that Spaniards traditionally, overwhelmingly value cash over other kinds of financial assets. In addition, a construction boom has fuelled the black economy.
The disparity with the rest of the euro zone can be seen by the fact that in the past year the number of 500 euro notes in Spain more than doubled, while elsewhere in the region they increased by just 12%.