Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

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Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

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Article excerpt

Filling in One Last Y2K Blank--Literally

Q. Many of our customers have a large supply of checks with a preprinted "19--". What should customers do with those checks at year 2000? We are worried that entering "00" in the blank makes the check a stale item (100 years old!). Related is the stock of cashiers checks, money orders, and travelers checks sitting in bank vaults. Can we just imprint "2000" over the preprinted "19__"? It may not look very nice but it will be cheaper and more secure than tossing out boxes of inventory. --ML., D.C.

A. In each of these situations, the clear use of a tour-digit year--2000-should eliminate any confusion about the date intended. Gordon Glaza of ABA's Y2K Team agrees that you should be able to print "2000" in the date area and use up remaining inventories of checks.

In recent years, most newly printed checks have used just a plain line in the date area, so there wouldn't be a problem with these items. The main thing to keep in mind is that the four-digit year should always be clearly indicated. Simply adding "00" is not good enough, and would probably produce a confusing result.

If you and your customers follow the four-digit approach, there shouldn't be a need to toss out check inventory, since everyone can understand the concept of 2000 when it is written out clearly. …

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