As Singapore celebrates the Bicentennial with a flurry of cultural exhibitions and events, a controversy brews over a piece of commemorative currency. Within the first day of the Monetary Authority of Singapore’s issuance of the commemorative $20 note, news reports flood in with stories of snaking queues, diminishing supplies, and online re-sellers – the most infamous one being a single $20 note listed for sale at $988.

Courtesy: Carousell

But is there more to the story than just a case of crazy delusional buyers and crazy delusional sellers? In this episode, we dig into the situation to try and make sense of the matter. Can you sell a $20 note for $988? How do you even begin to sell a $20 note for $988? And who’s buying these $988 $20 notes anyway? Tune in to find out.

This episode was made possible with the help of:

  • Episode guests Mae Xee, Li Anne, and Devin, and
  • Episode sponsor Sudio Tolv
Courtesy: Sudio

This episode of the Economical Rice Podcast is proudly sponsored by the Sudio Tolv, the latest in line of cutting edge earphones by Swedish lifestyle brand Sudio. For their summer promotion, Sudio is offering free shipping on every purchase of the Tolv, and a free tote bag on every sale from 1 May to 31 July.

You can get a pair for yourself at

Use discount code economicalricepodcast at checkout for 15% off.


Singapore Bicentennial website

Bicentennial S$20 notes resold on Carousell for S$988

‘Strong demand’ for Singapore’s new $20 bicentennial commemorative notes

8 Key Factors that Affect Foreign Exchange Rates

Long queues at banks for commemorative S$20 note


The following tracks were curated from the Youtube Audio Library:

Jesse Gallagher – Sea of Ancestry

Acoustic Blues by Audionautix is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license (


John Deley – Bumper Tag

E’s Jammy Jams – Swipesy Cakewalk

Quincas Moreira – Summer Shower

Norma Rockwell – That never dies

Cover image credit: Ooi Boon Keong / TODAY

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