Information about currency: Czechoslovak Koruna

Czechoslovak Koruna (1919 - 1993)
Currency NameCzechoslovak Koruna
System1 koruna = 100 haléřů (Czech, singular: haléř) or halierov (Slovak, singular: halier)
ISO CodeCSK
Description

The Czechoslovak koruna (in Czech and Slovak: Koruna československá, at times Koruna česko-slovenská; koruna means crown) was the currency of Czechoslovakia from April 10, 1919, to March 14, 1939, and from November 1, 1945, to February 7, 1993. For a brief time in 1939 and 1993, it was also the currency in separate Czech and Slovak republics.

On February 8, 1993, it was replaced by the Czech koruna and the Slovak koruna, both at par.

The (last) ISO 4217 code and the local abbreviations for the koruna were CSK and Kčs. One koruna equalled 100 haléřů (Czech, singular: haléř) or halierov (Slovak, singular: halier). In both languages, the abbreviation h was used. The abbreviation was placed behind the numeric value.

Period: First Koruna (1919 - 1939)
NameFirst Koruna
Period1919 - 1939
Description

A currency called the Krone in German and koruna in Czech was introduced in Austria-Hungary on 11 September 1892, as the first modern gold-based currency in the area. After the creation of an independent Czechoslovakia in 1918, an urgent need emerged for the establishment of a new currency system that would distinguish itself from the currencies of the other newly born countries suffering from inflation. The next year, on 10 April 1919, a currency reform took place, defining the new koruna as equal in value to the Austro-Hungarian krone. The first banknotes came into circulation the same year, the coins three years later, in 1922.

This first koruna circulated until 1939, when separate currencies for Bohemia and Moravia and Slovakia were introduced, at par with the Czechoslovak koruna. These were the Bohemian and Moravian koruna and the Slovak koruna.

Period: Second Koruna (1945 - 1953)
NameSecond Koruna
Period1945 - 1953
Description

The Czechoslovak koruna was re-established in 1945, replacing the two previous currencies at par. As a consequence of the war, the currency had lost much of its value.

Period: Third Koruna (1953 - 1993)
NameThird Koruna
Period1953 - 1993
Description

The koruna went through a number of reforms. A particularly drastic one was undertaken in 1953. At that time, the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia had to deal with the fact that there was a double market in the country: a fixed market ensuring basic food availability a remnant of the postwar quota system, and a free market, in which goods were as much as eight times more expensive but better quality. They decided to declare a currency reform valid from 1 June 1953 and to distribute new banknotes printed in the Soviet Union. The reform had been prepared very quickly and was confidential up to the last minute, but some information leaked anyway, causing a lot of panic among people.

The night before the deadline, the president of Czechoslovakia Antonín Zápotocký made a radio speech, in which he lied to the nation that there was no possibility of a reform and quieted down the inhabitants. The next day, people (not lucky enough not to fit into the category of "capitalistic elements", a pejorative category to which the intelligence agency used to blacklist certain individuals) were allowed to change up to 1,500 old korunas for new korunas at the rate of 5 old to 1 new koruna and the rest at the rate of 50 to 1. All insurance stock, state obligations and other commercial papers were nullified. The economic situation of many people got worse insofar as many petitions and demonstrations broke out, the largest of which took place in Plzeň, where 472 people were arrested.

In 1993, in accordance with the dissolution of the Czechoslovak federation, the Czechoslovak koruna split into two independent currencies: the Slovak koruna and the Czech koruna. Accession to the EU in 2004 meant both currencies were slotted to be replaced by the euro once their respective countries meet the criteria for economic convergence and there is the political will to do so.

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Czechoslovak Koruna: Details
Issued ByCzechoslovakia
From1919
To1993
Czechoslovak Koruna: Users
CountryPeriodFromTo
Flag of Czechoslovakia Czechoslovakia Czechoslovak Koruna (pre-war) 1919 1939
Flag of Czechoslovakia Czechoslovakia Czechoslovak Koruna 1945 1993