Active replacement of US $100 bills

I find it curious that no one has jumped in to either corroborate or contradict my observation in the OP. Usually in this kind of thread, that’s among the first posts. Surely there’s someone out there who handles lots of money and is observant could contribute their observations…

Anyway, today I thought of a possible reason for my observation (assuming it’s reflective of reality at large). The new $100s were delayed by about 3 years from when they were initially set to be issued. There were technical problems which aren’t important here. But during those three years could the BoE have stopped printing 100s altogether? Or perhaps severely curtailed production? That would explain the dearth of old bills. All (or most of) the ones in circulation would be 3 or more years old. While age itself is not a reason to retire them, in general they’d have more wear on them than typical 3-year old bills, so they’d be close to normal retirement. So while the Fed wouldn’t be intentionally retiring them, they’d be getting retired in large numbers anyway.

Interestingly, about 2 weeks ago I was at the Atlanta Monetary Museum, part of Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta and the new $100s were mentioned in that as the old bills come to the Fed they are actively destroyed. It’s not mandated that the old ones get returned - they’re still perfectly valid for use, but there is an active effort to replace them, in large part because of the anti-counterfeiting stuff in the new bills.

I don’t have a cite I can point you to - this is something that was said by a tour guide.

Thank you, Lsura. This is what I was looking for. Tour guides are not the most reliable sources, but it may be the best we can do.