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The lev is Bulgaria’s currency, which can currently be divided into 100 stotinki. The lev has gone through 4 stages since 1881.
The lev was originally introduced in 1881 and was set equal to the French Franc. Until 1916, Bulgaria's silver and gold coins were issued to the same specifications as those of the Latin Monetary Union. Banknotes issued until 1928 were backed by gold.There was also a period when the lev was pegged to the German Reichsmark, at 32.75 leva = 1 Reichsmark.
The second lev started in 1952 and continued for 10 years. 1 new lev was set to equal 100 old leva, and was pegged to the US dollar.
Stage 3 saw the lev stablise for around 3 decades, with the lev being pegged to the US dollar with the exchange rate at 1.17 leva = 1 U. S. dollar. After the fall of communism, in 1997 the lev was pegged to the Deutsche Mark with 1 Lev = 1000 DM to remedy the drastic inflation and currency devaluation.
1999 saw the last revaluation of the lev, with 1 Lev = 1 Deutsche Mark, and currency no longer being backed by gold and silver.
Bulgaria have been postponing the use of the Euro for years now, after the global financial crisis and Eurozone crisis they have not been able to meet the criteria.
The word “lev” derives from the old Bulgarian word for lion, and stotinka comes from “sto” which means a hundred.
The Bulgarian Lev is the official currency of Bulgaria. The ISO 4217 currency code for the Bulgarian Lev is BGN.