TWENTY pence is now worth £50, a tenner is worth 12p and a 2p piece is worth about four grand, it was confirmed last night.
Martin Bishop, Coinmaker-in-Chief at the Royal Mint, said it all started when he accidentally made a load of 20ps with no date on.
"The next day some bloke said they were worth fifty quid and, even though it didn't make much sense at the time, no one thought to argue.'
He added: "Now it's all a bit fucked up."
Mervyn King, Governor of the Bank of England, said he had finally decided to give up, adding: "I've bought a guitar and am going to go round the local pubs doing Tom Petty covers."
The sudden, totally random and utterly inexplicable change in the value of money is a boon for those who collect coins or have recently used a fiver to buy some Tic Tacs.
Edie Godley, 82, from Worcester has a large cider bottle completely filled with the small brown coins that used to be worth 1p and 2p each.
She added: "I collect coppers because I am lonely and enjoy taking them to the bank, where I can chat to the teller as she laboriously counts them out, while people stand behind me, calling me a 'manky old shit'.
"But now each two pence piece is worth £800,012 so I have decided to buy Norway and make myself its Queen. It's going to be lovely."
Others, like Dave Stein, a gangster and drug dealer from Chigwell, are less pleased.
"I had just left a major heroin deal with a suitcase full of unmarked fifties. Apparently they're now worth 0.0086p each. I've already spent it all on a Wispa. I'm gutted."