What is 'NAD (Namibian Dollar)'

NAD is the abbreviation for the Namibian dollar, which is the currency of Namibia. This dollar is comprised of 100 cents, similar to the U.S. dollar. In most instances, the Namibian dollar is written with the $ symbol, or with N$ to make a distinction between it and other currencies with dollar denominations.

BREAKING DOWN 'NAD (Namibian Dollar)'

The Namibian dollar (NAD) has been in circulation in the country since 1993. The first banknotes were introduced in September of that year and the countries first coins were minted in December. All of the notes feature the image of Hendrik Witbooi, one of the leaders who fought against German rule during the 20th century.

The Bank of Namibia, the nation's central bank, has taken steps to help fight the circulation of fake banknotes by implementing anti-counterfeiting structures into its currency. 

History of the Namibian Dollar

Prior to 1993, the South African rand (ZAR) was the single legal currency for the country of Namibia, which was ruled by South Africa as South-West Africa from 1920 until 1990. After gaining independence, Namibia's currency largely shifted to the Namibian dollar. While the dollar is widely circulated, the rand is still actually the legal tender in Namibia, because the dollar is pegged to the rand at par. Residents use both currencies throughout the nation.

Replacing the Rand With the NAD

A growing movement to replace the outdated South African rand began in 1990. Because the Namibian dollar is connected to the rand and has an exchange rate of one to one, the rand remains the "legal" tender accepted in Namibia. Initially, in 1990, the proposed replacement currency for the country was the "kalahar," a name that reflects the Kalahari Desert, which sprawls across eastern Namibia. Officials drew up several designs for the kalahar and speculated on a range of denominations, but little developed from this.

The only replacement currency for the rand that ever took shape, and exists today, is the Namibian dollar. 

NAD Denominations 

NAD coins in circulation exist in the amounts of 5, 10 and 50 cents, as well as coins that hold a value of 1, 5 and 10 dollars. There are banknotes in the amounts of 10, 20, 50, 100 and 200 dollars.

Practical Use of the NAD

While the Namibian dollar is highly utilized in conjunction with the South African rand in Namibia, the dollar is not legally accepted in South Africa. Within Namibia, the NAD can be exchanged for the rand without commission. A similar transaction in South Africa, while still able to be performed, generally incurs a weighty commission. In most cases, this commission is about 25 percent, as of 2016.

Highs and Lows of the NAD

In terms of the exchange rate with the U.S. dollar, the NAD experienced its all-time low of 2.52 in November of 1990. The record high for the NAD exchange rate at the beginning of 2016 was 16.87.

RELATED TERMS
  1. ZAR (South African Rand)

    The South African rand (ZAR) is a volatile currency that is often ...
  2. Dollar Rate

    The dollar rate is the exchange rate of a currency against the ...
  3. BWP (Botswana Pula)

    BWP is the currency abbreviation for the Botswana pula, the currency ...
  4. Currency

    Currency is a generally accepted form of money, including coins ...
  5. Hard Currency

    A hard currency is a system of money that generally comes from ...
  6. Currency In Circulation

    Currency in circulation refers to physical forms of money that ...
Related Articles
  1. Trading

    The New World Of Emerging Market Currencies

    Take advantage of foreign currency markets without stepping out of your house.
  2. Trading

    The U.S. Dollar's Unofficial Status as World Currency

    Discover how and why the U.S. dollar emerged as official currency in many foreign countries.
  3. Personal Finance

    5 Countries Where the USD Is Commonly Accepted

    In these five countries, the U.S. dollar is either the official currency or is used alongside native currencies for transactions.
  4. Investing

    Forex Investing: How To Capture Commodity Fluctuations

    For individual or retail investors looking to gain exposure to hot commodity trends, the foreign exchange markets provide the answer.
  5. Investing

    Currency Positions You Can Take Now

    The foreign currency market is the largest financial market in the world, and investors in this market have many options.
  6. Investing

    Interested In Investing In Africa? Here's How

    In 2000, Africa was labeled “The Hopeless Continent” by The Economist. In 2011, its cover read “Africa Rising.” What has changed for investors?
  7. Trading

    Weakest Currencies against the U.S. Dollar in 2015

    The U.S. dollar has been pummeling other currencies, largely due to falling global commodity prices. Here are the worst performing currencies of 2015.
  8. Insights

    Fitch Downgrades South Africa’s Outlook (EZA, EEM)

    Fitch joins other credit rating companies and downgrades South Africa's debt outlook to Negative.
  9. Trading

    Profiting From a Weak U.S. Dollar

    Learn how to allocate your investments when the U.S. dollar is down.
  10. Trading

    6 top-traded currencies and why they're so popular

    Every currency has specific features that affect its underlying value and price movements in the forex market.
RELATED FAQS
  1. How does the balance of trade impact currency exchange rates?

    Find out how the balance of trade affects a country's exchange rates and how those exchange rates can, in turn, affect the ... Read Answer >>
  2. Is there a world currency? If so, what is it?

    There is no such thing as a world currency. However, since World War II, the dominant or reserve currency of the world has ... Read Answer >>
  3. How is the forex spot rate calculated?

    The forex spot rate is determined by supply and demand. Banks all over the world are buying and selling different currencies ... Read Answer >>
  4. How do national interest rates affect a currency's value and exchange rate?

    Generally, higher interest rates increase the value of a given country's currency, but Interest rates alone do not determine ... Read Answer >>
  5. How can I trade in cross currency pairs if my forex account is denominated in U.S. ...

    The forex market allows individuals to trade on nearly all of the currencies in the world. However, most of the trading is ... Read Answer >>
  6. How does the balance of payments impact currency exchange rates?

    Take a brief look at the relationship between a nation's balance of payments and the exchange rate value of its currency ... Read Answer >>
Hot Definitions
  1. Discount Rate

    Discount rate is the interest rate charged to commercial banks and other depository institutions for loans received from ...
  2. Economies of Scale

    Economies of scale refer to reduced costs per unit that arise from increased total output of a product. For example, a larger ...
  3. Quick Ratio

    The quick ratio measures a company’s ability to meet its short-term obligations with its most liquid assets.
  4. Leverage

    Leverage results from using borrowed capital as a source of funding when investing to expand the firm's asset base and generate ...
  5. Financial Risk

    Financial risk is the possibility that shareholders will lose money when investing in a company if its cash flow fails to ...
  6. Enterprise Value (EV)

    Enterprise Value (EV) is a measure of a company's total value, often used as a more comprehensive alternative to equity market ...
Trading Center