Have you ever heard of the phrase “a stack of money?” If you have, you probably thought that it just meant “a lot of money,” which it technically does. In money terms, a stack, which is equal to a strap, is a collection of 100 bills consisting of the same denomination.
So, a stack of $1, $2, $5, $10, $20, $50, and $100 bills would equal $100, $200, $500, $1,000, $2,000, and $10,000, respectively.
However, a stack of money isn’t the only “unit” when bundling money together. In this guide, I’ll explain what the different meanings of stack can be, what other official and unofficial money-bundling units there are, and why all of this even matters.
What Is a Stack?
If you ask a handful of people what a stack of money is, you might receive different answers. Some people might say that a stack refers to a ‘large amount of money, while others will give you a direct monetary value.
In official terms, a stack, which is also known as a strap, is a collection of 100 bills of the same denomination. In slang, a stack can refer to a pile of cash with a total value of $10,000.
The following table will describe the differences in official and unofficial meanings of stack by how much money it contains and how many bills there are.
Bills, Monetary Value
Bills, Monetary Value
|$1||100 bills, $100||10,000 bills, $10,000|
|$2||100 bills, $200||5,000 bills, $10,000|
|$5||100 bills, $500||2,000 bills, $10,000|
|$10||100 bills, $1,000||1,000 bills, $10,000|
|$20||100 bills, $2,000||500 bills, $10,000|
|$50||100 bills, $5,000||250 bills, $10,000|
|$100||100 bills, $10,000||100 bills, $10,000|
As you can see from the table above, the only overlap between the official and slang meanings of stack is when counting $100. Also, it’s worth noting that in slang terms, a stack doesn’t have to contain a singular denomination—e.g., 1 stack = 50 × $100, 100 × $10, 150 × $20, 1,000 × $1.
What Other Money-Bundling Units Are There?
In official terms, there are only 2—stacks/straps and bundles. A bundle refers to 1,000 bills consisting of the same denomination. From this, we can conclude that a bundle is the same as 10 stacks.
The following table will describe the monetary value of a bundle based on denomination.
|Denomination||Monetary Value per Bundle|
When looking at unofficial terms, there are racks ($1,000) and bricks ($100,000). Let’s see how many singular-denomination bills you would need to build a rack and a brick.
|Denomination||Bills per Rack||Bills per Brick|
Again, unofficial terms for bundles of money do not require the same denomination per stack. You can combine different banknotes to come up with the total money value based on the bundle type.
Why Does All This Matter?
For both official and unofficial meanings, the differences between stacks, bundles, racks, and bricks don’t really matter. It’s just a way of stating that you have “a lot” of money in your possession.
However, when making large deposits to a bank, the bank might require that you separate your cash piles into stacks and/or bundles. The Federal Reserve has very meticulous guidelines on how one should keep money bundled together.
One important rule banks should take note of is that bills from $1 to $20 must be deposited in full bundles, whereas $50 and $100 bills can be deposited in full straps and/or bundles.
But what does this mean to us, the average person who wants to deposit large sums of money? Nothing at all—banks have money-sorting machines and systems in place to count out stacks and bundles for us. All we have to do is stand there and make sure the teller isn’t trying anything funny.
How Much Does a Rack, Stack, Bundle, and Brick of Money Weigh?
Regardless of the denomination, all dollar bills will weigh 1 gram. So, we can easily figure out the weight of paper money by the stack and bundle. Racks and bricks are different since they are measured in money value, not bill count. Assuming we’re using the same denomination per rack, stack, bundle, and brick, this is how much each will weigh.
|$1||1,000 grams||100 grams||1,000 grams||100,000 grams|
|$2||500 grams||100 grams||1,000 grams||50,000 grams|
|$5||200 grams||100 grams||1,000 grams||20,000 grams|
|$10||100 grams||100 grams||1,000 grams||10,000 grams|
|$20||50 grams||100 grams||1,000 grams||5,000 grams|
|$50||20 grams||100 grams||1,000 grams||2,000 grams|
|$100||10 grams||100 grams||1,000 grams||1,000 grams|