The Mexican peso (sign: $; code: MXN) is the currency of Mexico. Modern peso and dollar currencies have a common origin in the 15th–19th century-Spanish dollar, most continuing to use its sign, "$". The Mexican peso is the 10th most traded currency in the world, the third most traded currency from America (after the United States dollar and Canadian dollar), and the most traded currency from Latin America.
The current ISO 4217 code for the peso is MXN; prior to the 1993 revaluation (see below), the code MXP was used. The peso is subdivided into 100 centavos, represented by "¢". , the peso's exchange rate was $21.75 per euro and $19.27 per U.S. dollar.
The name was first used in reference to pesos oro (gold weights) or pesos plata (silver weights). The Spanish word peso means "weight". Compare the British pound sterling.
The peso was the name of the eight-real coins issued in Mexico by Spain. These were the so-called Spanish dollars or pieces of eight in wide circulation in the Americas and Asia from the height of the Spanish Empire until the early 19th century (the United States accepted the Spanish dollar as legal tender until the Coinage Act of 1857).
In 1863, the first issue was made of coins denominated in centavos, worth one hundredth of the peso. This was followed in 1866 by coins denominated "one peso". Coins denominated in reales continued to be issued until 1897. In 1905, the gold content of the peso was reduced by 49.3% but the silver content of the peso remained unchanged (subsidiary coins were debased). However, from 1918 onward, the weight and fineness of all the silver coins declined, until 1977, when the last silver 100-peso coins were minted.
Throughout most of the 20th century, the Mexican peso remained one of the more stable currencies in Latin America, since the economy did not experience periods of hyperinflation common to other countries in the region. However, after the oil crisis of the late 1970s, Mexico defaulted on its external debt in 1982, and as a result the country suffered a severe case of capital flight, followed by several years of inflation and devaluation, until a government economic strategy called the "Stability and Economic Growth Pact" (Pacto de estabilidad y crecimiento económico, PECE) was adopted under President Carlos Salinas. On January 1, 1993 the Bank of Mexico introduced a new currency, the nuevo peso ("new peso", or MXN), written "N$" followed by the numerical amount. One new peso, or N$1.00, was equal to 1000 of the obsolete MXP pesos.
On January 1, 1996, the modifier nuevo was dropped from the name and new coins and banknotes – identical in every respect to the 1993 issue, with the exception of the now absent word "nuevo" – were put into circulation. The ISO 4217 code, however, remained unchanged as MXN.
Thanks to the stability of the Mexican economy and the growth in foreign investment, the Mexican peso is now among the 15 most traded currency units.