Shekel sign

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The two ways of representing shekels. The "₪" symbol on the left and the abbreviation "ש״ח" on the right may be used interchangeably. (The symbols need not be smaller than the numbers; this was done for stylistic reasons.)
Shekel sign
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The shekel sign () is a currency sign used for the Israeli new shekel, which is the currency of the State of Israel.

Israeli new shekel (1986–present)

The Israeli new shekel is denoted in Hebrew: שקל חדש‎ (šéqel ħadáš, IPA: [ˈʃekel χaˈdaʃ], lit. "New Shekel") or by the acronym Hebrew: ש״ח‎ ([ʃaχ]). The symbol was announced officially on 22 September 1985, when the first new shekel banknotes and coins were introduced.[1] It is constructed by combining the two Hebrew letters that constitute the acronym (the first letter of each of the two words): "ש" and "ח". Sometimes the "₪" symbol (Unicode 20AA) is used following the number, other times the acronym Hebrew: ש״ח‎.

The Israeli toll road symbol bearing the Shekel sign.

The shekel sign, like the dollar sign ("$"), is usually placed left of the number (i.e. "₪12,000" and not "12,000₪"), but since Hebrew is written from right to left, this means that the symbol is actually written after the number. It is either not separated from the preceding number, or is separated only by a thin space.

Unlike the dollar sign, the new shekel sign is not used that often when handwriting monetary amounts.

The road sign announcing the entrance to an Israeli toll road, such as Highway 6 or the Carmel Tunnels, is a shekel symbol with a road in the background.

Unicode and input

The symbol has the Unicode code point U+20AA NEW SHEQEL SIGN (8362decimal<dot-separator> HTML &#8362;). It has been found in Unicode since June 1993, version 1.1.0.

According to the standard Hebrew keyboard (SI 1452) it must be typed as AltGr-A (the letter ש appears on the same key in regular Hebrew mode). It can be typed into Microsoft Windows on a standard Hebrew keyboard layout by pressing AltGr and 4 (Shift-4 produces the Dollar sign). The Shekel sign, however, is not drawn on most keyboards sold in Israel and the sign is rarely used in day-to-day typing. On a Ubuntu system it can be entered by holding down Ctrl+Shift+u, releasing (a u with an underline appears) and then typing the Unicode code point 20aa space. In Mac OS X it can be typed as Shift+7 when the system is set to a Hebrew keyboard layout.

Old Israeli shekel (1980–1985)

Old Sheqel sign.svg

The old Israeli shekel, "Old Sheqel sign.svg", in circulation between 1980–1985, had a different symbol, which was officially announced on 18 March 1980.[2] It was a stylized Shin shaped like a cradle (i.e. rounded and opening upward). Before the introduction of the old shekel in 1980, there was no special symbol for the Israeli currency. This symbol appeared on checks issued by Israeli banks between 1980 and 1985. Quoting prices in new shekels started officially on January 1, 1986, and the old shekel checks remaining unused had to be stamped with The New Shekel symbol over the old symbol.

See also


  1. Reshumot - Yalkut Pirsumin (Israeli official gazette, collection of miscellaneous announcements), Collection No. 3254, 14 Tishrei 5746, 29 September 1986, p. 430, ISSN 0334-2980 (in Hebrew).
  2. Reshumot - Yalkut Pirsumin (Israeli official gazette, collection of miscellaneous announcements), Collection No. 2619, 27 Nisan 5740, 13 April 1980, p. 1423, ISSN 0334-2980 (in Hebrew).