Just days before the dawn of the Year of the Monkey, David Pham walked out of a Wells Fargo bank in Little Saigon — past tubs of purple holiday orchids — clutching $500 in crisp bills.
He spread them out across his palm, satisfied.
"When we give lucky money as a gift, it has to be new," Pham said. "The newness is part of the beginning of another year. If it's old and wrinkled, it's not special."
Pham, who owns a financial services firm in Westminster, will mark the Lunar New Year Monday by...