Recent changes in the use of cash

Quarterly Bulletin 1982 Q4
Published on 01 December 1982
  • Demand for cash has recently been growing much more slowly than expected.
  • This is difficult to reconcile with the proposition that the 'black economy' has been expanding.
  • There are a number of possible explanations for the slower growth: changes in the way consumers make payments, away from cash and towards cheques, are emphasized.
  • These changes have been more rapid in the UK than in many other countries; we now use rather less cash in relation to spending levels than other European countries, but still more than North America.
  • Such structural changes imply that movements in cash are unlikely to be helpful as a guide to general economic or financial conditions.

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