In Sweden people are getting concerned about the shift towards a cashless society - 11/22/2018

Few countries have been moving toward a cashless society as fast as Sweden. But cash is being squeezed out so quickly – with half the nation's retailers predicting they will stop accepting bills before 2025 – that the government is recalculating the societal costs of a cash-free future. The financial authorities, who once embraced the trend, are asking banks to keep peddling notes and coins until the government can figure out what going cash-free means for young and old consumers. The central bank, which predicts cash may fade from Sweden, is testing a digital currency – an e-krona – to keep...

In Great Britain, 95% of the population is still carrying cash. - 10/01/2018

Nearly the entire United Kingdom carries cash, indicating that its citizens may feel some needs unfulfilled by banking and payment apps. According to a report by the Post Office, the vast majority of the country, around 95%, still carried cash, with the average wallet   containing at least £26. Fewer than 10% were ready to transition to a cashless society. Additionally, over 20% actually preferred using cash for certain purposes and purchases, illustrating that payment apps may not have served all needs required for consumers to trust them completely. Read more

Will you prosper in cashless Britain? - 09/29/2018

As we move towards a seemingly cashless future, concerns are growing about the real impact and risks that a society without physical money brings with it. There are obvious, well-known worries that millions of Britons are being left behind in the world of financial apps, online banking and contactless payments. A quarter of the population fears for the vulnerable and elderly in an increasingly cashless Britain, the Post Office warns, while another quarter simply doesn’t feel we have the infrastructure in place to transition smoothly. Read more

Despite claims of a cashless revolution, in the UK the average purse contains £26 - 09/29/2018

More than 95 percent of people still carry cash and fewer than 10 percent of people are ready to make the move to a cashless society, based solely on digital payments and online banking, a report found. The study, which revealed that the average wallet contains at least £26, backs recent claims that the cashless revolution has been exaggerated and that cash remains an important part of everyday life across the country, and undermines claims from the UK credit card industry that the days of notes and coins are numbered. Read more

The growing digital divide in the Chinese economy - 09/27/2018

An argument between staff at a cashless supermarket in northern China and an elderly man who did not know how to use his smartphone to buy a bunch of grapes has revived calls for help for those left behind in the digital economy. The 67-year-old man tried to use cash to buy the fruit at a supermarket in Jixi, Heilongjiang province, on Sunday, video news site Pear Video reported. Checkout workers rejected the money and insisted that he use his phone to pay via either WeChat Pay or Alipay, prompting the argument. Read more

In theory cashless societies appear to be great, but fail in reality: a China case study - 09/26/2018

With the world’s most advanced and widespread digital payments infrastructure, cash is fast becoming a thing of the past in China. A  Foreign Policy report, however, shows a very different side of the supposed success story and tells a story of deep inequality with potentially global implications. The death of cash may not be the gift it is often presented as for the simple reason that a large proportion of the country’s population still depends on cash for their survival. Read more

China in no position to afford a cashless society - 09/11/2018

In Chinese cities, paying via the ubiquitous WeChat platform is now so common that vendors often have trouble making change for cash, or sometimes refuse to take it altogether. Wang Yazhou, a senior banking official in Hefei, the province’s capital, commented a thorough cleanup was needed because refusing cash payments would be likely to have a very negative impact. Regulators like Wang are right to be concerned. The growing “cashlessness” of Chinese cities threatens to expose underlying issues of economic instability. Read more

Why we should not celebrate the idea of a cashless society - 08/24/2018

We are gradually moving towards a cashless society, fuelled by swipe cards, and in the UK only 3 per cent of all spending is now in cash. As a result, we have huge credit card debts because of the disconnect between easy spending and real money.   Read more

The poorest will suffer the most if the idea of a cashless society goes wrong - 08/22/2018

On November 8, 2016, the Indian Prime Minister announced that the country’s two highest denomination banknotes would no longer be legal tender. The 500 and 1000 rupee notes accounted for 86 per cent of currency supply in a country where roughly 90 per cent of transactions are done in cash. In the aftermath of Modi’s overnight demonetisation, sociologists documented how it was poor people who were disproportionately affected. Replacement notes turned out to be in short supply and poor people found it hardest to get to banks and trade in old for new. Read more

The reasons why consumers must resist the push for cashless societies - 08/10/2018

All over the world, traditional methods of monetary transaction are in decline and are being replaced by digital methods. In Sweden cash now represents only one percent of the national economy. Many consumers and businesses have welcomed this revolution adopting online banking, contactless payments and so on. For their part, the mainstream media almost unanimously welcomed this movement as a good thing. But some voices are raised to relativize the virtues of the disappearance of cash. Read more
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The cashless society from an ethical point of view

The debate about the move towards a cashless society has been at the center of the scene for several years, now. Various angles have been taken by economists, politicians, banking institutions and sociologists. Beyond the technicalities of the debate, lies the question of freedom, of inter-citizen solidarity and of governmental responsibility. The debate cannot remain in the hands of financial specialists, it is first and foremost an ethical, political and societal issue.

The cashless society from an ethical point of view

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