Is cash dead? | The Tylt

VOTING CLOSES: 3 days
Culture
Is cash dead?
#CashIsDead
#CashIsDead
#AlwaysHaveCash
#AlwaysHaveCash

Prior to the coronavirus outbreak in the United States, physical cash was already losing its luster. While some businesses opted for "cashless" operations, others pointed out that going cashless discriminates against customers with no access to credit cards, debit cards or digital payment. But COVID-19 is changing many things about regular life, including the safety of cash when it comes to transferring the virus. Is cash going away for good?

Dataviz
Real-time Voting
Is cash dead?
#CashIsDead
#AlwaysHaveCash
#CashIsDead

Businesses across the country are requesting digital payments for all transactions, and some are not accepting physical cash whatsoever. Where cash once appeared reliable, it now seems laden with germs and potential dangers. As the Los Angeles Times' James Rainey puts it: 

The almighty dollar has lost some of its might in the time of COVID-19. While most struggling businesses will take payment in any form to make ends meet during the economic downturn, a minority reject cash, fearing that it could be a transmission vehicle for the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Some experts predict that the pandemic will accelerate a steady flight by American consumers away from dollars and cents.

Although Rainey reminds readers that the most likely way someone will contract COVID-19 is through respiratory droplets, experts acknowledge that cash still makes many customers and businesses nervous. 

“This crisis is clearly pushing us even farther away from using cash in our everyday legal transactions,” said Kenneth Rogoff, a Harvard University economics professor and author of “The Curse of Cash.” “And it’s for obvious reasons. No one wants to touch something you or someone else just touched. That’s not going to change any time soon.”
#AlwaysHaveCash

But as Politico's Nancy Scola puts it, "money habits can be hard to break." Scola writes: 

For more than 200 years, paper cash has been at the heart of the American economy.

And as a result, not all businesses and customers are ready to write off cash so quickly. 

By one measure, cash is far from gone: The Covid-19 pandemic, like most emergencies, has seen people stashing away paper money. Federal Reserve data shows a slight uptick in U.S. currency withdrawals globally, although much of that could be overseas squirreling away a safe-seeming currency.

Furthermore, as Scola points out, a cashless society is not in the best interest of all: 

To some, however, a pandemic-triggered decline in cash is nothing to celebrate. Cash is an essential financial tool of the millions of Americans who either don’t have access to banks or credit cards, or who opt to not make use of them. (While it’s still possible to use PayPal and Square without a bank account, such as by transferring funds to a prepaid debit card, the services are designed around banked Americans — not to mention ones with smartphones and broadband.)
VOTING CLOSES: 3 days
Culture
Is cash dead?
#CashIsDead
#CashIsDead
#AlwaysHaveCash
#AlwaysHaveCash