For years, politicians, financial institutions, retailers and society at large have all been discussing the future of cash. Often, the prognosis is less than rosy. Younger generations in particular have been taken in by mobile payments via the likes of PayPal and Apple Pay. Coins and bills are gradually disappearing from these predictions for the future. But one current trend shows: the demise of cash may have been predicted far too soon.
Cash on the Rise?
Various studies all seem to agree: cash is losing its importance in our society. The European Central Bank spoke at the end of 2022 about cash no longer being the most common payment method at checkout desks. Compared to non-cash payment methods, its share is shrinking – falling by 9 percent from 2019 to 2022. The COVID pandemic also contributed to speeding up this development. A major technology retailer’s recent decision to ban cash highlights this move towards cash-free alternatives.
Younger generations are taking center stage here. According to the payment questionnaire, over 30 percent of 18 to 29-year-olds asked could imagine a completely cash-free society – thanks to smart options. This makes it all the more astonishing that a new trend is driving precisely these young consumers into the arms of coins and bills: cash stuffing.
Save with Cash Stuffing
The hashtag #cashstuffing is going viral. There are thousands of Instagram and TikTok posts on the topic. Cash stuffing involves creating a kind of “household kitty”. The idea? Keep your finances in check by keeping physical cash – and count your savings at the end of the month. The impetus behind this saving hack is the increased cost of living, especially horrendous energy prices. The consequences are obvious: many people, especially younger people, are worried about losing control of their household finances. One solution is currently all over social media.
Cash stuffing means getting all of the funds available to you for everyday expenses out in cash at the beginning of the month. Rent and insurance payments are left in the account, of course. You then think of categories, write these onto envelopes and divvy up the cash. There are many options: from an envelope for groceries to one for leisure, such as “hobbies”, and even one for savings. This budget should then last for the whole month. In other words, you are only allowed to use the money allocated to the relevant envelope. Sneaking money from another envelope is strictly forbidden.
Retail and Banks: Reaction Required!
That’s one side of the social media trend. On the other, there are retailers and banks. They have been dealing with concerns surrounding cash for a while now. Even the International Currency Association (ICA) and Bundesvereinigung Deutscher Geld- und Wertdienste (BDGW) have been warning that cash supplies would be getting more expensive – perhaps even too expensive – for retailers and banks for at least two years. As Germans still love their cash, and trends like cash stuffing are currently showing that the younger generation would actually like to keep hold of it for now, efficient cash management solutions are needed – and fast.
That’s why ALVARA | Digital Solutions has devoted itself to cash management – with contemporary software solutions. The ALVARA Interactive Cash Control (ICC) platform is dedicated to the cash cycle. It comes with benefits for retailers and cash-in-transit companies as well as financial institutions and the Federal Bank. Digital cash management ensures one thing never gets lost: a clear overview. Various stakeholders can easily manage their complex communication and monitoring tasks across all cash logistics processes via the ICC platform or the ICC app. But how can one single platform be well suited to so many different users? Its modular setup means the solution can be adapted to different focal points and tasks.
Cash stuffing makes one thing clear: cash is here to stay – among the old and the young. Retailers and banks must react. They can, for example, use software solutions to tackle increasing cost pressure. These optimize cash management through digital, automated processes that in turn lead to more efficiency, security and transparency. A trifecta that companies and institutions can use to rise to consumers’ desire to continue to pay in coins and bills.
You can find out about all of our cash management products for retail here.
Find all digital cash management solutions for financial institutions here at a glance.
CTA: Want to prepare yourself for the cash stuffing trend? We’d be happy to advise you on the right solutions – individually tailored to your industry!