Paper Money

Why do people still use paper money? It’s easily lost, stolen, or destroyed, it’s a huge transmitter of disease, and it wears quickly and is a pain to replace.

My mother always told me to hide a bit of cash away for emergencies. Although she means well, I feel like a bad cartoon pirate that still relies on my chest of gold every time I hoard pieces of paper. Besides, every time I “hide” money away, I end up handing it over the lady behind the counter at Memos within a week.

In almost every way, electronic banking is superior to paper currency. Online deposits and withdraws make transactions faster and safer, durable cards are more eco-friendly, traveling to foreign countries is a breeze, theft has become minute due to the lack of physical bills kept in stores- the list goes on.

Still, with all of these glaring facts, cash refuses to die. Surprisingly, the demand for money is rising faster than both population rates and inflation. This is due to the invasive nature of banks and the laws that they must abide by. To ensure safety in terms of money laundering, tax evasions, drug dealing, etc. banks are forced to require more documents and larger minimum balances from their customers. These regulations reduce the population of potential clients that can meet the requirements.

Because of these regulations, banks effectively shut out the young and/or poor population who can’t keep up with the bank’s conditions as well as those who wish to keep their wealth and transactions confidential. These demographics play a large part in ensuring the livelihood of paper currency.

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