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Even Cashless Sweden Thinks That Some Cash and Coin Are a Good Idea

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We’ve written a lot about the powerful movement toward a so-called “cashless society.” In its pure form, cash would cease to exist in the same way that gold coins ceased to exist in 1933 and silver coins ceased to exist in 1965.

Your “money in the bank” would be in digital form only, with no ability to take it in cash form. All payments would be by credit card, debit card, PayPal, Venmo, crypto or some other digital payment channel. All point-of-purchase transactions would be with the help of a swipe, chip reader, bar code, etc.

Academics and central banks favor this digital world because it puts all private funds under government control in banks. It allows the imposition of confiscation through negative interest rates since individuals cannot escape the digital system. Merchants like it because it lowers transaction costs (it actually costs money to store and move cash).

This all-digital world of money is closer than you think. One of the movement leaders has been Sweden, which has the lowest cash usage of any developed economy.

Guess what? According to this article, Sweden is now having second thoughts. Swedish government officials are concerned that in the event of a power outage or cyberattack Swedish citizens would be left without any means of payment. They recommend stockpiling some cash in case of emergencies.

I can suggest many more reasons to maintain physical cash (including bank freezes and infrastructure collapses), but at least Sweden is on board with the need to maintain cash.

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