Paper Money

Swiss pushing back against so-called 'death of cash'

Is cash a thing of the past? Not if you ask the Swiss National Bank.

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The Swiss National Bank took a stand against the current trend for currency seen in several nations when one of its top executives said the bank has “no plans whatsoever to do way with cash,” in a statement released Feb. 27 by the bank.

Fritz Zurbrügg, deputy chairman of the governing board of the bank, used strong words when discussing the subject at the World Banknote Summit in Basel.

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“As the supplier of Swiss franc banknotes, the SNB thus takes the view that the reports about the death of cash are not just exaggerated — they are unfounded. The SNB has no plans whatsoever to do away with cash,” Zurbrügg said in his statement.

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This strong stance from the SNB comes after the European Central Bank announced last year it will stop issuing €500 notes by the end of 2018. This action is said to be a deterrent for counterfeiters and criminals.

Zurbrügg noted that keeping cash on hand and treating it as an asset of sorts avoids security issues that digital payments can sometimes present.

And they’ll be keeping their large-denomination notes, which people in cash-loving Switzerland use for large purchases such as cars.

“In Switzerland, we have no indication that large denominations — in our case, the 1,000-franc ($993.05) note — present a specific risk in this regard,” Zurbrügg said.

Read the full statement here.

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