Survey: Cash Resilient Amid Digital Payments Innovation

Prophecies of a cashless society are proving premature, according to survey results released by ATM provider Cardtronics and research firm Edelman yesterday. According to the survey, 56 percent of U.S. consumers use cash as frequently as a year ago, and 23 percent are using it more frequently — with just two in 10 using it less often. Eighty-four percent said they always try to keep some cash on hand, with $50 in the average wallet.

Reasons for the resilience of cash include concerns over data security, budgeting practices and convenience for small-dollar purchases. A little over half of respondents say cash makes them feel most secure from a retail data breach. Three-quarters say using cash helps them manage their finances and avoid overspending, in line with popular personal finance advice.

Consumers also tend to prefer cash for small retail transactions; it accounts for 72 percent of purchases under $10 and 54 percent of purchases under $20. And despite the growth of person-to-person payment apps such as Venmo, cash also remains dominant with 79 percent of the P2P payment arena.