Australian Newsagency Blog

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Reserve Bank head talks about phasing out cheques and the move to cashless

Mark Fletcher
December 12th, 2019 · 6 Comments

Phillip Low, governor of the Reserve bank in a widely reported speech Tuesday this week spoke about the rapid decline in use of cheques and cash.

Addressing the Australian Payments Network Summit in Sydney, Dr Lowe revealed the bank’s traditional survey of payment systems has found another huge fall in the use of cheques.

Over the past year, the number of cheques written has fallen by 19 per cent with the value down by 30 per cent. Much of this is due to the real estate sector moving to electronic property settlements.

Dr Lowe said the use of cash was also falling away with 80 per cent of retail transactions now tap-and-go. That rapid take-up of tap-and-go is faster than in most other countries, aided by the “willingness of Australians to try something different” including wearable devices.

“There has been a further trend decline in the use of cash, with cash now accounting for just around a quarter of day-to-day transactions, and most of these are for small-value payments,” he said.

I appreciate that cashless retail is not a popular topic here. There is no denying that it is on the horizon and approaching us.

I see evidence of cashless in my own shops as well as in other retail, in government, in banking service changes and elsewhere. I think there is no stopping this move.

By the way: my preference is cash.


Category: Newsagency management

6 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Graeme Day // Dec 12, 2019 at 6:34 AM

    He also stated the importance of cash and added that society will never be cashless. He said to keep cash on you as it’s here forever.
    Cards whist at an all time hih cost more money and this may put a halt to growth a such.


  • 2 Jason // Dec 12, 2019 at 8:17 AM

    Pretty sure consumers will buy how they want, it will only put a halt on the growth of sellers who don’t offer what consumers want.


  • 3 Leon Tonna // Dec 12, 2019 at 1:51 PM

    I’m sure the Government would love a cashless society. It would make transactions traceable and would reduce tax avoidance. An unintended consequence maybe the rapid increase in crypto and bartering. Be careful what you wish for.


  • 4 Colin // Dec 12, 2019 at 9:54 PM

    Our shop, not a newsagency, has a day most weeks when no cash is taken, it’s a rare day when cash exceeds 20%. Cheques we have not accepted for 5 years. Personally I stopped carrying cash about 6 months ago.


  • 5 Jonathan Wilson // Dec 12, 2019 at 10:13 PM

    I am surprised cheques are even still a thing in 2019. I haven’t seen a cheque in years and have never had (or needed) a cheque book myself.


  • 6 Ben Poland // Dec 13, 2019 at 9:51 AM

    Interesting – in fact over the past last few weeks I have felt that there has been a much greater use of eftPOS for small item purchases such as newspapers – notably in the older 60+ demographic.


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