The pros and cons of cash: Can we break free?

  • Article by: Editorial , Bloomberg View
  • Updated: October 28, 2013 - 5:52 PM

An all-digital-payment world could save money and time, but to that there are (you guessed it) costs.

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SlytalkerOct. 28, 13 7:05 PM

The so called disadvantages of cash will extend into the digital realm with the added bonus of govts knowing where every penny is thus facilitating control of the people.

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herby2013Oct. 28, 13 8:27 PM

A big chunk of my income comes electronically now via PayPal. I have been making most of my payments online for over 10 years. Problem is you can't place electronic money in a g-string. There is a pleasant anonymity in using cash that I would like to keep. What did I spend my money on? None of your business!

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rlwr51Oct. 28, 13 8:31 PM

What's the swipe fee for giving "money" to a panhandler?

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foneboothOct. 28, 13 8:43 PM

Once the cc companies control your cash flow 100%, then they get to set fees and interest rates. The rates they charge now we used to send mafia members to prison for just 25 years ago...

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lorelei65Oct. 28, 13 8:46 PM

"In Stockholm, the homeless now accept credit cards. Sweden’s high-tech economy has made bills and coins almost obsolete, so equipping the destitute with card readers — a world first, apparently — was a natural evolution" I don't have words to express all the things wrong with this paragraph. I supposed the government supplies the card readers to the homeless. just wrong.

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ciamanOct. 28, 13 8:51 PM

Stockholm Sweden is the society that is now out trying to wipe out the names of father and mothr, or boy or girl. Do you want that kind of society? Cash is the best thing to use to keep the hackers away from finding your home. And cash can be spent for anything that you would like to do. And big brother would love to get rid of cash so the NSA could keep track of what we bought and where and when. I will keep cash and also buy gold and silver since those metals retain their value far better than paper. They have inherent value. Do you get a thrill when you hold paper money? No. I say no to the credit cards which have helped put so many people into such far debt that they have lost their homes. I see no value in any other cards of any kind.

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erikj3Oct. 28, 1310:09 PM

Always keep cash on hand for emergencies and smaller purchases. It's not practical when buying groceries or traveling, however.

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fatredneckOct. 28, 1310:38 PM

Now how about a sudden shift to a cash-only society? I can picture it now . . . . it is Deadline Day - Let's make a run to (on) the bank. OK? It's my money and I need cash now!

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FrankLOct. 29, 13 8:56 AM

This only works when the power is on and the servers are working. Ask people in NYC how well their cell phones worked after Sandy? The cell phone networks were down for a couple of days, in many places power was out for week. Those without cash were up a creek as far as being able to buy even simple things like some drinking water.

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EleanoreOct. 29, 13 9:51 AM

Cash....is good. If we can't eliminate it and retain the positive qualities of it then I'll shift to barter.

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