A network of free-to-use ATMs that only dispense £5 notes has been launched in the UK by operator Bank Machine.
Bank Machine has introduced the 21 ATMs as part of a 'fight for fivers' campaign designed to increase the number of notes in circulation. After trialling two fiver-only machines in London - increasing circulation by 100,000 a month - the firm is now installing several more in Martin McColl's shops.
Ron Delnevo, MD, Bank Machine, says the move will also help people manage their money, claiming "there is cast iron proof that cash - and small denominations in particular - help people to budget, especially now during these financially stretching times".
The Bank of England has been urging financial institutions for some time to stock up ATMs with fivers in a bid to increase circulation. By the end of last year around £1.3 billion worth of £5 notes were in circulation, far fewer than £10 and £20 denominations.
Andrew Bailey, executive director, banking services and chief cashier, BoE, says the fact that few ATMs dispense £5 notes combined with their scarcity means they tend to stay in circulation longer, and change hands more times before they return into the wholesale cash distribution system for fitness sorting.
In a bid to increase the number of fivers in circulation, last year the Bank asked HSBC to stock 100 UK cash machines with them for a trial period.
Says Bailey: "The Bank has several projects underway to meet public demand for more £5 notes. One of these aims at encouraging the industry to include £5 notes in their ATMs - the front line of cash provision to the public. Bank Machine's launch of a network of £5-only ATMs across the UK is thus a very welcome move."