Half of UK payments still in cash
06 June 2014 | 9104 views | 20
Cash usage may be on the slide but notes and coins are still the UK's most commonly used buying tool, accounting for more than half of all payments last year, according to new figures.
Earlier this week the British Retail Consortium claimed that there has been a 14% decline in the use of cash in the last five years as customers switch to cards.
Soon afterwards, figures came from the UK Cards Association reporting that spending on plastic has more than doubled over the last decade, topping half a trillion pounds in 2013.
However, the Payments Council has now entered the fray, releasing figures which show that 19.9 billion cash payments, worth £260 billion, were made last year - 52% of all payments.
This is down on 20.8 billion payments worth £267 billion in 2012 but cash usage has held up relatively well over the last five years, hovering around the 20 to 21 billion mark since 2009.
The ATM remains the most popular method for Brits to get hold of their cash. At the end of 2013 there were more cash machines than ever before - 67,963 - with people withdrawing an average of £66 per visit.
David Hensley, head, cash services, says: "Despite speculation on declining cash use the reality is that the majority of our everyday purchases are still made in cash, particularly for low value items. Clearly customers need and want cash as much as ever."