Hannah Nixon, Managing Director of the Payment Systems Regulator
Stop the war on cash: Intervene to stop cash machines closing at a record rate
Intervene to stop cash machines closing at a record rate
Why is this important?
The news that cash machines are closing at a record rate is alarming. Over two million Britons rely on cash for their day-to-day shopping, including many of society’s most vulnerable, such as older people and those on low incomes. And cash is essential for many small businesses. Removing dozens of isolated machines will leave many communities entirely without access to their money.
The banks claim this is just a reflection of changed consumer behaviour - with lots of people not using cash anymore. But a majority of people choose to use cash regularly, and the public’s demand for cash is greater than ever before - 77 percent of people consider access to a free-to-use cash machine as essential to their lives.
This is about banks putting the cash machine network under pressure to cut costs, combined with card companies’ efforts to make cash machines unprofitable. The regulator needs to step in to make sure our voices as consumers are being represented.