We're reading some interesting things these days--some old and some new--and wanted to share a few tidbits. While new technology might do away with the actual cash itself, forecasting cash demand will always be necessary even if the cash, literally, no longer exists!

We don't have a crystal ball, so let's play what if!

    • Demise of the penny. This has been debated literally for decades in the US, but the fact that it still costs 2 cents to make something with a value of 1 cent (and this is actually down from 2012, according to Coin Collecting Enterprises, when it cost almost 2.5 cents to make a penny) means that our government could save a ton of cash if it stopped making tons of pennies. The penny in Canada was phased out in 2013 (as well as the nickel), and the US might not be too far behind.
    • Did you know there's actually a Dollar Coin Alliance? This group is, naturally, in favor of replacing the dollar bill with a dollar coin. There are a number of factors in favor of making this change, which is being assiduously fought by the Crane Paper Company, which has been making the paper for US bills since 1879. While the switch might seem straightforward, Americans still aren't making room for dollar coins in their everyday transactions, and dollar coins are stacking up unused in Federal Reserve vaults.
    • Believe it or not, there are people actually living a (tiny) Cashless Society. The South Dakota School of Mines & Technology and Nexus USA are testing a program which uses patented finger-reading technology, called Biocryptology, to complete cashless transactions. According to Planet Biometrics,

"The patented technology on the back end turns each finger scan into a series of valueless numbers that change every time the finger is introduced.
Data encryption ensures security, as the numbers can't be reproduced in a meaningful way. The Nexus Smart Pay pilot program is being tested by
50 students and four faculty members at two locations on campus."

The future is not here yet... but it appears it may be here sooner than later.