Finance Breaking news Bank of England called to account over £50 billion in missing banknotes last financial news
Breaking-Finance.Com - The Bank of England is coming under pressure from MPs to discover the whereabouts of £50 billion in missing banknotes, as cash supply dwindles on the high street.
Breaking-Finance.Com - The Bank of England is coming under pressure from MPs to discover the whereabouts of £50 billion in missing banknotes, as cash supply dwindles on the high street. A report from the Public Accounts Committee, says oversight of the production and distribution of notes and coins is “unclear” and “fragmented” across responsible authorities, who have been “behind the curve” in ensuring access to cash for consumers and businesses.Meg Hillier MP, chair of the public spending oversight body, says: “Our run up to Christmas and Christmas shopping is obviously very different this year, but it highlights how increasingly difficult it has become to, for example, choose to support a small local business by paying it in cash - generally the cheapest form of payment to accept.“In many areas where you can use cash you’d be hard pressed to find it, at least without paying an ATM fee that may be a substantial percentage of a small withdrawal - yet making frequent, small withdrawals can be a key budgeting tool for those on low incomes, and least able to afford those fees."Responsibilities are spread across HM Treasury, the Financial Conduct Authority, the Payment Systems Regulator and the Bank of England but no one body is in overall charge of making sure that people and businesses have access to cash, the Committee points out.Conversely, demand for sterling notes has steadily increased, but the Bank of England does not “appear to have a convincing reason for why the demand for notes keeps increasing” or any real understanding of where approximately £50 billion of issued sterling notes are, or being used for.
. This leaves about £50 billion worth of issued bank notes that may be being used overseas for transactions or savings, or held in the UK as unreported household savings or for use in the shadow economy. Says Hillier: ££50 billion of sterling notes - or about three quarters of this precious and dwindling supply - is stashed somewhere but the Bank of England doesn’t know where, who by or what for - and doesn’t seem very curious. It needs to be more concerned about where the missing £50 billion is. Depending where it is and what it’s being used for, that amount of money could have material implications for public policy and the public purse. The Bank needs to get a better handle on the national currency it controls.”
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