People turning to cash as prices rise

prices rise

A record £3.32 billion in cash deposits and withdrawals was handled at the Post Office’s 11,500 branches across the UK

Post offices handled a record £801 million in personal cash withdrawals in July, marking an increase of nearly 8% month on month.

The increase could be due to people taking more staycations in the UK as well as relying on cash more to manage their budgets on a weekly or even daily basis, the Post Office suggested.

In total, a record £3.32 billion in cash deposits and withdrawals was handled at the Post Office’s 11,500 branches across the UK.

Personal cash deposits totalled £1.35 billion, up 2% month on month, while business cash deposits totalled £1.13 billion, up by 1.9% month on month.

In July, the Post Office also processed more than 600,000 cash payouts for people eligible to receive energy bill support from the Government.

Martin Kearsley, banking director at the Post Office, said: Our latest figures clearly show that Britain is anything but a cashless society. We’re seeing more and more people increasingly reliant on cash as the tried and tested way to manage a budget.

Whether that’s for a staycation in the UK or if it’s to help prepare for financial pressures expected in the autumn, cash access in every community is critical, he said.

He said: Postmasters handling over £3.3 billion in a single month demonstrates just how vital being able to deposit and withdraw cash securely and conveniently is for millions of people.

Natalie Ceeney, chair of the Cash Action Group, said it showed people are ‘literally counting the pennies’ as they grapple with rising prices.

It’s absolutely because of the cost of living crisis, said Ceeney, who chaired the government’s independent Access to Cash review.

People will be taking out cash and physically putting it into pots, saying ‘this is what I have for bills, this is what I have for food, and this is what’s left’, she said.

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