Thursday, April 21, 2011

How Much Cash is in Your Pocket?

You have only $34 in your pocket, purse, or wallet right now--if you are typical. That is the median amount of cash carried by the average American, according to a recently published Federal Reserve Bank of Boston paper analyzing results of the 2009 Survey of Consumer Payment Choice (yes, there really is such a thing).

You make 64.5 payments during a typical month (including everything from buying groceries to paying your credit card bill). You make 29 percent of those payments with a debit card, 28 percent with cash, 17 percent with a credit card, 13 percent with a check, and 5 percent with online bill payments. Money orders and bank account number payments account for most of the remainder.

During a year's time, 77 percent of Americans access their bank account by going into a bank, 69 percent use an ATM, 61 percent use online banking, 32 percent use telephone banking, and 9 percent use mobile banking services on their cell phone.

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