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Unusual increase in amount of cash registered in Norway last year

KronerPhoto: Gorm Kallestad / NTB

Last year, Norges Bank noticed an unusual increase in the amount of cash after the corona pandemic broke out. The growth lasted almost the whole year.

Cash in circulation has shown a steady and declining trend for 15 years. Norges Bank expected the trend would continue at the beginning of 2020, the newspaper Finansavisen writes.

But from March last year, the amount of cash began to increase, and growth continued until the end of July. At that time, the amount of cash was NOK 42.5 billion. One has to go all the way back to September of 2018 to find a month with the same amount of cash in circulation.

From August, the total amount of banknotes and coins in circulation in Norway began to fall, but the value in August amounted to NOK 42.1 billion, which was 3.3% or NOK 1.3 billion more than a year earlier.


In Norges Bank’s annual report on banknotes and coins, the increase is described as unusual.

“The increase ‘may indicate that many want to have a little more cash than usual in difficult times,'” Norges Bank wrote in the report.

Only 3–4% of all transactions last year were made with cash, according to a survey conducted by Norstat for the central bank twice a year. In recent years, cash payments have accounted for just under 10% of all transactions.

Source: © NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today / #NorwayTodayFinance

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