This might seem like a completely backwards question, especially when you consider the recent mega-breach of credit and debit card numbers at Target. But it could be that the wider adoption of credit cards and electronic payments contributed to huge decreases in crime rates in the United States in the 1990s. [More]
You know the feeling when you reach into the pocket of some jeans or a jacket you haven’t worn in a while and come up with a $5 bill? Multiply that feeling by a whole lot and imagine what it’d be like to find a suit stuffed with cash for a grand total of $43,000. [More]
Tired of paying for Xbox Live content with Microsoft Points? Your life is about to become so much easier, or at least more consistent. Just like you buy things in the real world with local currency, a new update to XBox 360 will have you plunking down whatever the going rate is in your local currency for all things Xbox Live. Any leftover points will also be converted to their equivalent cash value. [via Engadget]
In spite of decades of studies showing the long-term cost benefits of dollar coins over Federal Reserve Notes, and the fact that most of the world’s leading economies have already switched to coins for similar denominations, the U.S. has remained steadfast in its use of printed dollar bills. So once again, lawmakers in the Senate are making the push to gradually make the transition from print to mint. [More]
Working all day serving drinks on a golf course might make one think, “Hey, I deserve a really nice tip.” But for one woman employed by a golf course in Miami Beach, Fla., there was no way she was going to claim a bag full of $36,000 in cash as her just desserts for doing her job. She found the bag o’green on the green and turned it in instead.
Look in your wallet. Which bills make you happier — the smooth, crisp new ones, or the dirty, crumpled, well-worn notes that have probably been passed around a bajillion times and handled by goodness knows how many people who don’t wash their hands? A new study says the crisper the money, the less likely we are to spend it because everyone wants to get rid of the old, dirty money as fast as possible.
We’ve often mused about what we’d do if we were to stumble on a whole lot of cash, seemingly without any owner to claim it. Maybe sneak a few bills? Quietly tuck it all away and pretend like it never happened? We couldn’t, we just couldn’t. And when a bus driver in Vienna found a shopping bag filled with 390,000 euros ($509,700) in cash, he did the right thing, too. [More]
Here at The Consumerist, we have a long-standing anti-penny stance, but we’re somewhat in favor of the gold-colored dollar coins. They’re shiny! The Sacagawea ones have a woman on them! They save the government money! Except a new Government Accountability Office report mentions something interesting that we haven’t discussed here before. Just replacing more fragile dollar bills with durable coins doesn’t save any money at all. Minting and distributing all of those coins costs a lot. Instead, all of the cost savings would come from Americans throwing dollar coins in jars instead of circulating them.
Most financial experts don’t recommend keeping large amounts of cash stashed at home, but that doesn’t stop people from socking their savings in corners they believe to be safe. Those who do so leave themselves vulnerable to losing huge amounts of money due to burglaries or forgetfulness.
Check your pockets before sending clothing and household goods to Goodwill, especially if you’re in the habit of storing your life savings in the pocket of a favorite suit. An 80-year-old man in Illinois with a Depression-era mistrust of banks stashed his savings around the house. That cash was in the pocket of a suit jacket that the main claims he donated to a Goodwill thrift store. He didn’t realize what had happened until a week later.
Canada, which dropped its $1 bill in favor of coins decades ago, is continuing to tear up its paper currency. This week, the country introduced a plastic $100 bill, which the government says is rip-resistant, virtually impossible to counterfeit, and won’t melt in the dryer or freeze in the winter. It’s also been modified, since some early reviewers saw sex toys and naked women in its original design.
If you had to fork over $1,000 right now, would you be able to do so without borrowing money or using your credit card? If so, then a new survey from the National Foundation for Credit Counseling says you’re in the minority.
With every story we write about increased credit card fees, slashed rewards programs or hacked bank databases, a growing number of readers have expressed a growing interest in ditching their plastic and going cash-only.
Shawn bought this antique piggy bank on eBay for $13.50. Adorable, isn’t it? What was even more adorable was what he found when he pulled out the original cork: $133 in cash. That’ll do, pig. That’ll do.
Utah’s state house took a step toward allowing gold and silver to be accepted as cash, passing a bill that would recognize government-issued gold and silver coins for not only their face value, but the value given to the items by collectors. If the bill passes, the state would study the idea of establishing an alternative form of currency backed by silver and gold.
If you ever lose a wallet stocked with cash but no identification, you can probably forget about ever reuniting with it. But a homeless 49-year-old Navy vet in Boston made the near-impossible happen for the bike messenger who lost the precious cargo.
In the last few decades, Americans use credit (or debit) cards for more and more of our everyday spending. We’re also, collectively, becoming more and more obese. A group of researchers wondered: is there a correlation here? They conducted four experiments looking at what types of food people purchase when using a credit card, and what they purchase when using cash. They published their findings in the Journal of Consumer Research. The result is not surprising: people are more likely to buy junk food, on impulse, when paying with plastic.