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Next steps for the FedNowSM Service

We’ve seen dozens of articles about the news that the Federal Reserve will develop the FedNowSM Service (Off-site), a new round-the-clock real-time payment and settlement service to support faster payments in the United States. Here’s what you need to know about next steps in the development of this service.

How can the industry provide input?

The August Federal Register notice (Off-site) asked for formal comments on all aspects of the FedNow Service by November 7. FedNow Program Executive Ken Montgomery and others on his team are attending industry conferences, holding calls and meetings and conversing with industry stakeholders to better understand the features and functionality that are most important to you. The Fed also answered questions on webinars in August and September (Off-site). Be sure to check out the Action Item below to learn how you can submit your comments.

What happens after November 7?

The Federal Reserve will carefully assess the comments it receives to determine the FedNow Service’s desired features, product design and a pathway to launch. We intend to publish a FedNow Service description in another Federal Register notice next year. To introduce the service as quickly as is feasible, we expect to initially offer the most necessary features, adding enhancements over time. We also seek to enhance FedLine® Solutions to support 24x7x365 operation. FedLine Solutions currently provide access to Reserve Bank payment and information services to more 10,000 financial institutions, directly or through their agents.

What questions is the industry asking?

There are many important questions – such as pricing – that simply can’t be answered until we make foundational product design decisions. We’re also hearing questions about the scope of our proposed service. It’s important to note that the FedNow Service will connect financial institutions, which in turn will build business-to-business (B2B), business-to-consumer (B2C) and person-to-person (P2P) applications on top of our platform – so this is an opportunity for private sector innovation and development of new use cases. In addition, we’re being asked about the potential expansion of Fedwire® Funds Service and National Settlement Service operating hours. This decision has operational implications for the payments industry, markets and others, so we’re taking the time to do more analysis. Be sure to read the Board of Governors’ frequently asked questions (Off-site) to see what other important questions are being asked and answered.

What else is happening?

The Federal Reserve has talked with numerous other central banks around the world about their real-time gross settlement services for faster payments. Montgomery and team are now holding follow-up discussions on how other central banks implement, evolve and manage their services. Leveraging international insights will be helpful even though the U.S. payment system is larger and more complex than the ecosystems in other countries.

Action Item:

Submit comments on the Federal Register notice through November 7, 2019, via one of the options listed below. All comments will be posted to the Board website without alteration except when necessary for technical reasons or to remove sensitive personally identifying information.

  • Board website: Follow the instructions for submitting or viewing comments on the Proposals for Comment (Off-site) page
  • Email: Send an email to and include the docket number, OP-1670, in the subject line
  • Fax: (202) 452-3819
  • Mail: Ann E. Misback, Secretary, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, 20th Street and Constitution Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20551
  • Federal Reserve to develop real-time gross settlement service for faster payments
  • FedNow Service
  • Fed360

    Delay in enhancements to Fedwire® Securities Automated Claim Adjustment Process

    As communicated directly to customers in late August, in consideration of requests made by industry participants, the Federal Reserve Banks have delayed the implementation of the Automated Claim Adjustment Process (ACAP) enhancements that were previously scheduled for October 28, 2019. While the industry prepares updated implementation readiness plans, the go-live date is being delayed until at least the second quarter of 2020. We will continue to evaluate input from industry participants and expect to announce the new implementation date in the fourth quarter of this year.

    In the interim, the Depository Institution Testing (DIT) environment will remain open and available for participants and service providers to begin or continue to conduct enhanced ACAP testing, and we encourage them to do so. Testing will continue to be required for:

    • All FedLine Direct® participants and their service providers
    • Existing FedLine Advantage® ACAP users that export incoming messages through the FedPayments® Manager—Securities application and/or receive their Fedwire® Securities statements via the FedLine Direct File, FedLine Direct Message or FedLine Command® Solution

    Given the new message types associated with the ACAP enhancements, testing is highly recommended for participants that use the FedLine Advantage Solution and export incoming messages through the FedPayments Manager—Securities application even if the participant does not currently use ACAP.

    Communications providing additional information regarding testing were sent to End User Authorization Contacts (EUACs), FedPayments Manager Subscribers and Fedwire Securities vendor contacts on April 23, 2019. If you have questions regarding testing, please contact your designated Wholesale Testing Unit.

    For more information about the enhancements, please see the October 2018 communication (Off-site) distributed to all participants and the June 3 Fed360® article

    Additional information

    Questions regarding the enhancements to ACAP should be directed to the Fedwire Securities Service contact at the East Rutherford Operations Center: (800) 390-2788.


    Explore the newly redesigned FedPayments Improvement website

    Last month, the Federal Reserve launched a redesign of the FedPayments Improvement website, (Off-site). Offering the latest in payments improvement news and perspectives, this website features a fresh new look, enhanced functionalities and an expanded selection of content, including interviews with senior Federal Reserve leaders and FedPayments Improvement Community members.

    Highlights of the new website include:

    A key objective of the reimagined is to showcase the diversity of the FedPayments Improvement Community (Off-site). Joining the Community will provide you with unique opportunities to engage the Fed and the broader payments ecosystem about the issues you care about, helping contribute to a better payment system that works for everyone.


    Protect your organization against ransomware attacks

    As the cyberthreat landscape in the electronic payments system continually evolves, the Federal Reserve Banks want to remind you of the importance of reducing the risk of cyberattacks within your organization. Security is everyone’s responsibility, and we encourage your organization to educate your staff on how to stay up to date on security best practices.

    Ransomware attacks can happen at any time, regardless of an organization’s size. Ransomware is a type of malware designed to deny access to a computer system or data until a ransom is paid. This type of cyberattack is usually spread through phishing emails or by personnel unknowingly visiting an infected website.  

    The U.S. Department of Homeland Security Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency (CISA) (Off-site) and the FBI’s Ransomware Prevention and Response Document (Off-site) offer helpful tips on ways to help organizations prepare for and respond to ransomware attacks. Some notable tips include:

    • Protect your networks by educating your staff. Educate your employees on how to spot emails from external senders with suspicious links or attachments.
    • Make sure your software and operating systems are updated with the latest patches. Any outdated applications or operating systems are more vulnerable to malware attacks.
    • Keep your system backup separate from your organization’s network and back up data regularly. Be sure to use a backup tool that saves multiple versions of your files so that, if needed, you are able to access the backup before the malware infiltration.
    • Put into place strong spam filters to prevent phishing emails from external senders and configure your organization’s firewalls to block access to malicious Internet Protocol (IP) addresses.
    • Implement a business continuity plan for this type of situation. Ensure your organization has the appropriate backups in place so in the case of an event, your team will be able to restore date from a known clean backup.

    What should your organization do if your network becomes infected with ransomware?

    • Keep the infected computer(s) isolated from the network as soon as possible.
    • Secure your organization’s backup data.
    • Change all online account and network passwords after removing the infected system from the network.
    • Contact for Federal Reserve Bank’s Customer Contact Center at (888) 333-7010 of any security incident involving a FedLine® connection and/or access control feature.

    In addition to the guidance provided above by the agencies above, it’s also a good time to review your compliance with FedLine security controls. As a user of FedLine, you also play a role in FedLine’s layered security approach or “defense in depth” and are responsible for establishing and maintaining secure environments in your operations. By adopting similar controls into your enterprise, you can better stay on top of the evolving threat landscape. 



    Currency Education Program: Introducing the Money Adventure Android app

    You can now download the U.S. Currency Education Program’s Money Adventure (Off-site) Android app! Money Adventure is a fun, interactive app that teaches the next generation of cash users about the historical designs and robust security features of U.S. currency.

    Similar to the iOS version, the Android version of Money Adventure contains a note front and note back explorer. The note front explorer reveals the unique security features of the $20 bill to students as they interact with the virtual banknote. Students work with Buck the Time-Traveling Dog in the note back explorer on a quest through the historical events illustrated on the back of U.S. currency. After download, students can venture through the app without an internet connection.

    Money Adventure is the mobile complement to the online K-5 Classroom (Off-site) platform on (Off-site). The website contains videos, lesson plans and easy-to-navigate activities that introduce elementary students to the world of U.S. currency.

    Download the app through the Google Play Store (Off-site) on your Android device or through the Apple App Store (Off-site) on your iOS device! Watch the video below to learn more. Already have the app? Leave a review to rate your experience.


    Cash me if you can: The impacts of cashless businesses on retailers, consumers and cash use

    On August 19, 2019, the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco’s FedNotes (Off-site) publication featured an article entitled “Cash Me If You Can: The Impacts of Cashless Businesses on Retailers, Consumers, and Cash Use” (Off-site) written by Claire Wang. We are sharing a reprint of the article, which describes results from a survey of a demographically representative sample of cashless businesses in the U.S.


    In recent years, numerous businesses have made headlines for refusing to accept cash as a form of payment. These businesses span a variety of industries, including airlines, eateries, sports stadiums, and general merchandise stores. This phenomenon is not just limited to a few cities, either. Cashless businesses have popped up across the country, including places like New York, Atlanta, and Chicago (Figure 1).

    Figure 1
    Sample of Cashless Businesses across the United States

    Sample of Cashless Businesses across the United States

    Note: In May 2019, San Francisco banned cashless businesses in the city.

    This paper explores the impacts of businesses going cashless from various angles: the incentives and benefits for the retailer, the cost to consumers, the potential impact on cash use, and the legal implications and current laws around the subject.

    Controlling operational costs makes it attractive for businesses to go cashless

    Much has been written already about why a business may consider going cashless, and most of these incentives are driven by cost and time savings.

    Cashless businesses no longer have cash handling costs

    Small- and medium-sized businesses are reported to pay tens of billions of dollars annually on cash handling expenses.1 Eliminating cash payments eliminates the costs associated with handling and transporting cash. Cashless businesses no longer need to pay banks fees to deposit and process cash and coin, nor do they need to pay for armored carriers to transport money to and from the bank.2 Additionally, these businesses no longer need to pay for employees to count and manage register balances throughout the day, enabling employees to spend more time helping customers instead. Given the fixed costs associated with accepting cash, it may be simpler and even more cost-effective for some businesses to not accept cash at all.

    There are fewer opportunities for theft

    Not having cash on store premises also reduces opportunities for both internal and external robberies. Internally, businesses face a constant battle with employee theft, or “shrinkage.” The 2015 Retail Fraud Survey estimates that U.S. retailers lose $60 billion per year to shrinkage,3 though cash is just a portion of this loss, and the National Retail Federation’s 2018 Security Survey estimates the average dollar loss per dishonest employee to be $1,203.4 Externally, cash-intensive businesses can be targets for robberies. Nearly a quarter of U.S. robberies (26 percent) took place at some type of retailer—either a gas station, convenience store or other commercial residence (Figure 2).5 When businesses forego cash on their premises, there may be fewer opportunities and incentives for internal and external theft.

    Figure 2
    2017 U.S. Robbery Locations

    2017 U.S. Robbery Locations

    Source: Federal Bureau of Investigation

    Transactions are faster

    Counting cash can take time, both for the customer and the employee. Several businesses that have gone cashless have cited benefits like faster transactions and increased store throughput. Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium found that its transition to exclusively card and mobile payment transactions not only reduced end-of-day reconciliation time but also resulted in quicker transaction times and lower wait times for customers.6 Salad chains Tender Greens and Sweetgreen found similar benefits from going cashless: Tender Greens estimates that cash transactions are four to five seconds slower than card transactions,7 and Sweetgreen found that its cashless locations processed 5 to 15 percent more transactions per hour.8 Particularly in high-volume businesses, these faster transaction times can translate to increased customer satisfaction, fewer opportunities for error in making change, and increased revenue.

    By going cashless, businesses can decrease costs, reduce opportunities for theft and offer customers a faster, more streamlined transaction experience.

    Cashless savings come at the cost of financial exclusion

    While market forces and cost savings make it attractive to forego cash, the reasons not to go cashless fall under different categories of financial inclusion and consumer choice.

    Some consumers are denied goods and services

    Perhaps the strongest argument against going cashless is that the practice denies access to goods and services for a segment of consumers. While popular perception may be that no one uses cash anymore, nearly 6.5 percent of U.S. households were unbanked and did not have access to financial services in 2017. In other words, 6.5 percent of the U.S. population, or 8.4 million households, did not have a bank-issued debit or credit card.9 Adding in ‘underbanked’ households—households that have a bank account but use other financial services like money orders, payday loans, and check cashing—these numbers increase to 24.2 million households and nearly 19 percent of the U.S. population.9 These consumers rely heavily on cash to pay for their purchases. The 2019 Findings from the Diary of Consumer Payment Choice (Off-site) found that more than half (56 percent) of unbanked consumers’ transactions are made with cash.10

    Even if cash-using consumers had the option to use prepaid cards to shop at cashless businesses, the switch is costly. Economist Oz Shy of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta estimated the cost of this switch in a 2019 working paper that quantified the economic burden of cashless stores on consumers who do not own credit or non-prepaid debit cards. Shy found that only when the cost of using cash is two or more times greater than the cost of using a card is the consumer indifferent; at a lower cost differential, the consumer reports a loss of economic utility.11

    Other consumers may trust or only have access to cash

    Some Americans willingly choose to exclude themselves from the banking sector and value anonymity at the point of sale. In its 2017 National Survey of Unbanked and Underbanked Households, the FDIC found that one third of unbanked households don’t trust banks, and other participants avoided banks because of privacy concerns or unpredictable bank fees.12

    Furthermore, other consumers may be using cash because they may momentarily only have access to cash. Non-cash payments, like cards and electronic payments, rely on the availability of card networks. Network disruptions, concerns about data integrity, and natural disasters can all render non-cash payments unavailable or unreliable.

    Whether consumers are willingly using cash (out of privacy or distrust) or unwillingly using cash (due to network outages or lack of access to their accounts), cashless businesses deny these customers the opportunity to participate in a certain segment of the economy.

    Businesses become vulnerable to card companies’ fees

    While going cashless generally translates to cost savings for retailers, these retailers could also be dropping their cheapest form of payment. The Bank of Canada conducted a study of 500 businesses in 2008 and found that, for these retailers, cash was cheaper to accept than credit and debit cards. The study found cash to be cheaper than credit cards even at the lowest quartile credit card rate of 1.75 percent, and cash to be cheaper than debit cards for all transactions below $12.60 where merchants paid debit card fees as low as 7 cents.13 A more recent 2011 study by economist Layne-Farrar estimates the transaction costs associated with cash, check, and debit for five types of retailers, including quick serve retailers, big box discount stores, supermarkets, gas stations, and travel retail stores. The study found that even when including costs like point-of-sale transaction time, back office costs, counterfeit costs, and fraud prevention, cash was cheaper than debit in terms of cost per $100 of sales. Cash cost retailers $0.53 per $100 of sales, compared to $1.12 for signature debit and $0.81 for PIN debit. Her study did not include credit cards.

    In addition to narrowing down their tender types to potentially more expensive forms of payment, cashless businesses also increase their vulnerability to card companies’ fees. When retailers swipe a customer’s credit card for payment, card companies charge them a ‘card-swipe’ or interchange fee for each debit and credit transaction. This fee is usually around one to two percent of the transaction total, and these interchange fees alone earned Visa and MasterCard a combined $43 billion in 2018.14 When businesses shift from cash or a blend of payment alternatives to card-only, they have little recourse when card companies raise fees, especially in a relatively concentrated card market. Regardless of where the ultimate incidence of these costs falls, the costs necessarily will be borne by either the retailer, in the form of lower margins, or by the consumer, in the form of higher costs.

    The rise of cashless businesses and their impact on cash

    If the current trend of cashless businesses continues to gain momentum, the impact on consumer cash could be significant, particularly if the shift occurs in certain key industries.

    The Federal Reserve’s 2019 Findings from the Diary of Consumer Payment Choice (Off-site), an annual study tracking a nationally representative group of U.S. consumers and their transactions over a three-day period, found that cash transactions were primarily driven by a few key categories (Figure 3). Nearly a quarter of cash transactions (23 percent) in 2018 were used for fast food-type purchases, such as coffee and grab-and-go meals. Grocery and convenience store purchases were the second leading driver of cash transactions, making up 18 percent of cash purchases, followed by gas (13 percent), general merchandise (10 percent), person-to-person (P2P) payments (10 percent), and sit-down restaurants (7 percent).

    Figure 3
    Categories of Cash Transactions

    Categories of Cash Transactions

    Source: 2019 Findings from the Diary of Consumer Payment Choice

    While there is no comprehensive registry of cashless businesses and their industries, many of the retailers making headlines fall under these same cash-intensive categories: fast food, restaurants, and general merchandise stores. The table in Figure 4A estimates the worst-case cash scenario if all businesses in these categories were to forego cash. For the categories mentioned earlier where there has been a rise in cashless businesses (fast food, grocery, general merchandise, restaurants), the table uses Diary data to calculate three columns:

    1. The average number of “in-person” brick-and-mortar payments made per consumer per month in this category,
    2. The average number of cash payments made per consumer per month in this category, and
    3. The category’s share of total cash payments. The Diary found the average consumer makes 11 cash transactions per month. This column takes column B (average number of cash payments made for this category) and divides it by 11.

    Figure 4A
    Average Number of Cash Payments per Person per Month

    Category(A) Brick & Mortar Payments(B) Cash Payments(C) Category's Share of Total Cash Payments
    Fast Food & Cafes 6.0 2.6 24%
    Grocery & Convenience stores 6.9 2.0 18%
    Gas Stations 4.1 1.4 13%
    General Merchandise stores 4.9 1.1 10%
    Restaurants & Bars 2.5 0.8 7%
    Total per Month 31 11 100%

    Source: 2019 Findings from the Diary of Consumer Payment Choice

    Figure 4B visualizes the data in table 4A. It shows that depending on the category and current amount of cash use within that category, a rise in cashless businesses can have a significant impact on cash use. If all businesses in the “Fast Food & Cafes” category went cashless, consumers would make 2.6 fewer cash transactions a month (out of the monthly average of 11 total cash transactions). This shift translates to a 24 percent reduction in monthly cash transactions. Similarly, if all “Grocery & Convenience stores” went cashless, there would be an 18 percent decline in cash transactions.

    If we extrapolate this and suppose all businesses in the “Fast Food & Cafes,” “Grocery & Convenience,” “Gas Stations,” “General Merchandise,” and “Restaurants & Bars” categories (all five categories listed in Figure 4A) go cashless, monthly cash transactions would drop by 72 percent, decreasing from 11 to 3 cash transactions per consumer per month. In short, wide adoption of cashless practices can have a substantial impact on cash use.

    Figure 4B
    Average Number of Cash Payments per Person per Month

    Average Number of Cash Payments per Person per Month

    Source: 2019 Findings from the Diary of Consumer Payment Choice

    The current legal landscape of cashless businesses

    From a legal perspective, no federal statute currently mandates that businesses must accept cash. The closest relevant statute is the Federal Reserve’s “Legal tender” statute, Section 31 U.S.C. 5103, stating, "United States coins and currency [including Federal Reserve notes and circulating notes of Federal Reserve banks and national banks] are legal tender for all debts, public charges, taxes, and dues." In other words, while cash is a valid way to pay for debts, it is not required to be accepted for goods and services. Private businesses are free to decide for themselves whether or not to accept cash, unless their state or local law says otherwise.15

    In that spirit, two state governments have passed legislation banning cashless businesses. Massachusetts was the first state to have an official stance, with its 1978 “Discrimination Against Cash Buyers Amendment” requiring that the state’s merchants accept cash.16 New Jersey recently became the second state to ban cashless businesses, signing a bill in March requiring its stores and restaurants to accept cash at brick-and-mortar locations.17

    Cities are beginning to take action as well. In February of 2019, Philadelphia passed legislation prohibiting cashless stores starting in July of 2019.18San Francisco soon followed suit, passing an ordinance requiring brick-and-mortar businesses to accept payment in cash for goods and services in May of 2019.19 San Francisco’s legislation states, “The purpose of this [law] is to ensure that all City residents—including those who lack access to other forms of payment—are able to participate in the City’s economic life by paying cash for goods and many services.”20 Additional cities, including New York City, are considering similar legislation.21


    The topic of cashless businesses is a complex and nuanced issue. On one hand, it can make economic sense for a business to go cashless. Transactions are faster, opportunities for theft are reduced, businesses may be less attractive robbery targets, and stores can eliminate cash handling costs. On the other hand, the move away from cash can symbolize, even inadvertently, support for financial exclusion of certain consumers. This trade-off raises a few philosophical questions: Do consumers have a right to use cash? Who bears responsibility for financial inclusion?

    While the legal landscape remains mixed, some retailers are backing off their cashless plans. In 2018, in response to strong customer feedback, burger chain Shake Shack decided not to go fully cashless in their restaurants;22 AmazonGo announced plans in March to enable customers to pay with cash;23 and famously cashless salad chain Sweetgreen announced in April of 2019 that all of its locations will accept cash again after experimenting with going cashless for more than two years.24

    Even if the legal tide turns against cashless businesses, other emerging retail trends pose similar risks to financial inclusion and to cash. One increasingly popular brick-and-mortar trend is the “showroom model,” where customers can physically try on and interact with products but ultimately purchase them online.25 Another retail trend is the $57 billion “on-demand economy,” where consumers can order goods, meals, and services instantaneously through their smartphones.26 While these innovations can offer tremendous benefits to both retailers and consumers, they pose similar questions around financial exclusion. Both require consumers to pay with some type of electronic or card payment, and both deny consumers the opportunity to use cash. Still, e-commerce’s share of total retail sales reached 10 percent in 2019, with no signs of slowing down or stopping (Figure 5).

    Figure 5
    E-Commerce’s Share of Total Retail Sales

    E-Commerce’s Share of Total Retail Sales

    Source: Federal Reserve Economic Data

    The Cash Product Office will continue to monitor the legal landscape around cashless businesses and, more generally, trends and changes in the retail space to understand their impact on consumer payment behavior and cash use.


    This paper would not have been possible without the support and contributions of the following individuals: Alexander Bau, Jonathan Bromma, Amy Burr, Ben Gold, Natallia Koller, Kelly McGuire, Shaun O’Brien, and Margaret Riley.

    About the Cash Product Office

    As the nation’s central bank, the Federal Reserve ensures that cash is available when and where it is needed, including in times of crisis and business disruption, by providing FedCash® Services to depository institutions and, through them, to the general public. In fulfilling this role, the Fed’s primary responsibility is to maintain public confidence in the integrity and availability of U.S. currency.

    The Federal Reserve System’s Cash Product Office (CPO) provides strategic leadership for this key function by formulating and implementing service level policies, operational guidance, and technology strategies for U.S. currency and coin services provided by Federal Reserve Banks nationally and internationally. In addition to guiding policies and procedures, the CPO establishes budget guidance for FedCash Services, provides support for Federal Reserve currency and coin inventory management and supports business continuity planning at the supply chain level. It also conducts market research and works directly with financial institutions and retailers to analyze trends in cash usage.


    1Southern California Public Radio.Why more and more LA businesses are refusing your cash (Off-site). April 2018.

    2Vox.Why cashless retailers put low-income people at even more of a disadvantage (Off-site). November 2018.

    3Forbes.New report identifies U.S. retailers lose $60 billion a year, employee theft top concern (Off-site). October 2015.

    4National Retail Federation. National Retail Security Survey (Off-site). 2018.

    5Federal Bureau of Investigation. 2017 Crime in the United States (Off-site).

    6Mercedes Benz Stadium Payments FAQ (Off-site).

    7 SCPR. Why more and more LA businesses are refusing your cash (Off-site). April 2018.

    8New York Times. Where a suitcase full of cash won’t buy you lunch (Off-site). July 2016.

    9 Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. 2017 FDIC National Survey of Unbanked and Underbanked Households (Off-site).

    10O’Brien, Shaun and Raynil Kumar. 2019 Findings from the Diary of Consumer Payment Choice (Off-site).

    11Shy, Oz. Cashless Stores and Cash Users (Off-site). Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. Working Paper 2019-11. May 2019.

    12Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. 2017 FDIC National Survey of Unbanked and Underbanked Households (Off-site).

    13Arango, Carlos and Varya Taylor. Bank of Canada. Merchants’ Costs of Accepting Means of Payment: Is Cash the Least Costly? (Off-site). January 2008.

    14Wall Street Journal. Visa, MasterCard near settlement over card swipe fees (Off-site). June 2018.

    15Federal Reserve System. Currency FAQs (Off-site).

    16Boston Magazine. Should Boston Stop Using Cash? (Off-site) February 2016.

    17Politico. Murphy signs bill banning most cashless stores in New Jersey (Off-site).March 2019

    18New York Times. Philadelphia bans ‘cashless’ stores amid growing backlash (Off-site). March 2019.

    19City and County of San Francisco. Board of Supervisors. Ordinance 190164 (Off-site).

    20SF Examiner. SF approves ban on cashless stores (Off-site). May 2019.

    21CNN. Retailers want to go cashless. But opponents say that’s discriminatory (Off-site). March 2019.

    22Eater. Shake Shack’s Grand Cashless Experiment Has Failed (Off-site). May 2018.

    23 TechCrunch. Cashierless AmazonGo stores are planning to accept cash (Off-site). April 2019.

    24Bloomberg. Sweetgreen will once again accept cash (Off-site). April 2019.

    25 New York Times. Retailers experiment with a new philosophy: smaller is better (Off-site). November 2017.

    26Inc. $57 Billion Dollar Opportunity: the State of the On Demand Economy in 2017 (Off-site).


    The Ops Stop: Are you familiar with the Deposit Visual Reference Guide?

    The Ops Stop provides your organization with a one-stop shop full of helpful operational resources offered by the Federal Reserve Banks. For this installment of the series, we are featuring the FedCash® Services Deposit Visual Reference Guide, which we hope your institution will find helpful.

    Did you know that the Federal Reserve Banks processed about 34 billion notes last year at our 28 processing facilities across the country? That’s a lot of currency! In order to keep those processes running smoothly, it’s critical that all financial institutions depositing currency and coin with their local Federal Reserve Bank closely follow the same depositing guidelines.

    The Deposit Visual Reference Guide was created to provide financial institutions with pictorial, step-by-step instruction for all of the different components of and scenarios for depositing currency and coin. The guide outlines what to do and what not to do when preparing:

    • Straps
    • Bands
    • Bundles
    • Bags or containers
    • Contaminated or mutilated currency

    It is important that your institution follows these guidelines carefully, because if you don’t, your deposit may be rejected by the servicing Federal Reserve Bank and returned to your institution at your expense, or differences associated with errors may be charged to your institution. The guide is a supplement to the Cash Services Manual of Procedures (CSMOP) (PDF) and does not include all requirements.

    The guide was revised in March of this year, and is also available in a printable format (PDF) so you can keep a hard copy handy.


    Learn all about Service Status in a few short videos

    FRBservices.orgSM has plenty of resources to help Fed customers with business contingency planning in the event of a service disruption. You can stay up to date with the operational status of the Federal Reserve 24/7 by checking Service Status. If you are not aware of all of the great features that Service Status offers, our resource videos cover a range of topics, such as how to access and navigate messages, general notifications and alerts. Check them out below:

    How to access and navigate Service Status

    Whether you are new to Service Status or have been using it for years, this video gives a detailed overview of the applications that everyone can utilize. Learn how to access Service Status, understand color-coding, the legend and key message delivery methods.


    General notifications and messages on Service Status

    Learn about the different communication vehicles within the Service Status application. This instructional video shows you how to find messages and general notifications on the Service Status page.


    Be prepared before, during and after a service disruption

    This short video is packed full of tips that will keep your staff abreast of best practices to execute before, during and after a service disruption. These tips will strengthen your business contingency procedures.