Where Is All the U.S. Currency Hiding?
The total amount of U.S. currency held by the non bank public equals about $375 billion, or nearly $1,400 for every man, woman, and child in the country. Clearly, few individuals ever hold this much cash at any point in time. On the surface, the sheer volume of currency outstanding seems inconsistent with common sense. Even if one considers currency balances held by businesses involved largely in cash transactions like retailers-and by participants in the underground economy-like drug dealers-it is hard to reconcile the difference between households’ holdings and total currency outstanding. So where is this currency hiding?
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