This is how little cash Americans are carrying now

What’s in your wallet? If you’re like an increasing number of Americans, you definitely have a debit and credit card — but the rest is a few crumpled dollar bills, maybe a $5, and some change. A survey of 1,000 people by DepositAccounts found that one in three Americans can’t make a $20 cash purchase without having to hit up an ATM machine, revealing that it’s easier to go cashless than ever.

Other findings included:

  • About 22% of survey respondents did not have any cash on them at all whenDepositAccounts spoke to them.
  • Going cash-free trends younger – 35% of the youngest respondents weren’t carrying any cash.
  • While plenty of Americans are carrying little to no cash, it doesn’t mean they aren’t caught in situation where they need it – approximately 67% of Americans have been in a situation where they regretted being without cash, and almost six in 10 have been in an emergency where they needed cash but didn’t have any.
  • Nearly 55% get frustrated by businesses that only take cash payments-especially Millennials.

Another thing cash doesn’t have: rewards. A third (34%) responded they avoided paying cash so they could rack up rewards. Nevertheless, Americans do find cash useful for a few reasons, mostly emergencies and small purchases.

Reasons Americans carry cash

  • Emergencies: 53%
  • Small purchases: 41%
  • Prefer using cash: 25%
  • Cash-only services: 23%
  • In case a card reader is down: 15%

This data on cash lines up with a 2017 US Bank survey that found nearly half of Americans held on to nearly $20 at a time and 76% kept less than $50 on hand. Recent data from the Pew Research Center found that about one-third of adults under the age of 50 make no cash purchases in a regular week.