Understanding the Relationships in the Cash Industry
Stop for a minute and think about the flow of cash in the American economy. You almost certainly have some in your pocket or purse right now, and at some point in the day, or the near future you will use it to buy something. Even if you rely mainly on plastic, you will sometimes tap an ATM for cash. Billions upon billions of cash dollars circulate every single day. Most importantly, you, and all parties concerned can easily access just the right amount of cash for their needs.
This miraculous flow of cash does not happen by accident. The Cash-in-Transit (CIT) system—a.k.a. the cash management industry—has evolved to manage cash efficiently and securely. This huge system is ubiquitous, yet many people have never heard of anything beyond “armored cars.” The system actually includes a large assortment of cash management businesses, some of them specialized and others offering a fully integrated package of services that help to keep commercial and retail markets liquid.
The CIT system serves banks, including the Federal Reserve, by providing the transportation, storage, processing, accounting, and other services that financial institutions need to ensure the right amounts of cash get to where they are needed. With the extensive geographic dispersion of branch banks and ATMs, it is no longer cost effective for each and every bank to provide all the cash management services it needs. Today, third party businesses in the cash management system can support multiple banks, including providing a level of risk management the industry demands. … Continue reading