Terrorists are no longer public enemy number one. Nor, it seems, are drug lords, people traffickers, arms dealers, cyber terrorists, or any other unsavory do-badder. Today, the biggest threat to global peace and security is physical cash, a means of exchange that has flourished for over 4,000 years but which now stands accused of being the world’s biggest enabler of criminality.
A Criminal’s Accomplice
The latest person to publicly highlight the deadly threat posed by cash is Peter Sands, the former CEO of the British bank Standard Chartered, who just published a report for Harvard Kennedy School of Government imploring central banks around the world to stop issuing high-denomination notes and bills. They include the €500 note, the $100 bill, the CHF1,000 note and the £50 note.
In his report Sands and his illustrious colleagues urge the world’s largest 20 economies to “take up the matter” – i.e. broach the subject of banning large denominations of cash – at the next G20 summit in China. If the world’s leading policy makers follow through on the report’s advice, it will be the first major offensive in the global war on cash…
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