A Future Without Cash?

From Google Wallet to Apple Pay, cashless transactions are becoming more mainstream by the minute. Forgot your credit card at home? No problem—you can buy your groceries or gas with a wave of your phone. Owe the last cash payment on your summer home? Not an issue—transfer money seamlessly through online vendors like PayPal. Today, carrying around cash can feel archaic in a world where paperless transactions are a reality of everyday life.
American Savings Bank knows that technology is advancing every day. But it also knows and celebrates the fact that person-to-person kindness and service is something that can never be replaced. Jack Kuntz, CEO of American Savings Bank, is confident that we are moving toward a cashless society. But he is equally as confident that there will always be a need and a desire for community and interaction, which is why he focuses his energy on developing a culture that his employees love and his customers come back to experience.

The history of online, cashless transactions is not long. In fact, many sources point to 2008 as the first year that a blockchain—or a digital exchange enables users to share data—was conceptualized. A developer used blockchains to enable users to create Bitcoin, a digital payment and currency system that operates fully on a peer-to-peer network. Bitcoin revolutionized the world of banking by becoming the first decentralized digital currency in history; it operates without a central repository or any individual administrator.

Since the creation of Bitcoin, online currency has rocked the way the world exchanges value. Online payment processors like Venmo, PayPal, and various digital wallets enable users to transfer money from one source to another using a mobile phone or web interface. These systems continue to grow in popularity as online retailers, mobile shopping, and long-distance purchasing skyrocketed with businesses like Amazon, whose online sales topped $94.7 billion in 2016, according to a report by eMarketer.

How does the proliferation of online, cashless transactions impact local community banks like American Savings Bank? Only time will tell, says Kuntz, who regularly chats with customers who stop by the bank to deposit cash from their local businesses, enjoy a cup of coffee, and play the Bank’s version of Family Feud with tellers and staff members.

“We’re being challenged by our society to continue to find ways to add value to our customers’ lives,” Kuntz said. “We have always embraced new technologies, and we will continue to adapt our services to meet the demands of the modern consumer. But we also know that we offer friendly faces, high-end service, and the ability to manage issues that our customers don’t want to deal with. And that value is not going away any time soon.”
American Savings Bank is proud to continue to serve the Greater Cincinnati and Portsmouth, Ohio, communities. The bank and its leadership are committed to supporting local families and small businesses, and it prides itself on finding innovative solutions for all of its customers’ financial needs.

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