by Paul-Martin Foss
It appears that the €500 note will die a slow death. Rather than being completely demonetized, production of the note will cease, but those holding notes will still be able to deposit them and exchange them. A complete ban seems to have been stymied due to strong opposition from Germany. German opposition to the note’s removal stems from a high rate of cash usage. Anyone who has traveled to or lived in Germany knows that Germans use cash for most of their transactions, 79 percent of all transactions in Germany using cash versus 40 percent in the United States.
This stems from the experiences of the Weimar-era hyperinflation, resulting in Germans not trusting the banking and financial system as much as Americans and other Westerners. Germans don’t trust credit and debt to the same extent that other nations do, thus the decision to eliminate the €500 note met with significant opposition from Germans.