Smithers Pira, an authority on print industry supply chains, is forecasting the global market value for bank note printing will rise from $9.5 billion in 2016 to $11.2 billion in 2021, a compound annual growth rate of 3.3 percent.
At the same time, the actual demand for cash will actually decline in real terms, according to a press release about the new report, "The Future of Banknotes to 2021."
"Annual reports of central banks all over the world share a common theme: less cash," said report author Rudie Lion. "Some central banks are pursuing policies intended to achieve a cashless society; others are more benign — merely mentioning the need to reduce the cash-to-GDP ratio. While the vision of a fully cashless society is utopian, and cash will remain the predominant method of payment for the near future, the drive for less cash is real and immediate."
Instead of volume, currency printers will focus to an increasing degree on "supporting a new generation [of] integrated security features and [delivering] economies over the medium term via more durable substrates," the release said.