Cash — or something close to it — is king again.
Enjoying a steady job market but reluctant to spend freely due to economic uncertainty, a wide swath of middle-class Americans are hoarding money in banks.
Total bank deposits rose 6.6% last year to $10.7 trillion, extending steady growth seen in recent years, data from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation show.
Deposits measured as a percentage of bank assets are 77.6% in the first quarter of 2017, the highest since 2006, according to data economic research firm Moebs Services.
And Americans love liquidity. They hold about $2 trillion in checking account now, says Mike Moebs, CEO of Moebs Services, which provides research and consultancy services to financial institutions. The average U.S. checking account deposit is about $3,600, climbing from $1,000 in 2007, he says.