currency in circulation

Definition

The total amount of paper currency, coins, and demand deposits that is held by consumers and businesses rather than by financial institutions, central banks, and the U.S. Treasury. Currency in circulation is thus the sum of currency held by the public, and is a component of a bank's reserves. It is an important factor that the Federal Open Market Committee takes into account when setting the money supply, since a decline in the currency in circulation means that banks don't have as many demand deposits in their reserve. This can mean that fewer loans could be extended to borrowers because the bank will have to make up for a decline in reserves.

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