The victim, a 59-year-old man, had just made a withdrawal at a cash machine near Tesco Express in Goodramgate and was walking along the street when a man who was unknown to him put an arm around his shoulder and ushered him towards a wall near the junction with Petergate.
At the same time a second man, who was holding a knife, stood in front of him blocking his path.
The two men spoke with a foreign accent, and the man with his arm around the victim gestured to him to hand over his money. The victim was also threatened by the men.
During the incident, the men kept smiling as if to give the impression that they were a group of friends having a chat.
The victim, fearing for his safety, handed over the money that he had just withdrawn and the suspects thanked him before leaving the area.
Detective Constable Robert Brook, of the York Serious Crime Team at North Yorkshire Police, said: “This robbery happened in broad daylight, in a busy street in York and there will have been a lot of people around at the time. It’s possible that people saw the men, but due to their ‘friendly’ approach, and the speed with which the incident happened, passers-by may not have been aware of what was happening.
“I am appealing to anyone who was in the area at the time and saw anyone matching the men’s description, or who believe they witnessed the incident, to please contact the police. It’s possible that the men were hanging around in the area of the cash machine, waiting for a suitable victim to approach.
“In the meantime, I urge anyone using cash machines to be vigilant, be aware of who is standing around or watching you as you use the machine. If in doubt, move to another location and report any suspicious people to the police.”
The first suspect was toned but stocky, aged 26-30, 5ft 11ins and was unshaven. He had black hair, brown eyes, olive skin and was of eastern European appearance. He Spoke with a foreign accent and was wearing a tight gym top, black jogging trousers and trainers.
The second suspect, the man holding the knife was of similar height but smaller build. He had an olive complexion, was aged between 24-26 and dressed in a similar way to the other man.
Police said a third suspect, who spoke to the victim afterwards, may have been involved in the incident. He had a similar appearance to the first two.
Anyone with any information about the incident which occurred at around 6.10pm yesterday (August 10)is asked to contact North Yorkshire Police on 101.