Cardtronics – a leading non-bank ATM operator – has been examining consumers’ payment behaviour and preferences since 2015 via its annual study entitled Health of Cash. The research is based on a representative survey of 1,000 US citizens and offers information on the popularity and use of various payment instruments available on the market by studying participants’ daily habits.
Results of the 2017 Health of Cash Study indicate that cash remains king in the US payments landscape. Contrary to what digital instrument providers would have us believe, banknotes are preferred by the majority of surveyed people, with 91% reporting using banknotes alongside other instruments. Mobile banking apps, for instance, are used by only 51% of participants. Furthermore, 72% of consumers declared regularly using hard cash, especially thanks to its convenience and ease-of-use, as well as for security and privacy concerns.
Besides, figures demonstrate that 9 out of 10 surveyed consumers favour diversity and rely on at least two different payment methods, depending on the situation and on the value of the purchase. In addition, 61% of participants declared that they would be upset if a retailer refused to accept cash, even if they did not necessarily plan on paying with it. This finding indicates that US consumers attach great importance to their freedom of choice between digital and tangible money. A push toward cashless instruments would thus prove extremely counterproductive and, on the contrary, damage people’s trust in governmental and financial institutions.
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