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79% of euro-area POS transactions are in cash

Categories : Cash connects people, Cash is the most widely used product
December 5, 2017
Tags : Central Bank, ECB, Europe, Universality, Usage, Widespread
The majority of transactions are carried out in cash in the EU, an ECB study finds, accounting for over half of all transactions in terms of value. Cards are the second-most used payment method, but reach only 19% of transactions for a total value of 39%.
Communication Team / Equipo de Comunicación

Despite all the talk about cash being quickly replaced by alternative payment methods, the numbers from a comprehensive survey prove otherwise. Indeed, in the ECB’s most recent Occasional Paper Series on the topic of The Use of Cash by Households in the Euro Area it was found that 79% of all point-of-sale (POS) transactions were carried out in cash, amounting to 54% of the total value of all payments in the euro area.

Indeed, there are significant differences between countries, but the numbers prove that cash is still the preferred tool for settling payments for many people in the Eurozone – regardless of class or education level –  and that it is far from being replaced. Men have a tendency to use cash more than women as well as people over the age of 40. Second in line behind cash are cards which equal to 19% of all transactions or 39% of total value paid.

More importantly, cash also plays another important role for Europeans: store of value. Indeed, almost 25% of respondents admitted to keeping some cash at home, just in case – something that cannot be done with any other payment method. And finally, contrary to general perception, a fifth of consumers have said to have used a €200 or a €500 in the past year.

To read the full report, download it here below.