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Data for today’s episode is provided by Mercator Advisory Group’s report – 2021 Outlook: U.S. Debit Cards and Alternative Products
ATMs and Cash Use Took Some Interesting Twists in 2020:
- Cash withdrawals had been trending down and continued to do so in 2020, but not as precipitously as some predicted.
- Some consumers were concerned about cash & COVID-19 and avoided it. Others gravitated toward cash as a safe haven in a crisis.
- The ATM came to the rescue as branches closed or operated by appointment only.
- Purely transactional activities moved to ATMs, giving FIs reason to expedite digital transformation plans for their ATM fleets.
- P2P app use skyrocketed as more consumers looked for cash-free and remote options.
- Existing users found new reasons to use P2P apps, including reimbursing others for shared shopping trips and sending funds to friends and family in need.
The events following the onset of the global pandemic helped to crystalize consumer attitudes regarding payment habits.
The progression of digital payments, contactless options and the momentum achieved by faster and real-time payments shone a light on the path these payment types would take as they leapfrogged in development and use by two to three years in the span of just a few months. The pandemic gave users a reason, beyond technology for the sake of technology, to adopt these payments.