Cards to overtake cash for global payments in 2016

A new study by global market research company Euromonitor International indicates that consumer card payments will surpass cash payments for the first time in 2016, registering $23.1 trillion globally.

Consumer card payments and mobile commerce will see 6.6 percent and 23 percent compound annual growth rates, respectively, from 2016 to 2021. Global cash payments will register a CAGR of only 1.3 percent.

screen-shot-2016-09-22-at-190018“This stagnant growth of cash payments signals a shift from an increase of cash supply to a decrease and is a major victory for card and electronic payments,” said Kendrick Sands, senior consumer finance analyst at Euromonitor International. “And the shift of consumer shopping channels toward online is directly benefitting mobile commerce, which saw a 53 percent rise from 2015 to 2016.”

Debit cards experienced strong year-over-year growth from 2015 to 2016 with an 8.1 percent increase in cards in circulation. Credit cards grew at 5.3 percent growth globally. In China, 5.4 billion debit cards accounted for 65 percent of payments.

“With more consumers gaining access to financial products and services, total debit cards in circulation are expected to register a 7.4 percent global CAGR growth from 2016 to 2021,” Sands said. “Overall, continued strong momentum is expected in the conversion of consumer payments away from paper to card and electronic alternatives.”

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