Mon. Mar 30th, 2020

Goodbye to cash in 10 years?

The means of payment market is a sector that has fragmented in recent years. In Spain, 43% of the country's companies believe that cash will disappear in the short term, specifically in 2030, and that it will be replaced by electronic payments through devices such as the mobile phone or even the watch itself of bracelet. As detailed in the report on management and prevention of defaults of the Intrum company, in 2018 more than 90.7 billion payments were made by means other than cash in the European Union. However, 91% of Spaniards continue to use cash, mainly in day-to-day purchases and those of smaller amounts, below 50 euros. According to the European Central Bank, the Spaniards carry those 50 euros on average in the portfolio, well below the 103 euros of the Germans, but above the 29 of the Portuguese and 32 of the French.

In the case of Spain, not all autonomous communities are committed to digital transformation. In this sense, Murcia has 70% of companies that believe that cash will never disappear, a figure similar to that of Castilla y León (69%) and Galicia (67%). On the other hand, in Madrid 52% of companies believe that the disappearance of cash will occur in less than ten years, followed by the Aragonese and Valencian, where 50% think so.

With this, Spain is still five points below the average of the Old Continent, which is shot at 53%, which makes it located within the six countries that farther away sees a society without cash, followed by Latvia , Czech Republic and Bulgaria. On the opposite side are the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and Sweden, where bidding for alternative payment methods to cash has been propelled in recent years.

For the PwC consultant, Europe's preference for cash and market fragmentation have become the main obstacles to creating a means of payment industry in the European Union. For this reason, the consultant has indicated that the work, both of European banks and of providers of payment means, is to convince consumers of the potential benefits of sharing their data within the established guidelines, as well as enhance cybersecurity against possible electronic attacks. One of the countries in Europe that has already started with measures that aim to boost payment with "plastic money" has been Italy.

The country of the boot seeks to recover 7,000 million euros through the fight against tax evasion and hopes to collect them by encouraging payment by credit card. The Minister of Economy, Roberto Gualtieri, said that, in the short term, he will propose a draft of the Budgets for the State to reduce the different sections of VAT for those who buy certain products with "plastic money". With this, it foresees a bonus of up to 475 euros for the user who has spent a minimum of 2,500 euros a year in sectors susceptible to fraud, such as restoration or work at home. This measure has been dubbed "bonus Befana" (holiday equivalent in Italy to the Magi of Spain).

In the case of Spain, the Bizum tool has been the system that has opened the ban to consumer confidence in terms of simplifying and extending payments and money transfers digitally. The application, which this year has celebrated its third anniversary, has five million users and plans to close the year of 2019 with six million more customers. Since its launch, Bizum has moved more than 2,600 million euros in transactions and has exceeded 53 million operations, which have reached an average amount of 50 euros. This tool allows account-to-account payments between individuals without knowing the recipient's bank details, since a phone number or email is sufficient.

In Europe as a whole, the new payment services directive modernizes the legislation applicable to cyber payments, introduces new security requirements and increases the protection of consumers' financial data. The list of standards that have been included in this legislation also opens the operation of payments to agents other than the financial sector, and prohibits surcharges. The idea of ​​making cash disappear, driven by technological advances, is therefore increasingly plausible.

. (tagsToTranslate) finance

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