The Reserve Bank of Australia is out with a discussion paper on the current environment for payments in Australia. The Consumer Payments Survey (CPS), which takes place every three years, recorded information on around 17,000 day-to-day payments made by over 1,500 participants during a week.
The document states that Aussie consumers continue to make the switch from paper to plastic and other digital methods. Cards were the most frequently used means of payment overtaking bills and coins for the first time, but cash continues to play an important roll across the country. It was interesting to see that PayPal was more popular than traditional checks.
The Reserve Bank said that contactless ‘tap and go’ cards are an increasingly popular way of making payments, displacing cash for many lower-value transactions.
As for payments using services like Apple Pay, these are a relatively new feature of the payments system and this technology was not widely used at the time of the survey which covered all of 2016. However, consumers are increasingly using their mobile phones to make online and person-to-person payments. Similarly, consumers are using automatic payments, such as direct debits, more frequently.
The document says the shift towards electronic means of payment is evident across broad demographic groups. The transition away from paper has been dramatic for the youth as they have adopted electronic payment methods to a greater extent than older consumers.
The report is embedded below.
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