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Survey: Debit cards overtake cash for payments in UK

Thursday 13 July 2017 | 12:13 PM CET

The British Retail Consortium’s (BRC) annual Payments Survey reveals that cards accounted for more than 50% of all retail transactions in UK in 2016.

According to the report, for the first time the volume of retail purchases made by card accounts for more than half of all customer transactions. This is due to the UK customers’ increased card use for lower value payments.

Other key findings of the survey:
New regulations have helped deliver savings for retailers: investment in payments has been increased by savings of around GBP 500 million for retailers and their customers from the EU Interchange Fee Regulation (IFR).
The burden on businesses is still high: despite these savings, retailers still spent over GBP 1 billion in 2016 to accept payments from customers and the cost of processing cards (mainly credit cards) remains high.
Retail customers are less reliant on credit: retail spending on credit cards has fallen and represents a diminished share of retail purchases by value, consumers borrowing less for day-to-day purchases.

Moreover, the survey uncovers that cards have become the dominant payment method due to the fact that retailers’ investment in payment technology has facilitated customer choice over how they pay for their goods, both in store and online.

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