Cash Is the Wallet Dinosaur – The Meaning for Cards?



Does your credit union have a sound mobile strategy in place? If not, you may be at risk of failing to keep pace with the evolution of mobile payments. The increasing consumer interest in digital wallets demands that your CU keep speed with the technology. The convenience your members expect depend on it.

Consumers are carrying less cash today than ever. According to a recent Bankrate® survey conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International, 40 percent of respondents reported that they carry less than $20 in cash in their wallets. Only nine percent of those surveyed in 2014 by TSYS® said they preferred cash over cards as a payment method. And a recent MasterCard survey reported on reveals that 80 percent of U.S. consumer spending is cashless.

While these data points illustrate how consumers utilize cash today, they also beg the question: How long before payment cards follow suit, especially given new advancements in digital wallet technology?

Globally, the mobile payment market reached $450 billion in 2015 and is projected to rise to $1 trillion by 2019, according to research published by Even so, this doesn’t mean that either cash or cards will disappear from the point of sale any time soon.

Consumers carry cash, even if in small amounts, because it works every time, requires no authorization and never runs out of battery life. Card usage has a proven history with consumers as well and is rising – up 7.8 percent annually nationwide, according to

While cash and cards are likely here to stay, so are digital wallets – partly because they allow consumers to leverage one of their all-time favorite toys, the smartphone.

Today’s Mobile Consumer

The “Huffington Post” reports that 71 percent of consumers sleep next to their smartphones, 35 percent check their phone as soon as they wake up and 29 percent continue to check it every five to 10 minutes throughout the day.

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