Merchant Acceptance of Cash and Credit Cards at the Point of Sale
Recent data show that the use of credit cards in Canada has been increasing, while the use of cash has been declining. At the same time, only two-thirds of small or medium-sized businesses accept credit cards. To better understand future development of this trend, it is important to study whether a change in merchant fees will increase credit card acceptance and will thus further reduce cash use. In this note, we calculate the level of the merchant fee where a merchant would be indifferent to accepting a credit card or cash payment, using the merchant indifference test. We find that the results are sensitive to the underlying assumptions. Furthermore, we discuss several main issues of applying such a methodology to Canada.