Angelika holds a PhD in Mathematics and a MA in Economics. In her work, she uses empirical microeconomics to understand why and how consumers and firms choose payment methods. This year, Angelika is working on a project that will provide insights in the merchant acquiring industry in Canada. Merchant acquirers have a central role in card payment system as they connect card accepting businesses to the payment networks, authorize and process card transactions and may also provide point-of-sale equipment to merchants. The goal of this project is to better understand the structure of the acquiring market and how it relates to payment efficiency.
Staff analytical notes
The official consumer price index (CPI) inflation measure, based on a fixed basket set before the COVID 19 pandemic, may not fully reflect what consumers are currently experiencing. We partnered with Statistics Canada to construct a more representative index for the pandemic with weights based on real-time transaction and survey data.
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.
Staff discussion papers
This note uses industry data and a unique dataset of small and medium-sized merchants to provide insights into the acquirer-merchant market in Canada.
Cash use is declining while contactless and mobile payments are on the rise.
Using data from our 2014 cost-of-payments survey, we calculate resource costs for cash, debit cards and credit cards. For each payment method, we examine the total cost incurred by consumers, retailers, financial institutions and infrastructures, the Royal Canadian Mint and the Bank of Canada.
The authors present the methodology and main findings of the Bank of Canada’s 2009 Methods-of-Payment survey, a detailed investigation of consumer payment behaviour in Canada. The survey targeted the 18- to 75-year-old Canadian resident population.
Staff working papers
Although credit cards are more expensive for merchants to accept than cash or debit cards, merchants typically pass through their costs evenly to all customers. Along with consumer card rewards and banking fees, this creates cross-subsidies between payment methods. Because higher-income individuals tend to use credit cards more than those with lower incomes, our results indicate that these cross-subsidies might lead to regressive distributional effects.
The discrete choice to adopt a financial innovation affects a household’s exposure to inflation and transactions costs. We model this adoption decision as being subject to an unobserved cost.
Merchants who accept credit cards face payment processing fees. In most countries, the no-surcharge rule prohibits them from using surcharges to pass these fees on to customers.
Recent studies find that cash remains a dominant payment choice for small-value transactions despite the prevalence of alternative means of payment such as debit and credit cards. For policy makers an important question is whether consumers truly prefer using cash or merchants restrict card usage.
In 2015, the Bank of Canada undertook the large-scale Retailer Survey on the Cost of Payment Methods.