Over the past 20 years, there has been a major shift away from the use of paper-based retail payment instruments, such as cash and cheques, toward electronic means of payment, such as debit cards and credit cards. Recent Bank of Canada research on consumers’ choice of payment instruments indicates that cash is frequently used for transactions with low values because of its speed, ease of use and wide acceptance, while debit and credit cards are more commonly used for transactions with higher values because of perceived attributes such as safety and record keeping. While innovations in retail payments currently being introduced into the Canadian marketplace could lead to a further reduction in the use of cash over the longer term, the implications for the use of cash of some of the structural and regulatory developments under way are less clear.
What makes e-money more special than cash? Is the introduction of e-money necessarily welfare enhancing? Is an e-money system necessarily stable? What is the optimal way to design an efficient and stable e-money scheme?
In the United States prior to 1863 each bank issued its own distinct notes. E-money shares many of the characteristics of these bank notes. This paper describes some lessons relevant to e-money from the U.S. experience with state bank notes.
The authors review recent developments in retail payments in Canada and elsewhere, with a focus on e-money products, and assess their potential public policy implications.
Despite various payment innovations, today, cash is still heavily used to pay for low-value purchases. This paper develops a simulation model to test whether standard implications of the theory on cash management and payment choices can explain the use of payment instruments by transaction size.
This paper reviews some recent developments in digital currency, focusing on platform-sponsored currencies such as Facebook Credits.
Recent studies in monetary theory show that if buyers can use lotteries to signal the quality of bank notes, counterfeiting does not occur in a pooling equilibrium. In this paper, I investigate the robustness of this non-existence result by considering an alternative trading mechanism.
November 15, 2012
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.
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.
May 17, 2012 The Bank of Canada’s annual conference, held in November 2011, brought together leading researchers from universities, central banks and other institutions from around the world. Divided into four sessions plus two keynote addresses, the conference covered such topics as the use of cash and other means of payment in retail transactions, large-value payments systems, and […]