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Digital Economy: Waving goodbye to cash and cheques

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Digital economy

Australia is moving in leaps and bounds toward adopting a truly digital economy. Sharp declines in cheque and cash use over the past few years have shown us that more Australians are becoming increasingly comfortable with the digital financial world.

What is the ‘digital economy’?

The ‘digital economy’ is a term used to talk about anything we do online. In regards to banking, it refers to financial transactions completed via digital methods. Digital methods include anything from a transfer or bill payment using internet banking to tapping or inserting your card to pay for goods or services at retailers. Another way to look at it is that it covers any transaction that doesn’t involve using cash or cheques.

Am I part of the ‘digital economy’?

Chances are – yes! In the past 10 years, cheque use in Australia has declined by nearly 73%. The decline is so dramatic that cheques only represented 1.2% of all non-cash transactions in the 2016 financial year. The remaining 98.8% of transactions were all using digital methods.

We’re all using our cards more (instead of cash) too. Cash withdrawals dropped by 6.6% in the 2016 financial year alone. Not only is cash use declining in volume, we’re getting out less whenever we visit an ATM too. At the same time, debit and credit card use is on the rise and our interactions with our banks are mostly digital too. 86% of all Australian households now have internet access in their homes – that’s 12.9 million of us! It may come as no surprise that 77% of Australians now have a smartphone. It’s been reported that more than 50% of interactions with banks globally occur from those mobile devices. It’s not just the younger generation either. 79% of older Australians go online and 53% of those have performed banking transactions online!

Clearly we’re all embracing the digital banking experience!

Why be part of the ‘digital economy’?

There are many benefits to going digital. Here are a few of our favourites:

1. Convenience

Managing your account, paying bills and doing other transactions online from the convenience of your home or your mobile device can save you considerable time. You can also bank when it’s the right time for you (24 hours a day, 7 days a week), not just during business hours.

2. Saving money

Most transactions online do not incur any additional charges as they are automated through the online system. Some transactions (such as paying bills at the Post Office or issuing cheques at one of our branches) can incur additional fees.

3. Better for the environment

Having your statements delivered to your email address (rather than your home) means less waste. If you’re keen to keep them on file for record keeping, why not download those you need directly from your Online Banking? You can access up to 11 years’ worth of statements via your Online Banking and they’re simple to download directly to your computer.

4. Security

Did you know that going digital can also reduce the risk of becoming victim to online fraud?

 

Want to know more?

More interesting facts, including all statistics referenced in this article, are available from the Australian Payments Clearing Association Milestones Report – The Digital Economy – Sixth Report November 2016.

In addition to online banking, you can go digital by switching to paperless statements or changing your marketing preferences to email.

 

  Important Information

The information on this page is of a general nature and is not intended to be a substitute for personal advice. This information has been produced without taking into account your personal financial circumstances, objectives or needs. You should consider the appropriateness of the information to your financial situation and seek personal advice before acting on any of this information. Please see our Terms and Conditions for Savings Accounts and Payment Services before you decide to open an account or use our payment services. Qudos Mutual Limited trading as Qudos Bank ABN 53 087 650 557 AFSL/Australian Credit Licence 238 305.

 

Article published October 2017