Boost for cashless mode: Debit card usage accounts for 60% of total card spend, says report

Post the note ban exercise in November last year, the government has been urging people to use less cash and shift to digital payment transactions to keep a check on the black money menace in the system. It seems more people across the country are paying heed to the government's call.

In January, swiping debit cards were the primary mode of payments for people across the country as against credit card usage, a Times of India report said.

Post demonetisation, payments through debit cards rose to 60 percent of total card spend as against 42 percent until October last year.

Representational image. Reuters

Representational image. Reuters

In the first month of 2017, debit card transactions reported by public sector banks stood at a healthy Rs 29,339 crore as against Rs 19,664 crore worth of transactions registered by private bank debit card users. Before the note ban in October last year, there were only 19 transactions in a month for every 100 debit cards in circulation.

Following the demonetisation, there were 54 transactions a month via debit card in December, although it fell to 40 transactions a month in January.

In value terms, public sector banks witnessed transactions to the tune of Rs 10,893 crore from a total of 61.7 debit cards issued till October. Compared to this, private and foreign banks clocked transactions worth Rs 11,048 crore with a debit card base of 12.25 crore, the report added.

If one looks at the overall transactions through various digital modes like credit/debit cards, UPI, USSD, and mobile banking, a total of 9,575 transactions were made amounting to Rs 104.05 lakh crore in December last year. However, this fell to 8,704 lakh in January and further to 7,630 lakh in February, with a corresponding decline in the value of monthly transactions, a Firstpost report said early this month citing RBI data.

The RBI data indicates that cash is slowly making a comeback as the remonetisation exercise has been underway. The notable fall in digital transactions, as mentioned above, is an indication that people still prefer cash over non-cash methods, if given a chance.

Updated Date: Mar 27, 2017 17:08 PM

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