How Consumers Get Cash: Evidence from a Diary Survey
Most research on payment instruments focuses on how consumers pay or spend their money using a wide variety of payment instruments including cash. This report focuses on the inverse of the question of spending, that is, how do consumers obtain cash? Data from the 2017 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice shows that, over a three-day period, about 21 percent of survey respondents get cash via various methods, such as getting cash from a family member or friend, using an ATM, getting cash back at retail, visiting a bank teller, etc. We find that consumers mostly get cash from family and friends, ...
The 2017 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice
This paper describes key results from the 2017 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice (DCPC), the fourth in a series of diary surveys that measure payment behavior through the daily recording of U.S. consumers' spending. The DCPC is the only diary survey of U.S. consumer payments available free to the public. In October 2017, consumers paid mostly with cash (30.3 percent of payments), debit cards (26.2 percent), and credit cards (21.0 percent). These instruments accounted for three-quarters of the number of payments, but only about 40 percent of the total value of payments, because they tend to be ...
The 2012 diary of consumer payment choice
This paper describes the results, content, and methodology of the 2012 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice (DCPC), the first edition of a survey that measures payment behavior through the daily recording of U.S. consumers? spending by type of payment instrument. A diary makes it possible to collect detailed information on individual payments, including dollar amount, device (if any) used to make the payment (computer, mobile phone, etc.), and payee type (business, person, government). This edition of the DCPC included about 2,500 participants and was conducted in October 2012. During that month, ...
U. S. consumer cash use, 2012 and 2015: an introduction to the Diary of Consumer Payment Choice
U.S. consumer cash payments averaged 26 percent of all U.S. consumer payments by number (volume share) from 2008 to 2015, according to the Survey of Consumer Payment Choice (SCPC), and were essentially unchanged between 2012 and 2015. New estimates from the Diary of Consumer Payment Choice (DCPC) show that the volume share of consumer cash payments is higher than estimated in the SCPC and suggest that the cash volume share was 8 percentage points lower in 2015 than in 2012. The DCPC most likely does not provide an accurate estimate of the actual change in the cash volume share, however, due ...
U.S. consumer holdings and use of $1 Bills
Small denominations play a special role in a payments ecosystem because they facilitate exchange for small-value goods and services. This report examines the $1 bill holdings of adults in the United States using data from the Diary of Consumer Payments Choice (DCPC). Simply knowing the number of $1 bills in circulation is not useful for understanding consumers' actions, since many of these bills are held by merchants. The costs and benefits to the consumer of carrying $1 bills have been largely ignored in the policy discussion of the costs of switching from dollar notes to dollar coins. ...
U.S. Consumers' Use of Personal Checks: Evidence from a Diary Survey
This paper presents a snapshot of U.S. consumers’ use of paper checks in 2017 and 2018, combining data from the 2017and 2018 Diaries of Consumer Payment Choice.Other data sources have tracked the decline in the use of paper checks since 2000. This report adds to that data by delving into the characteristics of 1,600 individual transactions—in particular, dollar amount, payee, and payer—made by a representative sample of U.S. consumers using checks. Among the findings:•Consumers used checks for 7 percent of transactions overall in 2017 and 2018 and wrote about three checks a ...
U.S. consumers' holdings and use of $100 bills
Conventional wisdom asserts that $100 bills are often associated with crime and foreign cash holdings, leading some commentators to call for their elimination; in light of this proposal, it is useful to examine the legal, domestic use of cash. This report uses new data from the 2012 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice (DCPC) to evaluate consumer use of $100 bills as a means of payment.
How are U.S. consumers using general purpose reloadable prepaid cards?: are they being used as substitutes for checking accounts?
Owners of general purpose reloadable prepaid cards (GPR) who do not have checking accounts comprise 4.8 percent of U.S. adults, according to the 2012 Survey of Consumer Payment Choice. This report explores two important aspects of prepaid card use: Do owners of GPR prepaid cards who lack checking accounts use these cards differently than those who have checking accounts? Are these cards substituting for payment services that have traditionally been provided only via traditional checking accounts?
This is what's in your wallet... and here's how you use it
Models of money demand, in the Baumol (1952)-Tobin (1956) tradition, describe optimal cash management policy in terms of when and how much cash to withdraw, an (s, S) policy. However, today, a vast array of instruments can be used to make payments, opening additional ways to control cash holdings. This paper utilizes data from the 2012 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice to simultaneously analyze payment instrument choice and withdrawals. We use the insights in Rust (1987) to extend existing models of payment instrument choice into a dynamic setting to study cash management. Our estimates show ...
The 2016 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice
This paper describes key results from the 2016 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice (DCPC), the third in a series of diary surveys that measure payment behavior through the daily recording of U.S. consumers? spending. In October 2016, consumers paid mostly with cash (31 percent of payments), debit cards (27 percent), and credit cards (18 percent). These instruments accounted for 76 percent of the number of payments, but only 34 percent of the total value of payments, because they tend to be used more for smaller-value payments. Electronic payments accounted for 43 percent of the value of payment ...