Payments in Sweden 2017: What Consumers Want
Payments in Sweden 2017: What Consumers Want, report examines the consumer payments market in Sweden, considering payment cards, online payments, P2P payments, and newer payment technologies such as mobile wallets and contactless. The report also examines the main regulatory players overseeing the market.
Swedish consumers are prolific payment card users. Average monthly card transaction volume is higher in Sweden than in other mature European markets such as the UK and Germany, although it lags behind its neighbors Denmark and Estonia. Payment card use in Sweden has been driven by concerted efforts by the government and banks, and consumer willingness to adopt them. As a result, payment cards are gradually replacing cash, and are now used even for small-value transactions at newspaper vendors and homeless magazine sellers, and for church donations. Over half of all bank branches no longer deal with cash-based transactions in Sweden. There are nearly 21 million cards in circulation, 51% of which are debit in 2017. Although debit and pay-later cards are almost equal in number, the former are used over four times more frequently. The increase in POS terminals has been paralleled by a substantial rise in the use of payment cards, with the volume of card transactions at POS terminals increasing substantially to 3.5 billion in 2017, accounting for 96.5% of overall payment card transaction volume. Contactless card payments are in their infancy in Sweden. However, currently all major banks (Nordea, SEB, Handelsbanken, and Swedbank) are either issuing or will start issuing contactless cards very soon; the slow uptake is in part related to POS terminals not being ready to accept NFC-enabled contactless payments. Peer-to-peer (P2P) transfers - most often through the Swish app - are very popular, and this space is expected to continue growing in the coming years.
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