Covid-19 crisis: Payments fall 46% in April; ATM cash withdrawal declines

Topics payments | Coronavirus | Lockdown

Card payments through credit and debit cards — a part of retail digital ecosystem — dipped 57 per cent to Rs 49,807 crore in April, from Rs 1.15 trillion in March in volume terms.
April saw total payments, comprising digital payments and payments made through paper-based instruments, plummet 46 per cent in value terms to Rs 84.1 trillion, from Rs 156.5 trillion in March, revealed the monthly bulletin of the Reserve Bank of India.

While the lockdown to contain the spread of the deadly novel coronavirus was initiated in the latter part of March, April bore the full brunt of the lockdown.

In volume terms (transactions), total payments in April plummeted 22 per cent to 2.38 billion, from 3.07 billion in March.

Total digital payments — both in volume and value terms — also contracted in April.

In value terms, they dropped 45 per cent to Rs 82.46 trillion, from Rs 150.85 trillion.

In volume terms, they dropped 21 per cent to 2.36 billion, from 3 billion.  

Following a similar trend, retail payments plummeted more than 45 per cent in value terms to Rs 19.66 trillion, from Rs 36.03 trillion, while in terms of volume, retail payments dropped to 2.37 billion, from 3.06 billion.

Card payments through credit and debit cards — a part of retail digital ecosystem — dipped 57 per cent to Rs 49,807 crore in April, from Rs 1.15 trillion in March in volume terms.

Cash withdrawals from automated teller machines (ATMs) nearly halved to about Rs 1.27 trillion in April, mainly on account of the impact of the Covid-induced lockdown.

The withdrawals were Rs 2.51 trillion in March.

According to the June bulletin, the number of transactions or cash withdrawal volume from ATMs also declined 286.6 million in April, from 547.1 million in the previous month.

The number of transactions through ATMs using debit cards also fell to nearly half to 285.2 million in April, compared with 544.1 million in the preceding month.

There were over 886.8 million cards in April, including 57.3 million credit cards and 829.4 million debit cards. The total number of cards in March was about 886.3 million.

There were 234,000 ATMs and 5.08 million point-of-sale (PoS) terminals.

Cash withdrawal volumes at PoS machines, however, increased in April to 4.08 million, from 3.36 million in March.

In terms of value, cash withdrawals at PoS machines stood at Rs 111 crore, compared with Rs 110 crore in March.

The number of transactions at micro ATMs using Aadhaar-enabled payment system more than doubled to 87.55 million in April, from 34.49 million.


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