Do ATMs still have value?
posted by Jace Day on Wednesday, March 27, 2019 in SHAZAM Blog
In today’s world of faster payments, there’s a gnawing question if automated teller machines still provide value. The millennial generation, born between 1982 and 2000, is the nation’s largest generation and their financial habits include regular access to ATMs.
Have card, get cash
For 72 percent of debit card holders, getting cash from the ATM remains their number one card use as reported in the Mercator Advisory Group study, U.S. Consumers and Debit: Fewer Use It for Purchases — Customer Monitor Survey Series, 2018.
While most accountholders access the ATM with their card, new technologies allow ATM access without. Mobile apps allow withdrawals by using a one use, limited time code. Using the code, the accountholder can make a cash withdrawal from the ATM without their card. If the accountholder doesn’t make the withdrawal within the time limit, the cash remains in their account. Accessing funds with biometrics is another trend. By providing a fingerprint or facial scan at the ATM, accountholders can access their account.
ATM use to access cash
While all generations continue to use varying levels of cash, a Bankrate survey found that the millennial generation prefers cash, and according to the Federal Reserve they use cash more than any other demographic in the United States. In fact, a recent article in Payment Source states that millennials use cash and ATMs on a daily basis. They do much of their banking online or at an ATM with more than half reporting they don’t visit a financial institution branch on a regular basis. As digital natives, millennials have a high level of comfort using technology to access their funds. Access to ATMs is still very important to this generation.
When considering all U.S. consumers, nearly 50 percent of transactions under $25 are in cash and 60 percent under $10 are paid in cash. Using an ATM is one way to quickly and conveniently access cash for these purchases. In addition to being the preferred method for making small purchases, cash payments can result in faster checkouts, help consumers manage their budgets and limit how much money is spent. Cash provides a way to purchase goods from cash-only merchants and it prevents identity theft.
Mobile ATMs provide access to cash at fairs, concerts and festivals where cash is the preferred payment method. Street vendors don’t often accept debit or credit card payments due to the required fees. Quick and easy access to cash gives consumers a way to pay for goods and services when they’re enjoying a night out.
While urban areas may show a decline in ATM installations, rural areas have experienced growth where ATMs can provide regular account access. Recent studies show that 65 percent of U.S. financial institutions plan to increase the number of ATMs over the next few years, 25 percent will not make a change and only 10 percent plan to decrease the amount. ATMs continue to provide accountholders 24/7 access to their accounts, whether they are withdrawing cash, making a deposit or checking balances.
Faster payments and cardless transactions continue to gain popularity, yet access to services through ATMs continues to be a critical banking tool for many.
- faster payments
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