Metrics Monthly | September 2019 | UK Edition

In the news Credit card spending overtakes cash

Cake and coffee The last Friday of September marked the annual Macmillan Coffee Fund- raiser event, hosted by Arena Business Centres, who manage our UK office at Lancaster Court.

According to the British Retail Con- sortium (BRC) Payments Survey, consumers are now spending more money on credit cards with UK retailers than they did with cash. The survey showed that, whilst debit cards were still the most popular way to pay with £216bn spent last year, credit cards have now overtak- en cash for the first time. Credit and charge cards account- ed to £82bn of retail sales last year, overtaking cash, which saw £78bn worth of spending. Whilst cash is being used more fre- quently, the amount spent using credit cards was higher than cash. This revelation leads to conversa- tions about the move to a complete- ly cashless society. According to Andrew Cregan, policy adviser for the

BRC, a cashless society would cause problems for millions of people. Cregan notes that, without cash, it would be harder to leave tips or give money to homeless people. In addi- tion, those who find it harder to use digital services or who use cash as a lifeline when in abusive relationships would be severely effected. The BRC also shows concerns for retailers due to the rising cost of accepting card payments, which could have a significant effect on small and medium businesses. The BRC survey goes alongside a recent claim by consumer group Which?, who said that free-to-use cash machines are disappearing quicker in deprived areas than in affluent ones, leading to more debate about the effects this will have on the economy.

The LendingMetrics team joined in the action for a slice of cake to support the worthy cause. We also got to help judge the ‘Bake Off’ competition entries, and decide which entry would be worth of a Paul Hollywood handshake. The standard of baking was higher than ever, and the team sampled an impressive selection of cakes, brown- ies and cupcakes, whilst also donating to Macmillan Cancer Support, who provide physical, financial and emo- tional support to people diagnosed with cancer and their families.

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