1 69 Cash withdrawals at the point of sale: motives for use and implications for cash holding The present article aims to investigate the role played by point- of- sale (POS) withdrawals ie withdrawals of cash at supermarket and filling station checkouts for consumers in Germany when obtaining cash and the implications that this has for their cash holding. The empirical analysis is based on data from the Bundesbank s 2011 study on payment behaviour, which was the first time that questions were asked specifically about this new option for withdrawing cash. A descriptive analysis of the data shows that point- of- sale withdrawals are being used only to a small extent in Germany at present. An average consumer in Germany covers no more than 1% of his or her annual cash requirements using this form of cash withdrawal. Of those surveyed, 92% stated that they had not made use of this option at all so far. Persons making POS cash withdrawals did so very largely because they had forgotten to obtain cash elsewhere in another way. The most commonly cited reasons for not making POS withdrawals were a sufficiently large number of available automated teller machines (ATMs) located nearby, a lack of confidence in retailers, and not being aware of the existence of this facility. The probability of making a POS withdrawal is higher for persons living in rural areas and who hold an account with a bank which has a low ATM coverage. Furthermore, it is evident that persons making more frequent use of POS withdrawals keep a lower stock of cash on average. The resulting effects on the amounts of cash held for transaction purposes in Germany are, however, negligible in macroeconomic terms even if this facility were to be used more widely in future.
2 70 POS as an additional withdrawal option alongside ATM and counter withdrawals Introduction Despite the steady increase in card payments, cash was still the most frequently used means of payment in German retail outlets in 2011 with a transaction share of 82%. 1 What consumers particularly like about cash is that it is quick and convenient to use and also protects their privacy. On the other hand, the fact that cash is used up when shopping and constantly has to be stocked up might be felt to be a drawback. Besides bank counters and automated teller machines (ATMs) as the traditional sources for withdrawing cash, there is now also the option at various retailers of withdrawing cash at the checkout. The present article is concerned with this new method of withdrawing cash, known as point- of- sale (POS) withdrawals. Innovations in the field of supplying cash to consumers are of great interest to central banks, since this may lead to changes in the demand for cash. In the past, for example, the universal availability of ATMs as an alternative to withdrawals at the counter led in many countries to a marked decline in the average amount of cash held for transaction purposes. 2 The option of POS withdrawals makes consumers cash management easier in two ways. First, it creates an additional cost- free possibility of obtaining cash, as no fees are charged for POS withdrawals in most cases. Second, withdrawals at the checkout save time, since they are made at the same time as the purchases. Such changes in the cost structure could lead to consumers changing their withdrawal behaviour. In much the same way as after the widespread introduction of ATMs, it is possible that consumers would withdraw cash more often but in smaller amounts. As a result, the average amount of cash held for transaction purposes would decline. The present article first gives an overview of the scale on which consumers in Germany currently make use of POS withdrawals and what factors play a part in this. Furthermore, we look into the impact that greater use of POS withdrawals has on consumers cash holding. Cash withdrawals at the point of sale For the purpose of this article, POS withdrawals are understood to be the option of withdrawing cash at a retail checkout at the same time as making the payment transaction. 3 POS withdrawals are currently offered by various supermarkets and filling stations. The methods used differ in terms of the conditions of use for the consumers and how they work technically. The methods used at supermarkets are also commonly known by the term Cash back. In this instance, customers can withdraw cash in the amount of up to 200 when purchasing goods to the value of at least 20 which are bought using a payment card with PIN authorisation. To do this, the amount to be deducted at the card terminal is increased by the desired amount to be withdrawn. The withdrawn cash is paid out directly by the employees from the cash register. The withdrawals per se are free of charge. For some customers, however, general fees for the use of the card may be charged by their bank. Withdrawing cash at filling stations is not conditional on making a purchase or refuelling. Since this option is based on a cooperative agreement with a commercial bank, withdrawing cash is subject to withdrawal fees for customers of other banks. A further difference from the supermarket schemes is that the participating filling stations operate integrated 1 See (2012), Payment behaviour in Germany in 2011 An empirical study of the utilisation of cash and cashless payment instruments. 2 See W Boeschoten (1998), Currency use and payment patterns, Financial and Monetary Policy Studies, Vol 23, Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic Publishers; H Stix (2004), How do debit cards affect cash demand? Survey data evidence, Empirica 31(2-3), pp This term does not cover ATMs which are located at a retail outlet, but which cannot be used for payment transactions. Providers Conditions of use and method of operation
3 71 cash management systems. These have the geous that when withdrawing cash in a super- advantage that the money paid in is checked market unlike at a bank ATM the banknotes for authenticity and fitness not only by the paid out to them have not been checked auto- cashiers but also by machine. Automatic check- matically for authenticity and fitness. Even so, ing is performed in accordance with a proced- they enter the same risk when accepting ure certified by the Eurosystem. change and in the case of withdrawals at a bank counter. Assessment of POS withdrawals from the retailers point of view and POS withdrawals have various advantages from the retailers point of view. This facility can attract additional customers who visit the retail outlet because they need cash. At the supermarkets, sales my increase if consumers who Cash management of consumers in Germany want to withdraw cash have to buy more products to reach the minimum purchase amount According to the Bundesbank s 2011 study on payment behaviour, a representative consumer Withdrawal strategies of 20. At the filling stations, the magazines of in Germany withdraws an amount of cash to- the fully automatic cashier systems have to be talling 8,072 annually. In Germany, there gen- emptied less frequently. The higher transaction erally exists the option of obtaining cash from costs resulting from POS withdrawals are a ATMs, at bank counters or at selected points of drawback for the retail trade, however. For every sale. Consumers can withdraw differing debit card transaction, a given percentage of amounts of cash and decide how often and the recorded amount irrespective of whether where they wish to withdraw it. This raises the it has been paid or withdrawn has to be question as to the strategy they use to obtain transferred to the payment service provider. their cash. from the consumers perspective From the consumers perspective, POS withdrawal facilities present an additional withdrawal option which is generally free of charge. The chart on page 73 shows how often ATM, counter and POS withdrawals are usually conducted. In addition to the information from Frequency of withdrawal This is an advantage primarily for customers of 2011, the 2008 figures are shown for compara- banks with a thinly spread network of ATMs. tive purposes. 4 By far the most frequently used Furthermore, customers can save time by mak- location for withdrawing cash is the ATM. Of ing POS withdrawals as they can combine pur- those surveyed, 89% (2008: 88%) stated that chasing and withdrawal transactions. Never- they regularly visit an ATM, with the average theless, this procedure also has some features user making 40 (2008: 43) withdrawals a year. that consumers might feel to be a disadvan- Counter withdrawals are made much more tage. POS withdrawals at supermarkets depend rarely. Of those surveyed, 54% state that they on paying for the goods using a card. In view had not made use of this option at all so far. of the above- mentioned large share of transac- The remaining 46% make a counter with- tions at German retail outlets which have hith- drawal about 13 (2008: 17) times a year. 5 POS erto been conducted in cash, most consumers withdrawals are made least often. Only 8% of would therefore have to alter their payment those surveyed stated that they make regular behaviour in order to withdraw cash there. Added to this is the fact that the withdrawal process which consumers in supermarkets have to perform themselves at the POS payment terminal requires data input and actions which differ from those at an ATM, which likewise requires a certain degree of familiarisation. Moreover, customers might feel it disadvanta- 4 For more detailed information on withdrawal behaviour in Germany in 2008, see (2010), Where does the cash in your wallet come from? An empirical study of the cash withdrawal behaviour of the German population at ATMs and bank counters in Germany. 5 The survey data on the frequencies of ATM and counter withdrawals are consistent with the commercial banks data in the official statistics. See (2013), Payment and securities settlement statistics in Germany
4 72 Underlying data: the s study on payment behaviour The Bundesbank s study on payment behaviour provides the underlying data for the present analysis. These data are derived from a survey of consumer payment and withdrawal behaviour which the Bundesbank conducts at regular intervals in cooperation with a market research provider. Data from the years 2008 and 2011 are available to date. The surveys of around 2,000 people in each case are representative of the German- speaking population aged 18 years and above. Numerous analyses have already been conducted on the payment behaviour of consumers in German retail outlets using these data. 1 In a second step, this article provides more detailed information about the withdrawal behaviour of consumers, in particular the use of POS withdrawals, which were recorded in the survey for the fi rst time in How high is the average amount per withdrawal at the respective place? How much cash do you usually still have in your wallet or purse before you decide to make a new withdrawal of cash? To users of POS withdrawals Why do you use the option of withdrawing cash at supermarkets and fi lling station counters? To non- users of POS withdrawals Why do you not use the option of withdrawing cash at supermarkets and fi lling station counters? Questions about withdrawal behaviour are generally aimed at determining which places of withdrawal are used (ATM, bank counter, POS) and how frequently the average size of the amounts withdrawn and why certain places of withdrawal are used or not used. Here are some examples of questions asked in To all participants How often do you generally withdraw cash at the following places: ATM, bank counter, POS? 1 See (2012), Payment behaviour in Germany in 2011, An empirical study of the utilisation of cash and cashless payment instruments; M Eschelbach and T Schmidt, Precautionary motives in short-term cash management evidence from German POS transactions, Discussion Paper, No 38/2013; C Arango et al, Cash management and payment choices: a simulation model with international comparisons, Discussion paper, No 04/2014.
5 73 Average amount POS withdrawals as a percentage of total withdrawals use of this withdrawal method, with users making POS withdrawals roughly nine times a year. The chart below shows the average amounts withdrawn at ATMs, bank counters and at the POS for the respective users. An average ATM user withdraws 215 per transaction. The average amount of a counter withdrawal is significantly higher at 436 (2008: 376). This is due to the fact that counter withdrawals are being used more and more rarely to cover the everyday need for cash. Rather, they are used to obtain cash for particular purposes. For example, 50% of the surveyed users in 2011 stated that they had a special reason for making a cash withdrawal at a counter. The most frequently cited reasons are major purchases, craftsmen s invoices and holidays, ie occasions that entail comparatively large expenditure. 6 Of all three withdrawal options, POS shows the lowest average amount and, at only 105, is well behind the figure for counter and ATM withdrawals. The low frequency of use and the small amount withdrawn already point to the fact that POS withdrawals still play no more than a minor role in Germany at present. In order to quantify their actual significance, the percentage values of POS, ATM and counter withdrawals are to be finally calculated for an average user. 7 It 6 The stated figures are average values for the individual users. Combining the surveyed microdata on amounts withdrawn and frequencies of withdrawal and, instead, calculating the average values for the transactions conducted in 2011 produces an average figure of 163 at the ATM and an average figure of 306 at the counter. The figure for the ATM is consistent with the commercial banks data in the official statistics ( 161). The counter figure, on the other hand, is distinctly higher in the official statistics at 1,178 per withdrawal transaction. This suggests that those surveyed for the payment behaviour study did not mention their extremely high- value withdrawals, say, for hoarding purposes. See (2013), Payment and securities settlement statistics in Germany To do this, for each survey respondent the value of yearly withdrawals is calculated separately for ATM, counter and POS as the product of the average amount withdrawn and the frequency of withdrawal. These variables are then expressed as a ratio of the survey respondent s total withdrawals. In a final step, the three percentages are averaged over all respondents. Frequency of use of various points of withdrawal % no users sporadic users (once every three months or less often) monthly users (once or twice a month) weekly users (once a week or more often) ATM Bank counter 2011 POS Average amount withdrawn by point of withdrawal * * The figures refer to those persons who actually use the stated points of withdrawal. becomes apparent that the ATM with an average share of 80% is the dominant point of withdrawal. The share of counter withdrawals is much smaller at around 19%. As expected, POS withdrawals occupy last place. Their share of an average consumer s total withdrawals amounts to only 1% ATM Bank counter POS
6 74 Reasons for making POS withdrawals Cash withdrawals at the point of sale: motives Subjective assessment of the survey respondents In the 2011 study on payment behaviour, users of POS withdrawals were asked why they used this procedure. Those who do not make POS withdrawals were asked to state their reasons for not doing so. Those surveyed were presented with a series of suggested answers. It was also possible, however, to give an alternative individual answer to the question. The selection of suggested reasons was based on the system s advantages and drawbacks as outlined above. The chart below shows the distribution of the most frequently stated reasons for making POS withdrawals. Roughly 71% of users withdraw cash at the checkout when they have forgotten to obtain cash elsewhere. Convenience, speed and lack of charges are cited as a key factor by around one- third of users in each case. Only 4% state that they use the POS as a point of withdrawal because they have no other suitable option available to them. These responses suggest that the key advantages of POS withdrawals convenience, speed and lack of charges do indeed play a part in the decision whether to use it. Nevertheless, the majority of users do not see POS as a primary withdrawal option, but as an alternative that can be used in an emergency. The chart on page 75 shows the most frequently cited reasons for not using POS withdrawals. Roughly one- third of the surveyed non- users do not see any need to make a POS cash withdrawal, since the closely- knit network of ATMs and banks in Germany is sufficient. Furthermore, in matters pertaining to cash almost one- quarter of non- users trust solely their own bank and not retailers. A lack of awareness of the possibility of withdrawing cash at the supermarket or at a filling station is in third place among the cited responses. Of the survey respondents, 13% stated that they make purchases only in retail outlets where POS withdrawals are not possible. Only 1.7% of those surveyed give the poor quality of the paid- out banknotes as their reason. Institutional determinants The cited reasons show, on the one hand, that POS withdrawals are only a low- priority alternative to ATMs and bank counters. On the other hand, it can be concluded from the responses that POS withdrawals at supermarket Reasons for not making POS withdrawals Access to cash Reasons for making POS withdrawals * % Forgotten to withdraw cash from ATM or at bank counter 71.4 Convenient and quick 35.0 Free of charge 29.1 No other point of withdrawal available 4.1 Other/don t know * The figures refer to those persons who actually make use of POS withdrawals. Multiple answers possible.
7 75 Reasons for not making POS withdrawals * % ATM or bank counter available nearby 34.0 Mistrust of this type of withdrawal 23.3 Unawareness of this type of withdrawal 22.6 Too complicated 16.9 No purchases made at outlets offering this withdrawal option 13.0 General reservations about card payments 10.9 Hardly any need for cash 10.1 Other/don t know 2.8 Poor quality of the banknotes * The figures refer to those persons who do not make use of POS withdrawals. Multiple answers possible. Regression analysis and filling station checkouts can be a practical solution for a small group of persons who otherwise have poor access to cash withdrawal facilities. How far institutional factors actually play a part in deciding which option to use can be determined using a simple regression analysis. For persons holding a current account at a bank with a thinly spread network of ATMs and persons living in rural areas there should, all other things being equal, be a higher probability of withdrawing cash when going shopping. In the following probit regression, the probability of a person making a POS withdrawal at least once a year is modelled as a function of bank affiliation (the bank with which he or she holds an account), the size of the locality (city, town etc) where he or she lives, and other sociodemographic factors. 8 The chart on page 77 shows the most important findings of the regression analysis. The full results can be found in the table on page 78. In actual fact, an individual s alternative withdrawal options appear to be an important factor in the decision on use. At around 6%, customers of savings banks and People s banks and Raiffeisen banks (Volksbanken and Raiffeisenbanken) who can withdraw cash in many locations owing to their dense networks of ATMs are, all other things being equal, the least likely on average to make a POS withdrawal. By contrast, customers of direct banks are the most likely to do so at around 17%. When comparing places where people live, persons living in localities with less than 2,000 inhabitants are, all other things being equal, the most likely to make POS withdrawals at roughly 20%. Persons living in urban areas with 100,000 to 500,000 inhabitants are the least likely to do so at around 5%. 8 Descriptive statistics on the observed institutional and sociodemographic features may be found in the table on page 76.
8 76 Descriptive statistics on the variables in the regression analysis * Explanatory variable Mean value in years Age % Gender: Male Highest educational qualifi cation Lower / intermediate secondary school leaving certifi cate 9.67 Senior school leaving certifi cate University degree No school leaving certifi cate / not specifi ed 1.64 Household income ( ) less than 1, ,000 to less than 1, ,500 to less than 2, ,000 to less than 2, ,500 to less than 3, ,000 to less than 3, ,500 to less than 4, ,000 to less than 4, ,500 to less than 5, ,000 and above 1.98 Not specifi ed 6.38 Giro account held with a Savings bank or Landesbank People s bank / Raiffeisenbank Big bank Cash pool 4.55 Direct bank 1.21 Other 1.69 Not specifi ed 0.48 Size of locality (inhabitants) less than 2, ,000 to 4, ,000 to 19, ,000 to 49, ,000 to 99, ,000 to 499, more than 500, Share of cash payments Annual withdrawal volume 2 7, Amount of cash held for transaction purposes Cash withdrawals at the point of sale: implications for cash holding Finally, we intend to study how the availability of POS withdrawals impacts on consumers cash holding habits. Of particular interest is whether, given more intensive use of this procedure, amounts of cash held for transaction purposes in Germany might fall. Consumers who would like to pay for their purchases in cash have to decide how much they keep for this purpose in their purse or wallet. In economic theory, the optimum amount depends on three factors: first, the value of the transactions to be paid in cash; second, the costs that arise from holding cash (for example, forgone interest income or loss of cash due to theft); third, the costs that arise from the replacement of cash (for example, withdrawal charges or the time and costs of getting to the place of withdrawal). Replacement costs are reduced for consumers by the option of POS cash withdrawals. First, additional charge- free withdrawal options are created, which are especially advantageous for persons holding a current account at banks with a thinly spread ATM network. Second, the processes of payment and withdrawal take place virtually simultaneously, which additionally saves time. Baumol (1952) and Tobin (1956) showed that, given lower replacement costs, it is optimal for consumers to withdraw cash more often but in smaller amounts. 9 For a consumer with a given cash transaction volume and given costs of cash holding, the use of POS withdrawals should therefore lead to a reduction in the average amount of cash held for transaction purposes. Economic theory * Number of persons: 1,904. The fi gures shown are descriptive statistics on the variables used in the regression analyses. Observations with missing values in continuous variables are excluded. No weighting was used to calculate the statistics. 1 Standard deviation: Standard deviation: 6, Standard deviation: See W Baumol (1952), The transactions demand for cash: an inventory theoretic approach, Quarterly Journal of Economics 66 (4), pp ; J Tobin (1956), The interest elasticity of the transactions demand for cash, The Review of Economics and Statistics 38 (3), pp
9 77 Probability of a POS withdrawal according to bank affiliation and size of locality * % Savings bank or Landesbank People's bank/ Raiffeisenbank Big bank Cash pool Type of bank 95% confidence interval Estimated value No of inhabitants < 2,000 up to 5,000 up to 20,000 up to 50,000 up to 100,000 Size of locality Direct bank up to 500,000 Other > 500, * Projected probabilities are the outcome of a probit regression using Individual carries out at least one POS withdrawal per year as the dependent variable (0/1). Regression analysis Apart from the lowering of replacement costs, however, there is also a simple technical reason why less cash might be held. At many supermarkets, the withdrawal amount is limited to 200. This could prompt consumers who make POS withdrawals to withdraw and hold less cash. In order to examine the connection between POS withdrawals and the average amount of cash held for transaction purposes, a microeconomic money demand function is estimated. 10 To do this, a linear regression is performed. The dependent variable is the average amount of cash a person holds for transaction purposes. The key explanatory variable is the percentage of POS withdrawals in a person s total annual withdrawals of cash. As further explanatory variables, the model contains the annual total volume of withdrawals, the percentage of card payments in weekly overall expenditure, bank affiliation, the size of the locality where he or she lives, age, the highest educational qualification, income and the individual s gender. 11 Before the estimation, the average amount of cash held for transaction purposes as well as the POS withdrawals as a percentage of all cash withdrawals first has to be calculated. To calculate the amount of cash held for transaction purposes, it is assumed for the sake of simplicity that an amount of cash withdrawn at a given time from an ATM, a counter or from a POS has been spent in regular and equal amounts by the time of the next withdrawal. If that is the case, at any given time an individual holds, on average, one- half of the amounts he or she regularly withdraws in his or her wallet or purse. 12 The amount of cash that an individual usually still has in his or her wallet or purse when he or she makes a new withdrawal of cash has to be added to this. This basic amount of money is always in his or her possession and 10 See W Boeschoten (1998), Currency use and payment patterns, Financial and Monetary Policy Studies, Vol 23, Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic Publishers; H Stix (2004), How do debit cards affect cash demand? Survey data evidence, Empirica 31(2-3), pp Descriptive statistics on these explanatory factors are shown in the table on page The assumption that cash is spent in regular and equal amounts is plausible for withdrawals made to cover the usual needs for cash. If, on the other hand, cash is withdrawn for special purposes, such as buying a second- hand car, this assumption is problematic since it can be assumed that the cash will be spent soon afterwards. In this case, the assumption that cash is spent in regular and equal amounts would result in the estimated amount of cash used for transaction purposes being overstated.
10 78 Regression analysis of the motives for making POS withdrawals * therefore has to be assigned entirely to the amount of cash held for transaction purposes. 13 Explanatory variable Marginal effect Standard error Age (in years) *** Gender: Male * Highest educational qualifi cation Lower / intermediate secondary school leaving certifi cate Ref Ref Senior school leaving certifi cate University degree No school leaving certifi cate / not specifi ed Household income ( ) less than 1,000 Ref Ref 1,000 to less than 1, ,500 to less than 2, ** ,000 to less than 2, *** ,500 to less than 3, ** ,000 to less than 3, ** ,500 to less than 4, ,000 to less than 4, * ,500 to less than 5, ** ,000 and above Not specifi ed Giro account held with a Savings bank or Landesbank Ref Ref People s bank / Raiffeisenbank Big bank *** Cash pool Direct bank Other No answer given Size of locality (inhabitants) less than 2,000 Ref Ref 2,000 to 4, ,000 to 19, *** ,000 to 49, *** ,000 to 99, ** ,000 to 499, *** more than 500, ** * Number of persons: 2,068. The table shows the results of two probit regressions with Individual carries out at least one POS withdrawal per year (0/ 1) as the dependent variable. Column two shows the marginal effect on the decision on use for each characteristic under observation. In the case of cardinally scaled variables (eg age), this measures the extent to which the probability of making a POS withdrawal changes when the explanatory variable under consideration is increased by one unit. In the case of non- cardinally scaled variables (eg Individual has a senior school leaving certifi cate ) the marginal effect shows by how much the probability of use increases if the individual in question has the characteristic under consideration. Furthermore, column 3 shows robust standard errors, which, in combination with the marginal effects, allow conclusions to be drawn as to the statistical accuracy of the estimation. ***, **, * denote statistical signifi cance at the 1%, 5% and 10% level. Based on the calculation method described above, the upper chart on page 79 shows the distribution of the average amount of cash held by the survey respondents for transaction purposes as a histogram. On average, an individual holds about 153 in cash. The amounts range between 7.50 and 1,800, with 95% of individuals holding less than 400. The share of POS withdrawals in relation to the survey respondents annual withdrawals has already been determined in the calculations above (see also footnote 8). As mentioned earlier, only around 8% of the survey respondents use the POS as a withdrawal location, thus producing a zero share of use for 92% of the respondents. On average, an individual makes only 1% of his or her withdrawals at the POS. For the group of POS users, the centre chart on page 79 shows as a histogram the distribution of POS as percentages of total withdrawals. Individuals making POS withdrawals obtain 12% of their cash reserves in this way on average. Nevertheless, for 95% of these persons, the share of POS withdrawals is only 2% (or less). The lower chart on page 79 shows the most important results of the regression analysis. The full estimation results are shown in the table on page 80. The hypothesis of a negative correlation between the extent to which POS withdrawals are used and the average amount of cash held for transaction purposes is confirmed: the higher the percentage of POS withdrawals 13 Specifically, the following calculation formula is used for the amount of cash held for transaction purposes (German: Transaktionskasse, TK).. Here, f j denotes how many times a year an individual withdraws cash from an ATM (j=1), a counter (j=2) and from a POS (j=3). b j denotes the relevant amount that is usually withdrawn. Thus, is the average amount withdrawn by an individual over all three withdrawal options, half of which he or she holds in his or her wallet or purse. If the basic amount of money r is added, this gives us the average amount of cash held by an individual for transaction purposes.
11 79 POS withdrawals only a stopgap, but a good alternative for individuals who otherwise have poor access to cash is, the smaller the average amount of cash held for transaction purposes. This correlation is statistically significant. From a macroeconomic perspective, however, the estimated effects are slight. Increasing the intensity of use by 1 percentage point would, all other things being equal, lower the amount of cash an individual holds for transaction purposes by 52 cents. Even with a tenfold increase in the intensity of use from 1% at present to 10%, the average amount of cash held for transaction purposes would decline only from 153 at present to roughly 149, which is equivalent to a percentage change of about 3%. If consumers switched over completely to POS withdrawals, the average amount of cash held for transaction purposes would go down to about 97, which corresponds to a roughly 37% reduction. 14 Summary and conclusions In conclusion, it may be noted that awareness and utilisation of POS withdrawals are still at very low levels in Germany. For consumers, withdrawing cash from an ATM remains the norm. The POS withdrawal facility is used only if an individual has forgotten to withdraw cash from an ATM or if circumstances make it difficult to do so. Persons who have tended to have poor access to cash in the past appear to benefit from this facility, however. A significantly higher probability of use is shown by customers of banks with a thinly spread ATM network as well as by individuals living in what tend to be more rural areas. Distribution of the average amount of cash held for transaction purposes * Absolute frequency ,000 1,500 Average amount of cash held for transaction purposes ( ) * The class width is equal to 50. POS withdrawals as a percentage of total withdrawals * Absolute frequency Share of POS withdrawals (%) * Survey participants who make a POS withdrawal at least once a year. The class width is equal to 1 percentage point. Estimated amount of cash held for transaction purposes in relation to the percentage of POS withdrawals * 160 Minor effects on the amount of cash held for transaction purposes in Germany POS withdrawals have had only minor effects on consumers cash holding so far. Although there is a statistically significant correlation between the intensity of use and the amount of % confidence interval 14 The regression results should nevertheless be viewed as an indication not as proof of a decline. Problems might arise if users and non- users of POS withdrawals differ fundamentally in their cash holding habits and these differences cannot be captured adequately using the explanatory factors of the model Share of POS withdrawals (%) * Projected values are the outcome of a linear regression using the average amount of cash held by an individual for transaction purposes as the dependent variable.
12 80 Regression analysis of the impact of POS withdrawals on the average amount of cash held for transaction purposes * Explanatory variable Marginal effect Standard error Total volume of withdrawals per year (logarithmic) *** Giro account held at a Savings bank or Landesbank Ref Ref People s bank / Raiffeisenbank Big bank Cash pool Direct bank Other ** Not specifi ed Size of locality (inhabitants) less than 2,000 Ref Ref 2,000 to 4, ,000 to 19, ,000 to 49, ,000 to 99, ,000 to 499, more than 500, Share of POS withdrawals in relation to the total volume of withdrawals (0-1) ** Share of card payments in relation to total expenditure (0-1) Age (in years) *** Highest educational qualifi cation Lower / intermediate secondary school leaving certifi cate Ref Ref Senior school leaving certifi cate University degree No school leaving certifi cate / not specifi ed cash held for transaction purposes, it is quantitatively very small and in combination with the low intensity of use negligible from a macroeconomic perspective. It remains to be seen whether POS withdrawals will play a significant role in supplying cash to consumers in the future. Their increasing importance is suggested by the growing number of providers who are also promoting this facility more and more strongly. Furthermore, the growing trend for card payments among consumers is consistent with a move towards demand for this facility. In countries such as the United Kingdom and Australia where cashless payments are much more common, there is also more widespread use of POS withdrawals, for example. What argues against growing use of this facility is the fact that many users see this procedure only as a second- class alternative to the ATM and bank counter. The crucial matter is whether the system s key advantage saving time will be enough to make people switch from their longstanding routine practice of withdrawing cash from an ATM or at a counter. Household income ( ) less than 1,000 Ref Ref 1,000 to less than 1, ,500 to less than 2, ,000 to less than 2, ** ,500 to less than 3, *** ,000 to less than 3, *** ,500 to less than 4, *** ,000 to less than 4, * ,500 to less than 5, * ,000 and above ** Not stated * Gender: Male *** * Number of persons: 1,922. The table shows the results of a linear regression with the average amount of cash held by an individual for transaction purposes as the dependent variable. Column 2 shows the marginal effect on the decision on use for each characteristic under observation. In the case of cardinally scaled variables (eg age), this measures the extent to which the amount of cash held for transaction purposes changes when the explanatory characteristic under consideration is increased by one unit. In the case of non- cardinally scaled variables (eg Individual has a senior school leaving certifi cate ) the marginal effect shows by how much the amount of cash held for transaction purposes is greater if the individual in question has the characteristic under consideration. Furthermore, column 3 shows robust standard errors, which, in combination with the marginal effects, allow conclusions to be drawn as to the statistical accuracy of the estimation. ***, **, * denote statistical signifi cance at the 1%, 5%, and 10% level.
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