Fintech in the Time of COVID-19: Trust and Technological Adoption During Crises

59 Pages Posted: 29 Apr 2020 Last revised: 28 Dec 2020

See all articles by Jonathan Fu

Jonathan Fu

University of Zurich - Department of Banking and Finance; Center for Sustainable Finance and Private Wealth

Mrinal Mishra

University of Zurich - Department of Banking and Finance; Swiss Finance Institute

Date Written: December 23, 2020

Abstract

We document the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on digital finance and fintech adoption and usage. Drawing on mobile application data from 71 countries, we estimate that the spread of COVID-19 and related government lockdowns led to between a 29.2 and 32.8 percent increase in the relative rate of daily downloads during the peak of the pandemic. We analyze factors that may have driven this effect on the demand-side and better understand the “winners” from this digital acceleration on the supply-side. Our overall results suggest that traditional incumbents exhibited particularly large gains relative to “BigTech” companies and newer fintech providers during this crisis period. Finally, we show that businesses that are amalgamated with existing digital payment infrastructure are better able to offset the adverse economic effects of COVID-19.

Keywords: digital finance, fintech, financial inclusion, technological adoption, market structure, COVID-19

JEL Classification: G23, G20, 033, L1

Suggested Citation

Fu, Jonathan and Mishra, Mrinal, Fintech in the Time of COVID-19: Trust and Technological Adoption During Crises (December 23, 2020). Swiss Finance Institute Research Paper No. 20-38, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3588453 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3588453

Jonathan Fu (Contact Author)

University of Zurich - Department of Banking and Finance; Center for Sustainable Finance and Private Wealth ( email )

Plattenstrasse 32
Zürich, CH-8032
Switzerland

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.bf.uzh.ch/de/persons/fu-jonathan

Mrinal Mishra

University of Zurich - Department of Banking and Finance ( email )

Plattenstrasse
14
ZURICH, 8032
Switzerland

Swiss Finance Institute ( email )

c/o University of Geneva
40, Bd du Pont-d'Arve
CH-1211 Geneva 4
Switzerland

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