Regional Differences in Retail Payment Habits in Italy

24 Pages Posted: 13 Oct 2020

Date Written: September 29, 2020

Abstract

Economic operators have a number of different procedures and instruments for regulating their cashless monetary transactions safely and quickly. Nevertheless, divergences in the use of non-cash payment instruments persist among European countries and, in Italy, between the Centre and North and the southern regions. In this paper, we study which factors are associated with the backwardness of South and Islands in the use of non-cash payment instruments. We focus on the period 2013-18, when there was a widespread increase in non-cash transactions among the main advanced economies, spurred by technological innovation and the new legal framework supporting security, efficiency and transparency in digital payments. We find that the main factors associated with a lower demand for cash are technological innovation in payments and the population’s digital skills and education levels; criminality and tax evasion are also significantly and positively correlated to the use of cash, but their correlations with the observed heterogeneity among Italian provinces are not predominant.

Keywords: payment instruments, cash demand, retail payments, technological innovation

JEL Classification: E41, E42, G21, G23

Suggested Citation

Ardizzi, Guerino and Bonifacio, Elisa and Demma, Cristina and Painelli, Laura, Regional Differences in Retail Payment Habits in Italy (September 29, 2020). Bank of Italy Occasional Paper No. 576, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3710137 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3710137

Guerino Ardizzi

Bank of Italy ( email )

Via Nazionale 91
Rome, 00184
Italy

Elisa Bonifacio

Bank of Italy ( email )

Via Nazionale 91
Rome, 00184
Italy

Cristina Demma (Contact Author)

Bank of Italy ( email )

Via Nazionale 91
Rome, 00184
Italy

Laura Painelli

Bank of Italy ( email )

Via Nazionale 91
Rome, 00184
Italy

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