Canadians ditched cash during pandemic, research shows

Central bank data shows cash withdrawals fell in comparison to debit card transactions

A woman making a credit card payment

Cash withdrawals fell relative to debit card transactions during the pandemic, according to new research from the Bank of Canada.

In their paper, Tatjana Dahlhaus and Angelika Welte use high-frequency data from ATMs and point-of-sale (POS) terminals to assess how consumer habits adjusted during the pandemic.

“While some caveats apply, the decline in the cash-card ratio might be an indicator that expenditure growth estimated from card network data alone is biased upwards,” Dahlhaus and Welte

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