The number of retail payment accounts continued to grow, and the number of actively used payment cards and payment cards registered in mobile wallet applications is also increasing as a result of digitalization, according to a report by the National Bank of Hungary.
The number and value of purchase transactions conducted with cards registered in mobile wallet applications and other cards grew significantly. As a result, nearly 20% of all payments was completed with cards registered in mobile wallet applications. In addition to transactions conducted with cards, there was a robust growth in credit transfer transactions which also contributed to a steady uptake in electronic payments. Although still insignificant relative to total turnover, the number of fraudulent transactions increased again, therefore it is of utmost importance to encourage consumer awareness. In 2022 Q4, turnover in the payment systems rose significantly.
In 2022 Q4, a significant rise was seen in payment system turnover. At the end of 2022 Q4, the number of payment accounts managed by domestic payment service providers exceeded 10.7 million, an increase of around 60,000 compared to the previous period. Part of this, the number of customer accounts held primarily for payment purposes increased by almost 30,000. The number of foreign currency accounts also continued to grow, this time by more than 2% compared to the previous period. In addition, the number of payment accounts accessible online (crucial for the further development of electronic payments) grew continuously, increasing by over 70,000 compared to the end of the previous period, reaching over 8.9 million.
There were no pronounced changes in the number of payment cards issued in Hungary. Nevertheless, further spread of digitalization was seen in consumer habits when using cards. The number of cards registered in mobile wallet applications exceeded 1.7 million as a result of an increase of over 7% relative to the end of the previous quarter, and the number of cards used for purchase transactions continued to rise throughout 2022 Q4. For the latter, the figure of over 6.9 million is more than 50,000 higher than in the level seen in the previous quarter.
There were no significant changes in the number of merchant acceptance points belonging to the network of domestic payment service providers and the number of POS terminals operating at these acceptance points. Up by more than 3%, the only significant rise occurred in the number of online acceptance points, exceeding 42,000. In 2022 Q4, ATM network contracted: the number of ATMs declined by 1.5% relative to 2022 Q3.
The volume of purchase transactions conducted with payment cards issued in Hungary continued to rise strongly year on year both in Hungary and abroad. However, there are significant differences in changes in numbers and value probably as a result of inflation and exchange rate effects. The number and value of domestic transactions were 17% and 32% higher than in the same period of the previous year. Consequently, over 385 million transactions were completed amounting to HUF 3,583 billion. Within the cross-border purchase turnover, the number and value of transactions rose by 22% and 38%, respectively, relative to the same period a year earlier reaching 36 million transactions in number which amounted to HUF 527 billion in value.
In cash withdrawals, the discrepancy between changes measured in terms of number and value is also apparent. Although the number of domestic transactions fell by more than 1%, their value increased by over 7%. Nevertheless, total cash withdrawals at HUF 2477 billion are far below the value of card purchases.
As mobile wallet technology grew increasingly popular, the use of mobile devices for payments rose significantly. In this regard, the number and value of purchase transactions conducted with cards registered in mobile wallet applications increased by nearly 77% and 101% year on year. As a result, 18% of the number and 13% of the value of total purchase transactions were conducted using these cards in 2022 Q4.
In addition to payment cards, the growth in credit transfer transactions also continued. The number and value of individual credit transfers initiated at resident payment service providers was above the levels seen in the same period last year by 3% and 22%, respectively. Here, the number and value of instant payments rose by 9% and 26%, respectively, exceeding 48 million in numbers and HUF 12,517 billion in value.
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