The way people around the world transact and bank has changed quickly and in some fairly dramatic ways over the past twelve months.
Around one in four respondents (26%) are using more cash now, yet 27% are using less.
Half of all South Africans are using more cash which Alicia Gaddin, sector head of financial services for Synovate in South Africa attributes to control.
"Using cash is a better way to curb spending. You watch it leave your wallet. Many South Africans are closing credit accounts and saving in order to make purchases."
Credit cards are similarly both more and less popular depending on market, with an overall 14% using them more than they did a year ago and 18% using them less.
Brazil is leading the credit charge with 29% using them more, followed by 28% in France and 26% in Denmark.
Ari Gonzalis, new business director for Synovate in Brazil says there are two contributing factors:
"Strong downward movement of interest rates has had a big impact in the feasibility of credit for many people, plus the banks and credit card operators have been running major campaigns to demonstrate the benefits of plastic money."
Cheques are on the way out it seems, although that change is probably more linked to technology and efficiency than it is to the global financial crisis.
Overall, 3% are using more cheques, 20% use them the same amount, 17% use them less and 60% do not use them at all.
US-based Claire Peerson Braverman, senior vice president of financial services for Synovate tells us that Americans are moving online.
"Internet banking is less expensive than cheques and allows for more control when paying bills. Automatic payments can be planned in advance, thereby avoiding late fees. All the research we have done tells us that every little bit helps in this economy and people are reevaluating all these seemingly small decisions to make sure they eek out as much value for the family as possible."
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