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If you feel that you have been making less use of cash lately, you are not the only one. 2016 may finally be the year that cash loses its title as king, forfeiting that top position to credit and debit cards instead. Based on research recently conducted by Euromonitor International, a market research company, consumers around the globe are expected to spend nearly $23.1 trillion on goods and services through alternative means, eclipsing the $22.6 trillion forecast for cash transactions.

Kendrick Sands, one of the senior consumer finance analysts at the firm, notes that this shift has been occurring over the past two decades, due in part to the growth of technology. Furthermore, in a bid to fight illegal activities and ensure honesty come tax time, many countries have had incentives in place for their citizens to reduce the use of cash and use cards instead.

So, where is this growth exactly coming from? Most key geographic areas have adopted credit and debit cards at a rapid clip, but China and the broader Asia Pacific region continue to lead the way as China’s economy transitions into one more reliant on consumer spending.

When you see yourself pull plastic instead of paper from your wallet the next time you are about to pay for something, you are participating in one of the biggest ongoing consumer behavior shifts over the past few decades!


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