Canadians Are Digitally Transferring Money at Record Rates

More Canadians than ever are turning to online alternatives when they want to send and receive money.

The popularity of Interac’s e-Transfer service skyrocketed in 2017, cementing the idea that electronic payments are the new cash. More than 241 million transactions worth over $92 billion in total were made last year—this represents a 52 per cent increase in volume and a 44 per cent increase in total value as compared to 2016.

“The consistent year-over-year growth in usage of the Interac e-Transfer service is a testament to its convenience and reliability among consumers, businesses and financial institutions in Canada who are always looking for ways to send, request and receive money,” says Debbie Gamble, VP of digital product and platforms at Interac. “Seeing Interac e-Transfer used at record levels strengthens Canada’s position to deliver a faster, more modernized payments system domestically and around the world.”

Beyond those impressive year-over-year increases, Interac also shared more usage stats. The e-transfer service is used more than 660,000 times per day on average, and the average value of a transfer is $382, with 62 per cent of transactions under $200 and 47 per cent under $100. A typical e-Transfer user sends three or more transactions a month, while 76 per cent of transfers are deposited on mobile devices.

Stats like these, provided by one of Canada’s leading financial institutions, offers a glimpse into Canada’s spending habits and how they interact with new ways of spending and transferring money. Beyond individuals, approximately one in six Interac e-Transfers are conducted by businesses. The rise of these kinds of transactions reduces dependency on cheques and an improved ability to reliably settle invoices.

Three-quarters of people using online banking in Canada are registered to use Interac e-Transfer, with close to 7.5 million active users every month.

Though Interac dominates the electronic money transfer landscape within Canada, they are looking to see what they can do outside of the country. Late last year they partnered with Nanopay to build a new way of digitally transferring funds through high-volume corridors to other countries. The first country they are working on expanding to is India. This kind of international accessibility would diminish Interac’s need to rely on Western Union and grow their brand even more.