ATM use recovers from lockdown impact
Issue 299 | 30 March 2022
ATM use recovers from lockdown impact
Although weekly ATM volumes remain below pre-pandemic levels, last weeks ATM volumes were greater than the equivalent week in 2020 when the first lockdown restrictions were put in place.
Weekly ATM value and volume figures 27 March 2022
The volume of ATM transactions increased by 3% when compared to the previous week in 2022.
The volume of ATM transactions increased by 19% when compared to the equivalent week in 2021.
The volume of ATM transactions increased by 47% when compared to the equivalent week in 2020.
Weekly LINK ATM transaction volumes
Last week there was a total of 31.1 million ATM transactions which represents an increase of 1.0 million ATM transactions over the previous week.
In 2022, there was an increase of 5.0 million transactions or 19% when compared with the equivalent week in 2021.
After the usual seasonal fall at the end of December and a slow start to January, activity in 2022 had pulled away from 2021 as expected given the Lockdown restrictions last year.
Two weeks ago the difference across the three years was narrowing as 2020 was heading towards the first Lockdown. Many venues were already takeaway only at this stage or closed with ATM transaction volumes rapidly reducing as a result of the restrictions in place.
In the figures for last week the sudden drop which occurred in 2020 can be seen as the first lockdown was announced and ATM Transactions fell by over 40%.
From Lockdown 1.0, 2.0, Tiers & 3.0, Steps 1 to 4 out of Lockdown, Plan B, Plan A and now living with Covid…..
This graph shows the impact on ATM Transactions throughout the first year of lockdowns in 2020 and initially at the beginning of 2021 with Lockdown 3.0. This was followed by a gradual increase in volumes in 2021 as restrictions eased throughout the Summer.
From the Summer months onwards activity across both 2020 and 2021 was very closely matched with the exception of the comparison with Lockdown 2.0 in November 2020. The usual seasonal fall at the end of December is clearly evidenced in the graph below which follows a usual pattern that can also be seen in 2020 and 2019.
After a slow start to January, the volume of ATM transactions in 2022 continues to track above 2021. Overall weekly volumes remain below pre-pandemic levels but are now above 2020 for the first time as levels two years ago reflect the first lockdown restrictions in place.
This next graph also shows the trajectory of ATM Transactions with the graph also showing the timing of each lockdown and the differing level of restrictions in place.
Conditions were at their closest over the two years over the Summer with hospitality re-opening at the beginning of July 2020 and with businesses operating under similar restrictions to those currently in place in 2021. The convergence of the graphs shows a consistent level of ATM transactions and value across the two years under these similar conditions.
The two graphs diverged as conditions differed during November but have now converged again as similar restrictions were in place across the two years with both years showing the usual seasonal reduction in volumes at the end of the year.
For the current year transactions can clearly seen to be increasing throughout January and the beginning of February.
In the latest report by LINK published on 4 March 2022, LINK research shows how cash habits have changed through the pandemic. By the end of January 2022, in England, the Government announced an end to Plan B measures. This was the first time LINK conducted the research since summer 2021 and it showed the number of consumers using cash in the last two weeks has now increased to 73%, the highest-level LINK has recorded during the pandemic.
The research also showed a change in where people are using cash. Locations which are showing increasing usage are supermarkets, other retail, services like hairdressing and most especially pubs. This may be a result of those locations starting to accept cash once again, or at least not actively discouraging it. Locations which have shown very little change are convenience stores (by far the most popular location throughout), fuel, DIY stores and parking.
Assuming conditions this year remain unchanged from now on, we would expect the 2021 and 2022 graphs to merge again around May when restrictions were lifted in 2021.
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