The free instant transfer is about to impose itself

The Postbank wants to make it the standard means of payment. It removes the transfer in 72 hours.

Revolution in the payment world. The Postbank will generalize the instant transfer. Unlike the standard transfer, which takes 24 to 72 hours, this allows you to send money anytime in less than ten seconds. “From May, the instant transfer will gradually replace the standard transfer, for all occasional transfers up to 1000 euros for individuals”describes the subsidiary of La Poste.

This transfer is free, as Postbank has abolished the charges (70 cents for private individuals) related to this service in January. Crédit Mutuel Arkéa (and its subsidiary Fortuneo) and Boursorama had already done this (without deleting the transfer within 72 hours) to align with the free Paylib, interbank payment solution for transfers between friends. In the other networks, the instant transfer is charged at 1 euro.

The death of the check

The Postbank hopes a “new market standard”. “His initiative will put pressure on his rivals,” he said. says Julien Maldonato, partner at Deloitte. The use of instant transfers, launched in France in 2018, is still very modest due to the price. In the first half of 2021, 62 million transfers were instant, out of a total of 2.34 billion, according to the Banque de France.

Wire transfer has proven itself in recent years as the most widely used payment method (along with direct debit), behind the debit card, widely used by individuals (7.34 billion payments in the first half of 2021). In value it is the first payment method, with 18,840 billion euros transferred in six months in 2021. This colossal amount takes into account salaries and other payments by companies.

By 2011, transfers had overtaken cheques, the decline of which further accelerated during the health crisis. In the first six months of 2021, the French wrote 539 million checks, compared to 3.12 billion for the whole of 2010. “The end of the check is very slowexplains Julien Lasalle, secretary of the national committee for cashless payments at the Banque de France. It remains privileged to make deposits, private lessons and small businesses still use it a lot. The average payment amount is high.”

The transfer will accelerate further thanks to the immediate payment. “This service brings a real plus, especially in the context of payments between individualssays Julien Lasalle. It secures the online sale of goods.” The used car seller no longer has to wait frantically to find out if the buyer’s check is bad.

In the Netherlands, where instant transfers are the norm, private individuals use them for their online purchases. In France, credit card payment remains the preferred choice on e-commerce sites for cultural reasons. That could change. “Many countries have switched to bill-to-bill payment”, emphasizes Julien Maldonato. This service allows traders to save money; private individuals can use split payment.

“The bank card will eventually disappear, provides Julien Maldonato. That is why Visa has taken over Tink.” This fintech allows you to activate a wire transfer from another account.

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