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Assessing the development of the European retail payments market from a historical perspective

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Changing consumer expectations are shaping the retail payments market at the global level. Within the European Union, the renewed regulatory framework, the revised Payment Services Directive, gives a further boost by fostering innovation and competition in the European retail payments market. In this evolving payment landscape, assessing the current state and forecasting potential development paths may benefit from a look at the past. This paper reviews past developments, discusses potential regulatory implications, and outlines a vision of future developments in the European retail payments market. It concludes that an evolutionary path is more likely than a revolutionary one. Regarding the future regulatory framework for retail payments, it proposes that the movement from entity-based towards more activity-based regulation should be continued.

Keywords: Digitalisation; Europe; network economics; regulation; retail payments

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Senior Adviser in the Payment Systems Department, Bank of Finland PO Box 160, 00101 Helsinki

Publication date: December 1, 2020

More about this publication?
  • Journal of Payments Strategy & Systems publishes peer-reviewed articles and case studies analysing best practice, emerging issues and new thinking in how to develop a profitable, customer-focused payments strategy. It examines major issues facing the corporate, wholesale and retail payments industry from a business, risk and operational perspective.

    Edited by renowned payments expert Alec Nacamuli and guided by an eminent Editorial Board, each quarterly 100-page issue provides practical, detailed analysis of developments and trends in the payments business, regulation, new entrants and technologies and how to bring them all together to define your payments strategy, as well as actionable advice and ‘lessons learned’ from fellow professionals on how payment processing systems can be leveraged to maximise profitability, security and efficiency and minimise risk. It contains no advertising and no advertorial.

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