Mobile Money is a form of digital money and as the name suggests this e-money can be used via cell phone. An individual needs to have a bank account linked to their mobile number to make transactions using the phone. Some common examples of Mobile Money Service Providers (MMSP) are Google Pay, Paytm, PhonePe, and all the banking institutes that allow virtual banking services.
In this article, we have performed a simple descriptive analysis on a global basis to understand who is actively using Mobile Money. As per the data, cell phone subscriptions have increased over time thus we have witnessed the rise of MMSPs and the usage of Mobile-money-services (MMS). Our analysis showed that the active consumers of this service are mostly rich, older adults, and men. So, Mobile money is not so popular with poor, young adults and women around the world. Is it because they do not have enough money to spend, hence reluctant to download a mobile money service providing app? As Edward R. Tufte once said, ‘Above all else, show the data’, thus, moving forward with the article.
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Mobile Money Service Provider – Introduction
IMF (International Monetary Fund) has defined Mobile Money as a pay-as-you-go mode of payment. It is a digital mode of payment system where you use your mobile to pay or receive money e.g. Google Pay, Paytm, bank apps, etc. In fact, Paytm is one of the largest MMSP in India and it serves over 400 m mobile subscribers as per Business World (2019) report.
Mobile Money is a digital form of money where your cell phone number is linked to your physical bank account. The service allows you to make transactions from your bank account without physically visiting the bank. It helps individuals to make monetary transactions using their mobile phones. Initially, each application required you to maintain a wallet such as Paytm wallet or airtel wallet. Gradually, with technological advancement, a definite virtual wallet is not required.
Benefits of MMSP:
- Cashless money reduces the cost to the government as it lowers the money printing costs. It also helps an individual to travel without heavy coins and crumbled paper notes
- No or lower transaction costs
- Due to the ease of such transactions, the velocity of money transactions also increases.
- increases business growth as now transactions no longer are constrained within geographical boundaries.
- E-money is more convenient and hence an individual reduces his trips to the bank without affecting his demand for money. Thus, increasing the aggregate demand for the economy.
The data is freely accessible on the official World Bank website. However, we homogenized the data and formatted it at our convenience. We have attached it as a downloaded file below. It is panel data with 216 cross-sectional values across ten years. For our analysis we have specifically used the following data sets:
- Mobile cellular subscriptions Mobile cellular subscriptions (per 100 people)
- Account ownership with a MMSP, female
- Account ownership with a MMSP, male
- Account ownership with a MMSP, young adults
- Account ownership with a MMSP, older adults
- Account ownership with a MMSP, poorest 40%
- Account ownership with a MMSP, richest 60%
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This section contains data, data file, data analysis, inference and visualizations.
- Descriptive Analysis
- Mobile Subscriptions
- Gender Distribution
- Age Distribution
- Income Distribution
- Mobile Money Service Provider Data File
Conclusion – Mobile Money
Mobile Money is a convenient method to scale up the velocity of transactions in any economy. It will pull up the aggregate demand and thus benefit the welfare. However, it is odd to see that women, young adults, and the poor section globally are being left out of this benefit scheme. Turkmenistan and South Sudan are the two countries where MMSP account ownership between male-female, rich-poor, and young-older adults witnessed high inequality. Iceland, on the other hand, reported absolute equality. Helping the poor or women to set up an MMSP account should be beneficial to the Government too since transferring direct benefits to the weaker sections will become easier than before. A march towards digitalization should help one and all.