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ATM use drops 50%. Portuguese take advantage of reduced MB Way fees and buy more online

Since the first recorded case of coronavirus in Portugal, the Portuguese have followed the recommendations of the health authorities and stayed at home, especially since the state of emergency was declared by the Government. The measures have had a profound impact on the consumption habits of the population and on the way their transactions are carried out. ATMs are less and less used, reflecting the isolation of the Portuguese in their homes.

SIBS revealed that in the last week there was a sharp drop in the number of operations carried out on the Multibanco network, with a reduction of 44% in terms of purchases and 49% in withdrawals, compared to the average recorded before the first case of coronavirus in Portugal. On the other hand, although the Portuguese use ATM less, they raised more money, with an average of 84.5 euros (25%) and increased the value of purchases to 42.1 euros (21%) since the first case.


In the opposite direction are operations through electronic payments, as in the case of MB Way. To accompany measures to combat the coronavirus and reduce the impact on the economy, some banks are relieving operations commissions. Novo Banco, for example, suspended commissions on MB Way transfers until at least April 30, as well as interbank transactions, service payments and cash-advances. BCP has also abolished MB Way commissions.

Due to the way payments are made without contact with terminals, MB Way has been registering an increase in use, according to SIBS. Above all, there is a greater concentration of purchases in supermarkets and pharmacies, which together account for 54% of payments made in Portugal in the last week.

It should be noted that the race for online shopping has skyrocketed, leading to great demand on supermarket websites. Platforms are constantly clogged, leading companies to create access ticket systems, with many hours of waiting until peak hours can enter. And when you finally have access, people have a limited time to do their shopping, as in the case of Auchan, who has 45 minutes per session. There are also limitations on delivery times, with forecasts reaching two weeks.