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A comprehensive report on the cards, payments and consumer banking market in Greece. Greece is primarily a cash- and cheque orientated country, with these paper-based payments accounting for over 95 percent of all transactions in the country. Greece lags far behind other EU countries in non-cash transactions; however, card payments are slowly increasing.
Visa holds the dominant position in the Greek credit cards market. The Greek credit cards market is concentrated among the four largest issuers – Alpha Bank, NBG, Eurobank and Piraeus Bank.
As with credit card issuing, the acquiring market in Greece is dominated by a handful of entities. The significant growth in the e-commerce market is having a positive impact on the payment cards market as a whole.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Demographics and Economy:
Outlines the key metrics and trends which influence the development of retail banking and payments in the country:
Verisk explores the structure of the local banking system, its infrastructure and the leading players. Data includes:
Overview of consumer finance in the country. Categories analysed include:
Industry-leading credit card coverage. We detail the past present and future of the industry through our data and commentary, including:
Demographics and Economy
The Greek economy has moved from being largely dependent on agriculture, mining and construction to being a service-based economy: service industries account for approximately 82.8% of GDP.
Banks operating in Greece have several hurdles to overcome, including decreased deposit levels, increased net-credit losses and low return-on-equity ratios. The banking sector has undergone significant restructuring since 2012 with major consolidation taking place.
Despite the risk of cannibalising credit card profitability, Greek banks have been encouraging customers to shift their debt from credit cards to personal loans through debt-consolidation products.
Greece is primarily a cash and cheque-orientated country, with these paper-based payments accounting for over 95% of all transactions in the country. Greece lags far behind other EU countries in non-cash transactions; however, card payments are slowly increasing.
Making payments online is gaining popularity in Greece. There has been a considerable rise in internet use and penetration rate of smartphones in Greece which has widened the opportunities for mobile payment players.
Credit card profitability is under threat from various debt consolidation products, personal loans and even home equity loan products, which are often more affordable and more flexible than credit cards.
Pricing and Enhancements
Greek credit card issuers typically offer insurance add-ons, including travel insurance coverage, emergency medical assistance when travelling and free shopping protection.
Four international card networks operate in the Greek credit cards market: Visa, Mastercard, Diners Club and American Express. Of these, Visa is the market leader, both in terms of the number of credit cards in issue and billed volume. The Greek debit cards market has no domestic debit scheme. All cards carry either Maestro, Visa or American Express branding.
Merchant Acquirers and Processing
As with credit card issuing, the acquiring market in Greece is dominated by a handful of entities. As a result, merchant acquiring in Greece is highly competitive with profit margins much lower than the average European level.
The e-commerce market in Greece is one of the fastest-growing among European countries. E-commerce sales in the country grew by 18.8% in 2015 and amounted to an estimated $4.8 billion. E-commerce sales comprise around three per cent of the country's retail sales.
The Bank of Greece, established in 1927, is responsible for both the central banking and regulatory framework in Greece. The Bank of Greece's main objective is to ensure price stability, safe payments and a stable financial system.
Reports include detailed market and competitor intelligence on payments cards, e-money, acquiring, retail banking, and consumer credit in Europe. Analysts use primary and secondary source data and conduct in-depth interviews with senior industry executives and finance experts.
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