BOFIT Viikkokatsaus / BOFIT Weekly 2017/43

With a shrinking number of local bank branch offices and fewer ATMs, households are turning to netbanking services. A recent Central Bank of Russia survey found that over a third of the adult population uses an online banking service or a mobile banking app. This share has clearly increased over the past two years. The survey also reviewed the wider use of banking services. Nearly 80 % of Russian adults have at least one bank account and about 45 % actively use at least one account. Many Russians have several bank accounts. Private individuals together had over 544 million bank accounts at the start of the year (about 4.6 accounts per capita). The use of debit and credit cards has also expanded rapidly. About half of adults have some sort of payment card, and in addition to this about 30 % of Russians have a bank card related solely to wage payments.

Despite rising household indebtedness, only about a third of the population has borrowed from a bank or other credit institution. Bank customers are typically middle-class urban-dwellers, while the customer base for the microcredit sector tends to be low-income individuals.