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Payments revenue growth forecasts almost halved under brightest post-Pandemic outlook

Payments revenue growth forecasts almost halved under brightest post-Pandemic outlook

Annual global payments revenues could reach $1.8 trillion under a quick Covid-rebound scenario, according to data from the Boston Consulting Group, representing a considerable slowdown in growth from pre-pandemic boom times.

The consultancy's annual Global Payments Report, compiled using data from Swift, includes three revenue growth scenarios based on global GDP development.

Under a quick-rebound scenario, BCG’s outlook suggests that the global payments revenue pool will expand from $1.5 trillion in 2019 to $1.8 trillion in 2024, a compound annual growth rate of 4.4%. Although solid, this CAGR is much lower than the 7.3% annual growth the industry enjoyed from 2014 to 2019.

In a slow-recovery scenario, the global revenue pool would reach $1.7 trillion by 2024, a CAGR of 2.7%. Under a deeper-impact scenario, the revenue pool would grow by only a moderate CAGR of 1.1%.

The second half of the decade, however, looks considerably brighter, driven by economic expansion, advancements in payments infrastructure, e-commerce growth, and greater financial inclusion. From 2024 to 2029, global payments revenues should rise by 4.4% to 5.6% annually, states the consultancy, roughly 1.5 times faster than the growth of banking revenues overall. By 2029, the revenue pool could swell to between $1.9 trillion and $2.4 trillion, depending on the extent of the economic recovery.

“By accelerating changes that traditionally take a decade to materialise in the payments industry, the pandemic and its aftermath have created a window for the most talented companies to leapfrog the competition, gain scale, and deliver customer impact,” says Yann Sénant, a Paris-based BCG managing director and partner, co-author of the report, and global leader of the firm’s payments and transaction banking segment. “That ticking clock means that payments players that act decisively now will have a clear advantage over the rest of the field.”

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