快捷搜索: 纽约时报  疫情  抗疫  经济学人  中国  特朗普 

电子货币支付会导致花费更多吗?

  Does e-money make you spend more?

  电子货币支付会导致花费更多吗?

  I have a memory as a boy, saving my pocket money by placing it in a special drawer, the golden pound coins collecting into a neat stack. (Although the stack never got too high to endanger its structural integrity.) I grew up in Hastings, a small coastal town in East Sussex, famous for 1066 and seaside charm. It has a reputation for being somewhat rundown and is forever “up-and-coming”.

  我记得小时候,为了省下零花钱,把它放在一个专门的抽屉里,一英镑的硬币整整齐齐地堆叠在一起(堆叠高度从不危及结构的完整性)。我在黑斯廷斯(Hastings)长大,东苏塞克斯(Sussex)的一个沿海小镇,黑斯廷斯以1066年的历史和迷人的海滨而闻名。它有点陈旧的名声,但一直保持积极进取。

  I got my first debit card when I was 14. Later, I saved up money for a gap year, by working at a bingo hall, and I put the money into a savings account. I avoided credit cards. Back then (2007) it was still around 5% interest rates, and I remember getting £70 ($91) one year, which made me feel very rich indeed.

  我14岁时拿到了第一张借记卡。后来,我在一家宾果游戏厅工作,攒了一年的钱,然后把钱存进储蓄账户。我避免使用信用卡。当时(2007年)的银行利率在5%左右,我记得有一年拿到70英镑(91美元),这让我觉得非常富有。

  Skip forward to 2018 and I was living and working in Beijing, China, as a freelance journalist. All around me Beijing residents were paying for everything using just their smartphones. They would walk up to a counter of a restaurant, shop, or convenience store, and offer up a QR code for the cashier to scan. Once scanned, the online system would immediately deduct the exact amount owed from the payer’s e-wallet. No fumbling for cash and waiting for change. No swipe of a plastic card either. The transaction would take seconds.

  进入2018年,我在中国北京以自由记者的身份生活和工作。我周围的北京居民都在用智能手机支付一切费用。人们在餐厅、商店或便利店的柜台前,向收银员出示二维码进行扫描。扫描成功后,在线系统会立即从支付人的电子钱包中扣除相应的消费金额。没有掏取现金和等待找零钱的过程,也不用刷卡,交易只需几秒钟。

  But I was a stubborn holdout. My friends, both Western and Chinese, would make fun of me for being so traditional – for clinging onto “dirty cash” – seeing the crumpled paper bills as evidence of my Luddite ways. But there were a couple of reasons why I kept using physical money and avoided getting into e-payments and e-wallets. Firstly, it felt safer. I wasn’t really aware of how electronic money would work on my smartphone and I feared it would somehow get easily siphoned off. Having physical cash just felt safer.

  我是个顽固的坚持者。我的朋友们,无论是西方的还是中国的,都取笑我太传统,太执着于“脏现金”,把使用那些皱巴巴的纸币当作我路德派(Luddite)作风的证据。我一直用实体货币,避免电子支付和电子钱包有几个原因,首先,拥有现款感觉更安全。我不知道电子货币在智能手机上是如何运作的,担心它会被轻易地吸走。

  Secondly, I feared that by moving to electronic payments, and losing the greater friction of paying with cash, I would end up spending more. I was afraid that by losing the tangible, visible qualities of paper money, and the physical transaction – of fishing out my wallet, finding the required bills, and handing over the cash – I would lose all sense of how much, day by day, I would be spending.

  其次,我担心使用电子支付,没有了现金支付的麻烦,最终会花费更多。由于失去了纸币的有形、可见的特性和有形的交易——比如掏出钱包,找到需要的钞票,然后交出现金。我会失去每天花多少的所有感觉。

  Were these fears justified? As more and more people across the world shun cash, these are essential issues to consider.

  这些担心有道理吗?随着世界各地越来越多的人回避现金,这些都是需要考虑的基本问题。

  Before we get into the twisty and tricky slopes of consumer psychology, and the conflict between classical economics and psychology that led to the birth of behavioural economics – let’s first consider what money is exactly.

  在我们进入消费心理复杂和棘手的问题前,以及导致行为经济学诞生的古典经济学和心理学之间的冲突之前,先考虑一下金钱到底是什么?

  Money is an abstract concept – and today we take it for granted, not considering how a piece of paper, or pieces of metal, are valuable items in themselves. But money is a relatively recent invention, and it represented a fundamental change in human society, says Natacha Postel-Vinay, who teaches a course in the history of money and finance at the London School of Economics.

  金钱是一个抽象的概念,今天我们把它视为理所当然,从不考虑一张纸或一块金属本身是否有价值。在伦敦经济学院教授货币和金融史课程的波尔泰维奈(Natacha Postel-Vinay)说,货币是一项相对较新的发明,它代表了人类社会的根本变化。

  “It was completely different from barter,” she says. “You don’t need exact matching from two different people and their desires. If you wanted to buy some bread, the bread seller didn’t need to have something specific from you; your coat or your garden veg. You just needed some silver.”

  她说:“这和易货完全不同。不需要匹配不同人的需求。如果想买面包,面包商不需要得到其它的东西:外套或者蔬菜。只需要付一些银子。”

  The first recorded use of money was in ancient Iraq and Syria, in the Babylon civilisation, around 3000BC. In Babylonian times people used chunks of silver which were accounted according to a standardised weight known as a shekel. From Babylon, we have records of the first prices, recorded by priests at the Temple of Marduk, as well as the first ledgers and the first debts.

  第一次有记录的使用货币,是在公元前3000年左右的古巴比伦文明时期的古伊拉克和叙利亚。在巴比伦时代,人们使用大块的银,这些银是根据一种叫谢克尔(shkel)的标准重量来计算的。从巴比伦开始有了最初的价格记录,是由祭司在马尔杜克神庙记录,还有最初的账簿和最初的债务。

  From Babylon we have many of the essential things required for a monetary economy. These include the fact the silver was regularly tested for its fineness and there was a stabilising force, such as a King or government, which people could trust to guarantee the value of the money. “At all times, in order for money to have value, trust is needed,” says Postel-Vinay. But there have been many developments in money along the way. Babylon had money, but it was still bulky and had to be weighed – it wasn’t as advanced as coins. From about 1000BC other civilisations were using precious metal, and in ancient Greece, in the Kingdom of Lydia, the first coins were minted.

  在巴比伦,有了货币经济所需的许多基本要素。包括:银的纯度接受定期测试;对国王或政府的信任,人们相信国王或政府能保证货币的价值。波尔泰维奈说:“在任何时候,为了让钱有价值,信任是必需的。”在这个过程中,货币方面也有了很大发展。巴比伦有货币,但它很笨重,需要称重,它没有硬币那样先进。大约从公元前1000年起,其他文明开始使用贵金属,在古希腊的吕底亚(Lydia)王国,第一批硬币被铸造出来。

  The first paper bills were used in Imperial China during the Tang dynasty (AD 618-907), which existed as privately issued bills of credit or exchange notes, but Europe wouldn’t cotton on to the idea until the 17th Century.

  中国最早使用纸币是在唐朝(公元618-907年),当时的纸币是私人发行的信用票据或交换票据,但直到17世纪,欧洲才开始接受这种想法。

纽约时报中英文网 www.qqenglish.com

  Nowadays, money is not tied to physical objects that are in themselves valuable commodities, such as gold or silver coins, but we use a form called fiat money which is a currency that a government has established as legal tender.

  如今,货币不再与实物挂钩,实物本身就是有价值的商品,如金币或银币。我们使用的是一种被称为“法定货币”的货币形式,这种法定货币是由政府确立的。

  The concept of credit (and debt) existed long before credit cards were invented. “It doesn’t need to be physical in order for it to be money,” explains Postel-Vinay.

  信用(和债务)的概念早在信用卡发明之前就存在了。波尔泰维奈解释说:“为了赚钱,它不需要是有形的。”

  The bank-issued credit card was invented by John Biggins of the Flatbush National Bank of Brooklyn in New York in 1946. Subsequently, credit cards were promoted to travelling salesmen, for them to use while on the road, in America. In the UK, Barclays issued the UK’s first credit card on 29 June 1966.

  银行发行的信用卡是1946年由纽约布鲁克林(Brooklyn)的弗拉特布什(Flatbush)国家银行的比金斯(John Biggins)发明的。随后,在美国信用卡被推广到旅行推销员,供他们在旅途中使用。在英国,巴克莱银行(Barclays)于1966年6月29日发行了英国第一张信用卡。

  The first debit card appeared in the UK in 1987. Chip and pin was introduced in 2003, and contactless credit cards followed four years later.

  1987年,英国出现了第一张借记卡。芯片和个人识别码(PIN)技术于2003年推出,4年后非接触式信用卡也随之出现。

  In China, meanwhile, scanning QR codes with your smartphone, or generating QR codes on your smartphone to be scanned by merchants, was co-opted as a means of making payments. China’s rapid adoption of electronic payments is explained by the ubiquity of WeChat in the country, a super-app that includes e-payment/e-wallet, messaging, and social media functions; the popularity of e-commerce platforms, such as Alibaba’s Taobao platform; and the fact that China has relatively low rates of credit card usage. From around 2015, adoption of e-payments in day-to-day usage became much more prevalent.

  与此同时,在中国,用智能手机扫描二维码,或在智能手机上生成二维码供商家扫描,被当作一种支付方式。中国能迅速采用电子支付是因为:微信无处不在,这是一款超级应用,包括电子支付/电子钱包、短信和社交媒体功能;电子商务平台的普及,如阿里巴巴的淘宝平台;以及信用卡使用率相对较低的事实。从2015年开始中国普遍使用电子支付。

  Countries that have the highest rates of cashless spending include Canada, where having more than two credits cards per person is a norm. In Europe, Sweden is the most cashless society, with just 13% of Swedes reporting that they used cash for a recent purchase, according to a nationwide survey conducted last year, down from around 40% in 2010. In comparison, around 70% of Americans still use cash on a weekly basis, according to a recent Pew Research Center study.

  加拿大是无现金消费比率最高的国家,一人拥有两张以上的信用卡是普遍现象。在欧洲,瑞典是最无现金消费的社会,瑞典去年进行的一项调查显示,只有13%的瑞典人说在最近一次购物中使用了现金,低于2010年的40%左右。皮尤研究中心(Pew Research Center)最近的一项研究显示,相比之下,约70%的美国人仍然每周使用现金。

  Emelie Svensson, a Swede who works in New York City as a broadcast journalist, says the two countries are very different when it comes to the use of cash. “It’s based on tipping and a lot of stores don’t even take cards, or it’s a minimum $10 purchase,” she says, referring to her experience of living in America. “It’s getting better though, just five years ago I paid my rent in cash!”

  在纽约做广播记者的瑞典人斯文森(Emelie Svensson)说,在现金使用方面,美国和瑞典有很大的不同。她谈到自己在美国的生活经历时说:“美国是习惯于给小费的,很多商店甚至不收卡,或者至少要花10美元购买。”“不过瑞典情况也有所改变;5年前,我还用现金付了房租!”

  And although the UK might be increasing in its use of non-cash payments, it still has a long way to go. For Moa Carlsson, a 20-year-old butcher from Gothenburg, the country feels quaint in comparison to her native Sweden. “I guess it’s a bit of fun and almost strange in a way to use cash,” she says, when she visits the UK. “England feels a bit more old-fashioned in itself. I would almost feel strange not to use cash there. I feel like the pound is a big part of England, much more so than the krona for Sweden”.

  尽管英国可能会增加非现金支付的使用,但仍有很长的路要走。对于20岁来自哥德堡的卡尔森(Moa Carlsson)来说,与她的祖国瑞典相比,感觉英国很古雅。当她访问英国时,她说:“我想在使用现金的方式上有点有趣,而且有点奇怪。”“英格兰人自己感觉过时了。但如果在英国不使用现金,我倒会感到古怪了。我觉得英镑是英格兰的重要组成部分,比瑞典克朗更重要。”

  For people who live in these increasingly cashless societies, the benefits of electronic payment are obvious. “It’s very convenient. You don’t have the feeling of having £200 in your pocket or [the hassle] of having to go take out money. ‘Where is the cash machine?’ It’s there in your pocket,” says William Vanbergen, a British entrepreneur who first arrived in China in 2003, and was a late adopter of e-payments.

  对生活在无现金交易社会的人们来说,电子支付的好处显而易见。这很方便。没有口袋里有200英镑的感觉,也没有掏钱的麻烦。“提款机在哪里?它就在你的口袋里。”英国企业家范伯根(William Vanbergen)说。2003年他首次来到中国,是电子支付的后来使用者。

  Like Carlsson, he says dealing in cash feels antiquated. When Vanbergen travels to Hong Kong for work, where cash is still the more usual payment method, or back to his native England, he says it’s like going back in time.

  和卡尔森一样,范伯根说用现金交易感觉过时了。当他去香港工作时(在香港,现金仍然是常见的支付方式)或者回到他的祖国英国时,他说,感觉就像回到了过去。

    蛐蛐英语 www.qqenglish.com

But what of the supposed disadvantages? 所谓的缺点是什么?

  Does spending without using physical cash make people spend more? This is a complicated question and it involves seeing humans as fundamentally irrational creatures, in various ways. For instance, it has been shown psychologically that people feel more pain when they lose £100 than the joy they feel on gaining £100. In other words, the pain of the loss stings more, even though the two sums are exactly the same.

  使用电子货币消费是否会让人们花费更多?这是一个复杂的问题,它涉及在多方面将人类视为非理性的动物。例如,心理学上的研究表明,人们在失去100英镑时感受到的痛苦比获得100英镑时感受到的快乐要多。换句话说,损失带来的痛苦更伤人,尽管这两笔钱的数目完全相同。

  This kind of psychological insight has powered enormous change in the field of economics. Whereas before, in classical economics, academics based their theories on the assumption that people behave rationally (so that the loss and gain of an equal sum would be treated the same by an individual), this was shown to be false by psychological studies. This led to the discipline of behavioural economics and branches such as consumer psychology.

  这种心理上的洞察推动了经济学领域的巨大变革。以前,在古典经济学中,学者们的理论是基于人们行为理性的假设(这样,一个人就可以同样对待等额的损失和收益),心理学研究表明这是错误的。这就产生了行为经济学和消费心理学等分支学科。

  One of the great researchers in this relatively new discipline is Drazen Prelec. The MIT professor once conducted a study that involved a silent auction. The auction was held for students at the prestigious Sloan business school, for tickets to sold-out NBA basketball games. The researchers told half the bidders they could pay only with cash, while the other half were told they could pay only with a credit card.

  在这个相对较新的学科中,著名研究人员之一是普雷勒克(Drazen Prelec)。这位麻省理工学院的教授曾进行过一项无声拍卖的研究。这次拍卖是为著名的斯隆商学院(SloanBusinessSchool)的学生举办的,拍卖的是已经售罄的NBA篮球赛的门票。研究人员告诉一半的竞标者只能用现金支付,另一半人则被告知只能用信用卡支付。

  The results astonished the researchers. On average, it was found that the credit card buyers were bidding more than twice as much as the cash buyers. What this means, according to Prelec, is that the psychological cost of spending a dollar on a credit card is only 50 cents.

  结果让研究人员感到惊讶。平均来看,信用卡买家的出价是现金买家的两倍多。根据普雷勒克的说法,这意味着用信用卡花一美元的心理成本只有50美分。

  Spending on a credit card clearly has effects on how people spend, which numerous studies have borne out. However, it’s also been shown that credit card bills, when they arrive, cause enormous pain for the receiver. So much so, in fact, that behavioural economists believe this explains the continuing popularity of debit cards.

  信用卡消费显然会影响人们的消费方式,许多研究都证明了这一点。然而,也有研究表明,信用卡账单到达时,会给接收者带来巨大的心理痛苦。事实上,行为经济学家认为,这正是借记卡持续流行的原因。

  But what about using e-wallets? What’s important is feedback, explains Emir Efendic, a post-doctoral psychologist and behavioural economist at the University of Louvain. “With credit cards, you don’t get instant updates. But with online banks, you see the amount deducted immediately,” says Efendic. “If you lose feedback, then yes you’ll be spending more”.

  但是用电子钱包怎样?卢万大学(Louvain)的博士后心理学家和行为经济学家埃弗雷迪(Emir Efendic)解释说,重要的是反馈。“使用信用卡,不能得到即时反馈。但是有了网上银行,马上就能看到被扣除的金额,”埃芬迪奇说。“如果失去了反馈,那么是的,你会花更多的钱。”

  With credit cards, the pain of payment is delayed (until that monthly bill arrives, anyway). The great ability of credit cards, in other words, is that they wield the psychological power of separating the pleasure of buying from the pain of paying.

  使用信用卡,付款的痛苦被延迟(直到每月的账单到达)。换句话说,信用卡的强大之处在于,它具有将购物的快乐与支付的痛苦分离开来的能力。

  But with e-wallets, users can see that money is deducted immediately. Emily Belton, a British ex-pat who uses WeChat Pay in Beijing, says she likes getting a notification each time she pays with it, and her balance and payments are updated in real-time. This is instant feedback and so does not have the same effect as a credit card.

  但电子钱包,用户可以看到钱被立即扣除。在北京使用微信支付的英国侨民贝尔顿(Emily Belton)说,她喜欢每次微信支付后收到通知,余额和付款会实时显示。这是即时反馈,因此与信用卡的效果不同。

  However, Prelec has found that neural pathways light up in what he describes as a “flinch moment”, almost like brief physical pain, when we part with our money. Although there is no similar research yet on paying with e-wallets, it could be hypothesised that the flinch moment could be missing when paying with a smartphone. But this needs more research.

  然而,普雷勒克发现,当我们花钱时,神经系统中的“退缩时刻”会亮起,就像短暂的身体疼痛一样。虽然目前还没有使用电子钱包支付的类似研究,但可以假设,使用智能手机支付时可能会错过神经系统中的“退缩时刻”。但这需要更多的研究。

  This pain of parting with our money can keep us from overspending, but the negative aspect is that it can rob us some of the joy in consuming. This psychological cost, what Prelec calls a “moral tax”, can be reduced in various ways. Pricing instruments such as bundling – including “free” goods along with the purchase of a main good, can take away some of this “moral tax”. Prepayment is another method, even when there is no financial advantage. For example, people have been shown to prefer to pay in instalments for vacations (even though they’re losing some of their cash liquidity).

  这种花钱的痛苦可以防止我们过度消费,但消极的一面是,它剥夺了我们消费的快乐。这种心理成本,普雷勒克称之为“道德税”。“道德税”可以通过其它方式来降低。如捆绑销售等定价工具,包括在购买一种主要商品的同时提供“免费”商品,在一定程度上降低了“道德税”。提前还款也是一种方法,即使没有经济上的优势。例如,人们更喜欢用分期付款的方式度假(尽管他们失去了一些现金流动性)。

  And once they’re abroad they also find it easier to spend in foreign currency, treating it with much less seriousness than with the “real money” of their native country. Companies such as Club Med have latched onto this kind of psychology, where their resort guests buy plastic chips to use instead of cash.

  一旦到了国外,人们也会发现用外币消费更容易,对待外币的严肃程度远远低于用本国的“真金白银”。像地中海俱乐部(Club Med)这样的公司就抓住了这种心理,在他们那里度假的客人,是购买塑料芯片来代替现金使用。

  For me, I eventually transitioned to using e-payments in Beijing. I’ve found the cashless system quite staggering in its seamlessness, its convenience. It is like living in a world where you get all the benefits of spending, without the pain of paying.

  就我来说,最终转变为在北京使用电子支付。我发现无现金支付系统在无缝联接和便利性方面相当惊人。这就像生活在一个可以享受所有消费带来的好处,却没有付出痛苦的世界里。

  Perhaps this is better for economies, where it could be beneficial if people spend their money more freely, and many governments around the world are trying to encourage this. There is an old English saying: “Money, like manure, does no good till it is spread.” But sometimes, this kind of free spending, without any friction at all, leads to a kind of uneasiness.

  也许这对经济发展更有利,因为人们可以自由地花钱,对经济有益,世界各地很多政府都鼓励这样做。英国有句古话:“金钱如粪肥,不散则无利。”但有时,这种轻松的自由消费,会导致一种不安。

  Perhaps this is the “moral tax” Drazen Prelec refers to, which is a psychological tendency to feel opportunity costs as real pain. In other words, I might be feeling this uneasiness because I am imagining that I could be spending that money on other things instead.

  可能这就是普雷勒克提到的“道德税”,这是一种将机会成本视为真正痛苦的心理倾向。换句话说,我会感到这种不安,因为我想象我可能会把钱花在不重要的事情上。

  As more societies move from cash-based to cashless, the way we spend might change. But money will remain a governing force in the lives of humans.

  随着越来越多的社会,从以现金为基础的活动转向无现金的活动,我们的消费方式在发生改变。但金钱仍在人类生活中起主导地位。

网站部分信息来源于自互联网和网友上传,只为方便大家查询浏览,请自行核对信息的真实情况,本站将不承担任何责任!

您可以还会对下面的文章感兴趣:

  • 36小时环游新加坡
  • 中国颁布新规,限制未成年人玩游戏
  • 辞掉工作、花了57天,他们找回了走失的狗
  • 改善健康也许很简单:每天少吃300卡
  • 从《老友记》到《早间新闻》,詹妮弗·安妮斯顿的新旅程
  • 最新评论

    留言与评论(共有 条评论)
       
    验证码: