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MONEY AND THE PAYMENTS SYSTEM
MONEY SUPPLY MEASURES back
The money supply, as measured and published by the Reserve Bank, refers to the amount of cash held by the public plus deposits with specified financial institutions. The measures range from the narrowest category, money base, through to the widest category, broad money, with other measures in between. The measures mainly used are as follows:
Money base - comprises holdings of notes and coin by the private sector, deposits of banks with the Reserve Bank, and other Reserve Bank liabilities to the private sector.
M3 - is defined as currency plus bank deposits of the private non-bank sector.
Broad money - is defined as M3 plus borrowings from the private sector by non-bank financial intermediaries (including cash management trusts) less their holdings of currency and bank deposits.
The money supply under each of these measures at 30 June for the last three years is shown in table 26.35.
Following recommendations by the Financial System Inquiry, the Payments System Board was established within the Reserve Bank in July 1998. The Payments System Board has responsibility for determining the Reserve Bank’s payments system policy, under the powers set out under the Payment Systems (Regulation) Act 1998 (Cwlth) and the Payment Systems and Netting Act 1998 (Cwlth). The Reserve Bank also has responsibility for oversight of the stability of clearing and settlement facilities under the Corporations Act 2001 (Cwlth).
The payments system in Australia has changed significantly in recent years. In part, this has been a response to technological change and consumer behaviour. On average, there are at least 13 million non-cash payments made in Australia each day, the overwhelming majority of which are electronic payments.
Cheques account for 11% of the number of non-cash payments, 52% are debit and credit card payments, with the remaining 37% made up by direct debits and credits.
Table 26.36 shows the number of points of access to the payments system. Branches are access points staffed by employees of financial institutions. Agencies are staffed by other than employees of financial institutions such as postmasters or storekeepers, and exclude school agencies and giroPost agencies. giroPost provides a limited range of services at Australia Post offices on behalf of participating financial institutions. Electronic points of access include ATM and electronic funds transfer at point of sale (EFTPOS) terminals.