Financial inclusion and literacy
About the initiative
According to data from the World Bank, only 55% of the population in Latin America has access to a bank account. As leaders in the fintech sector in the region, through Mercado Pago we have committed to promoting financial inclusion in all the countries where we operate, in order to help reduce this gap. This means creating the conditions to empower as many people as possible, encouraging them to take control of their financial lives.
Although the expansion of digital wallets is driving inclusion, there are still many education challenges ahead. We know that there is no true inclusion without education, not only because it facilitates the actual use of financial products, but also because it empowers individuals to make informed decisions about their own finances or businesses and, and more broadly, to exercise their rights and responsibilities as citizens.
How we do it
Technology for inclusion
One of the premises of our business model is to use technology to overcome the barriers that hinder financial inclusion of either entrepreneurs or consumers in the countries where we operate. Based on the principle that digital transformation involves simplification, we have developed financial products and payment solutions for people who do not have a bank account because they do not meet the traditional banking system’s requirements.
We have been doing this through Mercado Pago, which offers digital accounts and payment methods that make it easier to access basic financial transactions, as well as investment and credit solutions. This allows more people and businesses to manage their finances and operate in the formal economy, making them more resilient to the ups and downs of the economy and improving their quality of life.
In 2022, we began offering the possibility of buying and selling cryptocurrencies in Mexico and later in Brazil, as well as adding life and personal accident insurance to our value proposition in Argentina and Brazil. With this offering, we aim to provide coverage to people who until now didn't have access to these products. We also include immediate-use services such as telemedicine and medication refunds, with benefits from the first minute of use.
Mercado Crédito is a line of credit offered by our fintech Mercado Pago, developed especially to simplify access and eliminate bureaucracy for those who want to pay in installments for purchases and services or apply for a personal loan. These are easy-to-access and secure loans, with tech solutions and credit scoring systems based on artificial intelligence.
With easy-to-use tools and access at their fingertips, many of our new users find themselves with the opportunity to make financial progress for the first time and realize they need to learn more about money management. This expectation of having a more organized and secure financial life was captured by the survey "The Impact of Fintech on Financial Education" conducted by Mercado Pago in partnership with Trendsity, which surveyed 4,250 people, including vendors and consumers, aged 16 to 65 in Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Colombia, and Mexico.
Of those surveyed, 77% felt they needed more financial education. Among digital wallet users, 60% said they wanted to learn more about saving and investing. The results confirmed that once included, these people want to learn how to make the most of the tools they have acquired.
In Brazil, Argentina and Mexico we have websites with special content for our users, especially entrepreneurs, providing information and training on sales and financial education. In 2022, we strengthened our efforts with the launch of two Mercado Pago financial education initiatives on a regional scale: one aimed at female entrepreneurs and another for basic financial education for young people.
Check out our financial education initiatives
Financial education initiatives for women microentrepreneurs in 6 Latin American countries. Developed by Mercado Pago in partnership with the organizations Pro Mujer (Hispanic America) and Aliança Empreendedora (Brazil), the program aims to equip women with the leadership and management skills necessary to manage their finances and sales.
Personal Finances for Young People
In collaboration with Junior Achievement, the initiative provides basic financial education to young students from public schools in the region. The program focuses on basic planning concepts and provides financial tools to manage personal finances.
Talk about the future
The financial education collective Nofront has created a free online course to address doubts of those who want to start an entrepreneurial activity. The course, designed by Gabriela Chaves, an economist and founder of the financial empowerment collective, covers topics such as distance and in-person sales and delivery.
Quality financial access
Jointly with Nubank, Google, and other innovative businesses in Brazil, we established Zetta, an association focused on discussing the digitalization of the economy, and promoting the digital and financial inclusion of thousands of Brazilians who do not have access to traditional financial institutions.
Over 250% average growth of Mercado Pago accounts in the last two years
3 out of 4 people
3 out of 4 people make at least three transactions in their digital accounts per quarter
x7 average credit growth per user after the pandemic
70% say they use less money and their financial circumstances have improved
45% had access to a card or credit offer for the first time
Only 34% say they could count on savings of two minimum monthly salaries for an emergency, which indicates that we reach people in a vulnerable financial situation
We are in the top 10 e-commerce platforms with the best digital accessibility in Brazil (Yaman study)
There's a lot more