Fed Survey Notes Continued Growth in Noncash Payments

Noncash payments in the U.S. continued to see strong growth in the period between 2016 and 2017, according to an annual supplement to the Federal Reserve’s triennial payments study released today. The Fed noted that growth in noncash payments was higher during this period than in previous years.

Card payments — including credit cards, non-prepaid debit cards and prepaid debit cards — rose 10.1 percent by number and 8.4 percent by value, the study showed. Prepaid and non-prepaid debit cards in particular surged; by number of transactions, prepaid debit cards grew 10.5 percent, while non-prepaid debit cards grew 10.4 percent. Credit card payments grew at 9.4 percent.

Remote payments increased by 22.8 percent, compared to in-person payments, which increased just 7.2 percent. Additionally, the value of purchase made in-person with a chip-authenticated card exceeded the value of those made with non-chip cards for the first time.

The study also continued to note a decline in check payments, which decreased in number by 4.8 percent between 2016 and 2017. Meanwhile, ACH payments continued to increase, growing by 5.7 percent by number and 6.9 percent by value during that period.