Federal Reserve study showcases growth of noncash payments
December 20, 2013

It's official - the importance of credit card processing technology for U.S. businesses is here to stay for the foreseeable future. According to a new study released by the U.S. Federal Reserve that examined noncash payment trends among consumers in 2013, electronic transactions now make up two-thirds of all noncash purchases.

The "2013 Federal Reserve Payments Study" is the latest installment of an ongoing triennial series that began in 2001. Consumer behaviors, as well as the U.S. economy itself, have changed significantly since that time. In fact, the use of credit cards experienced a minor decline between 2006 and 2009, the researchers found. However, the number of noncash transactions has charted steady growth in the last three years, with a largely positive outlook for the future as well.

"Trends in noncash payments are influenced by many factors, including technological and financial innovations, changes in consumer and business financial behavior, the business cycle, the composition of economic activity, regulatory developments, and population growth," the report stated.

These changes are especially visible in recent consumer behavior trends. An article from the online publication Bank Innovation reported that the vast majority of Americans carry multiple credit card as opposed to just one. Specifically, there are roughly 5 cards per capita in the U.S.

Small and medium-sized businesses can prepare for long-term growth by investing in integrated payment systems that store financial data and eliminate the need for many time-consuming back office duties. Not only do shoppers pay with credit and debit cards more than ever before, but they are also using them through multiple channels. An interface that easily gathers financial information from different sources can lead to substantial payoffs.

Nexus: G-WEBCD1