Fed Revision Reveals Declining Check Use in US

Check volumes in the US may have peaked, according to revised Federal Reserve figures. The Federal Reserve System has revised the Retail Payments System Research it initially released in November 2001, lowering its estimate of the number and value of checks written in 2000. This suggests check use may have peaked in the mid-1990s. Due to additional analysis of the original payments system research, the Fed has lowered its estimate to 42.5 billion checks valued at $39.3 trillion, down from the previous estimates of 49.6 billion checks valued at $47.7 trillion. ‘The Federal Reserve’s update states for the first time that check use is actually declining. The new, lower figure and the declining trend are big aftershocks to the change in thinking about check use that has occurred since the initial release of the Fed’s research,’ said Michael Herd, spokesman for NACHA – The Electronic Payments Association.


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