US financial institutions originated more than 2 billion automated clearing house (ACH) payments in the third quarter of 2004, the first time that milestone has been achieved, according to statistics from NACHA – The Electronic Payments Association. Financial institutions’ ACH volume for the quarter was 2.086 billion, up 24.6 per cent over a year ago. Including Federal government payments, ACH volume was over 2.3 billion for the third quarter. Leading the way is ARC – Accounts Receivable check conversion. In the third quarter there were more than 266 million ARC payments, an increase of over 500 per cent over a year ago. ARC accounted for 54 per cent of the growth in financial institutions’ ACH payments. The five ACH e-check applications combined for 537.3 million payments in the 3rd quarter, more than double the number over a year ago. The figures cited do not include estimates of on-us ACH payments, in which the originating and receiving financial institutions are the same institution. NACHA estimates that, including an allowance for on-us payments, ARC is on track to reach 1.25 billion transactions in 2004.
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