Consumer Payment Card News

Uncarded Americans

All of the elements of a “cash-less society” are in place except for people. At least 50 million adults in the USA do not possess a credit card and nearly 10 million U.S. households do not have a bank account. A new study says this will create huge demand for prepaid debit cards in the near term. The research projects that the number of prepaid debit cards issued annually will surge from 6.2 million in 2002, to almost 40 million in 2007. The PELORUS Group report entitled “Stored Value: 21st Century Currency” also found that among people in the U.S. with credit cards, more than 40% own a credit card that is within 5% of its credit limit. The research firm says this forces some cardholders to use their credit cards like debit cards as they must pay down the balance to make additional purchases. PELORUS concludes that the major areas of potential growth include prepaid debit cards for retail, payroll and insurance claims applications.

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