2022

Payment Card Adoption and Payment Choice
Claire Greene and Oz Shy
Policy Hub 2022-11
July 2022
How do consumers without credit or debit cards make payments, and do consumers without these payment cards differ from other consumers? This Policy Hub article explores some questions surrounding inclusion in the payment system.
Abstract | Full text Adobe PDF file format

Has COVID Changed Consumer Payment Behavior?
Claire Greene, Ellen Merry, Joanna Stavins
Research Data Report 22-1
January 2022
By fall 2020, compared with their behavior in 2019, consumers had shifted some of their purchases from in person to online. Read the latest Research Data Report that uses data from the Survey of Consumer Payment Choice to look at how the COVID-19 pandemic affected how people spend their money.
Abstract | Full text Adobe PDF file format

2021

2020 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice
Claire Greene and Joanna Stavins
Research Data Report 21-2
May 2021
U.S. consumers made more than half of their payments in 2019 with debit, credit, and prepaid cards. For more details, read the Atlanta Fed's 2020 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice.
Abstract | Full text Adobe PDF file format

2020 Survey of Consumer Payment Choice
Kevin Foster, Claire Greene, and Joanna Stavins
Research Data Report 21-1
May 2021
The 2020 Survey of Consumer Payment Choice (SCPC) is the 13th in a series of annual studies that aim to gain a comprehensive understanding of the payment behavior of U.S. consumers. The SCPC data complement data from the Diary of Consumer Payment Choice (DCPC), for which consumers record details of specific transactions (including dollar values) and their payment choices. Respondents participate in these two surveys in September (SCPC) and October (DCPC).
Abstract | Full text Adobe PDF file format

Income and banking access in the USA: The effect on bill payment choiceOff-site link
Claire Greene and Joanna Stavins
Journal of Payments Strategy & Systems 15 no. 3
2021
Consumer payment methods are determined by a number of factors, including the type of bill, the value of the bill, whether the bill is to be paid online or automatically, and—by no means least of all—the demographic and income profile of the individual making the payment. As this paper argues, the convenience and speed provided by automatic and online payments do not benefit all US consumers equally. Unbanked consumers lack access to most payment methods and hence use cash or prepaid cards to pay their bills. Low-income consumers are more likely to pay in person, use significantly more cash, and are less likely to set up automated or online bill payments, regardless of whether they have a bank account.

Consumer Behavior in a Health Crisis: What Happened with Cash?
Kevin Foster and Claire Greene
Policy Hub 2021-1
January 2021
In the United States, COVID-19 cases and currency in circulation both surged in March 2020. Did consumer choice play a role in the increase in currency in circulation? With fewer opportunities to shop and pay in person, why would consumers hold more cash? Data from the fall 2019 Survey and Diary of Consumer Payment Choice and interim rapid-response surveys in spring and late summer 2020 give some insights into consumer cash holdings and payments behavior.
Abstract | Full text Adobe PDF file format

2020

Consumer Payment Choice for Bill Payments
Claire Greene and Joanna Stavins
Research Data Report 20-5
October 2020
How do U.S. consumers pay their bills? That depends on several factors, including what type of bill it is. Read the latest Research Data Report that uses data from the Diary of Consumer Payment Choice to determine why consumers pay their bills the way they do.
Abstract | Full text Adobe PDF file format

Digital Payments and the Path to Financial Inclusion
Raphael Bostic, Shari Bower, Oz Shy, Larry Wall, and Jessica Washington
September 2020
Payments innovations offer convenience, but they can also exclude some people from our financial system. A new paper from the Atlanta Fed suggests that, to increase financial inclusion, a more effective approach than focusing on helping the underbanked become banked could be giving cash users access to digital payment vehicles that don't depend on traditional bank accounts.

Delivering Benefits of Faster Payments to the UnderservedOff-site link
Claire Greene, Fumiko Hayashi, and Joanna Stavins
Consumer & Community Context
August 2020
Faster payments may assist cash-strapped consumers with several factors influencing how broadly the benefits are shared.

Fed Releases 2018 Check Sample Survey Retail Payments Risk Forum
July 2020
Checks written by businesses made up 75 percent of the total value of checks in 2018, while by total number, consumers wrote slightly more than half of all checks. Read the just-published report from the Atlanta Fed on the 2018 Check Sample Survey, which examined check use by businesses and consumers.
Contact Nancy Donahue for inquiries.
Full text pdf || Appendices pdf: A: Data Tables | B: Technical Appendix | C: Remotely Created Checks | D: Check Interrogation Forms

The Cash SocietyOff-site link
Claire Greene
Journal of Payments Strategy & Systems 14 no. 2
June 2020
This paper discusses the use of cash by US consumers. Using data about how consumers get, hold, and use cash, it finds that reports of the demise of cash are, indeed, premature.

2019 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice
Claire Greene and Joanna Stavins
Research Data Report 20-4
June 2020
U.S. consumers made more than half of their payments in 2019 with debit, credit, and prepaid cards. For more details, read the Atlanta Fed's 2019 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice.
Abstract | Full text Adobe PDF file format

2019 Survey of Consumer Payment Choice
Kevin Foster, Claire Greene, and Joanna Stavins
Research Data Report 20-3
June 2020
In 2019, consumers on average made 30 percent of in-person retail payments in cash in a typical month. Read more results of the Atlanta Fed's 2019 Survey of Consumer Payment Choice in this Research Data Report.
Abstract | Full text Adobe PDF file format

Research on Paying with Cash and Checks
Claire Greene and Oz Shy
Notes from the Vault
March 2020
Who uses checks? Who uses cash? Notes from the Vault reports on survey findings investigating the resilience of paper payment instruments.

U.S. Consumers' Use of Personal Checks: Evidence from a Diary Survey
Claire Greene, Marcin Hitczenko, Brian Prescott, and Oz Shy
Research Data Report 20-1
February 2020
People are writing fewer checks every year, but they're still writing them. Who writes them? Who receives them? Is dollar amount a factor? Read this report based on data from the Diary of Consumer Payment Choice to learn about the characteristics of check writing.
Abstract | Full text Adobe PDF file format

2019

2018 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice
Claire Greene and Joanna Stavins
Research Data Report 19-3
December 2019
This paper describes key results from the 2018 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice, the fifth in a series of diary surveys that measure payment behavior through the daily recording of the spending of U.S. consumers.
Abstract | Full text Adobe PDF file format

2018 Survey of Consumer Payment Choice
Kevin Foster, Claire Greene, and Joanna Stavins
Research Data Report 19-2
August 2019
The 2018 Survey of Consumer Payment Choice (SCPC) is the 11th in a series of annual studies that aim to gain a comprehensive understanding of the payment behavior of U.S. consumers.
Abstract | Full text Adobe PDF file format

How Consumers Get Cash: Evidence from a Diary Survey
Claire Greene and Oz Shy
Research Data Report 19-01
August 2019
Friday is the most popular day for getting cash. Learn about this and other key findings from the 2017 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice in a new Atlanta Fed Research Data Report.
Abstract | Full text Adobe PDF file format

The Future of U.S. Fraud in a Post-EMV Environment pdf
Doug King, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, Retail Payments Risk Forum
June 2019
This paper explores fraud data from three countries that adopted EMV chip cards well before the United States did to see what fraud trends might develop as the United States approaches full EMV adoption.

2018

The 2017 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice
Claire Greene and Joanna Stavins
Research Data Report 18-05
2018
This paper describes key results from the 2017 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice.
Abstract | Full text Adobe PDF file format

The 2016 and 2017 Surveys of Consumer Payment Choice: Summary Results
Claire Greene and Joanna Stavins
Research Data Report 18-3
2018
This paper describes the results, content, and methodology of the 2016 and 2017 Surveys of Consumer Payment Choice.
Abstract | Full text Adobe PDF file format

The 2012 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice
Claire Greene, Scott Schuh, and Joanna Stavins
Research Data Report 18-1
2018
This paper describes the results, content, and methodology of the 2012 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice (DCPC), the first edition of a survey that measures payment behavior through the daily recording of U.S. consumers' spending by type of payment instrument.
Abstract | Full text Adobe PDF file format

2017

The Cost and Accessibility of Remittances Originating from the United States with a Focus on the Mexico Corridor pdf
Doug King, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, Retail Payments Risk Forum
August 2017
This paper examines whether section 1073 of the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act changed the environment for low-value remittance transfers in the United States.

2016 Mobile Banking and Payments Survey of Financial Institutions in the Sixth District pdf
David Lott, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, Retail Payments Risk Forum
March 2017
The charts and tables in this report reflect data the Atlanta Fed received from financial institutions responding to the 2016 Mobile Banking and Payments Survey.

Faster Payments Implementations in the United Kingdom and the United States pdf
Jessica J. Washington, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, Retail Payments Risk Forum
Chonchol D. Gupta, Department of International Trade, United Kingdom
February 2017
Background paper for the Lessons and Implications of Increasing Payments Speed Summit

2016 Mobile Banking and Payments Survey of Financial Institutions in the Sixth District pdf
David Lott, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, Retail Payments Risk Forum
January 2017
Many financial institutions cite biometric methodologies as the security tool they would most likely use in their mobile banking and payments program. Read the rest of the survey findings in the 2016 Mobile Banking and Payments Survey of Financial Institutions in the Sixth District.

2016

Getting Ahead of the Curve: Assessing Card-Not-Present Fraud in the Mobile Payments Environment pdf
Marianne Crowe and Susan Pandy, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, Payment Strategies Group
David Lott, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, Retail Payments Risk Forum
November 2016
This white paper describes the framework used to analyze four mobile card-not-present (CNP) use cases and a subsequent comparative analysis across functions and risk factors. Authored in conjunction with the Boston and Atlanta Fed's support of the Mobile Payments Industry Workgroup to identify and analyze potential risk areas where mobile commerce is vulnerable to fraud and other threats.

Risks in Faster Payments
Julius Weyman, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta
Retail Payments Risk Forum
May 2016
As the faster payments movement in the United States gains steam, a new working paper from the Retail Payments Risk Forum discusses some of the risks to faster payments.

Banking Bitcoin-Related Businesses: A Primer for Managing BSA/AML Risks pdf
Douglas King, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta
Retail Payments Risk Forum
October 2015 | Revised February 2016
Speed and low cost can make Bitcoin an attractive payment solution, but it carries some risk. What can the businesses that are emerging to support Bitcoin do to ensure that they can establish banking relationships? This working paper offers some analysis.

2015

Is Payment Tokenization Ready for Primetime?Off-site link
Marianne Crowe and Susan Pandy, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston; David Lott, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta; Steve Mott, BetterBuyDesign
June 2015
Since 2010, the mobile payments environment has changed rapidly, adding new technology platforms, solutions, and participants to compete for consumer spend. Yet one long-standing barrier to achieving success has been the lack of a framework to secure the payment credentials and associated end-to-end mobile payment transactions. Tokenization is one way the industry is embracing this security gap.
Abstract | Full text Adobe PDF file format

Improving Customer Authentication pdf
David Lott, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta
Retail Payments Risk Forum
April 2015
As technology and criminals get smarter, the pressure increases to improve customer authentication in the payments arena. A working paper from the Atlanta Fed's Retail Payments Risk Forum discusses authentication methods from way back in history all the way to the present.

2014 Mobile Banking and Payments Survey of Financial Institutions in the Sixth District pdf
David W. Lott, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta
Retail Payments Risk Forum
March 2015
Only six of the 189 financial institutions the Atlanta Fed recently surveyed do not offer or plan to offer mobile banking services, citing security reasons. Read the rest of the survey findings in the recently released 2014 Mobile Banking and Payment Survey of Financial Institutions in the Sixth District.

2013

A Summary of the Electronic Payment Order Forum pdf
Mary Kepler, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta
Retail Payments Risk Forum
May 2013
The electronic payment order (EPO) does not fit neatly into the current legal or regulatory payments infrastructure. To begin the process of defining EPOs and moving toward a clear legal outcome, the Atlanta Fed recently hosted the EPO Forum with payments industry participants.

U.S. Mobile Payments Landscape—Two Years Later Off-site link
Marianne Crowe, Susan Pandy, and Elisa Tavilla, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston; Cynthia Jenkins, NACHA
May 2013
The Federal Reserve Banks of Boston and Atlanta have rereleased a paper based on several meetings of the Mobile Payments Industry Workgroup. This paper, which updates the original version issued in 2011, reflects the evolution of the mobile retail payments industry over the last two years.
Abstract | Full text Adobe PDF file format

A Summary of the Final Remittance Transfer Rule (Section 1073) pdf
Azba Habib, Associate Counsel
Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta
Legal Summary
May 2013
Section 1073 of the Dodd-Frank Act creates new protections for U.S consumers sending money abroad. This article describes the background for the rule, explains what the rule covers, and clarifies exceptions to the rule.

Mitigating Online Account Takeovers: The Case for Education pdf
Michelle Castell, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta
Retail Payments Risk Forum Survey Paper
April 2013
As the world becomes more tech-reliant, consumers and businesses are also more at risk for account takeover fraud—to the tune of $4.9 billion lost in 2012. Why is this happening? How can we protect ourselves? Read highlights of recent studies and get tips.