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Federal Reserve announces seventh triennial study to examine U.S. payments usage

Beginning this month, financial institutions and payments organizations will receive invitations to participate in the seventh triennial Federal Reserve Payments Study, the Federal Reserve announced today. Based on survey data provided by participants, past reports from the studies have documented substantial change in the aggregate volume and composition of noncash payments in the United States since 2000. Recent reports have also revealed dynamic changes in aggregate payments fraud, automated teller machine withdrawals, and payment authentication methods, among other topics.

“The U.S. payments system has changed dramatically since 2000, and the Federal Reserve Payments Study has served as an aggregate benchmark for the payments industry, policymakers, and the public,” said Mary Kepler, senior vice president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta and the study’s executive sponsor. “Robust industry support and respondents’ willingness to participate is paramount to our ability to publish timely, accurate, and high quality results.”


The 2019 Federal Reserve Payments Study will administer two surveys, each contributing valuable information required to obtain robust estimates of totals and developing trends in the number and value of payments made with checks, cards, electronic transfers, and various alternative payment initiation methods and systems for calendar year 2018:

  • A survey of the commercial banks, savings institutions, and credit unions that process the majority of payments in this country.
  • A survey of payment card networks, third-party payment processors, issuers of private-label cards, and providers of various alternative payment initiation methods and systems.

The Federal Reserve will work with McKinsey & Company and Blueflame Consulting, LLC to conduct this research study. Only aggregate estimates are reported, and all survey data reported by participants remains strictly confidential.

Data from previous implementations of the Federal Reserve Payments Study are available at