The Automated Clearing House (ACH) Network is a payment processing network that speeds up the process of taking payments for micro-business owners, customers and financial bodies. And the rapid shift to faster payment avenues by new-age merchants and customers has earned it more popularity. According to new data, the ACH Network processed an entire 21.5 billion transactions worth over in 2017 — an upturn of 5.7 and 6.9 percent, in that order, over 2016.
Since its launch, the ACH network has maintained a “forward ever, backward never” trend. For three years in a row, the payment network has been recording remarkable increases of more than 1 billion in the number of new transactions. But last year’s performance still stands out as the highest growth rate for the network as of 2008.
According to Jane Larimer, COO of the National Automated Clearing House Association (NACHA), 2017 marked another momentous achievement in the development of the ACH Network as transaction volumes were extraordinarily high and Same-Day ACH was fully operational.
The Chief Operating Officer said that the persistent growth of ACH comes as no shock as the Network keeps evolving to cover more needs of merchants, financial bodies, and consumers. Adapting to changing needs of these 3 parties has ensured the Network stays relevant and helpful to all its users.
Last year, the network supported around nine billion ACH credit payments worth $30 trillion, and over 12 billion in debit transactions which valued at more than $16 trillion. That boosted the ACH network’s transactions worth to more than twice the GDP of the US, with volumes 66 times larger than the number of US citizens.
Furthermore, the network recorded an uptick in all forms of transactions in 2017. The performances were as follows:
• Business-to-business transactions went up 5.6 percent (3.3 billion transactions);
• Payroll & Consumer direct deposit transactions rose 5.8 percent (6.5 billion transactions);
• Internet transactions went up13.1 percent (5.2 billion transactions);
• Person-to-person transactions rose 23.3 percent (97 million);
• Same day ACH transactions improved by 478 percent (75 million).
NACHA also surveyed the different financial organizations that process ACH transactions but are not part of the network— often referred to as known “on-us” ACH transactions. And the reports revealed a total of 4.2 billion “on-us” transactions were processed in 2017, which is a 5.3 percent rise from 2016.
Having held the fort for buyers, businesses, and financial groups this year too, hopefully, the ACH Network will see even better results for 2018. The needs for all the parties it supports keeps changing, but NACHA works tirelessly to rise above these challenges. Just last month, NACHA publicized plans to roll out a new initiative to streamline the processing of B2B ACH payments. This is a Request for Payment platform that uses the ISO 20022 messaging standard security levels to enable eInvoicing and taking of ACH payments consistent to that bill.
Author Bio: As the FAM account executive, Michael Hollis has funded millions by using ACH loan solutions. His experience and extensive knowledge of the industry has made him finance expert at First American Merchant.