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Marqeta and Rain Team to Offer Earned Wage Access Debit Cards

Marqeta is expanding its earned wage access program with assistance from financial wellness provider Rain.

The card-issuing platform announced its collaboration with Rain Thursday (April 18), with Marqeta powering the Rain Card, a branded debit card that lets employers easily disburse earned wagers onto the cards.

“Over 60% of Americans are living paycheck-to-paycheck and seeking ways to take control of their finances,” the companies said in a news release.

“Offering employees quicker access to their hard-earned wages enables employees to reduce their reliance on credit, pay their bills on time, and better manage their finances, helping to foster a more engaged and dedicated workforce.”

Marqeta said it has seen substantial growth in its early wage access offerings, now accounting for 3% of its total processing volume as of the fourth quarter of 2023.

According to the release, Marqeta’s platform and embedded finance capabilities let Rain integrate the Rain Card into its customer experience, allowing employers to offer Marqeta-powered debit cards that give workers early access to their wages.

“As paycheck flexibility becomes an increasingly popular expectation from employees, companies that are more turnover prone will benefit from solutions that expedite employee payments,” the release said.

“Faster wage solutions provide the flexibility workers crave, leading to a more engaged and loyal workforce and helping to reduce overhead recruitment and training costs for businesses.”

PYMNTS Intelligence research, in collaboration with Ingo Payments, detailed in a report titled “The Rise of Instant Payroll and Early-Access Compensation” that most American workers want their employers to give them access to wages each day.

The research found that nearly all — 96% to be exact — of corporations that offer earned wage access say the product helps entice new talent, while three-quarters of millennials said it would influence whether they accepted a job offer.

PYMNTS Intelligence has found that earned wage access (EWA) can make a big difference to consumers who live paycheck to paycheck.

EWA provides these consumers with an alternative to taking on more debt, Rob Nardelli, director of commercial banking and business development at on-demand pay provider DailyPay, said in an interview with PYMNTS last spring.

“They’ve earned the hours and wages. EWA just gives them access,” Nardelli said.

But as covered here last month, the concept of EWA has been the subject of some debate, with some states adopting legislation to establish financial services oversight for earned wage access companies.

These bills, supported by industry players like Daily Pay, have drawn criticism from advocacy groups who worry the regulations don’t do enough to keep consumers from being exploited.