B2B Payments

NACHA’s Gov Relations Highlights Electronic Payments and ACH Network Priorities

The Electronic Payments Association brought its Government Relations Advisory Group (GRAG) together for a two-days of meetings with Capitol Hill and financial industry leaders. Members of GRAG, include leaders from large and small financial institutions and Regional Payments Associations across the country, will meet with Congressional representatives and staff to continue education on electronic payments and the NACHA Operating Rules, and discuss ACH Network priorities.

Originally created in the early 1970s to support the U.S. Air Force with paying its personnel across the country, the ACH Network has grown, evolved and adapted, and today processes nearly 22 billion transactions annually, totaling almost $39 trillion. Now the majority of Federal payments and collections are made via ACH, with more than 98 percent of Social Security beneficiaries receiving payments electronically.

In 2013, the volume of B2B ACH transactions increased 6.7 percent over 2012. Specifically, CTX volume grew 10.6 percent and CCD volume grew 6.6 percent. Addenda records associated with these payments grew as well, increasing almost 10 percent across both transaction categories.

Some of the growth can be accredited to the healthcare payments via ACH rule, which started in September 2013. This complements and supports the healthcare electronic funds transfer (EFT) and electronic remittance advice (ERA) standards designated by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), and the healthcare operating rules for EFT and ERA. The rule identifies healthcare EFTs (payments from health plans to healthcare providers) processed through the ACH Network, supporting needs of both the financial services and the healthcare industries. In the last quarter of 2013, there were 20.5 million healthcare EFTs totaling $99.2 billion.

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Banks, corporates and even regulators now recognize the imperative to modernize — not just digitize —the infrastructures and workflows that move money and data between businesses domestically and cross-border.

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