Pin-Based Purchases Grow, but EFT Networks Lower POS Volumes

Thursday 16 September 2004 21:11 CET | News

PIN-based purchases grew again in 2004, with the 12 Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) networks that support point-of-sale debit programs switching 522.8 million purchases in March, 25.3% more than in March 2003, according to the 2005 edition of the ATM&Debit News EFT Data Book.

However, the number of debit card purchases was smaller than anticipated, as some of the largest EFT networks restated their March 2003 volumes. In addition, ATM transaction growth was weak in March. The restatements, which lowered March 2003 figures by approximately 78 million purchases, were brought about primarily by a change in the Star networks data reporting. Prior to First Data Corp.s acquisition of Star, the nations largest EFT network, Star reported both the preauthorization and the final purchase as two transactions. In fact, out of the top four networks, Star, Interlink, Pulse and NYCE, which together switch nearly 90% of all PIN-based purchases, only NYCE counted a preauthorization and the final settlement as a single transaction. As a result of the restatements, Stars March 2003 volume dropped by 67.4 million purchases, to 210.5 million. Interlinks March 2003 total fell by 7.02 million transactions, to 69.6 million. Pulses total dropped by 3.3 million, to 44.2 million purchases. According to the 2005 EFT Data Book: * The number of ATMs deployed in the U.S. jumped 3.2% to 383,000 in 2004 from 371,000 in 2003. * The overall ATM volume grew by 1.9% in 2004, slightly less than in 2003. * The number of monthly transactions per ATM held steady, ebbing minimally from 2,432 in March 2003 to 2,400 in March 2004. * Leading U.S. ATM owners include Bank of America, Cardtronics and U.S. Bancorp. * Among the companies that experienced the largest growth in ATM volumes are KeyBank, Washington Mutual, SunTrust and Fleet Boston.

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Categories: Payments & Commerce | Payments General
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