Reed Luhtanen, Executive Director, FPC
This year – 2023 – marks the five-year anniversary of the Faster Payments Council. It’s truly remarkable to think about how much we’ve been able to accomplish in such a short time. From foundational initiatives such as establishing our Board and Board Advisory Group, to staple elements such as Member Meetings to facilitate dialogue, solutions and progress, to the collaborative pieces stemming from our Work Groups, the FPC is delivering the tools and resources to advance the industry.
And as an industry, we have come so far. Take RTP® for instance. This time five years ago, the network processed roughly 1,000 transactions. Last quarter, it recorded over 50 million real-time payments. Or consider Zelle. It launched a little more than five years ago with just seven founding banks. As of last quarter, more than 1,800 banks were on board, covering about 80 percent of all U.S. bank accounts. And, later this year, we’ll witness the launch of FedNow℠, an instant payments network that was just a concept five years ago.
While there is much to be celebrated, there is still much more for us to do, and the FPC will be ramping up efforts to advance faster payments progress. From an industry perspective, we will further FPC messaging and initiatives by increasing our presence at industry events. FPC staff plan on participating in traditional and new events this year, including MAG’s Mid-Year Conference & Tech Forum; Nacha’s Smarter, Faster Payments; a number of Regional Payment Association events; and more.
From an educational perspective, we’ll continue to further existing initiatives. For instance, we just published a new Service Provider Catalogue to include offerings from faster payments service providers. This resource was developed to complement the Solution Provider Catalogue that includes faster payments end-to-end solutions. We’ll also be enhancing the Faster Payments Use Case Repository to encourage and support use of faster payments. And later this year, we’ll issue the fourth installment of the Faster Payments Barometer. The FPC’s Barometer serves as the industry’s gauge on progress and perceptions around faster payments, trends, use cases, and challenges in the United States. Given the progress the industry has made, new innovations that are on the horizon, and the opportunities that will become available as a result, the findings of the upcoming edition of the Barometer will not only be revealing, but informative and extremely important as we prepare for the next phase of the faster payments journey.
And from a Member perspective, we’ll continue to provide the forums for Members to engage, learn, and collaborate. First and foremost, we’ll support existing Work Groups and their efforts to bring forth ideas and solutions to solve for faster payments challenges. We’ll also explore opportunities to create new Work Groups that can respond to evolving industry needs. Just last month, we launched our two newest Work Groups: Digital Assets in the Financial Industry in response to the momentum around CBDCs and other digital currencies, and the Operational Considerations for Instant & Immediate Payments, which given the near universal and growing use of faster payments is critical to ensure financial institutions understand and can manage changing operational processes to support faster payments now and into the future. We’re also invested in updating and enhancing the FPC Community, a Members-only engagement and collaboration tool. Early next month, we’ll be adding new educational content to support Members’ faster payments understanding, and will continue to add content throughout the year. And, of course, we’ll soon be holding our Spring Member Meeting. Taking place in Kansas City, March 20-21, the event will serve as an opportunity to connect, explore and gain an understanding of what’s new, and continue to chart the path for the year ahead.
It is truly a momentous year for the FPC, and for faster payments. As we celebrate five years of the FPC and faster payments progress in 2023, we revel in all we’ve accomplished, but recognize there’s more to do. So, here’s to the work, progress and success ahead.
If you’re not an FPC Member, consider making this year your year to become part of the Faster Payments Council. With so much momentum around faster payments, there’s no better time to join in and help us shape the path ahead. Learn more at https://fasterpaymentscouncil.org/Why-Join-the-FPC or reach out to FPC Member Services.