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Same Day ACH launched in 2016 with a goal of moving the ACH Network from next-day settlement to multiple same-day settlement options for virtually any ACH Network transaction. At the 5-year mark of this highly successful payments innovation, the Center for PaymentsTM and Nacha collaborated to conduct a market intelligence study of financial institutions to better understand the current and potential usage and strategies for Same Day ACH.  Topics examined included: use of Same Day ACH by banks and credit unions and potential barriers to adoption; operational and risk mitigation practices regarding and leveraging Same Day ACH; and opportunities to enhance Same Day ACH in the future. The Executive Summary of the study is now available publicly; the full results of the study are available to the members of the 10 payments associations that sponsor the Center for Payments.

 Positioning of Same Day ACH

The ACH Network continues to evolve and provide new opportunities for financial institutions. At the time of the study, more than 60% of institutions responding already adopted and offered Same Day ACH origination services. Of those that did not offer Same Day ACH, nearly 1 out of 4 respondents indicated plans were in place to begin offering it by the end of 2022.

Respondents were asked to estimate the percentage of their clients that use Same Day ACH. Most financial institutions (76%) indicated between 1% and 25% of their origination clients utilize the service. Responding institutions agreed that fostering greater adoption of Same Day ACH will rely heavily on educating corporate users about its benefits.

Risk Management

Almost half (49%) of financial institutions were not leveraging Same Day ACH windows to return ACH transactions, a missed risk management opportunity. A majority (56%) of respondents felt Same Day ACH had not negatively impacted their level of payments risk.

When respondents were asked about specific practices implemented to mitigate origination risk, restricting access to Same Day ACH was most cited (35%). Other practices included an improved credit evaluation process before access was granted and enhanced operational procedures like dual control (20% and 18%, respectively).

Application and Strategy

Responding institutions cited Same Day ACH was most often used for emergency situations related to payroll (70%). Other common use cases included general emergency transactions (57%) and payroll funding (43%). Of those that are currently offering Same Day ACH, 54% have seen an increase in satisfaction among their customers or members. Enhancement of internal origination capabilities and increased revenue are other benefits cited by respondents (29% and 18%, respectively).

For the full report and more information on ways to leverage Same Day ACH or faster payment options, contact your payments association.

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