ACUC Coverage: Real Time Payments Network Ramping Up Speedy Payments

BOSTON—The Real Time Payments (RTP) network is ramping up participation in its speedy payments network, expecting to have a large number of FIs using its rail by the close of 2019.


Mike Thomas

The RTP, owned by The Clearing House, currently has seven large banks participating and expects to have 25 large FIs on board by year-end.

“We expect to be adding 2,000 financial institutions of all sizes per quarter in 2019,” said Mike Thomas, VP product development for RTP, during CUNA’s America’s Credit Union Conference here. “Even though this is run by The Clearing House, we are looking for this to become the next ubiquitous payments system—the first new payments rail in 40 years.”

The RTP is a credit push rail that settles transactions in five seconds.

“Mobile technology and digital commerce are driving the need for a safer and faster payments system in the U.S. The RTP network is a real-time system for all U.S. financial institutions to use as a platform for payments innovation,” Thomas said. “Financial institutions will take advantage of RTP's capabilities to create or enhance digital services for their corporate and retail customers.”

Thomas said a big advantage of RTP is that it can allow bank and credit union account holders greater, immediate access to their funds.

“This is a 24/7 network,” said Thomas, sharing an example of how it could benefit credit union members when shopping for a car over the weekend.

‘Make More Loans’

“With RTP, the credit union can allow members to access a line of credit they have already been approved for right at the dealership to fund a downpayment, even though the credit union is closed” he said. “That can help credit unions make more loans.”

Thomas said that RTP can also benefit members who need to send money immediately to one of their children facing an emergency situation over the weekend.

“And the transfer of funds is immediate, which can really solve a crisis,” he said.

RTP charges 4.5 cents per transaction.

“That is the same price we charge a big bank or small credit union, there are no discounts,” Thomas said. “The hope is that the price will drop as we get more volume.”

Thomas noted that FIs earn ten cents when a credit transfer is sent following a request for payment.

“This is a real-time, digital experience,” said Thomas. “And it can be a big help in encouraging more members to convert to digital delivery channels.”


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Copyright Year: 2019
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