Finicity is part of the Mastercard family. Our open banking platform provides the financial data you need.

Launched by J.P. Morgan Payments and Mastercard, Pay-by-Bank is an ACH payment that uses open banking, which enables consumers to permission their financial data to be shared seamlessly between trusted parties to let them pay bills directly from their bank account with greater security. No longer will they be faced with the tedium of typing in routing and account numbers each time they need to pay a bill. For billers and merchants, it automates consumer onboarding and reduces the risk and cost of storing bank account information.  

Pay-by-Bank holds huge potential for billers to take the pain out of recurring payments such as rent, utilities, payments to government, tuition, insurance, and health care where ACH is the primary medium of payment.  

Read more about this secure, streamlined open banking innovation here.

Once driven by early adopters like fintechs and tech enthusiasts, open banking is increasingly becoming embedded into the global financial landscape online and through apps from players across the ecosystem. And it is only expected to grow. From 2021 to 2026, the number of open banking users is expected to increase nearly eightfold. And instant payment flows enabled by open banking are expected to increase by 30 times.

Open banking allows for all boats to rise — including merchants, fintech innovators, large and small financial service providers and, most importantly, consumers and small businesses.

Jess Turner, Executive Vice President, Open Banking and API at Mastercard talks about the choice, innovation and inclusion in open banking that is lifting up opportunities across the entire ecosystem. Read here for more.

Consumers are embracing digital payments and turning to fintech for everyday finance needs. According to Mastercard’s 2022 Global New Payments Index, emerging payment methods like account-to-account payments, digital wallets and Buy Now, Pay Later are all on the rise. Eighty-five percent of consumers have used a digital payment method within the last year. And 93% are likely to use a digital payment method in the coming year.

Many of these emerging digital payments are powered by open banking and are a natural progression of the shifting landscape of payments. Through our latest research, we wanted to share five key trends to consider when integrating digital payments into your fintech innovation.

1. Consumers want convenience when paying bills

Consumers across the globe are relying on digital channels for paying bills because it is more convenient and makes it easier to manage finances.

Subscriptions, bills, utilities, loan repayment and retail payments are more convenient with open banking-powered apps and services. Eighty-one percent of consumers have already heard of account-to-account payments, but they may not know that open banking added speed and convenience to A2A, or that A2A payments can now be made at the point of sale, without typing in card details or writing checks.

2. Consumers seek flexibility in making payments

The majority of global consumers want the flexibility and control to optimize digital payments. Similar to the motivations around bill pay, consumers are connecting their accounts to automate repayment for BNPL and installment loans. Fifty-eight percent of consumers are open to connecting their bank account to other financial services to enable automatic repayments, and 52% percent say that they use digital repayment tools because they help to prevent missed or late payments.

3. Security is top of mind

Consumers recognize the convenience that digital payments offer, and security remains a top concern, highlighting an opportunity for providers to build trust. Building comfort with emerging digital payments is key to supporting future adoption as the two trend together. Faster transactions, convenience and transparency are the top reasons that help consumers overcome security concerns.

4. Consumers rely on fintech to manage finances

Consumers are relying on fintech, and indirectly open banking, to accomplish everyday financial tasks. Eighty-three percent of consumers have used digital tools for at least one financial task, and over half use technology to accomplish five or more tasks. The majority see making a payment as the most beneficial use case.

5. Emerging payments are strongest among Gen Z and Millennials

Younger generations have gone more digital in their purchasing and payments behavior globally and it’s anticipated that their use will continue to increase. These generations are less likely to make in-person purchases and payments: 50% for Gen Z compared to 78% of Boomers. They are also less likely to use cash for purchases. While security remains a concern for them, it is less heightened than for older audiences.

Building the Future of Payment Choice at Mastercard

At Mastercard, we have always powered experiences that enable customer choice. Our solutions are built to meet consumers’ financial needs and designed with security at the center.

In recent years, we have further differentiated Mastercard in the market by diversifying beyond the card. We’ve built a complementary open banking platform that enables ACH and account-based payments with best-in-class capabilities across infrastructure, applications and services. Empowering people to pay and get paid using a card, bank account, cryptocurrency, or even cash. Using any device or no device. In real-time or later, truly empowering people with flexibility and control.

Click here to download the full Global New Payments Index for a deep dive into emerging payment areas including digital payments, account-to-account, cryptocurrency, open banking and BNPL, among others. 

Certain open banking solutions are provided by Finicity Corporation, a Mastercard company.

Offering fast, secure payment choices to consumers is absolutely essential to the success of any small-to-mid-sized business (SMB). The digitization of every business, large or small, has been underway for decades, but recent studies show that the pandemic accelerated that process by five years

Consumers are looking for fast, convenient, contactless ways to shop and pay bills, driving businesses to adopt open banking-powered card and non-card technologies and platforms to service them. 

Payments are the Entry Point to Open Banking for Small Businesses

Nearly nine in 10 business owners utilize digital payments and open banking-backed payments, speeding up cash flow. Owners are also leaning into open banking to verify, secure and personalize payment transactions. 

SMBs are projected to spend more than $100 billion on payment services by 2025. It’s no surprise that payments are the open banking entry point for small businesses, according to Mastercard’s Rise of Open Banking small business report. 

As emerging payment methods like cryptocurrency and digital wallets gain widespread adoption, SMBs rely on open banking to create streamlined customer journeys. 

Ninety percent of SMBs utilize services that link accounts, enabling the speed, convenience and confidence of open banking payments. Owners cite a few core payment-related benefits for linking accounts:

Small Businesses are Quickly Migrating to Digital

The pandemic-driven fast-forwarding of digital adoption by SMBs has raised owners’ financial IQ, as 95% consider themselves heavy fintech users. The top driver for fintech use is the desire to make their businesses more digital. Permissioned data and the payment innovations it enables are primary needs for the SMB, as 92% are currently using or want to use digital payment systems. With a 50.5% increase in online sales from 2019 to 2020, the trend toward digital is evident, and businesses are embracing open banking to stay ahead of the curve.

SMBs are looking for solutions for agility and resilience, powered by technology. They’re facing challenges that are mostly digital, and they’re looking for digital solutions. Owner-permissioned data, insights and analytics from open banking platforms is creating new payment experiences for SMBs to offer consumers. To the SMB owner, open banking is an opportunity to partner with an innovator and grow. 

Accelerating adoption of digital channels means that a small business needs a partner that can handle real-time bank account verification, account data snapshots and predictive analytics. These core services can mitigate payment failures and fees, enable onboarding, maintain compliance and power next-gen payment apps and services.

Mastercard’s complementary account-based payments business leverages best-in-class capabilities across infrastructure, applications and services. By converging capabilities, Mastercard provides one trusted platform that empowers businesses to pay and get paid with confidence, using a card, bank account, or cryptocurrency. SMB owners can use a device or no device, and send or receive payments in real time or later. This kind of empowerment is what today’s innovators can offer the SMB, by leveraging open banking solutions. Maximum choice in payment types and methods, powered by open banking, providing effective tools for small business. 

Open Banking Payment Innovations are Gaining Momentum

Account-based payments are an emerging area ripe for targeted fintech development. Open banking technology allows you to integrate consumer-permissioned technology to your fintech innovation that offers more ways to pay with greater speed, convenience and confidence. With better quality data and insights about the small business, the non-card payments journey can be smoother.

Account-based payments are a new way for consumers to pay small businesses with convenience, security and control. Instead of entering payment card information, the customer can view their bank and the account they want to use, authenticate themselves, and pay immediately. Customers can: 

Mastercard is delivering the platform for innovation in the payments sector, giving fintechs the ability to scale up confidently. The recent release of Mastercard’s Smart Payment Decisioning Tools uses real-time bank data permissioned by a consumer to show payment indicators that can raise successful payment completion rates and reduce transaction costs. With Payment Success Indicator, payment failure risk can be mitigated by scoring the likelihood of a success before initiating it. Then with Payment Routing Optimizer, payment originators are given a recommendation for the most optimal day and rail to choose for the highest likelihood of successful settlement at the best cost and speed. These next-gen tools can give the SMB the advantage they need to best compete in a growing digital economy. 

In the next installment of the Rise of Open Banking series, we look at how open banking is driving innovation in SMB Financial Management. Click here to download the full study.

As part of its Smarter Faster Payments Conference here, Nacha announced its 2022 Pay-Me Award Honorees, recognizing companies and organizations that have helped advance the ever-evolving payments industry.

The Excellence in Smart Payments Decisioning award will go to Finicity, a Mastercard company, for its Smart Payment Decisioning Tools.

See all the honorees here.

Finicity has been an open-banking catalyst for Mastercard. One new Mastercard product, called Payment Success Indicator, relies on bank account information provided by the consumer on an opt-in basis. The product was developed through open banking, or a process for sharing bank account information with third parties.

A merchant, bank, digital wallet or payment service provider uses this bank account information to access a consumer’s balance and historial behavioral risk pattern for each transaction. That informs the Payment Routing Optimizer, which recommends the right day and payment rail (such as same-day ACH or next-day ACH) that strikes a balance for cost, speed and risk.

Read more at American Banker.

MARCH 31, 2022/BY FINICITY EDITOR

Every day, to a larger and larger portion of consumers, the pre-digital era of account opening becomes smaller in the rearview mirror. Among the growing millennial and Generation Z consumer demographics, the idea of visiting a physical location to open a financial service account might almost sound vintage.

But just how many consumers are we talking about? To find out more about what’s driving people to establish and maintain the financial foundations of their day-to-day digital lives, Finicity teamed up with PYMNTS to publish Account Opening and Loan Servicing in the Digital Environment

Drawn from a survey of over 2,300 U.S. consumers in December 2021, this report illustrates the rising number of consumers opening accounts digitally, their levels of comfort in managing their finances on a screen and the distinct role that digital plays between account types.

Account Opening

The numbers show that consumers are rapidly adopting online banking services in lieu of taking trips to brick-and-mortar branches. About 151 million adults in the U.S. opened a new financial account in the past 12 months, and more than three-quarters of them did so digitally. 

Banking has gone mobile in a big way as well. More consumers than ever are opting to bank from anywhere: according to prior PYMNTS research, 69% of all consumers opt to bank from their couch, the sidewalk, restaurants—wherever they feel like it—with their financial institutions’ mobile applications. Within the past year, 76% of all new financial accounts were opened via digital means.

Additionally, almost eight-in-ten Gen-Z consumers reported feeling “very” or “extremely” comfortable opening a financial account with a mobile app. That’s an entire generational cohort for whom mobile banking is simply the norm.

A significant portion of consumers—36%—said that they believed opening an account digitally was more secure than through traditional means, and younger cohorts were most likely to say that they felt more secure providing financial data such as proof of income and employment via open-banking channels.

Loan Servicing

Loan servicing is going digital as well. Most consumers have at least one outstanding loan account open, and most of them also manage those loans digitally whether on a desktop or mobile environment.

A large generational divide exists in our data regarding loan management—older consumers form a larger portion of those with loans to manage, and older consumers also express less comfort with digital finances overall. Concerns with data security are the top reason consumers gave as to why they wouldn’t elect to manage a loan digitally. 

On the flip side, the portion of consumers who are “more” or “much more” likely to use a digital financial account to manage loans grew 54% over the past two years, and consumers indicate that they feel much more comfortable with the idea of opening a new account online.

Consumers also indicate an interest in one of the main benefits of open banking—convenience. Half of consumers say that they’d be more likely to open a new account if the required financial information—income and employment verification, for example—were automatically transferred as part of the process. Verification takes time and labor, and open finance solutions allow both consumers and lenders to skip mountains of paperwork at account opening.

Learn More

That’s just the tip of the iceberg. It’s been clear for a long time that the future of financial management is digital. PYMNTS and Finicity have brought you the data showing just how quickly things are accelerating in the space. To learn more, download Account Opening and Loan Servicing in the Digital Environment today.

Mastercard is launching a new suite of Smart Payment Decisioning Tools to reduce risk in ACH payments and optimize cost and speed through open banking.

Merchants can now use advanced data analytics and machine learning to make the payment experience safer and smarter for everyone. Mastercard is launching two new Smart Payment Decisioning Tools, Payment Success Indicator and Payment Routing Optimizer, part of Finicity’s open banking suite of services that enables payments and account creation seamlessly and securely.

Read more about this new solution here.

The payment landscape continues to shift. The move from cash and checks to digital payments such as ACH (automated clearing house) has accelerated, particularly in high-dollar or recurring categories like rent and utilities. These moves offer benefits for both consumers and merchants – more choice, simpler experiences and greater speed to payment – but they come with a few challenges. 

Unsuccessful transactions create friction in the experience by leaving parties scrambling to find a different way to get a payment through, or it can generate penalty fees for both merchants and consumers. There is always the risk of fraudulent accounts or account credentials being used.

To improve the process, Mastercard today unveiled a new suite of Smart Payment Decisioning Tools that minimize these pain points. 

The new products – Payment Success Indicator and Payment Routing Optimizer – rely on real-time bank data permissioned by a consumer to show payment indicators that raise successful payment completion rates and reduce transaction costs.

When it comes to ACH transactions, Nacha reported that payment volume on the modern ACH Network increased 7.7% in the third quarter of 2021 alone, showing that consumers are becoming increasingly interested in making direct payments from their bank accounts.

With the increasing volume of ACH payments, there are a few hurdles that may potentially slow the increase in adoption, delaying the improved merchant and consumer experience: 

Minimizing Payment Failure, Maximizing Cash Flow.

How do these pain points play out in the market? According to Mastercard research, each time an ACH payment fails, the merchant is hit with a fee. Fraud also continues to be a major issue in payments. According to a 2021 AFP Payments Fraud Survey, checks and wire transfers are by far the preferred methods that fraudsters exploit, but ACH debits have seen an increase in fraudulent activity as well. 

Enter the power of open banking. By using consumer-permissioned data, these hurdles can be lowered or even eliminated. 

With Payment Success Indicator, failure risk is mitigated by scoring the likelihood of a successful payment before initiating it. Then with Payment Routing Optimizer, originators are given a recommendation for the most optimal day and payment rail to choose for the highest likelihood of successful settlement at the best cost and speed. 

Better Data, Better Decisions.

With smart data comes better decision-making. This is true in virtually every aspect of life, and it’s true in handling account-to-account payments. Leveraging machine learning and predictive modeling, Payment Success Indicator and Payment Routing Optimizer can help mitigate or eliminate ACH failure. This can increase cash flow and improve the bottom line while also creating a more positive experience for customers.

Consumers are adopting more apps and services that utilize digital checkout and payment options. It’s more important than ever to minimize fees and their associated costs, reduce fraud, non-sufficient funds (NSF) returns and make payment settlement confident and cost-effective. 

By utilizing consumer-permissioned bank insights, Payment Success Indicator will provide payment originators a composite score across 10 future calendar days, as well as an individual score for each of those 10 days. Scoring is based on real-time balance and historical behavioral risk patterns. This system is used to evaluate the likelihood a given amount will settle successfully. 

If there is a high risk of settlement or non-sufficient funds over the given time period, the merchant can then use that information and request an alternative payment method, deny the transaction or assume the risk and proceed.

The analytics engine returns a score separating the risk factors across four tiers, giving merchants the advantage of maximizing the available data before making the decision to initiate a payment:

Each composite score comes complete with weighted reasons accompanying it. Account balance, NSF history, consumer spending and consumer deposits are all factored into the analytics.

Payment Routing Optimizer will make payment rail, cost and payment date suggestions, based on the risk findings by Payment Success Indicator

For example, if the balance is available in a consumer’s account to make the payment today, but the analytics determine that it may not be available over the next few days, Payment Routing Optimizer will suggest Same-Day ACH over risking Standard ACH processing. 

This product aims to take the friction out of choosing between digital payment options with future updates of the Payment Routing Optimizer potentially including a debit card option.

Real-World Benefits.

The Bilt Rewards Alliance, a collection of more than 2 million rental homes across the country that lets renters earn highly valuable rewards points just by paying rent, will be the first fintech partner to launch Payment Success Indicator

“Our mission is to help renters get the most value out of one of their biggest expenses, and returned payments create significant expense and friction for both residents and landlords,” says Ankur Jain, Founder and CEO of Bilt Rewards. “Payment Success Indicator should significantly reduce the potential for returned payments, delivering a digital payment experience that works harder and smarter for everyone.”

Through smart decisioning analytics, Mastercard is helping financial services innovators and payment platforms change the ACH payments landscape. Increased confidence, minimization of fees, improved profitability and simplified payments. That’s the power of open banking. 

Click here to contact your sales representative for more information on our Smart Payment Decisioning Tools.

Consumers don’t want to go to a branch or to be limited by business hours for a call center to transact and manage their money. Digital channels are offering them the possibility to manage their accounts anytime, anywhere.

This has been confirmed by research conducted by PYMNTS and Finicity, a Mastercard company, which found that more than three-quarters of those who opened a new financial account in the last year used digital channels to do so.

Lisa Kimball, SVP for Open Banking at Finicity, talks with PYMNTS about the acceleration of digital banking adoption.

Watch the video interview here.