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Faster Payments celebrates first year with 180 million payments milestone

Karl Flinders

The UK's Faster Payments System, which was launched a year ago today, has processed more than 180 million payments, worth a total of more than £70bn.

Within six months of its launch it had processed about 60 million transactions worth £24.9bn. On 2 March 2009 it processed a record five million payments in a single day, worth over £1bn.

Apacs and UK banks decided to create a service which could clear payments in a day at the end of 2006. It went live as planned in May 2008. It was the first new UK payment system to be introduced in 20 years.

Apacs said the number of users will increase as more banks include it as a service to customers.

But there is still work to do on educating potential users. A survey of 2,000 adults across the UK by TNS revealed that only 55% of consumers had heard of Faster Payments. Less than half of this 55% had made a Faster Payment. Overall, 25% of consumers said they had used the service.

David McFarlane, Chaps company manager, said, "In part this may be because the roll out across the industry has been gradual but also because different banks have communicated their new service in different ways.

The IT system which supports the UK's Faster Payments system was created in 18 months by VocaLink and Apacs.

"The central infrastructure of the Faster Payments Service was groundbreaking; we dared to deliver a payments system that would give banks the ability to process payments 24 hours a day seven days a week and on a scale that had not been tried anywhere else before.

"It is no surprise that now the technology has a year's worth of successful and continuous service under its belt we're getting enquiries from all around the world from countries looking to follow our lead," said McFarlane.

Image: Image Source/Rex Features

 

Faster Payments by month 
  Month total volume  Total value  
 May 08  334,000  £209m
 June 08  4,165,000  £2,266m
 July 08  6,984,000  £3,621m
 Aug 08  7,945,000  £3,787m
 Sep 08 11,656,000 £4,853m
Oct 08 15,824,000 £6,162m

 

  Month total volume    Total value
Nov 08   16,144,000 £5,459m
Dec 08 19,737,000 £6,208m
Jan 09 18,679,000 £6,208m
Feb 09 18,476,000 £6,234m
 Mar 09 22,950,000 £8,183m
Apr 09 21,802,000  £8,007m


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