2015 No. 15–3

Research Data Reports

How Are U.S. Consumers Using General Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Cards? Are They Being Used as Substitutes for Checking Accounts? How Are U.S. Consumers Using General Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Cards? Are They Being Used as Substitutes for Checking Accounts?

By Claire Greene and Oz Shy

Owners of general purpose reloadable prepaid cards (GPR) who do not have checking accounts comprise 4.8 percent of U.S. adults, according to the 2012 Survey of Consumer Payment Choice. This report explores two important aspects of prepaid card use: Do owners of GPR prepaid cards who lack checking accounts use these cards differently than those who have checking accounts? Are these cards substituting for payment services that have traditionally been provided only via traditional checking accounts?

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