Published on: March 10, 2014by Kevin Coupe
The Washington Post over the weekend reported that Bank of America seems to be pulling the plug on the traditional check, having just "rolled out a new checking account with all the traditional trappings--mobile payments, ATM use, access to call centers--sans the nifty booklet of paper checks we've all come to know and kind of love."
The reason? here's how the Post frames it:
"Cutting paper checks out of the account experience makes sense. Americans wrote 28 billion checks in 2009, 5.3 billion less than 2006, according to the most recent data from the Federal Reserve of Philadelphia. At that pace, researchers at the Philly Fed expect checks could disappear all together in 12 years.
"A 2003 change in the law on how banks process checks hastened their demise. Before then, banks sorted, then carted checks off onto airplanes for delivery to other banks. When the FAA grounded planes after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, lawmakers passed legislation to let banks use electronic images of checks to process payments.
"Philly Fed researchers estimate that the electronic switch is saving banks $1.2 billion a year. Between the electronic processing and the rise of mobile banking, the days are numbered for paper checks. You might want to save one to show your grandkids some day."
Forget grandkids. For the most part, while my kids are familiar with the look and concept of a check, they never use them … everything is done online. They have checking accounts that are checking accounts in name only.
Add it to the list of things that used to be regular parts of our lives that are fast become obsolete and irrelevant.
It is an Eye-Opener.
- KC's View: