A consumer need for convenience, increased regulation, and numerous advances in technology have all contributed to the drastic changes in check handling by the banking industry since 9/11. Prior to these changes, the only way to clear checks taken as deposits at bank branches were to physically transport them by plane, armored car or truck from the bank of deposit to the nearest Federal Reserve Branch. The checks were then sorted, and transported to the bank they were drawn on to post. The total check clearing process could take at least five business days! Writing checks is quickly becoming obsolete: almost all non-cash transactions are now done electronically through ACH, debit, and credit card transactions. In fact, in 2015, only 12% of non-cash transactions were made by check – this is a 34% decrease in check payments since 2003!

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