Federal Reserve receives legislator praise for real-time payments system

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The Federal Reserve’s recent decision to move forward on building a real-time payments system has drawn plaudits from lawmakers.

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Sens. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Reps. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), and Jesús “Chuy” García (D-IL) said Americans lose billions of dollars each year in overdraft fees, driving consumers to turn to more costly financial products because of inefficient payments systems – noting taxpayers deserve a public utility allowing safe and secure access to their money while enabling small institutions and entrepreneurs to compete on a more even playing field.

The lawmakers said the Federal Reserve’s decision addresses the issues and creates a payments system benefiting all Americans.

“For too long, consumers and small businesses have unfairly shouldered the costs our slow payments system – despite the fact that we have the technology to update it and a clear and urgent need to do so,” Van Hollen said. “I’m glad to see the Fed is heeding our calls to act and that the American people will soon have a payments system that works for them.”

Pressley said with the action the Federal Reserve Bank has affirmed the right of consumers and small businesses to access and move their money in real-time.

“Although this decision is long overdue, I’m pleased that the Fed is formalizing the commitment Chair Powell made to me last month to create an accessible, secure, and ubiquitous payments system for all Americans,” she said. “I look forward to working with my colleagues on the Financial Services Committee to ensure that this system is implemented in a timely, transparent, and responsible manner.”

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