04.08.15

Rounds Announces New Senate Payments Innovation Caucus

WASHINGTON—U.S. Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), along with Sens. Gary Peters (D-M.I.), Johnny Isakson (R-G.A.) and Tom Carper (D-D.E.), today announced the formation of the bipartisan Senate Payments Innovation Caucus. The Senate Payments Innovation Caucus will explore new and innovative technologies in the payments industry and address issues concerning data security, consumer protection and electronic payments.  

“Credit cards and mobile payments are a large part of South Dakota’s economy, and it’s important for others to understand how the industry works,” said Rounds. “The technology payments industry impacts nearly every corner of our economy and is changing just as rapidly as it is growing. Our goal is to make sure others are aware of the issues important to the industry to meet its growing needs and keep consumer data safe and secure.”

“As the trade association of more than 500 U.S. payments technology companies, ETA applauds the leadership of Senators Mike Rounds and Gary Peters in forming the Senate Payments Innovation Caucus,” said Jason Oxman, CEO of the Electronic Transactions Association (ETA). “ETA member companies are the world’s leading payments innovators, deploying mobile payments and other technology that powers commerce for merchants and their customers.  We look forward to working with caucus members to advance policies that promote innovation and economic growth through payments technology.”

Nearly 70 percent of consumer spending is done using electronic payment methods, and electronic consumer spending continues to grow. By 2017, it is expected to reach an estimated $7.3 trillion.

Electronic payment methods include credit, debit and prepaid cards, as well as mobile payments. The use of mobile phones and other electronic devices to access bank accounts and credit cards and to make payments is a rapidly growing part of our economy that provides new opportunities for small businesses, startups and established stakeholders to reach customers around the world. The electronic transactions industry supports tens of thousands of jobs across the country, and it continues to grow.

Mobile banking and innovation in payments technology also have the potential to increase access to financial services for unbanked and underbanked consumers. Among underbanked consumers, 48 percent have used mobile banking in the past year. These technologies can help lower-income Americans save for their future and manage their income and expenditures.

The Senate Payments Innovation Caucus will focus on educating staff and Senators on the dynamic issues surrounding this growing industry, including data security and consumer protection, innovation in electronic payment technologies and consumer access to electronic financial services.

Reps. Lynn Westmoreland (GA-03), Randy Neugebauer (TX-19), David Scott (GA-13), and Kyrsten Sinema (AZ-09) recently formed the Congressional Payments Technology Caucus in the House of Representatives.