Prepaid Cards in the U.S., 7th Edition

Prepaid Cards in the U.S., 7th Edition

Prepaid Cards in the U.S., 7th Edition, provides insight into significant near-term and longer-term factors shaping this varied and growing card segment. Specifically, the report:

  • provides a market size and forecast for the prepaid card market, including trended payment value for general use (open-loop) and private label (closed-loop) prepaid cards, by card type, with related growth opportunity analysis
  • assesses in detail the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the prepaid card industry, including cash conversion, payment electronification, interchange, and deposits, as well as effects by card type
  • gauges (reloadable and non-reloadable) prepaid card use trends during 2014-2019, breaking prepaid card use down by card network; banked status; credit score; cash preference; and app and smartphone use
  • identifies top general-purpose prepaid card brand and card network brands, by demographic
  • studies reasons for choosing general-purpose reloadable prepaid cards, including use cost; overdraft fee avoidance and debt management; credit and bank account substitution; breadth of acceptance; and reloading method
  • explores prepaid card marketer and issuer strategies, including those of Axos Financial, The Bancorp Bank, Green Dot, MetaBank and Netspend
  • Analysis includes competitive positioning, new product introductions, company innovations, and trended performance analysis.
  • Heavy emphasis is placed on add-value proprietary estimates for load value, purchase value, and other metrics otherwise not published by these industry participants.
  • Thorough analysis of the app-based digital banking threat is also included.
  • explores a variety of prepaid card industry challenges and solutions, including regulatory issues, pricing, and profit factors, broadening the target audience, bank account competition, and fraud


  • Executive Summary
    • Report Scope
    • Report Summary
      • Market Size and Forecast
      • Coronavirus Pandemic Impact on the Prepaid Card Industry
      • App-Based Digital Banking Threatens GPR Prepaid Industry
      • Prepaid Card Use Trends
      • General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Feature and Use Rationales
      • Prepaid Card Marketer and Issuer Strategies
  • Market Size and Forecast
    • U.S. Prepaid Card Market Size and Forecast
      • Payment Value to Reach $377 Billion in 2020
        • Table U.S. Prepaid Card Market Size, 2016-2020
      • 2024 Payment Value Forecasted at $475.3 billion
        • Table U.S. Prepaid Card Market Size, 2016-2020
      • "Open-Loop" Prepaid Card Market Size, by Card Type
        • Table U.S. Open-Loop Prepaid Card Market Size: By Type, 2016-2020
      • "Closed-Loop" Prepaid Card Market Size, by Card Type
        • Table U.S. Closed-Loop Prepaid Card Market Size: By Type, 2016-2020
    • Growth Opportunity
      • Sideways/Down: Consumer General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Cards
      • Near-Term Declines; Long-Term Incremental Growth: Gift Cards
      • Strong Near-Term/Incremental Long-Term Growth: Government Prepaid Cards
      • Moderate-to-Strong Growth: Healthcare Cards
      • Near-Term Declines; Moderate-to-Strong Growth: Payroll Cards
      • Strong Growth: B2B Payments
  • Challenges and Opportunities
    • Coronavirus Pandemic Impact on the Prepaid Card Industry
      • General-Purpose Prepaid Card Spend to Take Discretionary & Non-Discretionary Hit
      • Near- and Long-Term: Prepaid Cardholder Cash Preferences to Give Way
        • Table Attitudes Toward Cash as Preferred Purchase Payment Method and Always Using Cash to Pay Bills, 2019 (general-purpose reloadable prepaid card vs. debit card vs. credit card users)
        • Table Attitudes Toward Cash as Preferred Purchase Payment Method and Always Using Cash to Pay Bills: General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Users by HH Income Bracket, 2019
      • Near- and Long-Term: In-Store Purchases Pressured and Online Purchases Benefit
      • Near- and Long-Term: The J-Hook Takes a Gut Punch
      • Near- and Long-Term: Interchange Wins
      • Near-Term: Stimulus Bump
      • Near-Term Winner: Government Benefits Programs
      • Near-Term Loser: Payroll Cards
      • Near-Term Loser: Tax Refund Cards
    • App-Based Digital Banking Threatens GPR Prepaid Industry
      • The Good: Prepaid Cards Adapt to Digital Banking World
      • The Spoiler? Fintech Marketers Undercut on Price and Deliver on Features
      • In Focus: Chime
        • Table Chime Account Fees, 2020
      • The Consequences
  • Prepaid Card Use Trends
    • General-Purpose Prepaid Card Use Trends: 2014-2019
      • Reloadable and Non-Reloadable Card Use Declines
        • Table General-Purpose Prepaid Card Use, 2014-2019 (reloadable vs. non-reloadable)
      • Lower-Income Adults Remain a Sweet Spot
        • Table General-Purpose Prepaid Card Use: By Age Bracket and HH Income Bracket, 2014-2019
      • Visa Leads Use but Mastercard Is Gaining Share
        • Table General-Purpose Prepaid Card Use Share by Card Network, 2014-2019
    • General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Use: 2014-2019
      • 18- to 34-Year-Olds as a Trouble Spot
        • Table General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Use Share by Age Bracket and HH Income Bracket, 2014-2019
      • Declines Are an Industry Trend, not a Network-Specific One
        • Table General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Use by Card Network, 2014-2019
    • General-Purpose Non-Reloadable Prepaid Card Use: 2014-2019
      • Middle-Income Traction
        • Table General-Purpose Non-Reloadable Prepaid Card Use: By Age Bracket and HH Income Bracket, 2014-2019
        • Table General-Purpose Non-Reloadable Prepaid Card Use by Card Network, 2014-2019
      • Bank Account, Smartphone, and Banking App Use Analysis
        • Table Bank Account, Smartphone, and Banking App Use: General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card, Debit Card, and Credit Card Users (2014 vs. 2019)
    • General-Purpose Prepaid Card Brand and Card Network Brand Use
      • Overview
        • Table General-Purpose Prepaid Card Use by Card Brand/Network, 2018
      • Demographic Analysis
        • Table General-Purpose Prepaid Card Use by Card Brand/Network: By Age Bracket, 2018
        • Table General-Purpose Prepaid Card Use: By HH Income Bracket and Card Brand/Network, 2018
        • Table General-Purpose Prepaid Card Use by Card Brand/Network: By Credit Score, 2018
        • Table General-Purpose Prepaid Card Use: by Banked Status and Card Brand/Network, 2018
  • General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Feature and Use Rationales
    • General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Features Used
      • Table General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Features Used, 2018 vs. 2020 (percent of adults)
      • Money Movement and Payment Features: Demographic Analysis
        • Table General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Money Movement and Payment Features Used: By Age, 2020
        • Table General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Money Movement and Payment Features Used: By HH Income Bracket, 2020
        • Table General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Features Money Movement and Payment Features Used: By HH Income Bracket, 2020 (18-34 years old vs. 35+ years old)
      • Financial Management Features: Demographic Analysis
        • Table General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Financial Management Features Used: By Age Bracket, 2020
        • Table General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Financial Management Features Used: By HH Income Bracket, 2020
        • Table General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Financial Management Features Used: By HH Income Bracket, 2020 (18-34 years old vs. 35+ years old)
    • Reasons for Choosing Reloadable Prepaid Cards
      • Acceptance and No Fees Rule the Roost
        • Table Important Reasons for Choosing a Prepaid Card, 2018 vs. 2020
      • Influence of Direct Deposit on Card Use
        • Table Prepaid Card Reload, Monthly Fee, Withdrawal, and Purchase Behavior, 2018 vs. 2020
        • Table Prepaid Card Reload, Monthly Fee, Withdrawal, and Purchase Behavior: Direct Deposit vs. No Direct Deposit, 2020
        • Table Prepaid Card Reload, Monthly Fee, Withdrawal, and Purchase Behavior: By HH Income Bracket, 2020 (18-34 years old vs. 35+ years old)
  • Prepaid Card Marketer & Issuer Strategies
    • Axos Financial
      • Prepaid Card Programs
        • Table Axos Financial: General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Program Brands, Managers, and Networks, 2020
      • The Tax Man Cometh: H&R Block Prepaid Emerald Card and Related Products
      • The Card Leverages Ancillary Products to Grow
        • Table H&R Block Emerald Card: Active Cards, Deposits, and Revenue, with Per-Card Metrics, 2012-2016
      • H&R Block Revenue Trends Suggest Card Growth
        • Table H&R Block Revenue: Total, Refund Transfer, Emerald Card, and Emerald Advance, 2014-2019
      • Deposits Trends Suggest Emerald Card Growth
      • But Cardholder Engagement Remains a Struggle
        • Table Axos Financial, Inc. Prepaid Card Deposits: Q4 2015-2019 vs. Q1 2016-2020
      • Refund Advance Origination Trends Suggests Room to Grow
        • Table Axos Financial, Inc. Prepaid Card Deposits: Q4 2015-2019 vs. Q1 2016-2020
      • H&R Block Relationship Strongly Impacts Deposits
        • Table Axos Financial, Inc.: Number of Deposit Accounts by Type, 2013-2019
      • Prepaid Card Interchange Exemption Breach
    • The Bancorp, Inc.
      • Regional Lender and Prepaid Card Leader
      • Variety of Prepaid Card Programs, Program Managers, and Card Verticals
        • Table The Bancorp Bank: General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Program Brands, Managers, Networks, and Card Types, 2020
      • But Non-Prepaid Debit Fintech Partnerships Drive Growth
        • Table The Bancorp Bank: Non-Prepaid Debit Fintech Partnerships: By Name, Network Brand, and Launch Date, 2012-2020
      • And General-Purpose, Reloadable Cards Are Being Replaced
      • Healthcare a Bright Spot
      • Prepaid Card Deposits on the Rise
        • Table The Bancorp: Average Q4 Total and Prepaid Card Deposits, 2016-2019
      • Real-Time ACH Growth
      • Performance Trends
        • Table The Bancorp: Load Value and Selected Non-Interest Income Metrics, 2015-2019
      • Prepaid Card Growth Trends
    • Green Dot Corporation
      • Table Green Dot Consumer Product Features and Platform Capabilities, 2020
      • Market Segments
      • Operating Segments
        • Table Green Dot Operating Revenue by Segment, 2015-2019
      • Key Program Brands
        • Table Green Dot General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Program Brands and Networks, 2020
        • Table Green Dot General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Program Management-Only Brands and Networks, 2020
      • Key Relationship: Walmart
        • Table Green Dot Operating Revenue and Revenue Attributable to Walmart, 2015-2019
      • The Walmart MoneyCard
      • Stimulus Grab
      • Key Competitive Threat: Low-Cost App-Based Digital Banking
      • Key New Product: Unlimited by Green Dot
      • Key Service: BaaS
      • Key Performance Trends
        • Table Green Dot Active Cards, Cash Transfers, Load Value, Purchase Value, GPR Deposits, and Tax Refunds Processed, 2013-2019
        • Table Green Dot Active Cards, Cash Transfers, Load Value, Purchase Value, GPR Deposits, and Tax Refunds Processed: Percentage Annual Growth, 2014-2019
      • Key Revenue Trends
        • Table Green Dot Operating Revenue by Type, 2015-2019
      • Per-Card Revenue, Load Value, and Purchase Value Trends
        • Table Green Dot: Per-Card Prepaid Card Analysis: Revenue by Type, Load Value, and Purchase Value, 2015-2019
      • COVID Crunch
    • MetaBank
      • Card Brands and Segments
        • Table MetaBank General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Card Program Brands, Managers, and Networks, 2020
        • Table MetaBank Payroll Card Program Brands, Managers, and Networks, 2020
        • Table MetaBank Prepaid Card Program Brands, Managers, and Networks: By Card Type, 2020
        • Table MetaBank: Refund Transfer Fee and Tax Advance Metrics, 2016-2019
      • Performance Trends
        • Table MetaBank: Meta Payment Systems Deposit Analysis, 2015-2019
      • MPS Card Fee Income Stagnation and Decline
        • Table MetaBank: MPS Non-Interest Income, Card Fee, Deposit Fee, and Interchange Analysis, 2016-2019
    • Netspend
      • Overview
      • Competitive Positioning
      • Card Brands
        • Table Netspend Reloadable Prepaid Card Programs: Brands, Issuers, and Networks, and Card Types, 2020
      • Retail Distribution
      • Performance Trends
        • Table Netspend: Revenue, Active Cards, and Per-Card Revenue: By Revenue Stream and Direct Deposit Use, 2014-2019
        • Table Netspend Prepaid Card Load Value, 2014-2019
      • Debit Competition Affects Card Base and Masks Load Value Trends
        • Table Netspend: Active Cards and Load Value with Direct Deposit Share, 2014-2019
      • Direct Deposit Remains King
        • Table Netspend: Total and Per-Card Revenue and Load Value: By Card Direct Deposit Status, 2014-2019
      • COVID Crunch
  • Appendix
    • Methodology
      • Consumer Survey Methodology
      • Population Estimates
      • Prepaid Card Exemptions from Debit Card Interchange Limits
    • Abbreviations
      • Table Report Abbreviations, 2020
    • Terms and Definitions

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