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Report Highlighted At The IEC 2000 Conference.

When it comes to saving money, consumers would rather lick their own stamps than pay a bank fee for paying bills online. In 1999, only three million US households were paying their bills online compared with seven million households who view their accounts online and an impressive 20 million stock portfolios that were tracked online in 1999.

When it comes to giving up the old tattered checkbook, consumers are looking for savings as an incentive - and saving time is not enough. In a recent GartnerGroup survey of consumers who were already using online banking or online trading services, 60 percent said they are not willing to pay a fee at all for online bill payment. Today, four out of five banks charge customers for paying bills online. The average monthly fee is more than $6.

"Market pressures to recoup investments and show growth eventually will force Internet bill payment service providers to offer financial incentives to attract a critical mass of consumers," says Avivah Litan, Research Director Payments Systems, at GartnerGroup. "As with many Internet offerings, the consumers will have their way when it comes to fees in the bill payment marketplace."

By 2002, GartnerGroup predicts that 15 million US households will be using online bill payment.

"Marketers at banks need to find more attractive pricing points for this service," continued Litan. "Or they should bundle lower checking account fees as a retention incentive. Once all those account numbers are entered into the system, consumers will be reluctant to begin again with a different online bill payment system."
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Title Annotation:Industry Trend or Event
Comment:Report Highlighted At The IEC 2000 Conference.(Industry Trend or Event)
Publication:EDP Weekly's IT Monitor
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Mar 6, 2000
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