Alternatives to Traditional Banking Increasingly Becoming the American Way

Press Release
Feb 7, 2014
Rockville (MD), February 7, 2014 -- As of last year, 40% of adults age 18+ are personally unbanked. Notably, this represents an increase of 13% from 2005 and an increase of 9% from 2009, which suggests that more and more people are either unserved by traditional banking institutions or are finding competitive alternatives to traditional banking, according to Unbanked and Underbanked Consumers in the U.S., 3rd Edition, a report by market research publisher Packaged Facts.

The report reveals that the tendency to self-identify as unbanked strongly increases as household income decreases. More than half of adults with household incomes under $25K are unbanked, compared to barely a quarter of adults in homes with incomes of at least $100K. However, the growth rate among unbanked consumers having higher household incomes is greater than those with lower household incomes, which suggests that emerging competitive alternatives to traditional banking could be luring higher-income banking candidates away, states Packaged Facts research director David Sprinkle.

Young Millennial adults ages 18-24 are among the most likely to now seek alternatives to traditional banking, as the percentage of those who self-identity as unbanked has grown 25% between 2005-2013. Packaged Facts attributes the increase to recession-driven unemployment and wage trends that have disproportionately affected younger entrants to the job market, with diminished job prospects and wage issues dampening need for bank accounts. However, it also suggests that a generational shift away from traditional banking relationships among Millennials may be underway, as these young consumers adapt to newer forms of alternative banking, led by the likes of "non-bank" funding accounts (i.e. PayPal) and reloadable prepaid cards.

For more information on Unbanked and Underbanked Consumers in the U.S., 3rd Edition, please visit

About Packaged Facts -- Packaged Facts, a division of, publishes market intelligence on a wide range of consumer market topics, including consumer demographics and shopper insights, consumer financial products and services, consumer goods and retailing, consumer packaged goods, and pet products and services. Packaged Facts also offers a full range of custom research services. To learn more, visit: Follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Google+.

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Daniel Alexander Granderson


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