The Open Loop Prepaid Market in 2019 Prepared No One for 2020

Share Article

Mercator Advisory Group releases new research that finds that cash access has preserved much of its value proposition.

One of the exhibits in this report.

The Cash Access category covered in this Report includes not only Open-Loop Gift, which will experience growth under the pressure of the virus, but travel, which has nearly imploded.

Mercator Advisory Group’s most recent report, 17th Annual U.S. Open-Loop Prepaid Cards Market Forecast 2020-2024, Part One reveals some categories will grow under the pressure of COVID-19, while others are under assault.

Predicting the future is always a challenge, and the COVID-19 storm clouds from 2020 onward make the task even more of a crystal-ball exercise.

Nonetheless, for the 17th year, Mercator Advisory Group has attempted to balance all the forces affecting the prepaid market to produce a picture of the prepaid industry’s future.

This report provides a five-year forecast (to 2024) as well as Mercator’s market estimate of the dollars loaded on open loop prepaid debit card programs in the U.S. market in 2019.

“The Cash Access category covered in this Report includes not only Open-Loop Gift, which will experience growth under the pressure of the virus, but travel, which has nearly imploded,” said Theodore Iacobuzio, VP and General Manager of Research at Mercator Advisory Group and the author of the report.

Highlights of this report include:

  • Growth in the open loop prepaid card category as a whole was positive in 2019, reaching a very healthy 13.6% year-over-year (YOY).
  • While the strong economy of 2019 propelled continued growth in many segments, the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on consumer and business spending are expected to be significant beginning with 2020.
  • Mercator Advisory Group forecasts that growth in the open loop prepaid loads in the United States will be 4.1% through 2024, reaching a total of $466.2 billion.
  • Money and Financial Services are a bright spot in the Cash Access core open loop category. This sector is expected to continue on its growth trajectory, in spite of the challenging market environment, thanks to its use in certain consumer groups and applications.

The second part of this report deals with the other categories of open-loop cards as delineated in the taxonomy.

This report is 16 pages long and contains 21 exhibits.

Companies mentioned in the survey results shown include: Green Dot, Netspend

Members of Mercator Advisory Group Prepaid Service have access to this report as well as the upcoming research for the year ahead, presentations, analyst access and other membership benefits.

Please visit us online at

For more information and media inquiries, please call Mercator Advisory Group's main line: 1-781-419-1700 or send email to

For free industry news, opinions, research, company information, and more, visit us at

Follow us on Twitter @

About Mercator Advisory Group
Mercator Advisory Group is the leading independent research and advisory services firm exclusively focused on the payments and banking industries. We deliver pragmatic and timely research and advice designed to help our clients uncover the most lucrative opportunities to maximize revenue growth and contain costs. Our clients range from the world's largest payment issuers, acquirers, processors, merchants and associations to leading technology providers and investors. Mercator Advisory Group is also the publisher of the online payments and banking news and information portal

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Karen Yetter
Follow >
Visit website