News & Events
News & Events

Global News Updates

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May 2022

Bank branch closures create gap Next-Gen ATMs fill

Asia / Asia Pacific

Bank branch closures create gap that Next-Gen ATMs can fill
Recent ATMIA survey shows significant support for Universal Cash Deposits at ATMs

One of the consequences of the recent COVID-19 pandemic has not received very much attention.  About  30-40% of Canada bank branches were closed and many others were subject to drastically reduced hours.  Although most have recovered, the number of bank branches in Canada continues to decline.  It reached a peak for the top nine banks of 6,400 in 2014.  By 2020, the number had shrunk to 5,783.

Both consumers and small businesses still depend on in-person banking services despite the proliferation of online alternatives, and the shrinking of branch networks threatens local economic activity that is key to wealth-building in marginalized communities.  Many communities that had multiple banking options are now down to one – or only options that are an hour drive or more away.  This impacts not only consumers who tend to favor cash, but small businesses that need daily cash deposit and other banking services.

In July, 2021, ATMIA published a position paper arguing that Universal Cash Deposit for ATMs will assist communities and businesses in dealing with these declines, while making cash itself more competitive and protecting the on-going access to cash for all demographic groups. The paper defined Universal Cash Deposit as an interoperable system within an ATM network, or across multiple networks, for accepting cash deposits at enabled ATMs on an “interbank” basis, whereby a customer from one bank may deposit cash at ATMs owned and operated by other banks or by IADs.

Our recent survey on the "Readiness for Universal Cash Deposits for ATMs 2022" showed that over 68% favored Universal Cash Deposits at ATMs.  And over 90% agreed that the current trend in bank closures strengthened the case for making it a reality.

Cash Deposits at ATMs is one of the functionalities already baked into the NextGen ATM plan.  Any ATM able to accept cash is a potential depository.  Add recycling and you now have a strategy for building transaction volume and revenue by serving small businesses and consumers, who might otherwise be in a banking desert.

Bank branch closures create gap Next-Gen ATMs fill

Canada

Bank branch closures create gap that Next-Gen ATMs can fill
Recent ATMIA survey shows significant support for Universal Cash Deposits at ATMs

One of the consequences of the recent COVID-19 pandemic has not received very much attention.  About  30-40% of Canada bank branches were closed and many others were subject to drastically reduced hours.  Although most have recovered, the number of bank branches in Canada continues to decline.  It reached a peak for the top nine banks of 6,400 in 2014.  By 2020, the number had shrunk to 5,783.

Both consumers and small businesses still depend on in-person banking services despite the proliferation of online alternatives, and the shrinking of branch networks threatens local economic activity that is key to wealth-building in marginalized communities.  Many communities that had multiple banking options are now down to one – or only options that are an hour drive or more away.  This impacts not only consumers who tend to favor cash, but small businesses that need daily cash deposit and other banking services.

In July, 2021, ATMIA published a position paper arguing that Universal Cash Deposit for ATMs will assist communities and businesses in dealing with these declines, while making cash itself more competitive and protecting the on-going access to cash for all demographic groups. The paper defined Universal Cash Deposit as an interoperable system within an ATM network, or across multiple networks, for accepting cash deposits at enabled ATMs on an “interbank” basis, whereby a customer from one bank may deposit cash at ATMs owned and operated by other banks or by IADs.

Our recent survey on the "Readiness for Universal Cash Deposits for ATMs 2022" showed that over 68% favored Universal Cash Deposits at ATMs.  And over 90% agreed that the current trend in bank closures strengthened the case for making it a reality.

Cash Deposits at ATMs is one of the functionalities already baked into the NextGen ATM plan.  Any ATM able to accept cash is a potential depository.  Add recycling and you now have a strategy for building transaction volume and revenue by serving small businesses and consumers, who might otherwise be in a banking desert.

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The need for increased ATM crime penalties

United States / Americas

Raising awareness of the need for increased ATM crime penalties

Our industry has complained loudly for many years that "the penalty should fit the crime".  When the crime involves theft from an ATM or theft of the ATM, even along with its entire contents, that rarely happens.  Unless the same criminal group is crossing state lines to commit multiple crimes, in multiple jurisdictions.

Unlike bank robbery, which is a federal crime and felony, ATM crimes are generally considered petty theft or property crimes, which are relegated to state law and typically categorized as misdemeanors.  The irony of all that, however, is that the average ATM theft nets around $50,000 – 8 times more than the average bank robbery.

In 2020 there were about 1,500 bank robberies reported with total losses of $9 million. Burglaries of bank ATMs in the same year increased 165% to about 1,000.  This is a problem that is causing equal misery for both independent operators and financial institutions.

Thankfully, it is also a problem that is beginning to attract a lot of attention outside of our industry, as well.  Legislators and staff are hearing from constituents that something has to be done.  And there is word that a bill may be introduced in the House that would address these crime issues.

Meanwhile, states are taking the lead.  Texas passed a law last year that raises ATM crime to a felony.  Kansas signed a similar bill into law a couple months ago.  And the measure proposed this year in Missouri is making steady progress.  It is good to see that these bills are also taking into account the significant damage that can be caused to the ATM itself and surrounding property.

If you live or work in one of these states, please reach out to the bills' sponsors and co-sponsors and let them know how important it is.  Or, contact your local representatives and suggest they initiate similar efforts in your state.  This is truly a worthwhile issue that everyone in our industry can get behind.

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