In 2011, automated clearinghouse payment volume totaled more than 20.2 billion transactions, up 4.4% from a year earlier, NACHA reported April 12.

NACHA attributed the increase to additional native electronic payments, more online payments by consumers and a rise in the use of the ACH network for vendor payments and business-to-business transactions.

Native electronic payments, which are payments that start as electronic, increased about 5% from 2010. This indicates that more customers and businesses are making electronic payments instead of through cash or checks, Janet O. Estep, president and chief executive of NACHA, said in a news release.

Consumer-initiated entry transactions rose about 13% year over year. Direct ACH debit payments authorized through the Internet or a mobile device increased more than 9% and made up about 16.7% of the total network volume.

As for business-to-business transactions, CTX transactions grew by almost 13% and CCD transactions rose almost 5% from 2010. The CTX code allows for large amounts of data on a single payment, whereas the CCD code allows for just one addenda item.

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