Why is the U.S. Department of Treasury encouraging recipients to consider the Direct Express&reg card?

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Why is the U.S. Department of Treasury encouraging recipients to consider the Direct Express&reg card?

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The Direct Express&reg card is a safer, more reliable payment option for the millions of Americans who receive federal benefits by paper check. Americans are increasingly open to and actively seeking — alternatives to cash and paper checks. According to a 2007 study by the Federal Reserve, of the 93 billion non-cash transactions in 2006, more than two-thirds were electronic payments. Furthermore, debit cards now surpass credit cards as the most frequently used electronic payment type. To put this in context, Americans made more than 25 billion debit card purchases valued at $1 trillion and made 5.8 billion ATM cash withdrawals in 2006. In addition to Americans increased preference for debit cards, individual states have paved the way for a federal benefit debit card by widely introducing child support, unemployment insurance, and other economic assistance on state-sponsored debit cards. For example, the majority of states in the U.S. use debit cards to disburse child support payments.

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