WASHINGTON (10/30/14)--The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC) Wednesday released the results of the 2013 FDIC National Survey of Unbanked and Underbanked Households, which showed a drop in unbanked households from 2011 to 2013.
The biennial report showed unbanked households declined to 7.7% in 2013, down from 8.2%, while the share of underbanked households remained essentially unchanged at 20%--or about 24 million households.
FDIC officials said that the economic recovery and "increases in household education" explain the decline in unbanked households.
Out of all unbanked households, 35.6 % said that not having enough money was the main reason for lacking an account, while 14.9% said that they disliked or distrusted banks. Unpredictable or high account fees were cited by 13.4% of unbanked households as the primary reason they did not have a bank account.
The survey is conducted every two years by the FDIC in partnership with the U.S. Bureau of the Census and provides insights and guidance on the demographics and needs of the unbanked and underbanked.
New to the 2013 survey were questions related to how consumers access their accounts. Nearly two out of three households primarily used tellers or online banking when accessing their accounts, the report found.
The FDIC also reported that 29.2% of "underbanked households" and 21.7% of "fully banked households" used mobile banking devices in 2013.
The FDIC concluded that consumers needs could be better fulfilled if financial institutions "deploy and market checkless checking accounts and other options" and integrate "mobile banking initiatives with branch-based strategies."
While underbanked households are more likely to use mobile devices, the FDIC also said that they are less likely to use online banking to access accounts.