Unbanked

Prepaid Cards: 5 Good Reasons to Put Them in Your Wallet

Lately, many banks and celebrities have been encouraging us to switch from credit or debit cards to prepaid cards. And even though these tools have their downsides, we can think of five situations when prepaid cards are the right plastic for the purpose.

Is Prepaid the Future of Plastic? Fee-Hungry Banks Hope So

There's a new wave of plastic filling the middle ground between credit cards and debit cards: refillable cards -- or prepaid cards -- that act like a hybrid of both. They're an attractive option for consumers -- and a convenient way for banks to sidestep recent consumer protection laws.

MoneyGram Goes Mobile with Digital Wallet Money Transer App

People who regularly use money transfer services just got another digital leg up. MoneyGram International is partnering with Gemalto, the company behind the LinqUs Mobile Money digital wallet, to allow customers to do money transfers straight from their smartphones.

Prepaid Credit Cards: Are They a Smart Tool for You?

Americans with limited access to banking services have been turning to prepaid cards for some time, but now Chase is pitching its new prepaid card as a good option even for customers who can get a regular bank account.

Cashing a Tax Refund Just Got Easier for the Unbanked

As many as 60 million Americans have limited or no access to banking services, and many of them will get tax refunds this spring. Typically, this is where payday lenders come in, cashing the checks for big fees, but now there's a new cashier offering to do it for much less: Walmart.

More Southerners Are Off the Banking Grid

More people in Southeast don't have bank accounts than in any other part of the country. The state of Mississippi leads the country with more than 16% of households using cash-and-carry for all their transactions. That's a situation that can keep families from climbing the ladder of success.

Wal-Mart Expands Check Cashing Service

Wal-Mart will expand check-cashing services at its Money Centers, bringing the largest public corporation by revenue into a decidedly low-rent business. The big box store will follow its usual strategy, charging less than competitors. With approximately 9 million "unbanked" U.S. households, this could be quite lucrative.

Living without a bank account

Woman at a bank windowThere's a troubling trend in this nation: People are giving up their banks.

Exactly how many people are going "bankless" is hard to track, but in...

Costly Cash: The Rise of Pawn Shops and Payday Lenders

Millions of Americans are facing the worst money problems imaginable, but these same conditions are a boon for pawn shops and payday lenders. Borrowers get short-term loans at these stores using some asset as collateral -- their paycheck, or a car, or jewelry. That access to cash helps, but it comes at a cost that can be crippling.