FIS Partners with The Clearing House for Real-Time Payments


By Roy Urrico

Jacksonville Fla.- based financial technology powerhouse FIS announced it is teaming with The Clearing House to bring real-time payment processing and settlement to credit unions and small-to-mid-sized banks.

FIS’ said its real-time payments managed service provides a complete turnkey service for financial institutions to quickly and cost-effectively connect to the RTP network, the real-time payment system provided by the New York City-based The Clearing House.

“We’ve designed our new managed service to ease the process of connecting to this emerging platform for small-to-mid-sized banks and credit unions that lack the resources of their larger competitors.” said Royal Cole, EVP, head of financial institutions payment solutions at FIS.

“We are excited to be working with FIS to bring the benefits of real-time payments to its financial institution customers,” said Steve Ledford, senior vice president of product development and strategy at The Clearing House.

Defining the Network


The RTP network, billed as the first new U.S. payments infrastructure built in more than 40 years, enables instantaneous settlement of payments and availability of funds for participating financial institutions and their customers. The network also enables financial institutions to initiate and receive real-time payment transactions.

Norman Marraccini, SVP, group executive payments, for FIS, said its real-time payments managed service helps smaller financial institutions connect to The Clearing Houses’ RTP network quickly and cost-effectively. “Because the solution is hosted by FIS, financial institutions can take advantage of the network without the need to add staff or make significant upfront capital investments.”

What does real-time processing actually mean? The system runs 24/7, year-round, and processes any time it receives a payment. “The real-time system is not a batch system; we process single transactions immediately,” explained Marraccini. He added, at the time of transaction submission by the user, the transactions are already in processing steps for the recipient to receive funds; all in a matter of seconds.”

How It Works


The way it works is the real-time processing allows for money to move right away. Due to the configuration TCH holds with the financial institution, funds can move immediately from account to account. Marraccini noted settlement is immediate and constant as there is no concept of “end of processing day.” Money moves every day of the calendar year.

The system that FIS is offering is a managed product. “We are monitoring and processing all transactions on behalf of the financial institutions,” Marraccini said. As a turnkey service, FIS processes the transactions. “Real-time payments use ISO20022 messaging. We convert all the ISO messages into an acceptable format at the financial institution for their ability for presentment to the account holder.” Marraccini added that due to asset size FIS’ turnkey offering does limit a financial institution’s real-time feature and functionality available in the RTP network.

St. Louis-based First Bank, and Irvine, Calif.-based Nano Banc, are among the first FIS core banking clients to begin real-time payments through the FIS managed service. Other financial institutions are on the way, “We’re rolling this offering out to clients but can’t currently disclose any specific names outside of those mentioned in our announcement,” Marraccini advised.

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