Zelle Under Pressure to Handle Payment Fraud More Like Cards

On July 20, 2022, there was an article on payment fraud in Digital Transactions, “So-Called Friendly Fraud on P2P Payment...
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Cryptocurrency Governments Payments

Should the Federal Reserve Create a Digital Currency?

In January 2022, the U.S. Federal Reserve released a long-awaited discussion paper on its thinking about a central bank digital...
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Enterprise Payments Payments Payments 101

Payments 101, Part 8 – Enterprise Payments

With this installment, we come to the end of our tour of major payments systems with a description of enterprise...
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Cryptocurrency Digital Goods NFT Payments

A Realistic Path for NFTs

There has been a lot of hype around non-fungible tokens (NFTs) lately, and a lot of confusion, so I thought...
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ACH Checks Legal issues Payments Payments 101

Payments 101, Part 7 – Checks

This is part of an ongoing series.  For previous installments, go here. Before we wrap up our tour, there is...
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ACH Payments Payments 101 Wires

Payments 101, Part 6 – ACH, Wires and Faster Payments

We are nearing the end of our initial excursion into the basic payment methods with what are the most fundamental...
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Banking as a Service Payments 101 Prepaid Cards

Payments 101, Part 5 – Prepaid Cards

Welcome to another installment in my ongoing tour of the major payment methods, how they work, and the issues and...
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Stablecoins for Purchases? Not So Much

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Cryptocurrency Governments International Payments

Cryptocurrency in China’s Economic Strategy

Recently, China piloted a new state-owned cryptocurrency, the digital yuan.  In this article, I will show how this fits into...
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Debit cards Legal issues Payments Payments 101

Payments 101, Part 4 – Debit Cards

This is part of an ongoing series.  For earlier installments, see The Five Actor Model, Credit Cards, Part One, and...
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Cryptocurrency Payments

Bitcoin is Not a Viable Currency. Stablecoins Will Be.

(Note: this article was updated on January 19, 2021 to account for new information, particularly the extension of the boom...
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Payments 101

Payments 101, Part 3 – Credit Cards, Part Two

(This is part of a continuing series.  Read Part 1 and Part 2.)   Introduction When we left off last...
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Subscriptions, Online Services, PayPal, And Covid-19

Here is a link to an article I did for Digital Transactions Magazine's November 2020 issue:
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Financial International Payments

As Americans Face Economic Strain, VCs are Investing $230 Million in Alternative Credit

Before we get back to the history and workings of credit cards, I thought it would be interesting to catch...
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Credit Cards Payments Payments 101

Payments 101, Part 2 – Credit Cards

Over the next several weeks, we’ll take a tour of the payment methods outlined in Part 1, and go into...
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Financial International Payments Payments 101

Payments 101, Part 1 – The Five Actor Model

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COVID-19 Update: Things Could Be Worse

It’s been a few weeks since my last blog post on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, so this seems a good time...
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Wallets Within Wallets

On July 17, 2017, PayPal announced a new partnership with Samsung to enable PayPal as a payment method within the Samsung Pay...
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Fragmentation in the World of P2P Payments

Last time I wrote about the unbundling and rebundling of payments; what I didn’t cover was the downside, which is greater...
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The Unbundling and Rebundling of Payments

One of the most interesting trends that I have been following for the past several years is what I call...
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Law 6


Payments 101 is a website and consulting practice dedicated to making complex payments concepts easy to understand, cutting through the jargon to get to the essentials that everyone in the industry should know. Its founder, Aaron McPherson, is a 20-year payments industry veteran, having worked in both research/consulting as well as the industry’s biggest financial technology provider, FIS.


We provide research-based consulting services to large and small businesses focused on partnerships, market assessments, competitive analyses and market forecasts. We also provide training, both in-person and remote, in the full range of payments topics, all delivered in a simple, engaging style that welcomes questions and curiosity, perfect for new employees, salespeople, and others who may be coming into the payments industry from elsewhere. We will be providing free resources on this site in the form of a “Payments 101” blog series, as well as topical commentary. Aaron McPherson has a long history of this sort of outreach, on his Twitter and LinkedIn accounts.


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“Aaron brings a depth of knowledge about the payments industry and direct experience from his prior senior strategy posts. As leader of our research team, he helped insure the delivery of quality research and took on special projects to better the group. Three significant initiatives were: (1) the increased technology and vendor comparison style studies across all of our practices; (2) the creation and adoption of the worldwide payments model; and (3) an improved internal system for measuring metrics across the teams performance. I would strongly recommend Aaron for any technical role or leadership over any technical/production capacity. He was respected across our analyst team for his industry knowledge and professional approach. I wish Aaron success in any new role he takes on!”

Robert Misasi • President & Founder, Mercator Advisory Group

“I recently hired Aaron for a consulting project to help my company do an assessment of the FinTech market. Aaron did a fantastic job and absolutely exceeded our expectations! From project design to execution and everything in between, he was a pro in every regard. His deep domain expertise coupled with his exceptional network of executives in the FinTech space enabled us to achieve results quickly. I strongly recommend Aaron and I look forward to working with him again as soon as the opportunity presents itself.”

Craig Harris • Founder, R&D Leader, HG Insights

“Worked with Aaron at Financial Insights and found him extremely smart and thorough. He knows his topic areas completely – especially payments – and can go wide as well as deep.”

David Potterton • Director, Product Management, Alkami Technology

“Aaron is a clear thought leader in the payments systems and process market. He may also be the most critical advocate in the industry of enterprise payments and payment hub strategies, technologies, and business implications. I have sought Aaron out on numerous occasions for razor sharp thinking on market sizing, vendor evaluations, and technology trends. His insights have proved invaluable and I know first hand have guided significant decisions by major participants in the space.”

Bruce Parker, Payments Geek


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