ORLANDO, Fla. (4/9/09)--The number of automated clearinghouse (ACH) payments in 2008 topped 18.2 billion--a 1.2 billion increase over payments in 2007, reports NACHA-The Electronic Payments Association. More than 15,000 depository financial institutions, including credit unions, originated and received ACH payments last year. NACHA announced the statistics at its PAYMENTS 2009 conference Monday, noting that payments via the ACH Network grew, despite the slower economy. The portion of volume passing through the ACH Operators increased to nearly 15 billion transactions--7.1% more than in 2007. The dollar value of these transactions totaled $29.96 trillion, a 4% increase over 2007's dollar value. Internet-initiated ACH debits rose by 19.7% to nearly 2.1 billion payments. When combined with consumer-initiated credit payments, the dollar value of consumer ACH payments via the Internet totaled $939 billion in 2008. Business-to-business and financial EDI payments saw more than one billion addenda records transmitted last year, a 14.6% increase over 2007. Back office conversion, the newest e-check transaction to be available for the full year, grew by 1.772% in 2008--to nearly 78.5 million payments. The federal government used the ACH Network for more than 30 million direct deposits as part of last year's economic stimulus package. This contributed to a 10.2% growth of federal government ACH payments to 1.145 billion payments in 2008. For more information, use the resource link.