The amount loaded onto US prepaid cards
is predicted to reach $672 billion over the next
three years, more than double the $330 billion placed onto these
cards in 2009. 

Research company Mercator Advisory Group’s
Seventh Annual Prepaid Market Forecasts 2010 to 2013
report found that increased consumer adoption coupled with greater
loads in government sectors will continue to drive the open-loop
prepaid market. This is expected to exceed the
closed-loop load value in 2012.

“The diversity of the prepaid market allows it to
grow at this blistering pace, as government agencies, corporations,
and consumers all find new uses for these cards,” Tim Sloane, vice
president of client services and director of Mercator Advisory
Group’s Prepaid Advisory Service.

The prepaid market grew by $60.7 billion in
2009, and closed-loop in-store gift cards currently represent 87.7
percent of the total gift card market.

Mercator predicts that the closed loop prepaid
market will achieve a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.4
percent between 2007 and 2013 and the open-loop market will achieve
a CAGR of 36.6 percent over the same period.