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Western Union C2C remittances begin to recover, digital surges

Western Union reports that consumer-to-consumer money transfers in May have begun to recover from steep declines related to the COVID-19 pandemic in April, and digital transactions have reached their biggest increase in a decade. 

Overall money transfers among consumers, which are very often transfers to friends or family, were down only 7% during the month of May, compared with year-ago figures.. This compares to a 21% drop during April, according to a press release.

Digital transactions soared in the month of May, showing a 99% increase from a year ago, compared with a 77% increase in April. 

"We are encouraged that our money transfers transaction trends continue to improve as the disruptive effect of COVID-19 appears to be lessening," Hikmet Ersek, president and CEO of Western Union, said in the release. "Importantly the strong growth we are seeing in our digital business is especially impressive given that our digital money transfer business was already over $600 million of revenue in 2019, and it confirms that our digitally focused growth strategy is positioning us well for the future."

The company said transactions rose 39% in April and 51% in May. Digital money transfers accounted for 30% of transactions in April and May.