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Zelle says COVID-19 boosting P2P enrollment

Early Warning Services, the parent firm of Zelle, said the COVID-19 pandemic is boosting demand for the P2P network as more consumers are sending money to family and friends to help manage economic disruption.

Company officials said Zelle enrollment is up double digits above prior-year figures as consumers use the service to reimburse friends and family for canceled events, pay back neighbors for groceries and send money to family members, according to a press release.

"As events have unfolded and lives changed, consumers are using Zelle to help those in need, and as a result, these heartwarming stories are strengthening communities," Lou Anne Alexander, chief product officer at Early Warning, said in the release. "To help foster these bonds, together with our financial institutions partners, we are helping bring people closer together by enabling them to send and receive money for help with rent, emergencies, shared groceries and gifts for celebratory events."

A total of 837 financial institutions are contracted to work with Zelle and more than half of them are actively processing transactions.