Across the United States, more and more people are opting out of the banking system, according to a report from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.

According to the report, 821,000 households (approximately 17 million people) were without a single bank account from 2009 to 2011. Those numbers place the “un-banked population” at 8.2 percent of the U.S. population.

An additional 51 million people told researchers that although they have a bank account, they also make use of payday lenders, pawnshops, rent-to-own services, money orders or other such alternative financial services. This population, known as under-banked, has increased to 20.1 percent of U.S. households from the prior figure of 18.2 percent. Overall, a full 28.3 percent of U.S. households have either zero or one bank account for the whole household.

The report also found that a full 25 percent of U.S. households used alternative financial services in the past year. Among these households, 7.5 percent said they chose to do so because of discomfort with or lack of trust in banks.

Huge numbers of Americans opting out of banking system, 9/22/12

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