Western Union, MercadoLibre team on remittances

Western Union will work with MercadoLibre, the South American e-commerce giant, so that digital remittances can be sent to Mexico – where they now represent a significant part of the local economy, Reuters wrote on Wednesday (July 6).

This comes as the economy has been weakened by various factors. Now, families abroad will be able to send money through Western Union, and those in Mexico will be able to collect payments through Mercado Pago, the digital financial arm of MercadoLibre.

Stores in Mexico, including large chains like McDonald’s, Domino’s Pizza and Starbucks, are more often accepting MercadoLibre as a form of payment.

Reuters wrote that more than 70% of remittances are currently collected in cash in Mexico, and due to low bank penetration, more than half of the country’s 126 million people do not have a bank account.

It comes as remittances hit a record high of $5.17 billion in May, as the US economy was doing better at the time – with the US being the top destination for migrants from the Mexico.

However, Reuters quoted several experts who said things could get worse, with silver returning to lower volumes over the next few months alongside a potential recession.

In March, PYMNTS wrote that Walmart was working to make it cheaper for customers to send their funds to Mexico.

Read more: Walmart relaunches Mexican remittance program

Customers can send money from any of the retail giant’s stores in the United States to Mexico, with the cost being just $2.50 per transaction on the money transfer program Walmart2Walmart.

It came as remittances to Mexico rose 27% from 2021, the company said, and Julia Unger, vice president of Walmart Financial Services, said the low costs show just how the company wants to make things fairer in general for customers.

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NEW PYMNTS DATA: HOW UTILITIES AND CONSUMER FINANCE COMPANIES CAN IMPROVE THE BILL PAYMENT EXPERIENCE

About: More than half of utilities and consumer finance companies have the ability to digitally process all monthly bill payments. The kicker? Only 12% of them do. The Digital Payments Edge, a collaboration between PYMNTS and ACI Worldwide, surveyed 207 billing and collections professionals at these companies to find out why going digital remains elusive.

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