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APIs in Action: Lead Bank gains back-end efficiencies with new FedACH® API

The Federal Reserve has begun to offer application programming interfaces (APIs) that provide our financial institution customers programmatic access to information services, providing greater flexibility and efficiency opportunities for managing daily operations.

APIs are often key components of online business that help to modernize customer experiences and operational processes. They also allow for increased innovation on new financial services by enabling programmatic access to a defined scope of data or functionality, often in a timelier manner.

Early adopter successfully pilots FedACH APIs

Lead Bank (Off-site), a state-chartered bank based in Kansas City, Missouri, provides banking as a service (BaaS) to its fintech customers, which allows nonbanks to leverage a bank’s infrastructure to offer financial services to their clients. When Nitu Choudhary, a senior software engineer at Lead Bank, was searching for ways to automate back-end services and ACH content, she turned to the Federal Reserve for help. Choudhary worked with her relationship manager to join the Federal Reserve Financial Services’ (FRFS) API pilot program.

To know if an ACH file was accepted by the Fed, Lead Bank previously had to wait to receive an acknowledgement file — a time-consuming, cumbersome process. Choudhary’s relationship manager introduced her to the Fed’s ACH File Origination Status API, which enables financial institutions to determine in real time whether their FedACH files have been accepted, rejected or are pending and troubleshoot the same day. Lead Bank found the ACH File Origination Status API to be so helpful that the organization has since expanded their use to include all early availability FedACH APIs.

Automation helps Lead Bank integrate with third-party clients and provide services where the transactions are not limited. APIs help us keep up with client needs and allow our partners to scale up. It has been great to see the Fed moving in this direction, and we are excited for other APIs to be available.
Nitu Choudhary
Senior Software Engineer
Lead Bank

Explore the full suite of FedACH APIs

In addition to the ACH File Origination Status API, the Federal Reserve is piloting a suite of FedACH APIs:

  • ACH File Receipt Status API provides real-time information for FedACH files that are in process or have been received through FRFS, giving users early insight into their receipt activity.
  • ACH Originator Batch Summary API delivers summarized information for batches originating through FRFS. This API can extend the programmatic reach of key ACH batch originator summary information by helping organizations build informational processes into their business services.
  • ACH Settlement Summaries API offers advice and settlement summary information for entries that have been originated or received through FRFS. This API allows information to be queried at the customer's preferred timing and in a more accessible format.

FedACH APIs can offer a standard, automated way to quickly access information and data, making your organization’s existing processes more effective and efficient. They also allow organizations to make efficiency improvements to existing processes and create new customized experiences for your financial institution and your customers.

Join the FedACH API pilot program

APIs create business opportunities for all financial institutions, regardless of their size or access to technology resources. Now is a great time to discover the business benefits they can offer. If your organization is interested in piloting early availability APIs, contact your relationship manager.

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