Some social media buzz heated up as some consumers complained about why the money wasn't readily available.
"Banks holding stimulus payments so they can collect the overnight interest on the money should be a crime," wrote @goldietaylor on Twitter, editor-at-large for the Daily Beast. The tweet had 4,875 retweets.
Another asked: "Why are @Chase and @WellsFargo holding onto your money until March17?"
Another tweet: "Live look at Wells Fargo bringing my stimulus money to the bank. Talk about speed and horsepower." Not surprisingly, that tweet showed a photo of the Wells Fargo stagecoach.
Bankers and others in the industry set out Monday to clarify the payment time schedule and take on their critics.
"There is no mystery where the money is from the time the first payment file was transmitted on Friday, March 12 to when all recipients will have access to the money on Wednesday — it is still with the government," according to a statement provided Monday morning from Nacha.
The statement noted that the Internal Revenue Service announced that the "settlement date for the initial wave of tens of millions of economic impact payments by Direct Deposit will be Wednesday, March 17."
"This is the date on which the IRS will provide the funds to the banks and credit unions to further make available to recipients," the industry group stated.
I reported last week that the U.S. Treasury would start to send electronic messages to banks on Friday but bank accounts would not see any extra cash available immediately.
It was expected then that March 17 would be the effective date when the Treasury actually transfers the money, according to industry experts. More than 100 million payments are expected to be payable on March 17 via direct deposit, according to banking industry experts.
Jen Psaki, White House press secretary, told reporters in Washington on Thursday that people would start seeing direct deposit of the stimulus checks as soon as last weekend.
Jane Larimer, president and CEO of Nacha, issued a similar sentiment on Thursday after President Joe Biden signed the massive COVID-19 relief package into law.
"The ACH Network is ready to deliver these relief payments via Direct Deposit, with funds available to people on the day instructed by the IRS," Larimer said then.
The IRS noted in a press release issued late Friday: "As with the first two Economic Impact Payments in 2020, most Americans will receive their money without having to take any action. Some Americans may see the direct deposit payments as pending or as provisional payments in their accounts before the official payment date of March 17."©2021 Detroit Free Press. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.