In 2013, the World Bank began measuring financial inclusion. The United States lags significantly behind other developed countries in providing access to basic banking services. In Britain, France, Germany and South Africa, every citizen has access to a basic bank account — a key financial product that offers a range of services including access to cash, bill payment and money transmission. A basic bank account is also the gateway to a range of other financial products, such as affordable credit, savings and insurance. Remaining in the fringe banking economy creates a never-ending cycle of financial vulnerability; households are financially unstable, illiquid and unable to save for emergencies.