Deluxe Corp.'s chief executive told a gathering of Wall Street analysts in New York last week that he expects the number of checks written in the United States to begin declining as early as next year.

J.A. "Gus" Blanchard, president and CEO of the St. Paul-based check printer - the nation's largest - said consumers' increased use of credit and debit cards, along with nascent home banking services are beginning to impact the use of paper checks.

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