Discover Index Shows Consumer Confidence Down 2 Points

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] The August Discover U.S. Spending Monitor dropped to 80.5, its lowest level since March 2009. This after having plummeted 13 points since the January figure of 93.1, down 2.2 points from the July recording. This is thanks in great part to uncertainty over the debt crisis and wild swings in the…

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American Express Appoints Head of Enterprise Growth Group

Harshul Sanghi has been appointed to lead the Enterprise Growth Group office in Silicon Valley, a new business unit within American Express focused on expanding alternative mobile and online payment services beyond the traditional card and travel businesses. Sanghi will work to broaden and strengthen American Express’ existing online and mobile products through key partnerships with the local technology and venture communities. Sanghi has extensive corporate venture experience and a strong mobile background from his most recent role at Motorola Ventures. Sanghi was previously the Managing Director of North American venture activities for Motorola Mobility and Vice President, Business Development at Ucentric Systems.

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BOFA Launches New Cash Rewards Credit Card

Bank of America, the Official Bank of the San Fransisco Giants, launched an integrated marketing program that ties the game’s ultimate defensive play with the new “BankAmericard Cash Rewards” credit card. Automatically rewarding customers with 1 percent, 2 percent and up to 3 percent cash back on their most common purchases, the new card is in response to customer requests for a program that rewards consumers for the spending categories they use most, such as gas and groceries. It rewards customers automatically earn 1% cash back on all purchases, 2% cash back on grocery store purchases, and 3% on gas station purchases. Customers earn the 2 percent and 3 percent cash back on gas and grocery purchases on the first $1,500 they spend in those combined categories per quarter. After that, they continue to earn one percent on purchases.

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NCR Deploys Multivendor ATM Software Fast

NCR Corporation deployed its APTRA software featuring Advanced Deposit on multi-vendor ATMs in Alaska USA Federal Credit Union’s ATM network roughly eight times faster than the norm. This is thanks to the continually increasing experience of its professional services team as well as improvements to its APTRA software. APTRA software can help mid-sized and community banks and credit unions take advantage of the cost efficiencies of multi-vendor applications – especially as financial institutions deploy more sophisticated functions at the ATM, such as ADA voice guidance, advanced deposit, personalization, targeted marketing and integration with other channels. According to NCR data, only one percent of U.S. financial institutions with less than $50 billion in assets have installed multivendor software applications, despite 75 percent of the 20 largest banks doing so.

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Starmount Debuts m-Selling Assistant

Starmount software solution provider announced an update to its “Starmount Engage” mobile-selling assistant, adding to its mobile POS solution and allowing the merchant to deliver a more personalized in-store experience. The “Starmount Engage 2.0” allows associates to use a mobile device to extend and leverage valuable web content with a wide assortment of mobile-selling tools at sales associates’ fingertips. Features include the ability to search and browse items; scan an item in the store to go to detailed product information; check cross-channel availability to save a sale; access influential customer input via ratings and reviews; and offer side-by-side product comparisons to help associates drive a buying decision with shoppers. Since these resources are available on a mobile device, sales associates are free to interact with shoppers at the point-of-decision, anywhere on the store floor.

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Century Payments Offers Merchants Trustwave PCI Compliance

Century Payments selected Trustwave to provide its Level 4 merchants PCI DSS compliance validation solutions. Century engaged Trustwave to provide its merchants access to its “TrustKeeper” security and compliance web portal. Supporting merchants’ compliance efforts, including moving merchants through the complex compliance process with greater ease and efficiency by making the tasks achievable by non-technical users, “TrustKeeper” helps facilitate PCI DSS compliance validation for merchants or acquirers, ISOs and processors with large merchant populations. The “TrustKeeper” also helps merchants complete required vulnerability scans and receive their PCI DSS compliance certificate.

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Wells Fargo Increases Credit Counseling Commitment 35%

Wells Fargo is set to increase its commitment to credit counseling nonprofits by $5.4 million to a total of $12.4 million in 2011 for a 35% increase over the $9.2 million in 2010 to national and local credit counseling agencies. The company has taken this extra measure in an effort to sustain vital services provided by non-profit agencies who work with customers with financial challenges that extend beyond their home payments. On April 14, federal government officials agreed to discontinue $88 million of U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) grants to housing counselors. This money enabled counseling agencies to offer their services free of charge or for a small fee.

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AmEx Execs Gear-up for Investor Conferences

American Express is set to participate in a number of investor conferences. With this, Group President Dan Schulman will participate in the Goldman Sachs Financial Technology Conference on Tuesday, September 13, 2011. Meanwhile, Chief Financial Officer Dan Henry will participate in the Barclays Capital Global Financial Services Conference on Wednesday, September 14, fielding a question and answer session relating to the Company’s recent results and strategies.

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Payvment Launches Social Commerce System

Payvment Facebook ecommerce launched its social commerce solution that includes an array of new features designed to meet the needs of larger retailers, brands and agencies. Payvment is integrating these new features into two new enhanced paid versions that will be available in late September: Payvment Premium and Payvment Platinum. Payvment’s award-winning free Facebook store will continue to be offered alongside these new versions, making it easy for anyone to get started with social commerce.Since launching in 2009, Payvment has developed an infrastructure for social discovery and promotion that includes Facebook’s most popular ecommerce application as well as Facebook’s only Shopping Mall.

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