SYBASE & MOPAY

Sybase 365, a subsidiary of Sybase mobile messaging and commerce, is
working with MoPay independent mobile banking services to provide mobile
access commerce in South African communities. To improve access to
financial services for the under-serviced and un-banked communities of
South Africa, the partnership is targeting primarily the lower to middle
social groupings dependent on services provided in municipalities.
Sybase 365 is managing all of the messaging interconnection for the
service using a dedicated SMS short-code that functions across all South
African operator networks and providing the mobile payments platform to
process all financial transactions. With MoPay, the companies aim to
enhance efficiency of payment collection for government bodies,
utilities providers and education organizations.

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Wells Cash Back Card Adds Options

Wells Fargo & Company has expanded its “Cash Back Card” program to give eligible customers the ability to pay
down their home equity principal, automatically apply cash rewards to their eligible Wells Fargo checking
and savings accounts, pay down their personal lines and loans or request cash rewards.
Customers can also pay down their Wells Fargo Home Mortgage with the Wells Fargo Home Rebate Card.
Since 2007, when the company introduced its “Wells Fargo Home Rebate Card”, a special
credit card only for its mortgage customers, nearly $10.5 million has
been applied to the principal on Wells Fargo Home Mortgage loans.
Virtually every purchase (minus returns/credits) customers make with
their “Wells Fargo Cash Back Card” or “Wells Fargo Home Rebate Card”
counts toward a 1% rebate. The rebate is applied automatically to
the selected account in $25 increments, and there is no cap on the
amount of rebate customers can earn.

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GE Money to Issue BERNINA Card

GE Money and sewing machine manufacturer BERNINA have signed a multi-year extension of their consumer financing
agreement. The no annual fee BERNINA credit
card offers customers special financing options and additional savings
opportunities throughout the year. The BERNINA credit card can be used at over 500 authorized dealers to
purchase any of BERNINA’s complete line of state-of-the-art sewing and
embroidery machines, sergers and embroidery software. The card is managed by GE Money’s
Sales Finance unit. BERNINA dealers use GE Money’s Web-based finance management portal,
Business Center. Business Center provides business clients with an easy,
secure way to manage their credit programs and better serve their
customers. Thousands of small businesses use GE Money’s Business Center
to securely access all the sales, operational, marketing and training
tools they need at the click of a button.

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Spending & CARD Act are Keys to Profitability

Among credit card-backed securities, yield and the monthly payment rate declined in September. Charge-offs declined for the second time in three months, while delinquencies resumed their upward trend.
FitchRatings says that near-term profitability for U.S. credit card issuers will remain challenged by credit and spend volume, with longer-term earnings prospects dependent on each issuer’s ability to adapt to new legislation. Purchase volumes were relatively flat in the third quarter from the prior quarter but were down 13.7% annually on average at the top six card issuers. During September Fitch’s “Credit Card Charge-off Index” declined 77 basis points to 10.75%. Delinquency (60+ days) edged up to 4.2%. Yield declined 27 basis points to 10.39% and the monthly payment rate declined from 18.19% in August to 17.98% in September. Fitch notes that under the “CARD Act”, the inability to re-price existing balances will necessitate higher rates for all cardholders, credit availability will decline, with tighter underwriting criteria and reduced credit lines and competition in the prime market is likely to intensify.

ABS METRICS
YIELD MPR
Sep 08: 17.13% 18.57%
Oct 08: 17.05% 18.42%
Nov 08: 17.01% 15.96%
Dec 08: 17.21% 17.27%
Jan 09: 16.00% 17.15%
Feb 09: 16.83% 15.78%
Mar 09: 17.66% 16.48%
Apr 09: 18.01% 16.98%
May 09: 17.94% 17.16%
Jun 09: 17.95% 18.85%
Jul 09: 19.35% 18.56%
Aug 09: 19.66% 18.19%
Sep 09: 19.39% 17.98%
Source: FitchRatings

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FlexPerks Visa Card Expands Program

U.S. Bank expanding its “FlexPerks Visa card” rewards program to its
portfolio of credit and check card products. Consumers and small businesses can now enroll in “FlexPerks” to earn rewards and
cash back and combine rewards earned on their credit and
check cards. FlexPerks credit and check cards enable customers
to earn a number of cash back options. They can also choose to earn free
award travel, starting at only 20,000 FlexPoints (up to a $400 ticket
value) on more than 150 airlines, with no blackout dates, capacity
controls or e-ticket redemption fees. In addition to the cash back and
travel rewards, other reward options include merchandise, gift cards or
statement credits.

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nFinanSe Sets a New Standard in PPC Packaging

In the spirit of more transparency Tampa-based nFinanSe has developed
new packaging for its reloadable prepaid Visa debit card that details
pricing upfront. The new card is also competitively priced at $3 with a
$2.95 monthly maintenance fee for an unlimited number of purchase
transactions. Additional funds can be loaded for $2.95. The Company’s
“Visa Reloadable Prepaid Debit Card” will charge a customer $1.50 to
withdraw funds at an ATM but will offer free direct deposit of payroll
and free receipt of bank transfers. The card and packaging were designed
by Fifty Eight Advertising, an Atlanta-based advertising firm. The new
reloadable prepaid Visa debit card will launch next month in Winn-Dixie
Supermarkets. The card is issued by Palm Desert National Bank.

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Survey Finds Retailer Gift Cards with Fees

A new study shows that fees vary widely on major gift cards. Bankrate says consumers spent $24.9 billion on gift cards last year.
The survey found that three issuers charged a $2.50 monthly
maintenance fee after 12 months of inactivity on their gift cards.
All store gift cards don’t charge a fee for purchasing their card in-store (Starbucks charges a $1.50 handling fee for cards purchased online), however all credit issuer gift cards charge a $3.95 fee upon purchase. While most retailers do allow online purchasing, major
retailers such as CVS, T.J. Maxx, and Marshall’s do not allow their gift cards to be used online. A recent survey by Accenture found 59% of Americans want a gift card, compared to 56% for apparel and 44% for toys. Three-quarters of consumers will spend the same for a gift card as they would a gift for someone. Seven out of ten gift card recipients plan to spend their gift card within three months or less. Four out of five respondents say will be buying gift cards this holiday season.

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Capital Payments Acquires Two Firms

NY-based payment solution provider Capital Payments has acquired both
Chicago-based e-payment service Applied Merchant Systems and PayQuake.
AMS is an electronic payments services company specializing in credit
card and check processing, and other payment related services for
small and medium-sized businesses, corporate merchants, ecommerce
merchants, and trade associations. The acquisition of AMS supports
Capital Payments’ core strategy to grow
through both strategic acquisition and strong organic growth. AMS
services over 12,000 merchants throughout the United States and will
extend Capital Payments’ platform as the leading national provider of
payment solutions to the Trusted Advisor community and their small
business clients who rely on their advisory services.

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Average Credit Scores Continue to Slide Down

The Midwest and Northeast regions showed the highest increases in credit card debt with 16% and 17% respectively, during October. Credit scores continued to slide during this year, dropping to 671 in October, compared to 676 in January. Nevertheless, credit scores are on the rise for many consumers with 40% of consumers increasing their credit scores in October. San Francisco-based Credit Karma says the South region had the highest percentage of increasing credit scores. In October, 41% of consumers in the South increased their credit scores, while 28% of consumers’ credit scores decreased and 31% of consumers’ credit scores stayed the same. In October, the average consumer with an open account had: $7,573 in credit card debt; $194,372 in home mortgage loans; $54,039 in home equity; $14,729 in auto loans; and $26,417 in student loans.

CREDIT SCORES
May 09: 675
Jun 09: 674
Jul 09: 674
Aug 09: 673
Sep 09: 672
Oct 09: 671
Source: Credit Karma

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NXP & ABI

ABI Research has placed NXP Semiconductor number one on its “Vendor
Matrix” evaluation of worldwide contactless transaction IC vendors,
followed by INSIDE Contactless and Infineon Technologies. The “Vendor
Matrix” analytical tool was developed by ABI Research to provide a clear
understanding of vendors’ positions in specific markets, assessed on
“innovation” and “implementation” across several criteria unique. The
ABI Research conclusions were based on examined the vendors’ product
portfolios; products’ physical specifications; applicability to a range
of applications or devices; experience; relevance to the global market;
and focus on and capabilities in new application development. ABI
Research provides in-depth analysis and quantitative forecasting of
trends in global connectivity and other emerging technologies, advising
thousands of decision makers through 27 research and advisory services.

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TODOS EBANKING

Todos has delivered its 20 millionth eBanking security product,
continuing to strengthen the bonds of trust between banks and their
customers. Allowing for a safer online experience, Todos invests in
security products such as the Todos “C400” and “C200” advanced smart
card readers, 6million of which have already been shipped. Eliminating
the danger of man-in-the-middle and man-in-the-browser attacks, the
smartcard readers provide enhanced transaction authentication without
having to connect to the user’s PC using the Todos “Dynamic Signatures”.
“Dynamic Signatures” allows banks to adjust the level of security in
proportion to the level of risk involved in each transaction while
“Secure Domain Separation” prevents cross-channel attacks by keeping
eCommerce, eBanking authentication, logon and transactions separate.

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SELFSERVE PLANT

The NCR Corporation has opened its new manufacturing plant in Manaus,
Brazil, supporting the market demand for self-service ATMs in Brazil,
the Caribbean and Latin America with the production of the “SelfServe”
machine. The company celebrated the opening at its plant 90 days after
having announced plans to do so and will create about 250 new jobs in
the city. Testing and certification at the 2.5-acre plant was conducted
and completed by NCR’s global quality organization, as well as the
Canadian Standards Association (CSA International) and the Underwriters
Laboratories (UL). NCR’s decision to bring ATM manufacturing in-house
was driven by the belief as self-service ATM technology becomes more
innovative and strategic to financial institutions, the ability to
control manufacturing in key markets becomes a core and competitive
advantage to a growth strategy.

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