U.S. Consumer Credit Risk Hits New High in Q2

The nation’s credit risk level climbed to its highest level in a decade
during the second quarter. However, the good news is the rate of
increase is slowing as the general lending environment remains stagnant.
The TransUnion “Credit Risk Index,” which measures the change in average
consumer credit risk within various geographies rose to 128.32 for the
second quarter, compared to 127.26 in the first quarter and 120.89 for
2Q/08. The rate of increase between the first and second quarters was
the lowest since 2006, when the nation experienced a 3.35% decline from
115.37 to 111.51. The states that experienced the largest quarterly
increases included Florida (2.67%), Oregon (2.65%) and Nevada (2.37%).
Of the states experiencing quarterly decreases, Delaware (-0.80%), New
Mexico (-0.62%) and Montana (-0.60%) led the way. On a year-over-year
basis, four states had double digit increases in the CRI, including
Nevada (13.20%), Arizona (12.49%), California (12.47%) and Florida
(12.40%).

CREDIT RISK INDEX
2Q/08: 120.89
3Q/08: 117.74
4Q/08: 124.79
1Q/09: 127.26
2Q/09: 128.32
Source: TransUnion

Details

OGC & MASTERCARD

The Office of Government Commerce (OGC) has allowed public sector
agencies MasterCard electronic payment solutions for their procurement
activities under its new Framework Agreement. running from 2010-2014.
The agreement allows for MasterCard solutions, including the MasterCard
“Purchasing Card,” the “SmartData Online” and its “InControl,” made
available to the 3,300 national, regional and local public sector bodies
in the UK through financial institutions AirPlus, Barclays, J.P. Morgan
and RBS Group. The 44,000 disparate buying units across the UK public
sector will also be able to use MasterCard payment solutions as tools to
streamline and improve purchase-to-pay processes. The “inControl”
platform allows financial institutions to provide government agencies
enhanced authorisation controls to direct how, when and where payment
cards may be used while the “Purchasing Card” allows public sector
organizations to leverage data reporting, integration and management
tools through “SmartData Online”.

Details

Meta Payment Systems Launches Community PPCs

Meta Payment Systems has successfully completed the pilot for a new
“Community Gift” program to help local economies through the promotion
of Chamber and/or Downtown Association organizations’ retail members.
The Community Gift pilot program was conducted in Sioux Falls, SD and
Luverne, MN. Downtown Sioux Falls approached Meta Payment Systems with
the desire to replace and improve upon its existing program.
The Luverne Area Chamber of Commerce partnered with Exchange State
Bank of Luverne to offer Community Gift also with positive results.
Based on the successful results from the pilot programs
Meta Payment Systems is launching the program nationally.

Details

BLAZE ADVISOR

Absa Bank has deployed the FICO “Blaze Advisor” business rules
management system as its decision engine for all consumer credit
originations. The FICO solution will standardize its decision process
across mortgage, personal loans, auto loans, checking accounts and
credit cards for significantly greater agility and effectiveness. The
“Blaze Advisor” also gives Absa a single point of control to manage
multiple product offers and make customer-level decisions to improve
response time and decision consistency. Users can modify business rules
themselves, without having to rely on technical staff support, offering
greater flexibility and control over policies, reducing time required to
modify rules to minutes.

Details

EVO Merchant Services to Market Hypercom

NY-based credit card processor EVO Merchant Services has Class A certified and will market Hypercom’s “Optimum T4210”
and “T4220” terminals to its nearly 200,000 US retail and restaurant merchant customers.
Hypercom’s high security Optimum T4200 product family for North America
consists of four powerful 32-bit multi-application devices that share
the same platform, user interface and software toolkit to maximize
efficiency, application portability and offer customers a broad range of
options to serve any market need.

Details

GLOBALPAY.EUROOUT

Wachovia has introduced its “GlobalPay.EuroOut” at the 2009 SIBOS
conference, a euro payment solution to help financial institutions send
payments outside of Europe. The service was designed to allow European
banks to initiate and make euro payments to a beneficiary’s account,
without having to use a correspondent bank account to facilitate the
process. While most banks in the Eurozone have traditionally gone
through correspondent banks to make euro payments to beneficiaries
outside the Eurozone, “GlobalPay.EuroOut” eliminates this step. With
this, European banks can make payments using the same systems they use
to send payments inside of Europe, including Target2 or EBA Euro1.

Details

TUTUKA & SAFENET

South African-based Tutuka payment processor has implemented SafeNet’s
“DataSecure” platform and “ProtectHost (PH) EFT” hardware security
module. These Components of SafeNet’s Enterprise Data Protection (EDP)
Security Suite allow Tutuka to meet PCI DSS and EMV compliance. Tutuka
provides software-based solutions for gift vouchers, gift cards, prepaid
Mastercards, prepaid cash replacement and loyalty programs, catering to
customers typically avoiding traditional credit card options. These
payment methods can now be easily and securely issued, redeemed,
tracked, and reported on through multiple channels such as point of
sales, terminals, EFT switches, self-service kiosks, telephone, and the
Web. The “DataSecure” security solution was additionally appealing
thanks to its quick installation and flexibility with new compliance.

Details

RDS Launches New Payments Division

POS reseller Retail Data Systems will introduce a new payment services division.
RDS has appointed payments industry veteran, Richard Roscher, to head up
this division. Roscher has worked for such companies as Chase Paymentech
and RBS WorldPay, as well as launching his own consulting company and
ISO. RDS partners with leading POS technology
companies to provide customized point-of-sale solutions.

Details

AFI FORUM

The “2009 AFI Global Policy Forum” in Nairobi attracted nearly 100 central bankers and other financial policymakers. The Thailand-based Alliance for Financial Inclusion, which is partly funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, endeavors to expand access to financial services to 2.5 billion unbanked consumers globally. AFI members, who represent more than 60 countries, have chosen to focus on six policy areas to increase financial inclusion for their respective countries: agent banking, diversification of financial products and providers, state bank reforms, financial identity, consumer protection and mobile phone banking. AFI is managed on behalf of its members by the German development organization Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Technische
Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) and supported with a $35 million grant from
the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Details

TRAVELEX & TOWERGROUP

Travelex Global Business Payments international payments and foreign
exchange solutions and TowerGroup have released a new research report
ranking Travelex Global Business Payments as the industry leader in
global payment solutions for the Small-Medium Enterprise (“SME”) market.
With SME customers’ increasing emphasis on the importance on cash
management to reduce working capital and optimize supply chain and
service delivery, there’s a pressing need for integrated, global payment
platforms, enhanced visibility and tightened security controls to
improve payment efficiency. The research also shows a strong market
demand for high touch customer service to support the SME customer;
international payments services is rapidly expanding as SMEs search for
a reliable platform to serve international payments needs, which many
global banks lack the local footprint to support; many payment solutions
are aimed at the large, multi-national companies but are not well suited
for the SME market; and innovative payment solutions such as beneficiary
management are not currently supported by any global or regional banks.

Details

PAY & GO

O2 has launched its “Pay & Go” tariff designed to offer customers
unlimited web access and unlimited texts. The “Text & Web” tariff is
especially for customers on the go, whom will only pay GBP30 a month,
unless they join prior to October 31 in which case they will pay only
GBP15. Regardless of the UK mobile operator they use, the subscribers
gets inclusive allowances for “Text & Web,” those who join between
September 15 and October 31 who top up between GBP10 and GBP14 a month
will get unlimited UK text messages while those who top up more than
GBP15 a month will get unlimited UK texts and web access. Those joining
after October 31 who top up between GBP10 and GBP14 a month get 300 UK
text messages, top up between GBP15 and GBP29 a month will get 500 UK
texts and unlimited UK web access, and those who top up over GBP 30 a
month will get unlimited UK texts and web access.

Details

PPI Sponsors Self Storage Association

Integrated payment solution provider Payment Processing is the official partner sponsor of the Self Storage Association.
PPI provides self storage companies with a full range of services for
integrating electronic credit and debit card payments, including gateway
services, integration support, merchant support and services, and PA
DSS/PCI-DSS security assistance. The company’s proprietary PPI PayMover
platform can be integrated with virtually any business application and
is the leading payment processing solution used in the self storage market.

Details