AMEX & BA

Economic indicators increased sharply again in July, and there
were substantial upward revisions to the index in the past four months as actual data for second quarter operating profits became available.
The The Conference Board “Leading Economic Index” for Japan increased 3.1% and The Conference Board “Coincident Economic Index” increased 50 basis points in July. The strengths among the leading indicators were widespread this month, with the six-month growth rate of productivity, index of overtime worked, business failures (inverted), and the
Tankan business conditions survey making large positive contributions.
For the CEI industrial production continued to grow strongly this month, while wage and salary income improved at a more modest pace.

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CREDITZ USA

CEO America announces it is expanding its “CREDITZ” system to more customers in North America. The system has been alpha and beta tested over several years utilizing IBM’s latest DB2 database and Series I infrastructure technology in Canada and the USA. The “CREDITZ” system includes free stored-value accounts for customers (no credit check involved), easy online account registration, collateral materials to
merchants, online account management and setup. CEO America is the North American Licensee for the “CREDITZ” brand.

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FDC CFO

First Data has tapped W. Patrick Shannon, previously with BellSouth, to serve as EVP/CFO. Shannon served as chief financial officer of BellSouth from 2005 to 2007 until the completion of BellSouth’s merger with AT&T. In addition, he served as a director of Cingular Wireless and a member of Cingular’s Audit Committee. Shannon succeeds Phil Wall who has been appointed the chief financial officer of Bank of America Merchant Services, the recently formed alliance between First Data and Bank of America. Wall will join the Bank of America Merchant Services senior management team and report directly to its Chief Executive Officer Tom Bell.

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BB&T Slates a Free M-Banking Webinar

BB&T Payment Solutions is set to host a free educational webinar for small business owners
on alerts and other mobile banking services on September 16.
The BB&T Payment Solutions webinar series features industry experts and
is designed to help businesses explore new developments in payment processes. The
webinars focus on the ongoing transformation of payment systems from traditional
paper-based methods to more streamlined, secure, and convenient electronic-based
products and services.

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CC Card ABS Not Likely to Improve till Mid-2010

A new analysis concludes that the performance of credit card
securitizations will only improve after unemployment peaks in mid-2010.
Moreover, the credit card industry faces significant legislative and
regulatory changes in the coming year, adding to uncertainties. Moody’s
Investors Service expects underlying collateral performance in most U.S.
securitization sectors to remain poor well into 2011. Troubled
performance will linger in consumer-backed securitizations despite
positive GDP growth because employment levels and home prices will
continue to deteriorate well into 2010. With commercial real estate
usually one of the last sectors both to enter a recession and exit one,
Moody’s expects CMBS performance to continue to deteriorate into 2010 or
2011.

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VISANET 2Q/09

A new report reveals the global volume of payments made using non-cash instruments, such as direct debits, credit transfers, cards and checks, is growing at a 8.6% CAGR. Among mature markets the area consisting of Japan, Australia, South Korea and Singapore posted the highest CAGR of 16%. Payment cards remain the single strongest driver of volumes rising more than 14% annually. The ten largest markets account for 92% of all non-cash payments transactions in with the global market dominated by the U.S. and the Eurozone with a 61% share. According to the “World Payments Report 2009” from Capgemini, RBS and Efma, the U.S. accounted for 39% of global payments in 2007, with volumes having grown steadily at about 5% a year since 2001. While cash-in-circulation fell 7.4%, debit card volumes jumped 16.2%, credit card transactions increased by 5.6%, credit transfers increased by 7% and direct debits grew by 18%. U.S. check volume did decline 7.4% in 2007. The report also noted that U.S. general purpose card transactions grew 7.7% in 2008, with the number by debit card up 12.1% and by credit card up 1.7%. ??Debit cards accounted for 57.5% of total non-cash purchase transactions in 2008, up from 22.9% just ten years earlier. Debit cards first overtook credit cards as the preferred means of U.S. consumer payments in 2004, and their rise has been notable ever since. Still, the economic downturn made credit cards even less popular in 2008, and the debit cards’ share of transactions grew by 5% points from 2007.

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TRAVEL & PROFIT

From 1998 to 2008, across 9,500 U.S. companies in 15 industries, there
has been an incremental 1% increase or decrease in travel spend yielded
in aggregate a corresponding 1.7% increase or decrease in sales. Of the
15 industries studied, industries such as Chemical Manufacturing and
Retail/Wholesale could have benefited by increasing average yearly
investment in business travel over the last 10 years while Business
Services and Consulting may have reached their maximum return on travel
expenditures based on the last 10 years of average spending data. Gaging
the business travel market at $929 billion in 2008, the research,
conducted by IHS Global Insight, was unveiled during an educational
session at the 2009 NBTA International Convention & Exposition in San
Diego. AmEx Business Travel is committed to helping clients maximize
return on travel investment through increased cost savings, world-class
customer service and greater spending control.

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USAA Launches an Online Shopping Net

Financial service provider USAA has announced the launch of the online shopping network
“USAA MemberShop”, powered by MA-based Mall Networks. USAA members can
earn up to 20% in rewards for purchases, discounts and deals at
more than 500 name-brand retailers. USAA members earn rewards, either as cash back or points on every dollar
spent. These rewards are in addition to the regular rewards provided by
USAA credit and debit cards. USAA members, regardless of the credit card
they use, can collect cash back by shopping at the mall. The launch of
“USAA MemberShop” represents the company’s commitment to providing
increased value for its more than 7.2 million members.

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OFAC

The Western Union Company money transfer is set to implement the new
rules issued by The U.S. Department of Treasury Office of Foreign Assets
Control (OFAC) on sending money to Cuba. The new OFAC guidelines,
effective September 03rd, allow Cuban Nationals to send remittance
from the U.S. to “close relatives” in Cuba (including aunts, uncles,
cousins, and second cousins) and removes limits on the total amount and
frequency of remittances. Western Union has been providing money
transfer services from the U.S. to Cuba since 1999, in accordance with
OFAC laws, and currently has 3,000 Agent locations authorized to send
money transfers to the island country, on which there are more than 100
Agent locations.

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TRIONIS & PULSE

PULSE has signed long-term ATM acquiring agreements with TRIONIS
European interbank processing network. The agreements stipulates more
than 74,000 TRIONIS ATMs across Europe will be able to process ATM
transactions for Diners Club International and Discover cards. Diners
Club cards are now accepted at bank ATMs in Austria, Switzerland,
Portugal, Spain, Luxembourg and Belgium. Discover cards are expected to
be accepted at TRIONIS European ATMs beginning in October 2009. TRIONIS
is jointly owned by retail banks from nine European countries, the
European Savings Banks Group and First Data while PULSE is the Discover
Financial Services business unit responsible for expanding global cash
access for the company and linking cardholders with more than 289,000
ATMs and POS terminals across the U.S.

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NEOVIA PAYMENT SUITE

NEOVIA Financial independent global online payments business has added
Bracknell Forest Homes, Fire and Fireplaces, LandlordZONE.co.uk and
TenantVERIFY.co.uk to its list of merchants implementing the NEOVIA
Payment Suite. Allowing secure payment processing of payments on their
respective websites, Bracknell Forest Homes not-for-profit housing
association is implementing the NEOVIA Payment Suite to allow tenants to
pay their rent over the internet; Fire and Fireplacesonline retailer of
gas and electric fireplaces is using the services to allow customers to
pay online in multiple currencies; LandlordZONE.co.uk online community
and web portal can now settle the items it charges for directly over the
internet; and TenantVERIFY.co.uk will be deploying NEOVIA to settle its
on-line tenant verification and referencing service.

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