Link2Gov Offers More Business Tax Options

Metavante’s Link2Gov has announced the availability of
“businesstaxpayment.com”, its new
consolidated business tax payment site.
“businesstaxpayment.com” provides businesses with a
secure, convenient and reliable electronic option to initiate a tax
payment with a credit or debit card. All payments made through Link2Gov
are approved in real-time, and the payment date is the same date the
transaction was successfully completed. Taxpayers receive a transaction
confirmation number as an assurance they have completed the payment
process. Link2Gov collects a convenience fee for its tax payment
services. “businesstaxpayment.com” accepts all major credit cards as
well as debit transactions from cards
participating in the NYCE, PULSE, or STAR payments networks.

Details

MerchantWARE Mobile iPhone App Released

Merchant Warehouse has released the “MerchantWARE Mobile” POS app for
Apple iPhone. “MerchantWARE Mobile” is a point of sale application that
allows merchants
to run credit and debit transactions in real time. A merchant only needs
to install the application on their device, and have a merchant account
and a connection to WiFi, Edge or a 3G network and all all customer
information is
encrypted and sent over a secure SSL connection. MerchantWARE Mobile is
free, has no gateway fees, and does
not require an expensive third party license.

Details

ATM Specialist TRM Holds Up Well in 4Q/08

ATM specialist TRM reported that fourth quarter sales rose 4.3% to
$21.5 million. The Company ended 2008 with 11,522 transacting ATMs
compared to 9,307 transacting ATMs at the end of 2007. Average
transactions per ATM in 2008 were 264 compared to 286 in 2007. The
change in transaction per ATM between the periods is due to a mix of
contracts that were acquired with “Access to Money.” TRM reported an
operating loss of $26.1 million for the full year 2008. The Company says
going through restructuring efforts during 2007 and early 2008 has
provided it with a scaled and streamlined operating cost baseline that
allowed it to weather the downturn in the economy. For complete details
on TRM’s fourth quarter performance visit CardData ([www.carddata.com](http://www.carddata.com)).

TRM HISTORICAL GROSS SALES
4Q/06: $24.9 million
1Q/07: $22.9 million
2Q/07: $23.5 million
3Q/07: $23.3 million
4Q/07: $20.6 million
1Q/08: $18.1 million
2Q/08: $23.9 million
3Q/08: $25.2 million
4Q/08: $21.5 million
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

Details

RECYCLED CARD

Instant card issuer Dynamic Card Solutions announced “CardWizard” is now
available in Arabic to enable rapid
deployment and ease of use in regions such as the Middle East and
Northern Africa. “CardWizard” is a component-based software solution
that allows financial institutions to instantly issue EMV and
contactless cards at
the branch. “CardWizard”‘s Arabic language version, banks can deploy
the solution quickly without having to worry about the problems caused
by software packages only available in other languages. In addition,
“CardWizard” can also be customized to serve as an Arabic front end for
other card issuance-related software applications. The Middle East
remains an area of strategic focus for DCS, and the
company has just formed a team of industry experts specifically
dedicated to working with banks in the region.

Details

U.S. Credit Card ABS Market Gears Up for TALF 1.0

Moody’s says the U.S. economy currently suffers from two serious
drawbacks: a severe lack of aggregate supply of credit; and the knock-on
effect on demand of a slumping job market, where 3.6 million jobs have
been lost in just over a year. We are currently witnessing a
synchronized deleveraging of key economic actors (financial
institutions, corporations and households) — a necessary step to bring
back balance sheets to an equilibrium, but a phenomenon that undermines
investors’ and consumers’ confidence and further tightens wholesale and
retail credit conditions, even as the Federal Reserve has cut down the
policy interest rate close to zero. However, the credit card ABS market
should also be a beneficiary of TALF 1.0. About $80 billion of credit
card ABS is scheduled to mature in 2009, thus forming the largest single
asset class that is currently eligible under TALF. As such, TALF 1.0
could have positive credit implications for credit card originators. One
element that may moderate participation is that some issuers of credit
card ABS have access to other sources of funding that may be more
advantageous. For instance, issuers that are associated with
deposit-taking institutions may access other government funding
programs, such as the FDIC debt guarantee program.

Details

NRF Claims PCI Standards are an Elaborate Patch

The National Retail Federation now claims that security standards
imposed on merchants by the credit card industry are only “an elaborate
patch.” In testimony before a congressional panel the NRF said
the ultimate solution is to stop requiring merchants to store card data
in the first place. The hearing was held by the House Homeland Security
Committee’s Subcommittee on Emerging Threats, Cybersecurity, and Science
and Technology. The NRF says the PCI standards include more than 200
requirements intended to protect consumers against credit card fraud
committed by criminals who hack into computer systems. But, the
guidelines are “onerous, confusing and constantly changing” and have
required retailers to replace previous security programs with new
programs that are different but not necessarily better.

Details

Cap One and Consumer Action Expand MoneyWi$e

Capital One Financial Corporation and Consumer Action
will award 18 stipends through their joint MoneyWi$e financial literacy
program totaling $53,000. Recipient groups have attended MoneyWi$e
trainings which offer multilingual financial education materials,
curricula and teaching aids with regional meetings and roundtables to
train community-based organization staff so that consumers at all income
levels and walks of life can be reached. Community based organizations
teaching financial education in
California, Louisiana, Massachusetts and Texas will receive stipends for
programs designed to make an impact on the financial health of their
communities. The groups will utilize the
MoneyWi$e curriculum to educate local consumers on personal finance
basics like avoiding trouble with credit and becoming successful
homeowners, among other topics.

Details

MATICA FINANCIALS

Card personalizer Matica has announced its unaudited preliminary results
for the year ended 31 December 2008. Revenues for the 12 months to
December 2008 increased by 12% to EURO14.6m compared to 2007 results of
EURO13.0m. Profit after tax were EURO427,000 compared to its 2007 loss
after tax of EURO1,789,000. Credit and debit card use continues to
increase particularly in emerging markets, this, together with the
growing trend for banks to produce cards from regional rather than
central bases is driving demand for applications for the issuance of
financial cards. Technical innovations are also key to increased demand
such as the global migration from magnetic strips to smart cards further
helped by continued concerns over security and safety. As a result
volumes of plastic cards for ID, security, banking and loyalty program
applications remained high throughout 2008 and the Company generated
good sales growth across most of its markets, particularly in the
Americas and the Middle East. Trading conditions in Europe were
adversely affected, which was mainly due to the economic slow-down in
the region. However, this was offset by the strong performance delivered
in other markets.

Details

HotSchedules and Digital Dining Partner

TX-based HotSchedules has partnered with Digital Dining to integrate POS
platforms with labor management solutions. Digital Dining provides
restaurant POS software and handheld
POS solutions for all types of hospitality verticals with a flexible
XML-based POS software interface and non-proprietary hardware platform.
HotSchedules’ secure and cost-effective on-demand restaurant scheduling
solution interface includes tools to easily create schedules, print
reports and evaluate
staff availability and integrates with most major POS
solutions as well as time and attendance systems to allow for robust
reporting and advanced forecasting for substantial labor cost savings.

Details

MasterCard Reaches a Deal with European Commission

MasterCard Europe has reached an understanding with the European
Commission on interim interchange fees for cross-border consumer
payments within the European Economic Area. Effective July 1st
MasterCard Europe will establish intra-EEA cross-border default
interchange rates for consumer card transactions that, on average, will
not exceed 30 basis points for credit cards and 20 basis points for
debit cards. These interim rates will apply only to cross-border
transactions, which account for less than five percent of MasterCard
Europe’s total volume. Also on July 1st MasterCard Europe also will
publish on its website the new interchange rates and the rates that
MasterCard Europe itself establishes in the EEA, both for cross-border
and domestic transactions. In addition, MasterCard Europe announced a
new rule for its acquirers that will provide merchants with specific
information about the cost of accepting MasterCard consumer, MasterCard
commercial and Maestro cards.

Details

MC & EEA

MasterCard Europe has reached an understanding with the European Commission on interim interchange fees for cross-border consumer payments within the European Economic Area. Effective July 1st MasterCard Europe will establish intra-EEA cross-border default interchange rates for consumer card transactions that, on average, will not exceed 30 basis points for credit cards and 20 basis points for debit cards. These interim rates will apply only to cross-border transactions, which account for less than five percent of MasterCard Europe’s total volume. Also on July 1st MasterCard Europe also will publish on its website the new interchange rates and the rates that MasterCard Europe itself establishes in the EEA, both for cross-border and domestic transactions. In addition, MasterCard Europe announced a new rule for its acquirers that will provide merchants with specific information about the cost of accepting MasterCard consumer, MasterCard commercial and Maestro cards.

Details

MARCH PMI

The Bloomberg Euro-Zone Retail
Purchasing Managers’ Index rose from 42.3 in
February to 44.1 in March, signaling the smallest monthly drop in the
value of sales in five months. The first quarter has seen an average
monthly decline that was less steep than the record drop seen during Q4
of last year. The March decline remained strong by the survey’s
historical standards, and sales have now fallen for ten consecutive months.
The March survey also showed that euro area retail sales remained well
below a year ago on a like-for-like basis. The year-on-year sales index
edged up from 35.5 in February to 36.4, remaining below the 50.0
no-change level to register the fourth-steepest annual decline since the
survey began in January 2004. Expectations for beating targets in the coming month rose to a six-month
high in March. The respective index rose from 50.1 to 55.8. Confidence
has improved in France – where forecasts for sales are the highest for
eleven months – and Germany, while Italian retailers’ expectations are
neutral. Retailers of food & drink and autos & fuel are again the most
confident about hitting targets, while household goods is the only
category for which targets are expected to be missed.

Details