Experian Marketing Offers Postal Advice

Experian will host a webinar to help marketers with the upcoming postal
rate hike. The free webinar features Experian Marketing Service’s top
mail experts
Steve Lopez, vice president of Postal Affairs, and Mike Yapuncich,
vice president of List Processing who will present the hard numbers on the
rate changes, the impact of the change on a variety of mail types, and
what steps mailers can take now to build a winning strategy around these
cost increases that take effect May 11.

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Private Label Prepaid Produces a Bearish Outlook

A new report has discovered that prepaid card industry
stakeholders are bearish on private label prepaid cards, and cautiously
optimistic about the future of branded prepaid cards. The Aite Group research found that 82% feel the recession will have a negative impact on private label prepaid cards (mostly composed of merchant gift cards), while the majority of respondents (71%) see a positive impact of the recession on branded prepaid cards overall, largely driven by branded government cards, consumer incentive cards, payroll cards, and health care cards. In order to improve the market for prepaid cards as a whole, most agree that greater efforts must be made to educate the public on the benefits of prepaid cards. Technologies could also be better leveraged to improve the reload process.

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Former AmEx Exec Intros The Merchant Maven

A former American Express exec has launched “The Merchant Maven” website
to provide card processing deals for small businesses. The Merchant
Maven is an advocate for retailers,
restaurants and small businesses to find the best credit card processing
deals for small business
merchants. The website researches and reports on the best credit card
processing
deals for small and medium sized businesses and offers
merchants money saving tips and articles, as well as news about the
latest trends in credit card processing technology. The Merchant Maven
has a mission to fight against excessive credit card transaction
fees. For small businesses, even a slightly better deal on each credit
card transaction can make a big difference in profitability.

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TNB Inks Palisades FCU for Processing

TNB is now processing cards and providing its loyalty program to NY-based Palisades Federal Credit Union.
Palisades will leverage TNB’s portfolio consulting team to thoroughly assess the
potential of its $5 million portfolio. The credit union will then be able to
determine how best to structure its card offering so that the card is
more competitive and attractive to members. Palisades will also now be
able to market its cards through an array of turnkey marketing programs
offered by TNB, as well as implement rewards through TNB’s “Rewards2U.” Palisades FCU holds assets of $145 million.

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Coinstar E-Payment Services is Cited

Coinstar E-Payment Services was named
a top prepaid performer in the “2009 Convenience Store Decisions” brand
preference study. The study polled 65 decision makers with survey
questions which included which prepaid manufacturer offers the most
effective
sales program, the best quality products and the best supplier
relationship. Convenience Store Decisions announced the survey results
in its March 2009 Reader’s Choice issue. Coinstar shared top honors
with PaySpot, Inc., and Verizon.

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Upromise Launches Tuition Tales Promotion

College funding solution provider Upromise has launched the
“Tuition Tales” video contest. One contestant in each
of three categories – Saving for College, In College Now and Paying it
Back – will win $10,000 for college education expenses. Those three
winners and 9 finalists will win a $250 “Bed Bath & Beyond gift card”
and a $250 “Bank of America Visa Gift Card”.

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SignFort SAFE-BioPharma Certified

Fraud prevention provider Arcot’s “SignFort” has been certified as
compliant with the “SAFE-BioPharma” digital identity and signature
standard. “SignFort” allows electronic documents to be signed with
SAFE-BioPharma digital signatures from any location without tokens,
smart cards or software stored on desktops. The “SignFort” application
provides
strong authentication of the user before allowing access to the
SAFE-BioPharma credential. Arcot fraud prevention, strong
authentication, and e-Document security solutions are delivered
on-premise or on-demand as an Arcot hosted service.

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TSYS Teams with mPay Gateway and Nova Libra

TSYS Acquiring Solutions has teamed with mPay Gateway and Nova Libra to provide POS solutions that meet the needs of healthcare providers and their patients, as well as pharmacies and drug stores.
Effective June 30th, an IRS mandate prohibits FSA and HRA debit cards from being accepted at most drug store and pharmacy retail locations without an “Inventory Information Approval System.” Nova Libra specializes in the maintenance and distribution of product information.
The mPay Gateway empowers health care providers with a single source payment solution that enables collections from patients, regardless of the patient’s third party payer affiliation.

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Paur to Head DeltaCard Services

Merchants’ Choice Card Services has appointed Stan Paur as President and
CEO. Previously, Paur served as Chairman of PULSE EFT Association
LP, one of the nation’s leading ATM/debit networks. Prior to being named
Chairman of PULSE, he served as President and CEO for over 23 years. He
was Chairman of the MasterCard Maestro U.S.A. Board of Directors from
1991 to 1996. From 1986 to 1992, Mr. Paur served as Chairman of the
Shared Networks Executive Association. He received his degree from Saint
Louis University. MCCS serves over 41,000
clients, processing more than $3.4 billion in annual credit card volume.

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eBillme Intros Buyer Protection Program

Alternative payment portal eBillme has introduced its “Buyer Protection
Program” and includes more protection for shoppers on consumables.
eBillme’s buyer protection program, provided at no cost to shoppers and
retailers, has the same or a better level of buyer protection than
premium credit cards. Protection features include a return guarantee,
price guarantee, in-transit protection, and fraud protection. Consumers
can shop with confidence knowing their eBillme transaction is guaranteed
and protected.

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HYPERWALLET

hyperWALLET announced the expansion of their global payment network into Israel. With the addition of Israel, hyperWALLET’s global financial network now reaches 40 countries worldwide and provides in-country clearing and settlement capabilities across North America, South America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Central America and Africa. With the addition of Israeli shekels, hyperWALLET now supports transaction processing and payment distribution in 20 currencies. And with support for localization of website and application interfaces, hyperWALLET’s payment services can be readily launched in any of 7 languages including English, French, Spanish, German, Portuguese, Hebrew and Chinese.

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Credit Card ABS Faces Spread Compression

Among credit card-backed ABS the three-month average excess spread
increased to 5.80% in February from 5.43% for the prior month. The
improvement was largely driven by the exclusion this month of the low
reading from October, when the effect of last fall’s LIBOR dislocation
was realized. Excess spread would have been further compressed by a drop
in gross yield had it not been partially offset by lower trust funding
costs, driven by one-month LIBOR rates. Fitch expects an additional
100-200 basis points of compression in excess spread in the coming
months as charge-offs mount. Fitch also notes that on March 6th,
Citibank filed an 8-K specifying an additional 375 basis points of
credit enhancement and a variable discount option. The credit
enhancement could be either a subordinated note from the master trust or
the issuance trust that will take the first loss position or the
subordination of the seller’s interest in the master trust. A dynamic
discount option is effective March 1; it will be set at 1% initially and
will vary from month to month based on the levels of excess spread.
Citibank expects to put the credit enhancement into place by May 1, 2009.

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