GE Money Fourth Quarter Profits Sink 14%

GE reported that profit for its GE Money unit declined 14% in the fourth quarter to $832 million as revenues sank 15% to $6.52 billion. GE also boosted reserves by $500 million for its U.S. Card and Sales Finance business. During the quarter GE Money’s assets declined 12% to $184 billion. The Company says GE Money is executing on business exits, cost-out & deposit-funding; while increasing reserves.
During the quarter, Milan-based Banco Santander acquired former GE Money businesses in Germany, Austria, Finland, its credit card and auto businesses in the UK, and its credit card business in Ireland. In return Banco Santander sold its corporate bank Interbanca to GE Capital. Also, GE Money concluded the $5.4 billion sale of its Japanese consumer finance business to Shinsei Bank. Additionally, Volvo signed a multi-year agreement with GE Money to provide a new no-fee consumer credit card. For complete details on GE Money’s latest results visit CardData ([www.carddata.com](http://www.carddata.com)). (CF Library 11/20/08; CFI Library 9/23/08; 1/8/09)

GE MONEY TRACK RECORD
Income Revenues
4Q/07: $ 963 million $6523 million
1Q/08: $ 995 million $6377 million
2Q/08: $1056 million $6629 million
3Q/08: $ 791 million $6540 million
4Q/08: $ 832 million $5531 million
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

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Q4 Pain Spreads Across All Peer Groups

Issuers reporting fourth quarter statistics to CardData
(www.carddata.com) are revealing the same pain being felt by the largest
issuers with sluggish outstandings and lower volume. OH-based National
City reports Q4 outstandings of $3,399,652,000, flat compared to the
year ago quarter. NC-based BB&T reports a 9% decline in fourth quarter
outstandings to $1,523,030,110 and a 4% drop in Q4 volume to
$1,180,162,417, compared to one-year ago. VA-based First Citizens
outstandings of $294,429,923 was flat compared to 4Q/07 and volume
slipped 2.4% to $274,126,104. OH-based FirstMerit outstandings declined
3.2% year-on-year to $150,205,257 and volume fell 14.4% to $80,761,625.
For the latest fourth quarter performance statistics visit CardData ([www.carddata.com](http://www.carddata.com))

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FUJITSU F-01A

Identity solution provider AuthenTec and partner NTT DOCOMO has released the “Fujitsu F-01A” a fingerprint-enabled waterproof cell phone. AuthenTec’s TouchStone is a durable, thin profile fingerprint sensor packaging technology which expands aesthetic and product integration options for makers of cell phones, laptop computers, and other consumer electronics. “The F-01A” is based on a Symbian operating system and features a 3.5-inch widescreen VGA touchscreen display, 5.2 megapixel camera with Autofocus, built-in GPS using Mobile Google Maps with Street View, e-Wallet mobile payment capability, and a 1Seg mobile TV tuner. More than 9 million mobile phones today include an AuthenTec sensor to enhance privacy by securing the device’s personal and corporate data such as email and provide advanced navigation and personalization functions and support secure m-commerce.

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EQUATE & MINT

Prepaid product provider Mint Technology has signed a joint venture
agreement with the social change advisory Equate Organisation to
distribute branded prepaid cards designed for the UK credit under banked
and un-banked population using trade unions, migrant and special
interest groups offering access to financial opportunities not currently
being provided to this sector. Mint’s prepaid card product offering is
expected to deliver 100,000
customers this calendar year. The joint venture will be supported in
its initiative by Orbis Capital Limited, a leading structured finance
company based in London.

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Stradafee Expands High Risk Services

Travel industry solution provider Stradafee has expanded its travel
merchant processing portfolio. Stradafee has banks in the US and
offshore that provides travel
merchants a merchant account for their credit card processing needs
which includes: credit card & debit card acceptance; fraud protection
daily/weekly funding schedules; MOTO, retail & online credit card
processing; multi-currency acceptance, real-time processing with online
reporting and uncapped merchant accounts with no sales volume restrictions.

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2008 LOSSES

Fraud for all types of payment cards increased from A$127 million in
2007 to A$147 million for 2008. While Australia’s total rate of fraud
remains low compared to global averages, the total rate of fraud (cheque
and payment cards) has risen from 5.9 cents (2007) to 7.2 cents for
every $1,000 of payments. Debit card fraud increased slightly from 7.1
cents to 7.4 cents in every $1,000. Credit and charge card fraud
increased from 38.6 cents to 50.2 cents in every $1,000. At 31 cents in
every $1,000, Australia’s payment card fraud rate is well below
the global equivalent, which is 47 cents in every $1,000.
Card-not-present (CNP) is the most common type of payment card fraud
accounting for 48% of the fraud value on Australian issued credit and
charge cards. The findings were based on data gathered by the Australian
Payments Clearing Association for the 12 month period ending June 30th,
2008.

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GBC POS

GIRO Bankkártya Zrt (GBC) has launched new POS terminal services for all
acquirer banks and merchants present in the domestic market. GBC
extends its portfolio with new POS-related services that
include software development, terminal installation, service and
maintenance, merchant management, a 24hr help desk and terminal
handling, transaction processing and
clearing. The SIA-SSB subsidiary operates its own terminal management
system with substantial cost saving implications for the clients by
providing remote
software and parameter download options into the POS terminals. In
addition, the in-house POS software development activity covers the
banking, mobile top-up and other value-added functions as well.
GBC’s comprehensive solution will be provided to current and prospective
clients in Hungary and will be extended, in the near future, also to
other Central and Eastern European countries, among which Romania,
Croatia, Slovenia, Slovakia and Czech Republic.

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CUP & BEA

China UnionPay Data Services has signed a long-term credit card
processing agreement with the Bank of East Asia. BEA is the first
foreign bank to independently launch its own credit
card program in China and is the largest independent
local bank in Hong Kong, with total consolidated assets of HK$396.6
billion (US$50.85 billion) as of 30th June, 2008. CUP Data is China’s
largest third-party processor of electronic
payments, providing transaction processing, disaster recovery and other
services for issuing banks in China. CUP Data was established in 2003,
and has signed more than 61 credit, debit and prepaid processing client
banks at year-end 2008.

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Gas City Installs Radiant POS

Fuel retailer Gas City has signed an agreement with Atlanta-based
Radiant Systems to deploy the “Radiant POS technology at 50 Mid and
Southwestern locations. The Radiant solution includes “Radiant POS”
software, P1560 hardware
terminals with Order Confirmation Displays, S4600 site servers, Radiant
Electronic Payment Controllers and Tiger Fuel Controllers. The Radiant
solution will integrate to Gas City’s “ADD Systems” back office solution
using the industry-standard PCATS NAXML POS-to-back office interface.
Additionally, Gas City will deploy “Radiant Loyalty Manager”, allowing the
retailer to interface its POS with its existing customer loyalty program
from KickBack Points.

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CTIA WIRELESS

International CTIA WIRELESS 2009 is accepting submissions for the 4th Annual “E-Tech” awards with a new “Green” category. The E-Tech Awards will be judged online based on their innovation, functionality, creativity, and vision. The judging process will be handled by a panel of industry analysts, journalists and technology experts. Categories for the 4th Annual E-Tech Awards include: 4G; Enterprise & Vertical Market Solutions; Green; Mobile Applications & Widgets; Mobile Consumer Electronics; Network Infrastructure; In-Building/Local Area Network Solution and Wide Area Network. The application deadline is February 20. Winners will be announced onsite at the International CTIA WIRELESS at the Las Vegas Convention Center on April 2, 2009.

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CREDIT CARDS & YOU

The Financial Consumer
Agency of Canada (FCAC) has released the most recent update of its
Credit Cards and You comparison tool. The interactive tool, which
includes more than 200 credit cards, helps consumers choose the credit
card best suited to their needs by enabling them to compare annual fees,
interest rates and other features. Updated twice a year, the Credit
Cards and You interactive tool helps
consumers choose the card that best suits their needs by enabling them
to compare annual fees, interest rates and other characteristics. The
tool is available on FCAC’s Web site at moneytools.ca. Consumers can
also refresh their credit card knowledge by answering FCAC’s credit card
quiz. FCAC provides consumers with accurate, objective information about
financial products and services, and informs Canadians of their rights
and responsibilities when dealing with federally-regulated financial
institutions. FCAC ensures compliance with the consumer protection laws,
and monitors codes of conduct and public commitments that apply to banks
and federally incorporated trust, loan and insurance companies.

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Fans Pony Up for Super Bowl Parties

Survey results from Visa indicate that 62% of Americans plan to
hold a Super Bowl party and expect to spend an average of $172 on the
festivities. Washington, D.C. (71%), Pittsburgh, PA (70%) and San
Antonio, TX (70%) topped the list of areas with the highest number of
respondents saying they will host Super Bowl parties, while San
Francisco, CA (58%), New York City (57%) and the state of Vermont (52%)
represent areas of the country with the fewest number of respondents
holding a celebration. Visa, the NFL and NFL PLAYERS have created an
educational video game called “Financial Football” which can be played
online for free at www.financialfootball.com. Visa has reached
agreements with nineteen state governments to donate
the “Financial Football” game and accompanying financial education
curriculum to every high school in those states.

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