Consumer Confidence Settles Down

Consumer economic sentiment has settled down, ending its downward spiral this year. However, the ongoing decline in house prices, continued tight credit conditions, and soft jobs market indicate that while sentiment might be in the process of bottoming at a very depressed level, it has not likely begun an upward trend. The latest “RBC CASH Index” (Consumer Attitudes and Spending by Household) rose 19.2 points in August to 33.8, compared to 14.6 in July, which was an all-time low
since inception of the “CASH Index” in 2002. RBC noted that although still in negative territory for the eighth consecutive month, the “RBC Expectations Index” increased 50 points to -4.7 in August. The shift in the index is due largely to an improvement in Americans’ expectations for personal finances and the economy as a whole. This month, nearly one in three consumers believes their personal financial situation will be stronger six months from now (compared to 25% in July). In addition, nearly one in four believe their local economy will be stronger six months from now (compared to 18% last month).

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U.S. Navy Yard Card Expands

KS-based loyalty marketer Visible Results has enabled the United States
Naval Academy “Yard Card” program to be expanded to include more
locations at the Academy. The cards will be
initialized and customized for each Midshipman, plus a $5 bonus will be
added to the card as part of the Yard Card program expansion
celebration. Approximately 25% of the
student base signed up for the program last year and with the expansion
of the participating locations, an increase in enrollments is expected.
All incoming Midshipmen will be given a new Yard Card. Parents will now
have the ability to visit http://www.navyonline.com to
start a new Yard Card account for their Midshipman, refresh the balances
on their Midshipmen’s card, as well as request notifications of when
their Midshipmen’s card balance falls below a certain dollar amount.

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Alaska/Horizon Airlines Confirm Fraud

Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air have confirmed that customer credit
data was recently compromised. The two airlines, subsidiaries of Alaska
Air Group say that a former call center employee misused the payment
card information provided by some customers between August 2006 and June
2008. The airlines notified about 1,500 customers this week.
Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air together serve 95 cities through an
expansive network throughout Alaska, the Lower 48, Hawaii, Canada and
Mexico.

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Tier Adds Heasley to its Board

VA-based e-payment processor Tier Technologies has appointed Philip G.
Heasley, President and CEO of ACI Worldwide, to its Board of Directors.
Heasley has served as President and Chief Executive Officer of ACI
Worldwide, Inc., a developer of electronic payment software products,
since March 2005. He previously served as Chairman and Chief
Executive Officer of PayPower LLC, an acquisition and consulting firm
specializing in financial services and payment services, from October
2003 to March 2005. Mr. Heasley has also served as Chairman and Chief
Executive Officer of First USA Bank from October 2000 to November 2003.
From 1996 until November
2003, Heasley served as Chairman of the Board of Visa USA and a
member of the board of Visa International.

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Global Axcess 2Q/08 Revenues Up 4%

FL-based ATM specialist Global Axcess reported a 4% increase in second quarter revenues to $5.8 million. The increase was due to surcharge/convenience fees on selected ATMs beginning in the first quarter. The Company says this represented an increase of approximately 4.4% over 2Q/07. The Company recorded net income for the second quarter was $450,300, compared to $170,900 for the year ago period. Through its Nationwide Money Services subsidiary, the Company owns and operates approximately 4,300 ATMs in its national network spanning 44 states. For complete details on Global Axcess’ second quarter performance visit CardData ([www.carddata.com](http://www.carddata.com)).

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Obopay and Grameen Become Global Partners

Obopay inked a major partnership with global micropayment specialist
Grameen Solutions. Working initially in Mumbai, India and in Bangladesh,
The “Grameen-Obopay Bank A Billion Initiative” will get underway in
October. The first-of-its-kind alliance plans to use mobile technology
to deliver banking services to a billion of the world’s poorest people
by 2018. Grameen was founded by Professor Muhammad Yunus, the founding
father of the microfinance movement and recipient of the 2006 Nobel
Peace Prize. Obopay works on any phone and any carrier to empower
consumers and businesses with the convenience of mobile payments.

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M-PAYMENTS FORECAST

New research is projecting that globally more than two billion consumers will be paying by the mobile phone by 2013. It is also projected that Western Europe and Far East & China will account for over 50% of the total digital goods gross transaction market value by 2013.
The report by Juniper Research also projects that today’s teenagers will be the drivers of mobile payments. Typical transaction sizes will
remain in the $3-$5 bracket, but a sufficient number of users will be using their mobiles to buy music, games, tickets, infotainment and the other digital goods sufficiently often to see gross transaction value grow nearly seven fold by 2013.

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ATM Software Analysis Report Issued

A new report from ATM
Marketplace, “ATM Software: Trends Analysis for 2007-2008” indicates
that ATM deployers are relying more heavily on
innovative software solutions to manage their networks. Many ATMs now
have features like envelope-free deposits, as well as
enhanced advertising and personalized transactions. Rather than using
proprietary software, ATM deployers are increasingly
moving to multivendor programs that can run across any Windows-based ATM
network, regardless of the type or brand of hardware.

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Commerce Bank Expands Card Offerings

Targeting the 60% of U.S. cardholders that routinely carry credit
balances, Commerce Bank is launching a new line of “Simply Flexible”
cards allowing cardholders greater control over their credit to turn
everyday purchases into rewards with the “Easy Rewards Platinum” and
“Cash Rewards Platinum” credit cards. The “Simply Flexible” and “Simply
Flexible Business Visa” credit cards offer lower interest rates as a
reward for financial responsibility, ultimately for greater financial
control with the option of selecting their standard APR based on their
monthly payment. These include a competitive standard APR of 7.99% when
10% or more of their monthly balance is paid. The cards provide
consumers no reward limits, no travel blackout dates and no travel
restrictions. Commerce Bancorp, acquired by TD Bank on March 31, 2008,
has over $119 billion in assets providing customers a full range of
financial products and services at nearly 1,100 locations across the
country.

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U.S. Bank Names a Healthcare Pay Exec

U.S. Bank has named Ralph Bernstein, previously with Exante Financial
Services, as SVP of healthcare solutions.
Bernstein will manage U.S. Bank’s new healthcare solutions business
that includes savings and payment products and services for
consumers, healthcare providers, and health insurers. Bernstein rejoins
U.S. Bank where he served as vice president of emerging
products and markets for the Corporate Payment Systems group from 1996
to 1999. He has also held leadership positions with LumenSoft USA,
Gelco Expense Network, and Electronic Data Systems. His background
includes management positions in credit and debit card issuing, product
development and management, sales, operations, and finance.

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HHONORS & AIR MILES

Alliance Data “Canadian Loyalty” marketing solutions has extended
existing sponsorship agreements with Hilton Hotels. With these
agreements, Hilton’s “HHonors Program” loyalty program will be a
national sponsor/reward supplier of Alliance Data’s Canadian “AIR MILES”
reward program allowing “AIR MILES” collectors to earn reward miles when
staying at any Hilton Family hotel and “HHonors” members such advantages
as no blackout dates on reward stays and the “Double Dip” feature, the
latter of which allows consumers to earn both AIR MILES reward miles and
Hilton HHonors points for the same stay. Hilton “HHonors” guest rewards
program has over 25 million enrolled members to whom the program offers
points, miles and rewards towards stays at more than 3,000 Hilton Family
hotels worldwide while the “AIR MILES” reward loyalty program allows
collectors to earn reward miles at more than 100 leading brand-name
sponsors for redemption of more than 800 different types of rewards.

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Hackers Charged in Breach of 9 Retailers

Federal prosecutors charged a group of hackers with the theft and sale
of more than 40 million credit and debit card numbers that occurred over
the past few years. It is the largest hacking and identity theft case
ever prosecuted by the DOJ. Eleven people were charged with the alleged
hacking of the customer databases of TJX Companies, BJ’s
Wholesale Club, OfficeMax, Boston Market, Barnes & Noble, Sports
Authority, Forever 21 and DSW. Three of the defendants are U.S.
citizens, one is from Estonia, three are from Ukraine, two are from the
People’s Republic of China and one is from Belarus. One individual is
only known by an alias online, and his place of origin is unknown.
The DOJ alleges that once inside the networks, the criminal ring
installed “sniffer” programs that would capture card numbers, as well as
password and account information, as they moved through the retailers’
credit and debit processing networks.

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