Major Consumer Purchases May Hit the Brakes

More than half of Americans are uncomfortable making a major purchase such as a home, a car, major appliances or other significant items over the next three months. According to the latest “Experian-Gallup Personal Credit Index” 89% of consumers do not plan to apply for credit in the next three months; 30% of households with annual incomes of less than $40,000 are uncomfortable with their debt burden, while only 16% of those with annual incomes of $75,000 or more are uncomfortable and 17% of consumers know someone who has been turned down for credit during the past three months. Additionally, 58% believe the problems in the sub-prime mortgage market will affect the overall mortgage market, while 24% feel the problems will be contained.

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TNB Card Services Buys the Island FCU Portfolio

NY-based Island Federal Credit Union has sold its credit card portfolio to TNB Card Services. TNB announced its purchase of the card program, with $8 million in outstanding balances and 5,300 card accounts. Island FCU is a 52-year-old credit union that for most of its existence served KeySpan Energy employees and their family members. In January of this year, the credit union received its community charter, and now serves all of Nassau and Suffolk counties on New York’s Long Island with more than 21,000 members and assets of more than $330 million. TNB Card Services, owned and directed by credit unions, provides electronic payments processing, as well as an agent issuing solution for credit unions nationwide.

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FTC Halts a Major Calif Prepaid Card Scam

The FTC requested and received an order from a federal judge to halt an operation marketing VISA-and MasterCard-branded stored-value cards from making unauthorized debits from consumers’ bank accounts. According to a complaint filed by the FTC, the defendants marketed prepaid cards under a variety of names through Web sites and pop-up and e-mail advertisements that direct consumers to Web sites for the individual cards. These include Acclaim Visa, Impact Visa, Sterling Visa, VIP Advantage Visa, Vue Visa, Elite Plus MasterCard, Impact MasterCard, Secure Deposit MasterCard, VIP MasterCard, and Vue MasterCard. The defendants also market unrelated short-term loans on Web sites such as www.SuperAutoSource.com, www.SuperCashSource.com, and www.FastCashUSA.com. The complaint alleges that through their prepaid card programs the defendants debited, without authorization, a $159.95 application and processing fee from consumers’ bank accounts, including from consumers who either had no contact with the defendants or had applied for an unrelated short-term loan.

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Capital One Acquires NetSpend for $700MM

Capital One has inked a deal to acquire prepaid card specialist NetSpend for $700 million in cash. NetSpend has more than 1.5 million active customers nationwide and a retail network that has 15,000 locations where cards can be purchased and 50,000 locations where funds can be loaded. NetSpend has distribution relationships with Safeway, Pathmark, HEB Grocery Stores, ACE America’s Cash and others. Under the terms of the agreement, NetSpend will become a subsidiary of Capital One. NetSpend’s CEO, Richard Savard, will continue to lead the prepaid business after the acquisition has been finalized and will assume a key executive role within Capital One’s Payments business. The deal is expected to close in the fourth quarter.

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First Mutual MasterCard Debit Cards Coming

First Mutual Credit has signed contracts with MetaBank to issue First Mutual Credit MasterCard Debit Cards, pursuant to a license from MasterCard International Incorporated. First Mutual Credit have been approved by MasterCard International as an ISO and co-brand partner. First Mutual Credit Corporation is an investment banking and securities foreign exchange company.

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WSFS Acquires the CSSI ATM Vault Cash Portfolio

DE-based Cash Connect, the ATM Division of WSFS Bank has completed the acquisition of the vault cash portfolio of 1,700 ATMs owned by Creative Strategic Solutions. Benjamin Franklin Bank will continue to supply the $35 to $40 million in vault cash required to fund these ATMs, while Cash Connect will be responsible for all of the day to day ATM cash funding and management. WSFS Financial Corporation is a $3.0 billion financial services company.

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TNS Quarterly Revenues Near $80MM Rising 9%

VA-based transaction communication specialist TNS reported second quarter revenue of $79.4 million, an 9.2% increase over 2Q/06. Second quarter GAAP net income was $0.5 million versus a second quarter 2006 GAAP net loss of $0.9 million. Revenue from the International Services Division increased 25.1% to $32.4 million. Revenue from the Financial Services Division increased 17.3% to $10.1 million. Revenue from the Telecommunication Services Division decreased 3.7% to $16.1 million. Revenue from the POS Division decreased 3.1% to $20.8 million on 1.51 billion transactions. For the third quarter, TNS anticipates total revenue growth of 11-15% to $81.0-$84.0 million. For more information on TNS’ second quarter performance visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

[1]: http://www.carddata.com

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SBI VISA

The State Bank of India, in partnership with VISA, has launched the
“SBI Gold International” Debit card providing cardholders with money
transfer service, VISA “Bill Pay” and “Verified by VISA”. In addition,
the card holders can collect loyalty points, security limits on
transactions,
purchase protection, cash withdrawal without any service charges at
13 bank’s ATMs, and discounts at certain retailer locations. ATM cash
withdrawals are limited to $ 1,000 for international transactions and Rs
50,000 for domestic transactions. At the point-of-sale, transactions are
limited to $ 4,000 for international transactions and Rs 200,000 for
domestic transactions.

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Postilion Applications Earn VISA PABP

S1’s Postilion has received VISA “Payment Application Best Practices” validation of its applications used by banks and credit unions. This validation by Visa USA and Visa Europe indicates that the Postilion solutions for ATM Driving and Merchant Acquiring handle cardholder data in a secure manner. Visa PABP defines application best practices that are considered to be the industry standard for the data security of payment applications. Visa designed this program to assist software vendors in developing secure payment applications that minimize security breaches and compromised card details. Using these secure Postilion solutions will help banks and credit unions comply with payment industry standards such as the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS). Visa Europe and Visa USA list applications that have received this validation on their web sites. Postilion, a division of S1 Corporation is a global provider of integrated solutions for self-service banking and payment processing.

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RECONNET 7.4

Trintech has announced the availability of its software that enables users to automate, monitor, and document the effectiveness of the account reconciliation process. “ReconNET 7.4″‘s new account reconciliation lockdown features let clients close or “lockdown” specific time periods to ensure complete integrity throughout
the accounting, reconciliation and financial governance process.
“ReconNET 7.4” also incorporates support for current versions of Oracle and Microsoft databases and the Microsoft Windows “Vista” operating system.

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GE Money to Issue Modell’s New Cards

GE Money and Modell’s Sporting Goods announced plans to offer a “Modell’s Most Valuable Player Platinum MasterCard” credit card and a private label “Modell’s MVP Credit Card” to customers at their more than 130 stores throughout the Northeastern US. The MVP program will enable cardholders to earn rewards at all Modell’s locations, and everywhere MasterCard is accepted worldwide, plus receive 15% off their first Modell’s purchase on the card. In addition to earning rewards, customers can receive exclusive cardholder offers, special sale events and discount coupons.

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3RD MAN SUPERSEARCH

The 3rd man has established “SuperSearch”, a service allowing retailers
to share information regarding fraudulent activity. If a transaction is
rejected when conducted by a “SuperSearch” user, this information is
made available to all users and subsequently can prevent any further
attempts of fraud. This database scans 10 million transactions per month
and is composed of questionable details that may signal fraud such as email
addresses, delivery addresses, phone numbers and card numbers. In the
UK, The 3rd Man projects the prevention of between GBP 10-15million
per month in fraud for 2008 and an estimated GBP 20million saved over the 2007 Christmas period.

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