GE Money to Issue the Southern States Card

GE Money’s Sales Finance unit and Southern States Cooperative have announced a new multi-year relationship to provide new financing options through GE Money’s private label credit program. The program will be offered at the cooperative’s more than 1,100 retail outlets across 23 states. Southern States is a provider of agricultural products and services with 300,000 farmer members and fiscal 2006 sales of $1.6 billion.

Details

BARCLAYCARD PLATINUM

Barclaycard has introduced three new “Platinum VISA” cards offering
variations of cash-back and balance transfers. This is the first time
that Barclaycard has offered a credit card with three options. The
“Platinum Cash Back VISA” offers 2% cash-back on supermarket and petrol
spending and 0.5% cash-back on all other purchases. In addition, the
card offers 0% interest on balance
transfers for 12 months with a 2.5% fee. “Platinum Long Term Balance
Transfer VISA” offers no balance transfer fee during the first 60 days
from account opening, 5.9% interest per annum on balance transfers for
the life of the transfer and 0% interest on purchases for 10 months from
account opening. The “Platinum Balance Transfer VISA” offers 0% on
balance transfers for 12 months from account opening with a 2.5% fee
and 0% interest on purchases for 3 months from account opening.
Barclaycard has nearly 10 million cardholders in the UK.

Details

CyberSource Revenues Soar by 40% in Q2

CyberSource reported that second revenue rose 40% to $22.9 million. Transaction volumes increased to a record 269.2 million during the quarter, a 35% increase the same period last year. The Company also added approximately 2,100 new customers in the second quarter. During the quarter, CyberSource signed a deal to acquire Authorize.Net for $565 million; signed Craigslist, jetBlue Airways, The Kroger Company, PING Golf, Public Broadcasting Service, Timberland Switzerland, and WinZip Computing as new customers; and expanded or renewed its relationship with Ask.com, Duke University, Eastman Kodak, Hearst Corporation, Seagate Technology, and UCLA. The Company expects total revenue to be $23.8 million for the third quarter. For complete details on CyberSource’s latest results visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

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

Details

MAY DEBT

Credit card debt climbed again in May setting a new record of A$40.2 billion. However, credit card volume inched up by only 3% compared to one year ago and remains sluggish in the wake of credit card surcharge fees charged to consumers. Credit card debt rose 12%, compared to May 2006. Credit card limits also reached a new high at A$108.5 billion, marking the ninth consecutive month of A$100+ billion. Card volume was A$17.0 billion during May, compared to a previous record of A$17.1 billion set in December, according to the Reserve Bank of Australia. One-year ago credit card debt stood at A$35.9 billion. There are currently 13.5 million credit card and charge card accounts in Australia, compared to 12.9 million one-year ago.

Details

Citi’s U.S. Q2 Card Profits Decline 17%

Citigroup reported that 2Q/07 profits for its U.S. Cards unit declined 17% year-on-year to $726 million due to increased credit costs. U.S. card revenues decreased 2% to $3.18 billion. Bank credit card outstandings for the U.S. were down 2% to $108.9 billion compared to one-year ago. However, private label card outstandings increased 6% to $31.2 billion, but down sequentially. Purchase volume for the second quarter rose 6% to $82.2 billion. Citi’s account base at the end of the second quarter rose 2% to 147.5 million accounts, but down 2.5 million accounts from 1Q/07. Citi’s charge-offs for bankcard and private label cards declined to 4.55% compared to 4.63% in the prior quarter and 4.11% one-year ago. Overall delinquency (90+ days) declined slightly from 1.57% for 1Q/07 to 1.47% for the second quarter 2007. For complete details on Citigroup’s 2Q/07 performance, visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

CITIGROUP
U.S. Credit Card Net Income
2Q/06: $ 878 million
3Q/06: $1085 million
4Q/06: $1001 million
1Q/07: $ 897 million
2Q/07: $ 726 million
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

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

Details

Experian & PlaNet Explore Microfinance

TaoBao.com has reportedly tripled its transaction volume for the 1st
half of 2007 to $2 billion USD. From a 65% share of the market, over
the past year the site has grown to obtain a 72.2% market share with
the number of users increasing by 80% to 39.9 million. These figures
are reflective of a growing feeling of comfort with shopping online
amongst the Chinese population. For the company’s business-to-
consumer channel, nearly 8,000 companies applied. Of the almost
2,000 companies that have been approved, including Motorola, P&G
and Logitech, the average daily trading volume exceeded 100 million
yuan.

Details

KKR Expenses Pull-Down FDC Q2 Profits

First Data reported second quarter consolidated revenues of $2 billion, a 16% increase over 2Q/06. However, income from continuing operations declined 11% to $228.9 million. Income was impacted by transaction costs related to the pending merger with KKR as well as net expenses resulting from litigation, restructuring and all other items. For the quarter, Commercial Services generated revenues of $1.1 billion, a growth rate of 11% or 7% excluding reimbursable debit network fees. Financial Institution Services generated second quarter revenue of $487 million, up 8%. For the quarter, First Data International generated revenue of $403 million, up 35%. For the full year 2007, First Data affirmed its earnings per share guidance from continuing operations in the range of $1.20-$1.26. For complete details on First Data’s latest performance visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

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

Details

PAYPASS PILOT

The first “MasterCard PayPass” pilot in Italy is set to start by the end of this year. In partnership with Banco Posta’s Poste Italiane business unit, the trial will run for six to eight months. New cardholders will be offered the “PostePay Evolution MasterCard,” a prepaid card with “PayPass” technology. The prepaid card will be available for purchase and use at retailers in Milan and Rome in a variety of retail categories. The Italian pilot follows the launch of several “PayPass” pilot programs across Europe, beginning in June 2006 with the region’s first “PayPass” credit program launched with Garanti Bank and major retailers in Turkey. Most recently, MasterCard announced the forthcoming launch of a major “PayPass” pilot in Spain with Caja Madrid and more than 200 retailers.

Details

GE Money Renews the ARS HomeCard

GE Money’s Sales Finance unit has renewed its consumer finance agreement with TN-based American Residential Services for the “ARS HomeCard”. The new agreement will extend the relationship for multiple years, and covers a wide range of residential products, including air conditioning and heating systems, air filtration and purification products to improve indoor air quality, comfort controls, and large plumbing or sewer line replacements.The ARS HomeCard offers deferred payments and other promotional terms, giving ARS and Rescue Rooter customers a variety of ways to make their purchases affordable. ARS HomeCard transactions are serviced through GE Money’s Rapid City (S.D.) service center. GE Money’s Sales Finance provides private label credit card programs, marketing, installment lending and financial services for national and regional retailers, dealers and service providers in more than 20 markets.

Details

PrePaid International Forum Launched

When China becomes a center of Standard Chartered Bank operations,
the bank will have a network projected to be more than 170 by 2011.
Currently with 24 outlets in China, the British bank plans to expand
to 40 outlets by 2008. The bank also projects to be the largest lender of
small- and medium-sized enterprise (SME) businesses and to have the
largest employee base in China, compared to its other global operations.
These projections are citing an estimated expansion 20 to 30 times the
business currently in China over the next five years. Standard Chartered
Bank plans to launch operations in August 2007 in Shanghai and Beijing
with investable wealth of more than $1 million.

Details

Interchange Raises Antitrust Concerns

The House Judiciary Committee’s Antitrust Task Force heard testimony yesterday from merchant groups claiming that VISA and MasterCard are in violation of federal antitrust laws in the setting of interchange fees. Panel Chairman John Conyers (D-MI) said he believes the burden of proof lies with the credit card companies to reassure Congress that increasing interchange fees are not harming merchants and ultimately consumers. The National Retail Federation and the Merchants Payments Coalition says recent research shows that only about 13% of the interchange fee is spent on actual transaction processing. The rest goes for marketing, profit, and rewards programs. NRF Senior Vice President and General Counsel Mallory Duncan testified that this is the only market he knows of where the parties compete to raise prices rather than to lower them. VISA and MasterCard did not testify.

Details