PAGO Reports Record Low Chargeback Ratios

A new report shows that chargeback ratios for credit card
transactions have fallen dramatically to new lows. The average chargeback ratio is now 32 basis points, compared to 48 basis points one-year ago. Ratios for consumers from Germany is about nine basis points and for the rest of Europe about six basis points. All the results are based on the analysis of a representative selection of
around 30 million real-life purchase transactions processed through the
Pago platform between October 2005 and September 2006. Because Pago is a
credit card acquirer for VISA and MasterCard for the European license area, the transactions all originate from online shops in Germany, the U.K. and the rest of Europe. The new PAGO report also analyzes the E-commerce sectors retailing, gambling, services and travel and entertainment in more detail.

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Welcome Partners With AXA Private Equity

AXA Private Equity has acquired a majority hold in Welcome Real-time.
Welcome has bank customers in 21 countries around the world,
140 employees, and steady revenue growth at 50% per year. The
company’s card marketing enhancements create added value at the moment
of payment. AXA Investment Managers concentrates on private equity
investments and offers a selection of funds across a range of asset
classes.
These classes include Buyout, Mezzanine, Funds of Funds, Co-Investment,
Expansion and Venture Capital.

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Triton Selects MorphisSC Platform

ATM manufacturer Triton selected “MorphisSC” as the software platform for its worldwide technical support and services organization. MorphisSC provides real-time management of remote Help Desk facilities and field service organization functions. Triton will also be using the system to maintain up-to-date asset, owner and location information. Morphis data mining capabilities will enable Triton to analyze and more closely monitor service metrics using a variety of parameters. Every technical support call from field technicians will be recorded, building a historical service record, which will allow Triton to better analyze service performance and provide a higher level of support. Morphis is a supplier of currency supply chain management software. Triton is a provider of off-premise ATMs and ATM management software.

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British Break Record In Charity Donations

From the period of January to April of 2005, APACS plastic card
statistics have revealed that a record-breaking GBP 373.7 million have been
donated in Briton. This figure is GBP 200 million over the net total
donated in
the same period of the previous year and included donations to
political, social
and religious organizations on debit and credit cards. Experts credit
this leap in
donations on cards to sums raised by the central of Disasters Emergency
Committee following the Tsunami and Comic Relief’s “Red Nose Day”.

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ING & ANZ Introduce Pension Access Solution

ING & ANZ have combined resources to offer retirees access to pension
funds. In doing so, the institutions are combining pension with an
integrated
cash management account and granting access to the funds through ATMs,
branches, and Internet banking. The combining of resources consists of
ING’s
“OneAnswer” pension product offering ANZ “Prime Cash Management”
account as an investment option and providing access to funds. “OneAnswer”
provides over 70 investment options from ING and gives customers the
ability to shift funds between all the investment options.

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Federal Preemption on Data Security

The National Retail Federation says any new federal law on the national data breach notification standard should have strong preemption and recognize the fact that retailers usually do not possess the private consumer data needed to commit identity theft. Legislation on data security should take into account both the type of data held by different businesses — not imposing the same requirements on retailers, for example, as on financial institutions, which hold a full array of personal data — and also their size. Similarly, extending data security laws to paper documents is unnecessary because would-be identity thieves are not likely to steal large quantities of paper documents when they can more easily acquire the data electronically. Legislation requiring retailers who suffer a data breach to reimburse banks for the cost of reissuing credit cards is not needed because merchants’ contracts with credit card companies and banks already require the party responsible for a data breach to cover associated costs.

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McLuskie Leaves the MasterCard Board

MasterCard announced that Norman McLuskie, Class M Director and former Chairman, Retail Direct of The Royal Bank of Scotland Group, has concluded his service as a member of the Board of Directors. McLuskie served as a MasterCard director since 2000. Class A stockholders also reelected Class A Directors Nancy Karch, Director Emeritus, McKinsey & Company, and Edward Suning Tian, Chairman, China Broadband Capital Partners. Stockholders also approved the conversion of up to 13.4 million shares of Class B common stock into Class A common stock, and repurchase of up to $500 million of Class A common stock in open-market transactions. MasterCard’s Board of Directors also declared a cash dividend of $0.15 per share, payable on August 10th, to holders of record of its Class A common stock and Class B common stock as of July 3rd.

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Consumer Confidence Weakens in June

After a one-month rebound consumer confidence slumped in June as respondents expressed less confidence about their current situation and are only mildly optimistic about their future prospects. Rising mortgage rates, $3+ gasoline prices and weakening equity prices are contributing factors. The “RBC CASH Index” plummeted to 81.4 for June, well below May’s 87.1 level. Americans’ ratings of their current personal finances dropped in June, with 23% saying their personal finances are “strong,” down from 31% in May. By comparison, 27% of consumers rate their personal finances as “weak.” In addition, consumers said they were less comfortable making major purchases, such as a home or a car. The “RBC CASH Index” is a monthly national survey of consumer attitudes on the current and future state of local economies, personal finance situations, savings and confidence to make large investments. The “Index” is composed of four sub-indices: “RBC Current Conditions Index;” “RBC Expectations Index;” “RBC Investment Index;” and “RBC Jobs Index.”

RBC INDEX HISTORICAL
Jun 06: 84.1
Jul 06: 80.1
Aug 06: 74.8
Sep 06: 93.7
Oct 06: 83.1
Nov 06: 92.4
Dec 06: 86.9
Jan 07: 95.3
Feb 07: 103.0
Mar 07: 92.3
Apr 07: 85.4
May 07: 87.1
Jun 07: 81.4
Source: RBC Financial Group

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Record Monthly Check Image Items in May

SVPCO – Electronic Clearing Services reports that the monthly average check items and dollar value reached all-time highs in May.217.9 million in total monthly items, a 328% increase compared to a year ago, $392.7 billion in total monthly dollar value, a 158% increase compared to a year ago; 9.9 million in daily average items, an increase of 7.2% from April 2007. The Federal Reserve’s volume increased 22.9% to 39.5 million images from April 2007; The Bank of New York connected to the SVPCO Image Payments Network. In May 2006, daily average items were 2.3 million, total monthly items were 50.8 million and monthly dollar volume was $151.8 billion. Through May, participating institutions in the SVPCO Image Payments Network were Bank of America, The Bank of New York, BB&T, Comerica Bank, Fifth Third Bank, First Citizens Bank, HSBC Bank, Huntington National Bank, JPMorgan Chase Bank, KeyBank, LaSalle Bank, M&T Bank, National City Bank, PNC Bank, Sterling National Bank, Union Bank of California, U.S. Bank, Wachovia Bank, and Wells Fargo Bank. Through its relationship with the Federal Reserve and Endpoint Exchange, the Image Payments Network can reach more than 10,000 endpoints and help financial institutions of all sizes take advantage of image exchange.

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GSA SmartPay 2 Selects Participants

U.S. Bank Government Services has become one of four issuers selected to participate in the GSA “SmartPay 2” program for commercial charge cards and related payment services. U.S. Bank has served federal agencies since the inception of the purchase card program in 1986. It was the sole provider of purchase cards during the “I.M.P.A.C.” program from 1988 to 1998, and is one of several providers participating in the first “GSA SmartPay” program, which ends in 2008. U.S. Bank says it will offer travel, purchasing, fleet, and integrated payment products, as well as technologies such as its “Access Online” program management tool and “PowerTrack,” an electronic invoice payment and presentment tool used by the DoD and other government agencies.

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Cellular South WirelessWallet Launches

Cellular South has launched the first-ever multi-city consumer trial of its “WirelessWallet” service in Memphis and Jackson, MS is also the first mobile wallet trial in the country to engage multiple retailers within a community. More than 75 Cellular South customer participants will test the technology at nearly 50 retail locations. The technology uses a handset from Kyocera Wireless. ViVOtech is providing the payment software that resides on the handset. Mpact is providing trial development and management services, reader deployment and NFC content and delivery services. USA Technologies is developing a contactless wireless reader designed for vending machines and other self-service point of sales applications. The wireless device acts as a digital credit card that allows Cellular South customers to make payments and purchases by simply tapping it against a NFC-enabled wireless reader. The company plans to complete the trial by August, with an anticipated widespread consumer roll-out in early 2008.

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