Equifax, Experian and TransUnion have introduced a credit scoring methodology that is more uniform across the three consumer credit reporting companies. Under the new “VantageScore” scoring system credit score variance between the companies will be attributed to data differences within each of the three consumer credit files and not to the structure of the scoring model or data interpretation. VantageScore will range from 501 to 990. An “A” score will range from 901 to 990; “B” score from 801 to 900; “C” score from 701 to 800; “D” score from 601 to 700; and “F” score from 501 to 600. VantageScore is being independently marketed and sold separately through each of the three national credit reporting companies via licensing agreements with VantageScore Solutions.Details
Helsinki-based Rahaxi Processing has agreed to supply portable
EMV-compatible payment processing devices from Thyron Systems. Thyron
Systems mobile processing devices will be the most full-featured
portable payment terminals to be available in Finland and are currently
being used in the licensed taxis from Heathrow Airport, the high-speed
rail link between central Stockholm and the city’s main airport, and by
British Airways to supply electronic cash reimbursements to customers.
Rahaxi currently processes in excess of 1.3 million card payments per
month for such companies as Finnair, Ikea and Stockman.
Dexia Bank will distribute VASCO’s “Digipass 810 Unconnected Smart Cards Reader” to all its online users. Dexia Bank’s e-customers will use “Digipass 810” in conjunction with the Dexia Bank debit smart card to get online access to their accounts and to perform e-transactions in the new “Dexia Direct Net Application.” “Digipass 810” is designed to be used for non-face-to-face strong authentication in Internet banking. Dexia is the result of the 1996 alliance of two major European players in local public finance: Credit Local in France and Gemeentekrediet/Credit Communal in Belgium.Details
Thales’ e-Transactions will demonstrate the new “V PAY” debit
application on its Artema Hybrid terminal at this year’s CeBIT
trade fair. “V PAY” is a new pan-European payment card application from
Visa EU designed to support various languages in preparation for the
standardization of Europe’s electronic payment systems. The application
is based on a multi-lingual debit scheme which automatically selects its
language depending on the country in which the customer’s card was
issued. The language shown on the payment terminal display is determined
by the cardÃÂÃÂ´s country code and helps facilitate customer guidance
through the transaction. Thales is an international electronics and systems group, serving defense, aerospace, security and services markets and also offers high security PIN pads for ATMs.
Capital One is furthering its expansion into traditional banking with a deal to acquire North Fork Bancorporation for $14.6 billion. The nation’s fifth largest bank credit card issuer will become one of the 10 largest banks in the country. North Fork has deposits of $36.6 billion and 355 branch locations throughout New York, New Jersey and Connecticut. It is the third-largest depository institution in the greater New York region. Last year, Capital One purchased New Orleans-based Hibernia for $5 billion. After the North Fork deal, the combined company will have deposits of more than $84 billion, a managed loan portfolio of more than $143 billion, more than 50 million customer accounts and 655 branches. Capital One ended 2005 with $49.5 billion in U.S. credit card outstandings and $73.7 billion in annual purchase volume, according to CardData ([www.carddata.com]).
MasterCard has named Javier Perez as President of MasterCard Europe with responsibility for 53 countries in the region. Perez has been President of MasterCard’s Latin America and Caribbean Region since 2004. Prior to that, Perez was General Manager of the Customer Group for
MasterCard Europe. Perez succeeds Alex Labak, who is leaving MasterCard. MasterCard is currently in the process of identifying a successor to head its Latin America and Caribbean region. In the interim, Ruth Ann Marshall, president of the Americas for MasterCard, will oversee the region.
Data security specialist, AmbironTrustWave has hired Gene Distler, formerly of Global Payments, as VP of Strategic Relationships. In this capacity, Distler will be responsible for managing key AmbironTrustWave relationships including the card associations, select ISOs and other industry organizations. In addition, he will manage key business development projects as the company continues its expansion into international markets such as the Asia Pacific region. AmbironTrustWave currently provides data security and compliance services to several federal agencies. AmbironTrustWave is a leading provider of information security and compliance management solutions to Fortune 2000 businesses and the public sector.Details
Washington Mutual is launching a major advertising campaign today to promote its truly free checking product that includes cash back for debit card use. The new TV and print ads were created by Leo Burnett USA and poke fun at old-fashioned bankers enraged with WaMu’s new product and “The WaMu Way” of doing business. The new “WaMu Free Checking” account offers all the features of WaMu’s original Free Checking account plus: free ATM cash withdrawals, a free overdraft or insufficient funds fee waiver each year, free checks for life, cash back for debit card use, free outbound wires, free low-balance alerts with online banking, and free ID theft services. There are no minimum balance or direct deposit requirements. Customers receive a free “Gold Debit MasterCard with Rewards” which earns 3 cents for each PIN or signature transaction during the prior year up to a $250 reward if the account is open and in good standing on the anniversary date.Details
Driven by holiday spending, credit card outstandings neared the GBP 57 billion level during January. The figure is GBP 700 million above the prior month and GBP 2.9 billion higher than year-ago levels. The Bank of England says, however, that the annual growth rate of overall consumer credit continued to fall, to 8.7% in January. The annual growth rate of consumer credit was 9.3% in December. The increase in total net lending to individuals in January was GBP 700 million stronger than the increase in December and GBP 1.4 billion higher than the previous six month average. The twelve-month growth rate remained unchanged, at 10.3%.
U.K. CREDIT CARD OUTSTANDINGS
Jan 05: 54.1
Feb 05: 54.2
Mar 05: 55.0
Apr 05: 55.0
May 05: 55.7
Jun 05: 55.8
Jul 05: 55.9
Aug 05: 56.2
Sep 05: 56.4
Oct 05: 56.3
Nov 05: 56.4
Dec 05: 56.3
Jan 06: 57.0
SOURCE: Bank of England
Houston-based Commerciant is launching a wireless handheld device that processes checks and credit cards in a single, integrated device. The new “Mobilescape 5000” weights 1 lb 4.1 oz. without paper, has a 6000 transaction storage capacity, onboard thermal printer and a Lithium-ion battery with a runtime of 10 hours with intermittent use. The new terminal will be commercially available in mid-April, and will retail for $899.Details