Hypercom Lowers Full Year Income Forecast

Hypercom confirmed its previous guidance for full year 2004 revenues of $254-260 million but reduced its expectation of full year income from continuing operations from $21.0-22.4 million to $13.4-16.5 million. Hypercom is a leading global provider of electronic payment solutions that add value at point-of-sale transactions for consumers, merchants, and acquirers, and yield increased profitability for its customers. Widely recognized as the payment technology innovator, Hypercom delivers comprehensive card payment terminal, network and server solutions that help merchants and financial institutions generate revenues and increased profits.

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Weekend Card Volume Up More Than 9%

Card activity for the fourth holiday shopping weekend rose more than 9% compared to one-year ago. MasterCard predicts that Thursday, December 23rd will be the busiest day in terms of transaction volume — and that and the busiest hour most likely will be from 2 to 3 p.m. CT on Christmas Eve. For the weekend of December 17-18, MasterCard processed 71.3 million authorizations over its “Banknet” network, as compared to 65.3 million for the same period in 2003.

MASTERCARD TRANSACTIONS
Holiday Weekend Transactions Growth
Nov 26-27 64.2 million +9.3%
Dec 3-4 64.6 million +15.8%
Dec 10-11 67.7 million +7.8%
Dec 17-18 71.3 million +9.2%
Source: MasterCard International

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AmEx Takes a Fourth Quarter Charge

American Express expects to record a pre-tax charge in the fourth quarter of of approximately $100 million to $120 million in connection with various restructuring activities that it is undertaking within certain of its business units and staff groups. The charge is not expected to have a material impact on the quarter’s net income as the Company also expects to record a gain in the fourth quarter in connection with the previously-announced sale of the leasing product line in its small business financing unit.

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TurboTax Gets an OPC Card Payment Option

Official Payments Corp has entered into an agreement with Intuit to offer “TurboTax” customers the benefit of convenient and secure new federal and state tax payment options during the 2004 tax year. Under the agreement, Intuit will create an Official Payments Corp./Intuit co-branded Web welcome page that will provide Official Payments Corp. customers’ access to Intuit’s web-based TurboTax federal and state income tax preparation services during the 2004 Tax Year, (January 15, 2005 to October 15, 2005). Intuit will refer to Official Payments Corp. services in Intuit products such as Intuit’s web-based TurboTax federal and state income tax preparation services, and the Tax Year 2004 version of Intuit’s desktop TurboTax software. Tier is a leading provider of transaction processing and packaged software and systems integration services for public sector clients.

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VISA Named World’s Leading Credit Card Again

For the seventh consecutive year, the “World Travel Awards” has named VISA the “World’s Leading Credit Card.” The prize was awarded based on a worldwide online poll of travel agencies and frontline travel agents. Criteria used in evaluating companies and organizations include scope of distribution, convenience and overall best services. Established in 1993, the “World Travel Awards” held its eleventh annual “World Travel Awards Ceremony” December 11th at the Sherbourne Conference Center in Barbados.

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United Bank Card Places a NURIT 8320 Order

Lipman USA has received an order for its “NURIT 8320” POS terminal from United Bank Card. This order, valued at approximately $2.5 million, will be supplied through the first quarter of 2005. United Bank Card currently handles the merchant accounts for over 20,000 locations and processes in excess of $2 billion annually. UBC assists over 650 contracted ISOs around the country. Lipman develops, manufactures and markets a variety of handheld, wireless and landline POS terminals, electronic cash registers, retail ATM units, PIN pads and smart card readers, as well as integrated pin and smart card solutions.

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MBA & Solveras Team With Motorcycle Dealers

MBA Holdings and Solveras Payment Systems announced a new partnership to provide the National Motorcycle Dealers Association with group discounts on MasterCard and VISA processing. NMDA members will be able to utilize Solveras’ experience and superior service and enjoy competitive rates negotiated exclusively for the association. Net savings to motorcycle dealerships are expected to be as much as 0.25% or more per retail transaction which will immediately increase dealer bottom lines. Solveras Payment Systems provides complete electronic payment services to small and medium-sized businesses and trade and professional associations.

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Global Cash Access Hits 960 Clients

Global Cash Access has recently signed or renewed contracts with 20 gaming properties to bring its total client base to 960. GCA’s core credit and debit cash advance products, including QuikCash Cash Advance, Casino Cash Plus 3-in-1 ATM and TeleCheck Check Guarantee are among the products and services that properties will be using. Global Cash Access (GCA), is the global leader in providing cash access and related marketing services to approximately 960 gaming properties and other clients in the United States, Canada, Caribbean and Europe.

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Jack Henry Acquires Two Firms

Jack Henry & Associates has purchased FL-based TWS Systems. The firm is a provider of image-based item processing solutions for credit unions, and a top provider of ATM deposit processing solutions for banks and credit unions. Jack Henry also announced its purchase of the SERsynergy division of VA-based SER Solutions, Inc. SERsynergy, the division’s flagship product, is an intelligent document management solution for financial institutions of all sizes. SERsynergy is enabling more than 1,600 domestic and international financial institutions to further automate their processes by capturing, archiving, and immediately retrieving images of all forms of paper-based and electronic documents.

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Associated Bank Flips to MasterCard Debit

WI-based Associated Bank has inked an agreement with MasterCard International to convert its “VISA Check Card” program to the “Debit MasterCard Card.” Associated will also participate in the Maestro and Cirrus online debit programs. Associated operates approximately 300 branches and more than 340 ATM locations, serving over 400,000 debit cardholders in Wisconsin, Illinois and Minnesota. Associated’s cardholders will receive the “Associated Platinum MasterCard Debit Card” or the “Associated Green Bay Packers MasterCard Debit Card.”

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