Aussie Card Debt

The Reserve Bank of Australia reported this week that credit card volume in November hit $9.47 billion among 84.6 million transactions. The level was down $125 million from record volume in October. Australians currently owe $22.4 billion on credit cards compared to $19.4 billion on year ago. Over the past twelve months credit limits have increased about 11% to $64.2 billion. There are approximately 8 million credit cardholders in Australia among a total population of slightly more than 20 million, according to The RAM Report ([www.ramreport.com][1]).

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

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DELINQUENCY & WOORI

A new study projects that the number of credit cards issued in Ireland
will grow nearly 40% over the next four years. Mintel says cards-in-force
by 2006 should top 2.6 million based on current growth patterns. The
research firm says between 1997 and 2001, credit card debt increased 76% to
Euro 1.1 billion. The growth in card debt mirrors the rapid rise in
consumer spending during the same period, which nearly doubled. Mintel says
card issuers should be aware that Irish consumers have become less brand loyal.

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Online Volume Record

CO-based Corporate Express says it sold a record $7+ million in office products on January 7th through its e-commerce channels, which now account for nearly 50% of the Company’s total daily office products sales. As part of the $7 million e-commerce sales, E-Way, Corporate Express’ online ordering tool, had a record day of more than $5.3 million in online sales. With a B2C-style interface and customizable B2B functionality, E-Way provides Corporate Express customers with a robust procurement application. In addition, Corporate Express’ integrated solutions, which include EDI and XML integration with customers e-procurement systems, also achieved a new high of more than $2 million.

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KS Community Banks & ICBA

The Community Bankers Association of Kansas has endorsed the credit, debit, merchant or Internet banking programs and solutions offered by ICBA Bancard. With this announcement, the CBAK joins 32 other state banking organizations that endorse the credit, debit, merchant or Internet banking programs and solutions offered by ICBA Bancard. Currently over half of the Association’s growing membership participate in an ICBA affiliated program or service.

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SCA Signs FL Jeweler

Ft. Lauderdale-based J.R. Dunn Jewelers has signed a private label credit card program deal with NJ-based Shoppers Charge Accounts. SCA services brick-and-mortar and catalog retailers, who also have e-commerce businesses, throughout the U.S. The company acquires retailers’ receivables or will develop private label credit card programs for merchants who currently don’t offer a house charge. In both situations, SCA assumes responsibility for generating customers’ billing statements; managing credit, collection, and lockbox functions; and creating customized marketing programs.

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USTT 11th Vending Patent

PA-based USA Technologies has received its eleventh vending specific patent that covers nearly all forms of cashless vending, whether the vending machine is activated by a credit card, smart card, wireless, cellular phone, PDA or PIN. A large majority of USA Technologies’ 18 approved patents and 56 pending patents relate to wireless networking, payment processing, cashless microtransactions, remote auditing, and interactive e-commerce and e-business applications, spanning industries as pervasive as vending, office equipment, commercial laundry, kiosks, point-of-sale equipment, and automotive telematics.

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United Card Bonus

United Airlines and Bank One have introduced the “More Miles” program offering “United Mileage Plus VISA” cardholders to earn bonus miles. The program kicks off by offering cardholders double miles for all purchases charged on the Mileage Plus VISA card at restaurants and home-improvement stores between now and February 28th. The “More Miles” program features a combination of credit card offers, as well as additional opportunities offered exclusively by United’s partners, through which cardholders earn incremental miles during the year. Monthly credit card statement inserts will also feature a unique “More Miles” logo. United’s frequent flyer program has more than 40 million enrolled members. There are approximately three million United VISA cardholders.

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Household 4Q/02

Household reported this morning a 9.0% gain in fourth quarter bank credit card outstandings to $18,952,600,000 compared to 4Q/01. Private label credit card outstandings also grew from $13.8 billion for 4Q/01 to $14.9 billion at end-of-year 2002, an 8% increase. However, Household did experience an increase in both delinquency and charge-offs compared to one year ago. Delinquency (60+ days) hit 4.12% compared to 4.10% one year ago, for its managed VISA and MasterCard segment. However the figure was down 2 basis points from the third quarter. Delinquency (60+ days) for Household’s private label portfolio hit 6.03% compared to 5.48% for 4Q/01. Charge-offs (net of recoveries) climbed to 6.98% for Household’s bank credit card portfolio compared to 6.81% in the previous quarter, and 6.69% one year ago. Private label credit card charge-offs (net of recoveries) declined to 5.91%, compared to 6.12% for 3Q/02, and 5.40% for 4Q/01. For complete details on Household’s latest performance, plus historical portfolio information visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

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

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NPC 4Q/02

National Processing reported net income for the fourth quarter of $14.1 million, down 22% from comparable 2001 amounts of $18.2 million. Revenue for 4Q/02 was down 4% to $118.3 million compared to $124.0 million one year ago. Merchant Card Services transaction volume for 4Q/02 hit 1.1 billion, a 6% increase over 4Q/01. Card Services dollar volume for 4Q/02 increased 1% to $45.5 billion. Merchant Card Services revenue for the fourth quarter decreased 2% to $113.0 million. NPC says its top line growth in 2003 will be significantly impacted by lower pricing for national merchants and the company’s decision to exit merchant processing for airlines. The airline decision alone will decrease NPC’s year-over-year revenue growth by more than 300 basis points. NPC is projecting 2003 revenue growth of 1%-6%. For complete details on NPC’s latest performance visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

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

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Vital Marketing SVP

Vital Processing Services has hired Chuck Bruney, formerly with Speer & Associates, as SVP/Marketing and Communications. Bruney joins Vital after a 15-year tenure with Speer & Associates, Inc. (S&A), a financial services consulting practice, where he served as executive vice president and board member. At S&A, Bruney managed a wide range of consulting projects for financial institutions and leading technology providers worldwide.

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