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July 23, 2004

Ecommerce Chargebacks Declining

Linda Punch reports in Credit Card Management on the progress being made by online ecommerce merchants in reducing their losses due to cardholder chargebacks.
The progress e-merchants made against chargebacks over the past year is encouraging. Nevertheless, the battle rages on.

While chargeback ratios have "come down significantly, it's still a big problem," says Visa's McCarthy. Chargebacks for face-to-face transactions are "somewhere in the neighborhood of 7 cents to 8 cents out of every $100 put on a Visa card," he says. "We are still in the 25-cents-to-30-cents range in the e-commerce channel. There's still a big gap we want to close."

Visa Prepares for Peak Season

Visa USA announced it has completed preparations to ensure it will be capable of handling peak season transaction volumes later this year of over 6,000 transactions per second.

July 22, 2004

WSJ: America Becomes a Plastic Nation

Jathon Sapsford reports in Friday's Wall St. Journal on how card-based payments are replacing cash in the USA.
Last year, cash was used in 32% of retail transactions, down from 39% in 1999. Credit card usage has remained stable, accounting for about 21% of purchases during that time. Meanwhile debit cards, which take money out of checking accounts immediately after each purchase, shot up to 31% of purchases last year, from 21% in 1999.

The Quest for a Cashless Society

Lesley Stones reports from Johannesburg in on the quest for a cashless society.
Expectations that electronic banking and plastic cards will ever create a cashless society are about as unrealistic as the fanciful notion that one day we will all work in a paperless office. Just as people will not relinquish sheets of paper for electronic documents, people trust cash too much to replace it entirely with transactions based on the electronic transfer of digits.
We heard from a European friend recently that banks in one of the Scandinavian countries were in the process of actually removing ATMs from their networks -- electronic payments having become so pervasive that the demand for cash from ATMs was on the decline.

July 21, 2004

eBay Announces Second Quarter Results - Including PayPal

eBay this afternoon announced its second quarter financial results including perhaps some surprising results for PayPal. READ MORE »

MiniCards Are Next Big Thing

The Chicago Tribune is running a story tonight from the Boston Globe about how mini-credit cards are a big hit with consumers (subscription reqd).

Speedpass Promotion

speedpasscase.jpgExxonMobil has announced a promotion offering new and existing Speedpass customers a RaceCase in exchange for registering and completing four purchases using their Speedpass between July 1 and Sept 30 (must include two fuel purchases for a minimum of 10 gallons each and two non-fuel purchases for a mininum of $5 each). More information at

Burger King Selects Verifone for POS Rollout

Verifone announced this morning that Burger King has selected the Verifone Omni 3750 payment terminal for deployment to more than 2,000 company owned and franchise restaurants. The 3750 supports both dial-up and IP "always on" connectivity options -- apparently an important factor in Burger King's selection of the 3750 terminal.

First Data Reports Earnings

First Data Corp. reported earnings this morning for the second quarter with earnings per share up 15% on a revenue increase of 22% as compared to the same quarter last year. This reports includes the full effects of the merger with Concord EFS completed earlier this year.

July 20, 2004

Citi Launches Thank You Redemptions Network

Citi Cards has announced the launch of the Thank You Redemption Network, a new loyalty rewards program for Citi cardholders and retail banking customers. READ MORE »

Bill Me Later Service Gets Easier Connection

CyberSource and I4 Commerce have announced they're partnering to make it easier for merchants to implement I4 Commerce's Bill Me Later payment service. READ MORE »

A Look at ATMs and Triple DES

Kevin Poulsen writes in Security Focus about the upgrades now underway to address ATM PIN pad security and certification requirements.

Earlier this month, Visa International announced it was postponing its original July 1, 2004 compliance deadline for deploying tested and approved ATMs.

NOCHEX Updates Volumes

Creditman reports on NOCHECK, a UK-based online payment service -- having recently passed the milestone of having processed £100 million. READ MORE »

Jack in the Box Accepts Visa, MasterCard, Discover

Jack in the Box restaurants has announced that it has completed implementation and now accepts Visa, MasterCard and Discover cards at all of its company-owned and many of its franchisee-owned restaurant locations. READ MORE »

MasterCard Named One of Best Places to Work in IT

MasterCard has announced that it has been named on ComputerWorld's list of top places to work in information technology.

Smart Card Talk

The latest issue of the Smart Card Alliance's Smart Card Talk newsletter is now available. The Alliance has a webinar coming up later this week focusing on merchant and consumer benefits from contactless payment technologies.

Wells Fargo Highlights Internet Activity

In its earnings release this morning, Wells Fargo included the following highlights of its Internet-related activity: 5.6 million active online customers, up 30 percent from prior year; 1.9 million bill pay customers, up 36 percent from prior year; 485,000 active online small business customers, up 37 percent from prior year; over 1 million online statements now distributed monthly

US Bancorp Reports Earnings

US Bancorp reported earnings this morning that included a 16.4 percent growth in merchant processing services revenues at its Nova Information Systems subsidiary.
Merchant processing services revenue was higher in the second quarter of 2004 than the same quarter of 2003 by $23.3 million (16.4 percent), reflecting an increase in transaction volume and the purchase of two European merchant acquiring businesses, which accounted for approximately $7.1 million of the increase.

Triton Opens ATM IP Standard to Public Domain

Off-premise ATM supplier Triton has announced that it is opening up its ATM interface specifications through the release of its Triton Standard.

July 19, 2004

Payment Technologies Drives Sony of Canada Pulse Program

Payment Technologies has announced it is providing the technology platform supporting Sony of Canada's Pulse loyalty program. See also Sony Canada's press release on the Pulse customer loyalty program. READ MORE »


Sasha Talcott reports in the Boston Globe on mini-cards being issued by Bank of American, Discover and others and the higher usage those cards have as a result of consumer convenience. READ MORE »

July 18, 2004

Checking Account Fraud Increasing

Caroline Mayer and Griff Witte report in Monday's Washington Post regarding increasing concerns about checking account fraud. READ MORE »

Goodbye Float

Julie Tripp writes in the Oregonian on some of the implications of Check 21. READ MORE »


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