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« September 5, 2004 - September 11, 2004 | Main | September 19, 2004 - September 25, 2004 »

September 18, 2004

Top 10 Hidden Dangers of Credit Cards

Yahoo! Finance is carrying Bankrate.com's article by Peter Davidson about the top ten hidden dangers of credit cards.
Credit cards. It may seem very difficult to get by without them in this day and age, but the fact of the matter is it's becoming more and more expensive to live with them.

That's because credit card companies have managed to stack the deck in their favor, thanks to obliging lawmakers and regulators who have allowed them to gouge consumers for exorbitant fees and unconscionable interest rates.

September 17, 2004

Another Look at the JP Morgan Chase, IBM Outsourcing Cancellation

Gretchen Morgenson of the New York Times writes on Forbes.com about some of the potential implications of the breakup of the JP Morgan Chase outsourcing deal with IBM.

FMI Urges Congress to Address 'Skyrocketing' Card Fees

CardForum reports that the Food Marketing Institute has filed testimony with the House Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit urging Congress to investigate "skyrocketing" electronic transaction interchange fees and the lack of controls on those fees. The FMI testimony is available online as well as earlier comments it also provided to the Federal Reserve earlier this summer on this same subject. READ MORE »

Payments in the Supply Chain

The Chicago Federal Reserve Bank has published a summary of the payments conference titled "An Electronic Supply Chain: Will Payments Follow?" (PDF) that it held in May 2004. The conference agenda and presentations are also available for downloading.

Online Micropayments

NPR's Rick Karr examines paying for music in the Internet age -- including a look at online micropayments.

Shoppers Break Out Debit Cards

Eve Mitchell reports in the Oakland Tribune on the growth in debit card usage, displacing paper checks. READ MORE »

3M Pushes Web Pay Plan

Jennifer Bjorhus writes in the Pioneer Press about 3M's new supplier electronic payment plan -- and some supplier reactions to 3M's fees. READ MORE »

September 16, 2004

Debit Card and Network Trends

ATM&Debit News has released its 2005 EFT Data Book which includes details about ATM and POS volumes for the various debit networks.

September 15, 2004

Philips and ViVOtech to Deploy NFC-based Contactless Payment Solutions

Philips and ViVOtech have announced a new initiative to deploy Philip's Near Field Communication (NFC) technology-based contactless payment solutions at merchant locations allowing an NFC-enabled mobile phone to be used as a payment and promotion device. READ MORE »

First Data Announces Letter of Intent with Bank of America

First Data Corp. has announced entering into a letter of intent with Bank of America to provide new and expanded services. READ MORE »

JP Morgan Chase Brings Technology Infrastructure In-House

JP Morgan Chase and IBM announced this morning that JP Morgan Chase will be bringing various technology infrastructure functions currently outsourced to IBM back in-house. READ MORE »

September 14, 2004

OCC Issues Advisory Letter on Credit Card Practices

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has issued a new advisory letter regarding certain credit card practices of card issuers. READ MORE »

ING Holds Investor Relations Symposium

ING held an Investor Relations Symposium recently in New York. Among the interesting presentations is an update on ING Direct (PDF). Over the last four years, ING Direct has grown in the US market to become the 39th largest bank as represented by funds on deposit.

Barriers to Direct Deposit

The Department of the Treasury has completed a study on why some individuals still prefer to receive their Social Security payments via paper check rather than direct deposit via ACH. READ MORE »

Federal Reserve Proposes Changes to Regulation E

The Federal Reserve is requesting public comment on proposed changes to Regulation E that would provide guidance regarding the rights, liabilities, and responsibilities of parties engaged in electronic check conversion transactions.

The proposed changes also provide that payroll card accounts are "accounts" and are covered by Regulation E.

The full text of the proposed changes as well as commentary explaining the changes is available for downloading online (PDF). READ MORE »

Battle of the Perks Among Credit Card Issuers

Ron Lieber reports in today's Wall St. Journal about the escalating battle of the perks (subscription reqd.) between credit card issuers as highlighted by today's launch of the Citi PremierPass.
The PremierPass further escalates this battle of the perks. In addition to giving you points for the money you spend (one point per dollar generally; double that for groceries, gas, drugstores, parking garages, subways and commuter trains), the new card offers bonus points for miles flown.

September 13, 2004

Rewards Network Signs with Royal Bank of Canada

Rewards Network has announced it has signed RBC Royal Bank to provide the bank's Visa cardholders the opportunity to earn rewards points when dining at restaurants in both Canada and the US.

Banks Marketing Budgets Increase

The American Bankers Association announced this morning that a recent survey indicates banks have increased marketing expenditures this year 5 per cent over 2003.
Spending reflected the continuing boom in retail banking. On average, 66.5 percent of marketing expenditures promoted services to court consumers, 23.2 percent was allocated to the small business market. Commercial lending commanded the remainder of the expenditure pie with 7.4 percent dedicated to mid-market businesses and 1.3 percent for large corporations.

Credit Enters Fast Food Realm

Karen Robinson-Jacobs reports for the Dallas Morning News on the growing acceptance of card-based payments at fast food restaurants.

September 12, 2004

Identity Theft - The Crime That Keeps On Taking

Robin Palmer writes a comprehensive article on identity theft for the Sunday magazine of the Barre Montpelier (VT) Times Arcus.

No Pal to Overspenders

Lorene Yue writes in the Hartford Courant about PayPal's recent alliance with GE Consumer Finance.

The Demise of Paper Checks

USNews.com reports on the demise of paper checks and the upcoming implementation of new Check 21 rules.
The rise of cheaper and faster payment alternatives such as credit cards, debit cards, and online banking started eating into the check's market share in the 1990s. And next month, a new law takes effect that will eliminate many of the check's few remaining advantages for consumers. As a result, the current 4 percent-a-year decline in check writing is expected to accelerate. Within a generation, checks are likely to be a rarity, used only by a few stubborn oldsters or in special situations, such as giving a nephew money as a graduation gift.

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