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« November 6, 2005 - November 12, 2005 | Main | November 20, 2005 - November 26, 2005 »

November 19, 2005

How to Boost Your FICO Credit Score

Christopher Conkey writes for the Wall St. Journal on how your credit score increasingly affects the prices you pay for financial services products, what components go into your credit score and what you can do to affect it. 


November 18, 2005

NOVA to Acquire Citibank Card Acceptance in Europe

NOVA Information Systems (NOVA), a wholly owned subsidiary of U.S. Bancorp, has announced that its European affiliate, euroConex, has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Citibank Card Acceptance (CCA), a major European card acquirer and a part of Citigroup, Inc.


Headline News - Friday, November 18, 2005

Note: This posting is updated regularly throughout the day.

November 17, 2005

Debit Card Issuers Pile on Rewards, and Fret

Robin Sidel and Rob Lieber report for the Wall St. Journal on debit card rewards programs and the difficulties banks are having constructing viable rewards programs given the lower revenue that debit cards generate for card issuers as compared to credit cards.


Headline News - Thursday, November 17, 2005

Note: This posting is updated regularly throughout the day.

November 16, 2005

Pay Directly from Your Bank Account at is now accepting electronic check payments - or, as Amazon calls it, "Pay Directly From Your Bank Account."


More Than Half of U.S. Online Households Pay at Least One Bill Online

CheckFree has announced results of a recent survey concluding that 56 percent of US online households are paying at least one bill online, up from 52 percent last year. Currently, 87 percent of users who pay their bills from a single "consolidated" website, such as a bank, brokerage, credit union or Internet portal, say they receive the service for free.


Corillian Introduces "Intelligent Authentication"

Corillian has announced the integration of a strong authentication solution into its online banking applications in direct response to the recent Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council's (FFIEC) guidance.  The solution will enable Corillian customers to provide a strong, multi-layer authentication solution enterprise-wide by year-end 2006. Corillian calls its patent-pending security solution "Intelligent Authentication".


PayNowSMS Launches New Mobile Payment Service, Brand

ViewMedia.jpgGibraltar-based PayNowSMS has announced a new alternative payment processing service targeting merchants in the online entertainment and gaming sectors.  The service uses mobile phone text message to accomplish payment.  The PayNowSMS platform is being provided by Upaid.


Headline News - Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Note: This posting is updated regularly throughout the day.

November 15, 2005

MasterCard Files Amended S-1 With SEC

MasterCard yesterday filed an amended S-1 registration with the SEC. Among the changes included in the amended version were the naming of additional investment bank underwriters (adding Citigroup, HSBC, and JP Morgan Chase as joint bookrunnners to Goldman, Sachs who is acting as both joint bookrunner and sole global coordinator) and the disclosure of a Consumer Cards Incentive Agreement signed in April of this year with MBNA. In June, Bank of America announced plans to acquire MBNA.

Visa USA Decides It Wasn't Where It Wanted to Be

Stuart Elliott reports for the New York Times on yesterday's announcement by Visa USA that it is switching creative advertising agencies from its agency for the last 20 years, BBDO Worldwide, to TBWA/Chiat/Day. Both agencies are part of the Omnicom Group.


Headline News - Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Note: This posting is updated regularly throughout the day.

November 14, 2005

Wal-Mart Accepts Debitman Cards Nationwide

Debitman has announced that Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. is now accepting Debitman cards at checkout in all Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club locations across the United States.

“We are thrilled to be working with Wal-Mart,” said R. Scott Hatfield, President and COO of Debitman. “There can be no better validation of our business model and company mission.”


Two More Retail Groups Sue Over Credit Card Fees

Eileen Alt Powell reports for the AP on two new class action lawsuits filed today against Visa USA, MasterCard Inc. and a number of major banks over interchange fees. The cases were filed by the American Booksellers Association and the National Grocers Association and several of its members, including Affiliated Foods Midwest, Coborn's Inc., D'Agostino's Supermarkets and the Minnesota Grocers Association.


FMI Asks Supreme Court Not to Give Credit Card Firms Shelter

Convenience Store News reports on a Nov. 10th amicus brief filing with the US Supreme Court by the Food Marketing Institute urging the court to reject an invitation from Visa to "create an antitrust safe harbor" regarding interchange fees. The complete brief (PDF) is available online on the FMI web site.

Certegy To Offer PassMark Authentication System

Certegy and PassMark Security have announced plans to offer PassMark's two-factor, two-way authentication system with Certegy's Internet Banking, Cash Management and Bill Pay system.


UK: Credit Cards Likely to Reintroduce Annual Fees, Study Says

Bloomberg reports on a study titled Precious Plastic 2006 released today by PriceWaterhouseCoopers in the UK predicting that as the rate of borrowing on credit cards is slowing, card issuers in the UK are likely to introduce annual fees on cards to help make up for lower profitability. A copy of the report is available for downloading online following registration.

Interchange Fee Battle: Time to Step Back?

BAI's Banking Strategies reports on comments earlier today by Steve Mott at a BAI Payments Forum session on the subject of credit card interchange fees.

MasterCard Announces Prepaid Travel Card Program

MasterCard and Travelex have announced a new turnkey prepaid travel card program enabling MasterCard banks to offer prepaid, reloadable MasterCard branded cards as a "more secure and convenient alternative to travelers cheques and cash."


Interview: Visa CIO John Partridge on Reliability and Innovation

CIO Today interviews John Partridge, president and CEO of Inovant LLC, Visa's global IT organization.

"When Visa updates VisaNet, it's like modifying a 747 engine while the plane is in the air and full of passengers," said Partridge. "The margin of error is zero."

Dell Adds PayPal As Payment Option On

Dell has announced that it now accepts PayPal payments from U.S. consumer and small business customers.


Customer and Business Impacts from Breaches of Consumer Data

PGP Corporation has announced the results of two surveys of customer response to incidents of data breaches. The surveys reported that almost 20 percent of customers immediately terminated their accounts with vendors that lost their information, and an additional 40 percent considered termination. Companies participating in a parallel study estimated incurring an average cost of $14 million per breach incident, with costs ranging as high as $50 million. The reports are available online from PGP.


BitPass to Work with MSN to Enable Digital Content Sales

BitPass has announced an agreement with MSN to enable digital content sales on targeted international MSN portals. As part of the relationship, BitPass will work with MSN to provide co-branded payment services and a marketplace to MSN consumers, enabling a consistent and convenient buying experience.



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