In an article titled 'Rate Chasers Are Online and Moving Cash', Jane Birnbaum writes for the New York Times about "savers who hunt for the best interest rates at banks and credit unions and quickly move their cash from one account to another."
Wells Fargo Merchant Services has published a useful guide for merchants on how they can ensure they are achieving the best interchange rates on their payment card acceptance. The guide, "The Merchant’s Guide To Achieving Better Interchange Rates" can be downloaded online.
According to the Smart Card Alliance, "the vigorous take up of contactless payment in the United States and its future in mobile phones, plus a Mount Sinai Medical Center initiative to give patients control of their own health and hospital registration information, highlighted the Alliance's annual conference."
US households will receive approximately 5.3 billion offers for new credit cards during 2007 according to Mail Monitor, the credit card direct mail tracking service from global market research company Synovate.
CashEdge has announced the results of its second annual Consumer Online Banking Survey. "Eighty-five percent of respondents would never bank with an institution that didn't offer online banking, eighty-two percent of those surveyed say they would use more online banking capabilities if they were available, seventy-three percent of the respondents say they prefer opening and funding a new bank account online, and nearly two-thirds (65 percent) would move their finances to another institution if it meant gaining access to more robust online banking capabilities."
The U.S. Public Interest Research Group has launched Truth about Credit, a web site that focuses on what it calls the "out-of-control marketing and unfair practices of the credit card industry, with a focus on college campuses." It is attempting to get colleges to agree to its "Principles of Responsible College Credit Card Marketing".
Mercator Advisory Group has announced its 4th Annual Prepaid Closed Loop Market Assessment, "documenting the spending, growth, and market dynamics for all Closed Loop Prepaid Solutions in 12 Categories and 33 Market Segments from 2003 through 2006."
American Express has introduced "a new line of Customizable Gift Cards to enable large companies and small businesses alike to send special messages to valued employees, clients, and customers." The cards can be ordered online in quantities of 1 to 1,400 cards, up to $35,000, at http://www.americanexpress.com/gift.
CyberSource has announced that Jet Airways is the first airline in India to implement an automated online risk management solution. CyberSource is providing its Decision Manager solution to Jet Airways to help streamline online risk management processes and reduce fraud.
SVPCO has announced that its monthly image items and dollar volume grew strongly in September compared to a year ago - processing 255.3 million in total monthly items, a 218.3% increase compared to a year ago representing $427.8 billion in total monthly dollar value, a 119.9% increase compared to a year ago.
Aneace Haddad blogs about Welcome's SPICED card applet that enables contactless cards (and mobile devices with embedded contactless payment functionality) to interact with merchant acceptance devices to generate unique 1:1 consumer marketing messages at POS. All Visa payWave contactless cards in Asia will soon be equipped with this new applet.
The Wall St. Journal's personal finance columnist Jonathan Clements devotes his column today to how consumers can get more from banks - and, according to Clements, it's by cherry picking from the best, not just accepting the products offered by a single bank. He focuses on boosting the interest yield from funds on deposit and maximizing consumer rewards on payment cards.
Péralte C. Paul writes for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution about TSYS becoming a Discover issuing processor. "The deal gives Columbus-based Total System, or TSYS, processing rights on the networks of all four major credit card companies — American Express Co., Visa USA, MasterCard International and Discover — for the first time."
Update: Here's yesterday's press release from Discover announcing the new TSYS relationship. According to Discover, "the agreement, which will provide issuers with more options in choosing a preferred processor on the Discover Network, is part of the Discover Network's commitment to offering payment solutions that deliver significant value to issuers."
Metavante has announced the availability of its redesigned HSA solution that has been "reengineered to reflect the findings of Metavante-sponsored research detailing what consumers look for when researching and using HSAs."
FraudSciences Corp., a provider of "guaranteed online credit card-not-present fraud detection and protection", has announced it has closed its Series B round of venture funding totaling $11 million from Redpoint Ventures and BRM Capital.
The National Association of Federal Credit Union's web site has an article titled "NACHA releases interim data-breach policy" describing a new NACHA policy that requires ACH participants to "nform NACHA and others if they believe consumer information has been lost or gotten into the wrong hands."
We have received news of the following recent management changes:
Just a reminder to be sure to visit our Payments Jobs web site. Here you'll find payments-related career opportunities for payments professionals - including listings from Chase Paymentech, Online Resources, an industry leading EBPP provider, Authorize.net, Transaction Network Services, and more. And, If you're hiring payments professionals, be sure to post your current openings on PaymentsJobs.com.
Glenbrook's Russ Jones is in London this week - and files this field report on his first encounter with dynamic currency conversion in action - at Harrods.
Prosper.com has updated its People-to-People Lending Market Survey to reflect results through the end of September. In September, $5.4 million in loans were funded at an average loan size of $7,175. Over average over the month, 2,298 borrowers were looking for loans. A market commentary by CEO Chris Larson addressed the question of whether the Prosper lending marketplace anticipated the Fed's recent 50 basis point cut in interest rates.
Heartland Payment Systems has launched Heartland Express Funds, a bank-neutral remote deposit capture system. "Express Funds allows businesses to electronically deposit checks into bank accounts without physically transporting them to the bank – regardless of which bank or banks the business uses. Eliminating floats and holds, funds are available within 24 hours, and, in many cases, by the next-business morning."
Western Union and Yodlee have announced a program that the two companies says is "the first ever capable of linking financial institutions' online bill-payment services directly to Western Union's thousands of billers. These payment capabilities are featured in Yodlee's new BillPay PayItAll solution."
A research report titled "Crediting Debit: How Debit Cards Will Grow in a Changing Environment" from TowerGroup concludes that "the debit card's increasingly dominant position as a payment vehicle will continue through 2009 and beyond. Prepaid cards will also continue their rapid growth as a result of foreclosures affecting credit scores and consumers continuing to require the benefits of payment card access."