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May 12, 2008

This Week's US House Committee Hearing on US Interchange Fees

The US House Judiciary Committee is holding a hearing this Thursday, May 15th, on H.R. 5546, the “Credit Card Fair Fee Act of 2008”. That bill was introduced by committee chairman Rep. John Conyers, Jr. In an article titled "Old foes unite to keep charging credit card fees to merchants", The Hill reports that the "heated battle over the credit card fees charged to merchants has united two eternal foes" - namely, banks and credit unions. As of tonight, the witness list for Thursday's hearing hasn't been announced.

Glenbrook's Roundtable on the Structure of the Merchant Marketplace

Glenbrook's next roundtable on the Structure of the Merchant Marketplace will be held June 10th in Santa Clara, California. Registration is now open. Allen Weinberg and Carol Coye Benson will be taking a special look "under the covers" – focusing on the key industry verticals within the U.S. merchant marketplace. READ MORE »

New Indictments for Stealing Card Stripes from Restaurant Chain

Assistant Attorney General Alice S. Fisher of the Criminal Division and U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York Benton J. Campbell have announced that 'three defendants have been charged in a federal grand jury indictment and complaint with illegally accessing the computer systems of a national restaurant chain and stealing credit and debit card numbers from that system.' READ MORE »

FTC to Hold July 24 Town Hall Meeting on Contactless Payment

The Federal Trade Commission and the Technology Law and Public Policy clinic at the University of Washington Law School have announced they will be holding a one-day Town Hall meeting entitled “Pay on the Go: Consumers and Contactless Payment" to be held July 24 in Seattle to explore emerging uses of contactless payment devices and their implications for consumer protection policy. According to FTC, the Town Hall follows up on its November 2006 forum, “Protecting Consumers in the Next Tech-ade,” which examined the key technological and business developments that will shape consumers’ experiences in the coming decade. READ MORE »

FHA Encourages Lenders to Use Bill Payment Data for Loans

PRBC, a bill payment credit bureau, has announced that its credit verification, reporting and scoring procedures meet or exceed new guidance provided by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) for verifying "bill payment" histories and establishing credit scores for borrowers with little or no traditional credit files or FICO scores. READ MORE »

Wednesday Webinar on Alternative eCommerce Payment Options

Reminder: eBillme has announced a webinar this Wednesday, May 14, where Russ Jones of Glenbrook Partners will provide an in-depth look at the retailer integration process for several alternative payment options including: Bill Me Later, eBillme, Google Checkout, and PayPal. Registration for the webinar is available online.

Colorado Labor Department Launches Automated Payment Card

The Colorado Department of Labor and Employment has partnered with Chase to change the way benefit payments are issued by the state’s Unemployment Insurance Program. Recipients will be issued a Visa debit card called a Colorado Automated Payment (CAP) Card and benefits will automatically be deposited into their CAP Card account. The CAP Card can be used for purchases anywhere Visa is accepted. An FAQ on the CAP Card is available on the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment's web site. READ MORE »

Universal Studios Partners with GE Money, American Express

Universal Studios has announced it has entered into a multi-year marketing and financial services alliance with GE Money and American Express. Under the arrangement, American Express becomes the official payment of choice at Universal Studios Theme Parks Resorts; GE Money becomes the Parks' official financial services sponsor; and the companies launch the new Universal American Express Card issued by GE Money. READ MORE »

US Credit Card Issuers 2007 Financial Results

Cards&Payments has released the results of its Annual Bankcard Profitability Study finding that credit card issuers in 2007 generated a sizeable profit, though down slightly from the previous year. According to the study, the industry posted a collective after-tax return on assets of $18.08 billion, or 2.79% of average outstandings - down 1.58% from $18.37 billion and 2.97% in 2006. READ MORE »

AuctionBytes Interviews Google Checkout's Prem Ramaswami

AuctionByte's Ina Steiner interviews Prem Ramaswami, Associate Product Manager for Google Checkout, for an update on Google's payment service. Both a podcast and a transcript of the interview are available. Ramaswami says: "We want to create the fastest, safest and most convenient shopping method for our buyers to use, and we want to increase ecommerce, because we strongly believe that increasing ecommerce increases the size of the pie for everybody out there."

Preparing for OFAC Screening on International ACH Transactions

EPN, the ACH business of The Clearing House Payments Company, is urging financial institutions to start planning now to meet OFAC requirements for new international ACH transactions (IAT) in March 2009 and has created an IAT Readiness Checklist to help financial institutions prepare. READ MORE »

SmartPay Launches Utility Bill Payment Service in China

Shanghai SmartPay Jieyin, in partnership with China Unicom, China Unionpay and Huishang Bank, has launched its mobile wallet service for paying utility bills in Anhui Province. This service allows users to pay bills any time, any where, without having to go to banks or toll stations. SmartPay says" 'all they have to do is to send a SMS and bills are paid, saving time and cost.' READ MORE »

Headline News - May 12, 2008

Note: Throughout the day, as Payments News happens, this post is updated. For job opportunities available for payments professionals, visit PaymentsJobs.com. Employers looking to hire payments professionals can post their job openings there as well.

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