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April 17, 2009

U.S. Bank Issues 30 Millionth Gift Card

U.S. Bank recently issued its 30 millionth gift card - saying it remains "the top Visa gift card issuer and a leader in prepaid cards across the United States." READ MORE »

Issuer Credit Card Losses - Credit Loss or Fraud Loss?

TowerGroup is predicting that US branded total card credit losses will peak at $55.6 billion in 2009 because the recessionary economic conditions are making it difficult for consumers to repay credit card debt. TowerGroup's Brian Riley points out, however, that not all losses are the result of honest inability to pay, warning that intentional cardholder losses from abuse and fraud may cost the industry as much as $10 billion. READ MORE »

Citigroup Reports 1Q2009 Financial Results

Citigroup Inc. today reported net income for the first quarter of 2009 of $1.6 billion and a loss per share of $0.18.

In its North American credit card business, "purchase sales declined 18% reflecting a continued decline in discretionary and non-discretionary consumer spending. Average managed loans declined 4% due to lower purchase sales and balance transfer volumes, partially offset by a decline in payment rates."

"Continued weakening of leading credit indicators and trends in the macro-economic environment, including rising unemployment, higher bankruptcy filings and the housing market downturn, drove higher credit costs. Credit costs also reflected a significant increase in delinquencies, as well as the continued acceleration in the rate at which delinquent customers advanced to write-off. The managed net credit loss ratio increased 395 basis points to 8.88% in the Citi branded portfolio and 508 basis points to 12.40% in the retail partners portfolio."

Headline News - April 17, 2009

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.

April 16, 2009

Credit Card Execs Summoned to White House Meeting Next Thursday

In an article titled "Card Issuers, Geithner To Meet", Nancy Trejos and Binyamin Appelbaum write for the Washington Post's Friday edition that "top executives of 14 of the nation's largest credit card companies are heading to the White House on Thursday for a meeting with Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner and Lawrence H. Summers, the president's chief economic adviser." The meeting hasn't been publicly announced.

CFSI Studies Consumers' Views on Prepaid Cards

The Center for Financial Services Innovation has released a new report titled "A Tool for Getting By or Getting Ahead? - Consumers' Views on Prepaid Cards (PDF of the full report)." The authors studied both AccountNow and NetSpend and said: "Prepaid cards are a helpful financial tool, and users appreciate their features. Prepaid cards may also help consumers achieve short-term financial goals, such as paying off debt and accumulating emergency savings. However, achieving longer-term financial goals will likely require more intensive and comprehensive services and products that extend beyond what prepaid cards currently offers."

MasterCard Canada Completes Mobile Payment Trial

MasterCard Canada, in partnership with Citi Cards Canada and Bell Mobility, has completed the first near-field communications (NFC) trial of Mobile PayPass in Canada. The four month long closed trial allowed participants to use Bell Mobility's wireless network to make purchases using their mobile device at MasterCard PayPass acceptance locations across Canada. READ MORE »

JP Morgan Chase Reports 1Q09 Financial Results

JPMorgan Chase & Co. this morning reported first-quarter 2009 net income of $2.1 billion, compared with net income of $2.4 billion in the first quarter of 2008. Earnings per share were $0.40, compared with $0.67 in the first quarter of 2008.

In its Card Services unit, the net loss was $547 million, a decline of $1.2 billion from the prior year. The decrease was driven by a higher provision for credit losses, partially offset by higher net revenue. End-of-period managed loans were $176.1 billion, an increase of $25.2 billion, or 17%, from the prior year and a decrease of $14.2 billion, or 7%, from the prior quarter. Charge volume was $76.0 billion, a decrease of $9.4 billion, or 11%, from the prior year. Merchant processing volume was $94.4 billion on 4.1 billion in total transactions processed.

Headline News - April 16, 2009

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.

April 15, 2009

New Opportunities in B2B Payments - A Glenbrook Workshop

Glenbrook's workshop on New Opportunities in B2B Payments will be held in New York City on May 27th and 28th. This two-day session explores a market that is now breaking wide open: the traditionally paper-based world of business-to-business (B2B) payments. READ MORE »

Merchant Link, MSI Solutions Partner for Gateway Services

Merchant Link and MSI Solutions have announced a partnership that will allow MSI Solutions to offer Merchant Link's credit card gateway and security products and services as add-on interfaces to MSI Solutions' property management systems, including WinPM, NovaPlus, and EnterprisePM. READ MORE »

Western Union Adds Overnight US Home Delivery of Prepaid Cards

Western Union has introduced a new way to send money within the U.S. using its prepaid card platform coupled with an Overnight Home Delivery service featuring Western Union's new MoneyWise Visa prepaid card. READ MORE »

MasterCard Launches 'ATM Hunter' On Apple iTunes App Store

MasterCard has announced that the MasterCard ATM Hunter application is now available as a free download on the Apple iTunes App Store. ATM Hunter lets iPhone and iPod touch users easily locate the nearest ATM no matter where in the world they are. READ MORE »

MasterCard Focusing on Increasing Consumer Awareness of Prepaid

In an article titled "MasterCard Readies TV Push for Prepaid", Maria Aspan writes about MasterCard's plans to launch a consumer advertising campaign ("Everyday Prepaid") promoting reloadable (aka "network-branded") prepaid cards. One of the objectives of the campaign is to establish the Everyday Prepaid as the term consumers should think of versus the complex taxonomy of labels the industry uses to apply to prepaid cards.

Canada's Interac: "In a Fight for Its Life"

In an article titled "Interac in a fight for its life", Theresa Ebden writes for Canada's Globe & Mail about how Visa and MasterCard are challenging Interac in Canada for debit card business. Merchants are concerned that debit card acceptance costs will increase if Visa and MasterCard are successful selling their debit card products to Canadian bank issuers.

Verizon Business 2009 Data Breach Study

More electronic records were breached in 2008 than the previous four years combined, fueled by a targeting of the financial services industry and a strong involvement of organized crime, according to the "2009 Verizon Business Data Breach Investigations Report" released today. Full press release here. READ MORE »

Headline News - April 15, 2009

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.

April 14, 2009

Union Bank Enhances Remote Deposit

Union Bank has announced a next generation remote deposit solution, Remote Deposit Accounts Receivable. According to the bank,"the new software improves customers’ operating efficiency by integrating directly with their accounting software and enabling them to update their account receivables in one process." READ MORE »

Travelex Launches Corporate Cash Passport Prepaid MasterCard

Travelex has introduced the Corporate Cash Passport which it says "will allow companies to centralize and better manage their travel budgets while reducing administrative waste, providing auditing capabilities, increasing security and ultimately saving money. The card is loadable with U.S. Dollars and has the MasterCard Brand Mark and bearing MasterCard protections such as Purchase Assurance Service and Lost Luggage Service while allowing the card to be used anywhere Debit MasterCard is accepted and at ATMs around the world to withdraw cash in local currency." READ MORE »

April 13, 2009

College Students Increasingly Using Credit Cards for Tuition

Sallie Mae has announced results from a new report finding that, despite the credit freeze, college students last year used credit cards more than ever before, including charging tuition and other direct education expenses. The report, “How Undergraduate Students Use Credit Cards: Sallie Mae’s National Study of Usage Rates and Trends, 2009,” icon_PDF_small.gif is the fifth in a series conducted since 1998 through the company’s affiliate Nellie Mae which analyzes the credit card use of student loan applicants. READ MORE »

Glenbrook's Payments Boot Camp Schedule - Fall 2009

If you're planning ahead and want to join us in the fall for one of our Payments Boot Camps, we've just posted the full calendar. We'll be teaching both in New York and in the San Francisco Bay Area. Our last spring Payments Boot Camp session will be held May 12-13 in the San Francisco Bay Area. Check out the full schedule!

Headline News - April 13, 2009

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.

April 12, 2009

Glenbrook's Erin McCune Shares NACHA Payments 2009 Highlights

Over on our PaymentsViews.com website, Glenbrook's Erin McCune shares her perspectives on last week's NACHA Payments 2009 Conference in Orlando.

See also Erin's earlier post about the keynote given by Heidi Miller from JP Morgan Chase.

Bank Fee and Interest Rate Hikes Provoke Further Probes

In an article titled "Bailed-Out Banks Face Probe Over Fee Hikes", David Enrich, Marshall Eckblad and Maurice Tamman write for the Wall St. Journal about how banks that have both received Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) money from the Federal government and who have increased fees on deposit accounts, credit card interest rates, etc. are being examined by the Congressional Oversight Panel and legislators.

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