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Card Payments

Welcome to the News View for "Card Payments".

Here, on these archive pages, you'll find all of the articles on Payments News for Card Payments listed in date sequence beginning with the most recent article at the top of the page.

Click here for a complete listing of what's available in the Payments News Archive - organized by both posting date and subject category.

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December 19, 2013

Federal Reserve Releases New 2013 Payments Study of U.S. Payment Trends

FedThe Federal Reserve has published the 2013 Federal Reserve Payments Study that examines noncash payment trends in the United States. The 2013 Study has been expanded to include new information related to various payment initiation methods and unauthorized payments. To provide perspective on consumer and business payment trends over the past decade, the results are compared to previous payment studies conducted in 2004, 2007, and 2010.

The 2013 study shows that card payments--credit and debit--now account for more than two-thirds of all noncash payments, while the number of checks paid continued to decline. Other highlights include:

  • The total number of noncash payments, excluding wire transfers, was 122.8 billion, a growth rate of 4.4 percent annually from 2009 to 2012. The rate of growth was down slightly from the previous 10 year (2003-2012) growth rate of 4.7 percent. The total value of noncash payments grew from $72.2 trillion in 2009 to just under $79 trillion in 2012.
  • The number of credit card payments, which had shown a decline in the 2010 Study, grew at an annual rate of 7.6 percent from 2009 to 2012. Debit card payments grew at a rate of 7.7 percent over that same period.
  • Automated Clearing House (ACH) growth slowed to 5.1 percent annually from 2009 to 2012, down from the average annual growth of 10.9 percent over the previous 10 years. From 2009 to 2012, the number of ACH payments as a percentage of total payments increased less than 1 percent while the value of ACH as a percentage of total noncash payments rose almost 10 percentage points, from 51.5 percent to 61.3 percent.
  • The number of checks paid continues to decline, falling to 18.3 billion, less than half the number a decade earlier (37.3 billion). Checks are increasingly being deposited as images, with 17 percent being deposited as an image at the bank of first deposit versus 13 percent as reported in the 2010 Study.
  • The 2013 Study estimates that there were 31.1 million unauthorized payment transactions in 2012, with a value of $6.1 billion.
The study was made possible by broad-based industry support and information sharing.

October 29, 2013

New Discussion Paper: Clearing and Settlement of Interbank Card Transactions Transactions

Fed Philidelphia logoThe Payments Cards Center at the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia has published a new discussion paper titled "Clearing and Settlement of Interbank Card Transactions: A MasterCard Tutorial for Federal Reserve Payments Analysts" by Susan Herbst-Murphy.

From the summary: "The Payment Cards Center organized a meeting at which senior officials from MasterCard shared information with Federal Reserve System payments analysts about the clearing and settlement functions that MasterCard performs for its client banks. These functions involve the transfer of information pertaining to card-based transactions (clearing) and the exchange of monetary value (settlement) that takes place between the banks whose customers are cardholders and those banks whose customers are card-accepting. This document summarizes some of the key points from that meeting."

October 28, 2013

Just Make Payments Go Away...

I did a slide for a client last week that said in big letters that what consumers want is to "Make Payments Go Away."

This article titled "A Better Way to Settle Up" by Farhad Manjoo in Fast Company's November edition explains more about that concept.

Every restaurant meal you've ever had, at the greasiest spoon or the most rarefied temple of gastronomy, ends the same way--with a terribly outdated ritual that I like to call the payment dance.

August 19, 2013

Global Credit, Debit, and Prepaid Card Fraud Losses Up 14.6% in 2012

In a press release, The Nilson Report announced findings that "issuers, merchants, and acquirers of credit, debit, and prepaid general purpose and private label payment cards worldwide experienced gross fraud losses of $11.27 billion in 2012, up 14.6% over the prior year. Of that $11.27 billion, card issuers lost 63% and merchants and acquirers lost the other 37%." This amounts to a fraud loss rate of 5.22 basis points on total payment card volume of $21.604 trillion in 2012 - up from 5.07 basis points in 2011.

“Adoption of EMV at the point of sale is the strongest defense against counterfeit cards,” said David Robertson, publisher of The Nilson Report.

“EMV adoption would not only help U.S. issuers but also issuers in other parts of the world that must continue to put mag-stripes on their cards to accommodate POS terminals in the U.S. Fraudsters are willingly paying a premium for stolen mag-stripe data from EMV card countries in order to create counterfeit cards for use in the U.S.,” he explained.

Nilson noted that the losses were lowest on PIN-based debit cards where fraud losses were 1.1 basis points of PIN debit card volume.

July 03, 2013

Headline News from - July 3, 2013

On the web:

On the wires:

Upcoming from Glenbrook:

  • Summer Camp! - A special summer session of our popular Payments Boot Camp - in Half Moon Bay on August 6th and 7th... Also, an optional half day course on Data In Payments - August 8th, also in Half Moon Bay. Join Carol, Scott and Russ for lively, interactive sessions - register now!
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Note: Headline News is compiled by Glenbrook Partners. Throughout the day, as we spot interesting developments, this post is updated. Find something interesting to share? Tell us about it:!

February 27, 2012

Visa to Move to New Acquiring Fee Structure

Visa logo 60pxhWhile vague on specifics, Visa has announced to investors that it is changing its acquiring side fee structure in April.
First, Visa will lower variable acquirer processing fees for all Visa-branded products and across all merchant segments, including small merchants. Second, we are expanding acquirer and merchant incentives to further lower merchants’ processing costs. Third, Visa is implementing a new Fixed Acquirer Network Fee that will be assessed to acquirers based on both the merchant’s size and its number of locations.

Digital Transactions News talked to a number of sources and was able to piece together a more complete picture.

January 30, 2012

Payments Views - Who Knows What In Payments?

GP Logo Horizontal 140pxOver on Payments Views, Glenbrook's Russ Jones blogs about "Who Knows What In Payments?" and the explores whether or not the targeting of ads and offers can be enhanced with insight from payment transaction data. He also looks at what mobile wallets will know about the consumer's purchase behavior.

February 15, 2011

Payments Views - POS Steering in the Age of Durbin

GP Logo Horizontal 140pxOver on Payments Views, our sister blog, Glenbrook's Russ Jones shares his thoughts on where POS steering may be headed this year, commenting "several of Glenbrook’s merchant clients are already developing their strategies for rewarding customers that select low cost payment methods at the point of sale."

July 29, 2010

Credit Card Data Portability, the largest data portability group on the U.S., has recently embraced credit card data portability as one of its key initiative areas.
The Credit Card Data Portability Standard is supported by an opt-in community of electronic payment processing providers (service providers) that agree to provide credit card data and associated transaction information (sensitive data) to an existing merchant upon request in a PCI Compliant manner.

June 21, 2010

Payment Cards Center - Spring 2010 Update Newsletter

The Payment Cards Center of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia has released its Spring 2010 Update Newsletter. "This edition of Update features summaries of two conferences sponsored by the Payment Cards Center during the first quarter of 2010. Also in this issue, we feature the Consumer Statistics web pages, which have been gaining in popularity since we first created them earlier this year."

March 29, 2010

Cash Remains Preferred Form of Payment for US Consumer?

So finds a study by Packaged Facts titled "Consumer Payment Trends in the U.S." which reports that "54% of U.S. adults cite cash as their preferred form of payment". Based upon data from Experian Simmons' Spring 2009 adult consumer survey, the report notes that "68% of American adults have a debit card in their wallet and 67% have a credit card; though only 53% of adults may be considered active credit card users with transactions in the last thirty days."

March 03, 2010

Chase Enhances Cash Back Rewards on Chase Freedom Card

Chase Card Services has announced it is increasing the cash back rate on its Chase Freedom credit card to 5 percent on popular seasonal spending categories, like home improvement, gas and department stores. READ MORE »

February 22, 2010

Payments Friction

Wired Magazine has published an article titled "From Credit Card to PayPal: 3 Ways to Move Money" that graphically depicts the payments process for a) credit cards, b) iTunes and c) PayPal. Can you guess who's most "frictionless" - according to Wired?

January 20, 2010

The Future of Everyday Payments in Europe - Visa Europe

Visa Europe has published a new white paper titled "The Future of Everyday Payments in Europe - Who Cares?".

From the introduction: "Our overriding contention is that, to enable and accelerate further development everyday payments, more innovation will be essential. But we use the term “innovation” in its broadest sense. In some instances a big, sweeping change may be necessary. More often, a small tweak or a minor calibration can pay huge dividends."

December 23, 2009

The 2008 Survey of Consumer Payment Choice

The Federal Reserve Bank of Boston has published The 2008 Survey of Consumer Payment Choice by Kevin Foster, Erik Meijer, Scott Schuh, and Michael A. Zabek.

From the abstract:

This paper presents the 2008 version of the Survey of Consumer Payment Choice (SCPC), a nationally representative survey developed by the Consumer Payments Research Center of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston and implemented by the RAND Corporation with its American Life Panel. The survey fills a gap in knowledge about the role of consumers in the transformation of payments from paper to electronic by providing a broad‐based assessment of U.S. consumers’ adoption and use of nine payment instruments, including cash.

The average consumer has 5.1 of the nine instruments, and uses 4.2 in a typical month. Consumers make 53 percent of their monthly payments with a payment card (credit, debit, and prepaid). More consumers now have debit cards than credit cards, and consumers use debit cards more often than cash, credit cards, or checks individually. Cash, checks, and other paper instruments are still popular and account for 37 percent of consumer payments.

Most consumers have used newer electronic payments, such as online banking bill payment, but they account for only 10 percent of consumer payments. Security and ease of use are the characteristics of payment instruments that consumers rate as the most important.

December 17, 2009

A Look at Blippy and Philip Kaplan

In an article titled "Introducing a Twitter for Credit Card Purchases", Don Steinberg writes about Philip Kaplan and his new company Blippy - where you can choose to share your credit card purchase details with friends - or strangers. Kaplan suggests that consumers choose only one of the several credit cards in their typical wallet to make the "social card" - transactions on that card would then be shared via Blippy.

See also last week's TechCrunch article and yesterday's NetBanker article on Blippy.

December 15, 2009

November 17, 2009

November 13, 2009

India Card - RBI's Vision for a Domestic Payment Card System

The Reserve Bank of India has published Payments Systems in India - Vision 2009-12, a report that outlines several major initiatives that the bank is undertaking with respect to the payment systems in India. Among them is India Card - a domestic card initiative.

Quoting from the report: "The concept of a domestic payment card (India Card) and a PoS switch network for issuance and acceptance of payment cards would be looked into. The need for such a system arises from two major considerations (a) the high cost borne by the Indian banks for affiliation with international card associations in the absence of a domestic price setter (b) the connection with international card associations resulting in the need for routing even domestic transactions, which account for more than 90% of the total, through a switch located outside the country."

November 07, 2009

New York's Cabbies Love Credit Cards!

In an article titled "New York’s Cabbies Like Credit Cards? Go Figure", Michael M. Grynbaum writes for the New York Times about how New York cabbies have grown to appreciate the benefits of payment card acceptance as they've emerged as "an unlikely savior for New York’s taxi industry." When initially introduced two years ago, cabbies were very unhappy with the requirement to accept cards. According to Grynbaum, all of that has changed.

October 26, 2009

Going Cashless

Over the last few years, we've been watching various acceptance environments abandoning cash and moving to only card-based payments. Perhaps the best examples are the airlines - who moved over a relatively short period to eliminating cash acceptance for meals and drinks purchased in-flight. Now comes word from the Miami Herald in south Florida that Florida's Turnpike is being turned into a cashless toll road. "By February 2011, all cash collection on the Turnpike's southernmost stretch will end, and crews will begin tearing down every toll booth."

October 14, 2009

White Paper: Service Oriented Architecture in Payments

ISTS Worldwide, Inc., a retail and payment technology consulting and services organization, has published a new white paper titled "Service Oriented Architecture in Payments". According to the company, this paper is part of a series of white papers ISTS plans to publish around topics related to payments and high transaction low latency systems.

October 13, 2009

US Payment Transactions Projected to Exceed 100 Billion in 2009

Economic research firm Moebs Services projects that, for the first time in US history, the number of checks and electronic transactions for debit cards, credit cards and automatic payments will exceed 100 billion by the end of 2009 from all transactions from consumers and businesses. Moebs based its projection on research and projections using information from the Federal Reserve for 1979 to 2006. READ MORE »

September 21, 2009

Supermarkets Consider Dropping Checks in Favor of Cards

check-140px.jpgIn an article titled "Grocery stores taking check use off shoppers' lists", Jerry Hirsch writes for the Los Angeles Times about grocery stores, including Whole Foods Markets, considering banning the use of personal checks at their stores in favor of only accepting cash and cards. Hirsh quotes a Whole Foods regional vice president who says it "prefers cash, debit cards and credit cards because they can be processed quickly and come with added protections that safeguard the interests of the consumer and the retailer."

Transaction Times - Credit/Offline Debit vs Online PIN-based Debit

stopwatch_140px.jpgOver on his Payment Systems blog, Andy Orrock, COO at On-Line Strategies, shares some insights into transaction times for various payment card transaction times from a large merchant.

I found the time difference between credit and offline debit cards vs. online PIN-based debit cards to be interesting with PIN debit taking 1.6 times longer. Andy shares his explanation of the timing difference in the comments.

September 09, 2009

World Payments Report 2009

Non-cash payment volumes continued to grow in 2008 after an increase of 8.6 percent globally in 2007 to 250 billion transactions, according to the World Payments Report 2009, released today by Capgemini, RBS and Efma. The use of cards continues to be the single strongest driver for this growth with llobal card transactions (credit and debit) growing 14.5% in 2007 and 11.2% in 2008. READ MORE »

August 13, 2009

FleetCor Acquires UK, Ireland Fuel Card Businesses from Retail Decisions

Fleetcor_logo-140px.jpgFleetCor has announced that it has acquired the UK and Ireland fuel card businesses of Retail Decisions (ReD). The acquisition includes all of ReD’s fuel card operations in the UK and Ireland, including ReD’s network of UK fuel bunkering outlets. READ MORE »

Lender Angst and Consumer Frugality Drive Debit Card Usage

TowerGroup_logo-140px.jpgNew research from TowerGroup titled "Shuffling the Cards: The Migration of Frugal Consumers and Cautious Lenders to a Debit Card World" finds that "debit cards are far more resilient in the current recessionary economy than credit cards. In less than 15 years, debit card transactions in the United States grew from 1 percent of noncash transactions to more than 50 percent. TowerGroup predicts that debit card transaction volume and card spend will grow through 2015, through the current recession and ensuing economic recovery." READ MORE »

July 27, 2009

Charitable Giving via Plastic Cards Up 18% in UK

UKPaymentsAssn_logo-140px.jpgFigures published by The UK Cards Association show that donations to charitable organisations on plastic cards reached £1.19 billion in 2008 – up from £1.01 billion in 2007 – an increase of 18%. In terms of the number of donations made on plastic cards there was an overall increase of 13% from 2007 to 2008. Donations on debit cards increased by 16% (up from 13 million in 2007 to 15.1 million last year) while credit card transactions rose 9% (9.6 million in 2007 to 10.5 million last year). READ MORE »

June 26, 2009

A Day in the Life: Getting Refunds on Michael Jackson's Shows

With yesterday's death of Michael Jackson, purchasers of tickets to his planned London shows originally scheduled to begin in a few weeks will be seeking refunds on their purchases. See this article in todays' Guardian for more information. "Tickets for Jackson's 50-day tour sold out almost immediately when they went on sale in March. More than a quarter of a million people bought tickets..."

This is a nightmare scenario for a merchant acquirer - tickets purchased using credit cards for a future performance that ultimately doesn't happen. This is why merchant acquirers are as concerned about the nature of the goods/services being sold as they are about the merchant itself. It will be interesting to watch as this plays out in the UK.

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