Conference Board Index Reflects Fluctuating Economy

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] The Conference Board Leading Economic Index (LEI) for the U.S. increased 0.6% in September to 95.9 (2004 = 100), after a 0.4% decline in August and a 0.4% increase in July, while Coincident Economic Index (CEI) for the U.S. was up 0.2% to 105.1 (2004 = 100), after no change in…

Small Business Owners Waiting to Grow

The American Express OPEN Small Business Monitor shows just 20 percent believe economic conditions are the biggest barrier to growth (compared to 23% in the fall of 2011), fewer have cash flow concerns (53%, versus 58% in the spring) and fewer are stressed out by the economy (59%, versus 64% in the spring). Small business owners’ top priority, is maintaining their current business and sources of revenue (32%) and as a result they have adopted a “wait and see” approach for growth plans. Only 29% of businesses surveyed have plans to hire new employees, down from 35% in the spring.

Only 16% of entrepreneurs say the economy has caused them to lay off employees versus 21% six months ago. The Success Index, profiling High achievers, strivers, sustainers and strugglers, shows high achievers represent 6% of the total survey sample, and on average, have spent twenty-six years in business, employ eighteen people in their firms and have attained business growth of thirty-four percent over the last three years (versus 10% growth for the total survey population). The Success Index was developed based on self-reported responses to questions regarding business growth and characteristics correlated with high-performing entrepreneurs.

Yodlee Doubles API Business Growth

Yodlee Interactive has doubled its annual growth in its application programming interface (API) business as the standard in financial data and payments APIs. Yodlee Interactive serves more than 300 customers and partners and millions of end users across more than 25 vertical markets. The Yodlee API sits at the heart of a robust and expanding financial services ecosystem, where it helps streamline the innovation and delivery of new financial services and solutions, having launched Yodlee “FastLink” API feature that helps customers and partners bring innovations to market even faster and more easily, while reducing ongoing maintenance. FastLink speeds the onboarding process for all Yodlee Interactive powered services, enabling users to add thousands of financial accounts quickly, easily, and securely.

NFC Mobile Payment Transactions to Hit the $100B In 2016

ABI Research forecasts that the total value spend of NFC mobile payments will rise from $4 billion in 2012 to $191 billion in 2017, breaking the $100 billion mark in 2016. Mobile payments and more importantly the convergence between payment types – proximity, P2P and online – stored on a single NFC handset will be the initial trigger driving market convergence across a host of other markets, including ticketing, retail, loyalty, and access control. Market convergence is not quite ready for mass commercial roll out, but the potential value add that NFC brings has been identified. Smart card and IC vendors, device OEMs, MNOs, partnering service providers, and payments networks are all set to benefit should convergence prove successful.

Agilysys to Launch Next-Generation POS

Agilysys information technology and hospitality software made available its “Elevate” next-generation POS solution. Designed for the managed foodservice market the POS system is a single-pass POS solution that allows customers to take advantage of fast-moving trends in application delivery. The cloud-based system uses open architecture for maximum flexibility and scalability and employs VeriShield Protect, an advanced end-to-end encryption technology from VeriFone Systems to reduce PCI scope for merchants. It features remote deployment capabilities, flexible configuration, intuitive order entry and unified enterprise reporting. The system supports a variety of peripheral devices, including barcode scanners, receipt printers, scales and pole displays.

iKaaz Announces mWallet Platform

iKaaz mobile payments solution provider launched its iKaaz mobile payment platform for enterprises. The iKaaz Consumer Wallet for Enterprises allows enterprises including banks, operators, and merchants to offer mobile wallets convenience to their customers for quick and easy payments. Meanwhile, the iKaaz M-POS solution allows merchants to replace expensive POS equipment with just a mobile phone that settles payments electronically. With the iKaaz Tap & Pay solution, that leverages NFC technology, merchants can receive payments from customers with just a tap of a phone at the checkout terminal.

Digital Life Launches All-in-One eCard

Digital Life Technologies has launched its “GoNow eWallet” card, programmed by an eWallet and can be swiped at all existing POS terminals and ATMs without any change to existing payment infrastructure or tapped at contactless terminals. The reprogrammable magnetic stripe card that receives commands from your eWallet via your mobile phone, is now in pilots with two customers”one, a major bank; the other, a direct-to consumer eWallet issuer. Inside the GoNow eWallet Card is a secure element that is comparable to the secure element in a mobile phone. To learn more about mobile payments with the GoNow eWallet card visit The GoNow eWallet card, a reprogrammable magnetic stripe card that receives commands from your eWallet via any mobile phone, is now in pilots with two customers”one, a major bank; the other, a direct-to consumer eWallet issuer.

American Express 3Q/12 Revenues Rise, Expenses Decline

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] American Express posted 3Q/12 net income of $1.3 billion, up 1% from a year ago, while consolidated total revenues net of interest expense rose 4% to $7.9 billion, from $7.6 billion a year ago, thanks to more cardmember spending and higher net interest income. Consolidated expenses totaled $5.5 billion, down 2%…

New Incentive Cards Options Now Available

With customized, prepaid Visa® Incentive Cards from, companies large and small can now design and distribute their own personalized/branded rewards, rebate and incentive cards to employees, customers and potential customers. can deliver custom-designed, prepaid Visa cards complete with personalized greeting card carrier. Incentive CardLab’s unique self-service design portal and on-demand production system allow even very small businesses to order as few or as many cards as needed, when needed, with no minimum order and no setup fees. Cards are available in any denomination from $5 to $2500 and feature “full bleed” edge-to-edge design. Businesses can upload their own logo and create a truly one-of-a-kind card design, or choose from hundreds of templates available to select a card that is not only beautiful, but also conveys their message to employees or customers. Custom design assistance is also available.

Viableware Integrates with Restaurant POS Systems

Viableware has integrated its “RAIL” payment technology with POS systems including MICROS, NCR Aloha, and Dinerware. By integrating its “RAIL” payment platform with leading POS manufacturers that serve more than 60 percent of the full-service restaurant market, Viableware makes it easy for restaurant operators to accept various forms of payment at the table – including e-wallet and smartphone payments- using a handheld device. This allows restaurant operators to improve guest service, strengthen guest relations, and reduce PCI compliance requirements. Guests can self-swipe credit or debit cards, auto-calculate the tip, split the bill multiple ways, pay-by-item, and opt for direct-email receipts.

TSYS Study Shows Consumer Payment Preference

TSYS made available its second annual nationwide primary consumer research study, the 2012 Consumer Debit-Payment Choice Research Study. Designed in conjunction with Mercator Advisory Group payments research and consulting the goal of the study was to provide a snapshot of current consumer behavior and attitudes toward debit, credit and emerging payment forms, as well as to gather both quantitative and qualitative information. More than 1,000 consumers who owned a debit card were surveyed on payment choice, perceptions of value, and what might influence them to change how they pay. Debit cards continue to be the preferred payment type for everyday purchases, driven in part by the desire of many to manage their money on a near-daily basis; Merchant discounts and offers are the most effective way to influence consumers to use a payment type more often; Awareness of alternative payment accounts and methods is high, and consumers’ overall understanding of and interest in mobile payments has advanced considerably since last year; and consumers continue to be focused on the security, ease of use, control and speed at check-out, and incorporating these features into new or expanded offerings will result in greater consumer adoption.