Datacard Group has added new features to its “Maxsys” card issuance system. Datacard has integrated a host of intelligent features into the supply products for the “Maxsys” system. Major enhancements have also been made to the user interface of the “Maxsys” system to ensure that the system integrates easily into card issuance operations without burdening operators with a significant learning curve or training. In addition to the easy-to-use interface, all screens and error messages are now available in a variety of languages including English, French, German and Japanese with additional languages to follow.
VISA Europe unveiled plans to issue a miniature EMV smart card. The new “VISA Mini Chip Card” can be issued on a credit, debit, or prepaid platform and also has the flexibility to be issued as any VISA product including “VISA Gold” and “VISA Electron.” Due to its compact size, the “VISA Mini Chip Card” cannot be used at ATMs. The card has an optional perforated hole in one corner. VISA launched its magnetic stripe “VISA Mini” card in 2002 and now issued about 25 million since then, the majority in the USA.
MasterCard International reported third quarter worldwide gross dollar volume (purchases + cash ) of $365.9 billion, an increase of 10% over the third quarter of last year. Total purchases on MasterCard credit and offline debit cards increased 11.1% for the third quarter, as the number of MasterCard cards issued worldwide rose to 656 million.
For the nine months ended September 30th, MasterCard GDV totaled $1.0 trillion, up 9.5% over the same period a year ago. Globally, purchase volume rose 11.1% to $266.8 billion for the third quarter compared to the same period in 2003. In the nine months ended September 30, purchase volume rose 12.2%.
SCM Microsystems, OMNIKEY, and Kobil Systems have agreed on a joint standard for developing smart card readers with integrated PINpads. Using smart cards with PINs (Class 2 readers) increases the security of transactions. The companies are working under TeleTrusT, a company who aims to promote trustworthy information and communication technology. Class 2 PINpad readers protect smart cards, preventing unauthorized copying or use of information that is stored on the card. SCM Microsystems develops, markets, and sells smart card reader technology, OMINKEY is a world leading manufacturer of smart card readers, and Kobil Systems specializes in developing and marketing smart card based IT and multifunctional smart card terminals.
Atlanta-based sub-prime specialist, CompuCredit, reported a second quarter profit of $37.9 million, a sharp increase over the prior quarter, but well below 3Q/03’s $56.6 million. Delinquency has dropped significantly to 13.0% in the third quarter from 14.8% in the prior quarter and 15.5% one-year ago. However, the 60-plus day delinquency rate rose to 10.7% from 9.6% for the second quarter, and compared to 10.9% at the end of 3Q/03. Total managed receivables for the third quarter were $1,958,735,000, flat compared to the second quarter, and $2.5 billion one-year ago. As of September 30th, CompuCredit had 2,388,000 accounts compared to 2,222,000 at the end of 2Q/04. The net interest margin was 21.2% in the third quarter, as compared to 22.4% for the third quarter of 2003. For complete details on CompuCredit’s third quarter performance, visit CardData ([www.carddata.com]).
COMPUCREDIT NET INCOME SNAPSHOT
3Q/03: $56.5 million
4Q/03: $10.8 million
1Q/04: $17.7 million
2Q/04: $13.8 million
3Q/04: $37.9 million
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)
MasterCard International says it has issued more than 200 million “MasterCard,” “Maestro,” and “Cirrus” smart cards globally. Of the 200 million smart cards, 40% of them carry an EMV chip. “The MasterCard M/Chip 4” is a highly flexible smart card application for credit and debit cards and is at the cornerstone of MasterCards’s payment and added value programs. The MasterCard M/Chip 4 can be leveraged by MasterCard’s customers to deliver a range of value-added applications including OneSMART MasterCard Pre-Authorized, OneSMART MasterCard Authentication Program, and OneSMART MasterCard PayPass(TM). The OneSMART MasterCard program includes a range of pre-configured smart card packages including OneSMART MasterCard Payment, OneSMART MasterCard Authentication, OneSMART MasterCard Web, and OneSMART MasterCard Retail. MasterCard International is a leading global payments solutions company that provides a wide range of services that support their global member’s credit, deposit access, electronic cash, business-to-business, and other related payment programs.
VA-based Chesapeake Bank has migrated to Metavante for merchant processing and related services. Services include settlement and accounting solutions, fraud detection, and online resources to assist Chesapeake’s merchants to better manage their businesses and handle its merchant portfolio. Chesapeake Bank, a Virginia State-Chartered Bank as well as a Federal Reserve and FDIC member bank, provides personal services to individuals and business in the state of Virginia. Metavante is a chief provider of electronic funds transfer and card solutions to more than 2,200 financial institutions, transportation agencies, and health insurance companies in the U.S.
The U.K. “National Study on Identity Fraud” is officially underway. ID Analytics Limited will lead and conduct the research in partnership with five of the six largest banks, three of the four largest mobile operators, five of the seven largest credit card issuers, and two of the largest online and offline retail consumer finance companies in the U.K. A team of industry leaders from ID Analytics comprising analytic scientists, software, and security resources is now beginning to analyze key identity elements from the UK ID Network. In its research, the team is identifying patterns, practices, and activities indicative of identity fraud. Based on its findings, the team will build new solutions for fraud prevention that will be customized to the needs of the U.K. market. In 2003, ID Analytics, the U.S. parent of ID Analytics Limited, led a similar research effort in the U.S. which helped form the basis of the ID Network, the United States’ first and only real-time national system developed exclusively to manage identity risk.
Toronto-based Advantex Marketing International posted that revenue for fiscal 2004, ending June 30th, was $82.4 million, compared with $96.0 million in fiscal 2003. The decline in revenue can be attributed to the Company’s Canadian credit card loyalty business. The downturn in the full-service restaurant industry in Toronto resulting from SARS and other factors also impacted revenue. In addition, Air Canada’s filing for bankruptcy protection and restructuring process under the Canadian Companies’ Creditors Act also influenced revenue. However, factors that adversely impacted the Company’s CIBC Aerogold ADVANTEX Benefit program have been just about eliminated. Advantex Marketing International is a chief developer of syndicated loyalty marketing programs, which strengthen relationships between organizations and customers as well as build new relationships between customers and networks of merchants, service providers, and packaged goods manufacturers.
MasterCard has launched a new product that combines a contact chip and a contactless interface based on its “M/Chip 4,” an EMV-based smart card application for credit and debit cards. The new “OneSMART PayPass” will enable the “PayPass” program to expand beyond the U.S. into regions where EMV smart cards predominate, particularly Europe. With the product, payment details are captured by the terminal, then processed through the MasterCard acceptance network in the same way as a contact chip payment. The transaction is authorized either online by the issuer host or offline by the card. The card’s on-chip risk management capabilities can also accomplish “Card Authentication” offline. To further speed up a “PayPass” transaction, CVM requirements, such as signature or PIN, may be waived for low-risk, low-value purchases. ACI Worldwide and MasterCard have partnered for the first live issuance of EMV-compliant MasterCard “OneSMART PayPass” contactless cards. Ingenico, Oberthur, and Sagem Monetel have also teamed with MasterCard to support “OneSMART PayPass.”
The average amount that consumers pay each month on their credit cards has been steadily rising, hitting a record high in September. The increasing payment rates have slowed the growth of total revolving credit card debt to about 4% per year, a record low. At mid-year, bank credit card debt, exclusive of store/gas credit, stood at $672 billion compared to $646 billion one-year ago. Based on reports thus far, bank credit card debt may have reached $680 billion in the quarter ending September 30th. At year-end 2001, Americans owed $608 billion on bank credit cards. Therefore, bank credit card debt has grown by 12% over the past three years, the slowest rate of growth in the industry’s history. The average amount that consumers pay each month on their current balance reached 18.04% in September, compared to 17.73% one-year ago, 16.16% in September 2002, and 14.89% in September 2001. The 2001 figure was an aberration due to the 9/11 attack, but all of 2001 was well below the current payment rates. The monthly payment rate reflects the average amount paid back by all cardholders including those who pay-off their entire balance each month. There are approximately 185 million bank credit cardholders in the USA. Of these about 70 million pay-off in full each month, 71 million make more than the minimum required payment, and 44 million make minimum required payments.
The CO-OP Network’s CEO, Robert Rose, announced that he is retiring in June 2005 after serving as CEO since October 1990. Mr. Rose has been in the credit union industry for 36 years. At his arrival in 1990, CO-OP was the 24th largest ATM/EFT network in the U.S. It is now the largest network in the country and ranks No. 3 for overall ATM network. The CO-OP Network umbrella includes 1 billion transactions per year, almost 20,000 ATMs, and 1,800 credit unions spanning 50 states and 11 countries.