Robert McKinley, Senior Analyst/Editor Robert McKinley is an analyst of the payments industry on a daily basis for 32 years covering payment cards and payment systems from both the business side and the consumer side. McKinley is the retired founder and chief executive of RAM Research, CardWeb and CardTrak. In his prior position, McKinley has participated in more than 10,000 documented news media interviews, testified as an expert witness in two separate $billion+ U.S. anti-trust trials, testified before the U.S. Congress, assisted the GAO with paymentsIMG_2006 (1).jpeg reports, chaired numerous business conferences and provided C-Suite opinion to a multitude of Fortune 500 companies. In retirement, he has continued developing and funding digital media assets as well as contributing payments related analysis/content to a broad list of online publishers, including CardFlash, CardTrak and CardData. McKinley is also a national certified mentor with the non-profit SCORE organization with a focus on assisting Fintech startups. www.robert-mckinley.com

2013 Card Industry Revenue – Another Downtick

During the past five years CU and Bank card issuers have dealt with new regulations which curtailed their business models, impacting their interest and fee income strategies. Partly as a result, the 2013 top line revenue for the card industry in the R.K. Hammer card issuer model was reported at $145.5 Billion, down again, $4.1 Billion from the previous year. Indeed, some credit unions and banks showed revenue improvements last year, but those exceptions were primarily due to bulk acquisitions, as opposed to “organic” growth: exceptions to the rule.

American Express Settles Suits; Amends Surcharge Rules

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] American Express agreed to settle two putative antitrust class actions filed by U.S. merchants that challenged the company’s Card acceptance agreements. The settlement agreement will address certain merchant concerns, while helping to ensure that American Express Card Members are treated fairly at the point of sale. It will also limit the…

CheckAlt, iParse and CU Wireless Add To Mobile Deposit Network

FAA Federal Credit Union, University of Nebraska Federal Credit Union and Valley Credit Union have selected industry partners CheckAlt, iParse and CU Wireless as their mobile deposit solution provider. The mobile deposit solution created by the three innovative financial services companies integrates seamlessly into FAA’s, University of Nebraska’s and Valley’s existing mobile applications to allow the credit unions’ members to make mobile check deposits quickly and easily.

Fiserv Solution Suite Partners with OnPoint Community CU

Fiserv, Inc. announced that OnPoint Community Credit Union, a $3.2 billion asset, 260,000 member credit union based in Portland, Ore., is empowering members to better manage their finances through the implementation of a full-featured suite of digital banking services from Fiserv. With the addition of Corillian Online(R) for online banking, Mobiliti(TM) and Mobiliti(TM): Tablet for mobile and tablet banking and AllData(R) PFM for personal financial management, OnPoint is offering an integrated digital banking experience that can cater to specific member needs. The credit union has also added advanced money movement options including faster bill payments via CheckFree(R) RXP(R), money transfers between institutions via TransferNow(R) and person-to-person payments via Popmoney(R).

Fiserv Announces Latest FCU Client

Fiserv announced OnPoint Community Credit Union is deploying the full-featured suite of digital banking services from Fiserv. This includes “Corillian Online” for online banking, Mobiliti and Mobiliti: Tablet for mobile and tablet banking and AllData PFM for personal financial management. The credit union has also added advanced money movement options including faster bill payments via “CheckFree RXP,” money transfers between institutions via “TransferNow” and person-to-person payments via “Popmoney.” OnPoint worked closely with Fiserv to tightly integrate the new digital banking capabilities into existing OnPoint systems, and to customize the solutions where needed to meet member needs. As a result, members are experiencing new conveniences, such as the ability to see all account balances in one place, as well as the implementation of a single password for online, mobile and tablet banking.

Planet Payment Names COO

Planet Payment international payment and transaction processing and multi-currency processing services appointed Robert J. Cox COO, who will also continue in his role as CFO. Cox has served as the Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer since November 2009 and will continue to serve in such roles following his appointment as Chief Operating Officer. From June 2009 to November 2009, Cox served as the Chief Financial Officer of Harris Interactive, Inc., a market research firm. From 2001 to May 2009, Mr. Cox served as the Chief Financial Officer of DealerTrack Holdings, Inc., an automotive retail software solution provider. He began his career as a Certified Public Accountant in the audit practice at KPMG LLP. Mr. Cox holds a B.A. in Accounting from St. Bonaventure University and an M.B.A. from Columbia Business School.

NRF Appeals Credit Card Swipe Fee Settlement

The National Retail Federation formally filed an appeal of a controversial antitrust lawsuit settlement covering credit card swipe fees, asking the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to overturn a lower court’s ruling. NRF is filing the appeal to overturn the flawed credit card swipe fee settlement, which accordingly does nothing to reform the price-fixing payments system that has let credit card swipe fees grown over the past decade and nothing to keep them from continuing to soar in the future. Instead of lowering fees, the card industry’s settlement proposes that merchants pass them along to consumers in the form of surcharges. That is absolutely the opposite of what retailers sought, and major retailers have soundly rejected surcharging. NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and Internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries.

MoneyGram Warns About New Fraud Schemes

MoneyGram is warning consumers to watch out for new scams in the New Year. One of the newest scams targets people who use Instagram, offering the victim an investment opportunity. They ask the consumer to send between $100-$200, promise to invest it and turn it into $1000-$2000. Once the consumer sends the money, the scam artist and the money disappear. Also, fraudsters set up fake business accounts on popular networking sites and offer victims attractive work from home business opportunities, but first the victim needs to send money for a kit to get started. Remember, reputable companies use social media to connect with customers, not to ask for money. Seeing trip information and pictures gives thieves ammunition they need to call family and friends of individuals travelling and ask for money to help get their loved ones out of an “emergency situation.”

MasterCard Completes Acquisition of Provus

MasterCard announced that it has completed the acquisition of Provus Bilişim Hizmetleri A. Ş. (“Provus”), Turkey’s leading independent payment solution and processing provider. The acquisition will build on MasterCard’s strategy of increasing its processing presence in high-growth markets and deliver superior processing solutions and innovative value added services for both financial institutions and customers in the emerging prepaid and mobile payments space.

China UnionPay Chooses FIME

Following a competitive tender, advanced secure-chip testing provider, FIME, has been chosen by China UnionPay to develop the testing and certification framework of its new TEEi and N3 TEE standards, which will promote secure mobile payment transactions in China. The TEEi is a secure virtual platform that will communicate with the N3 TEE to control and manage the storage of applications within a smart mobile device, such as a mobile handset or set-top-box. The combination of the two TEEs creates a security barrier for trusted applications, such as mobile payments, and the protection of premium content. Providing consulting services, FIME will analyse the specification to create the required test plan and develop a test tool that can be used to certify products to the TEEi and N3 TEE standards. FIME’s global ISO 17025 laboratories will certify mobile devices, validating their compliance to the standards and confirming that they will perform as intended once launched.

Ezetap Launches Globally Certified mPOS Device

Ezetap announced the launch of the first integrated and globally certified Mobile Point of Sale Device with a price point under $50 – approximately one third the cost of any other integrated mobile card reader (supporting magnetic stripe, chip and pin) that is commercially available and certified. Competing head-to-head against global payments companies using devices manufactured in China in the fast-growing Mobile Point-of-Sale market, the entire Ezetap solution from its card reader to service platform has been 100% designed and developed in India.