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.

APR Sees Hiccup in Downward Trend

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] Average credit card APRs saw the most change in June since January, dropping .04% to 14.95% after averaging a .04% change over the past year. This offers continued momentum to the ebbing 2013 APR credit card averages. Compared to 1H/12, when the monthly average dropped from 14.95%-14.87% from January to June,…

Green Dot Class Action Litigation Dropped

Green Dot Corporation announced the United States District Court for the Central District of California dismissed with prejudice the federal securities class action that had been filed against the company, Steven W. Streit and John L. Keatley in July 2012. On May 2, 2013, the Court granted a motion to dismiss all of the claims asserted in that action, and the plaintiffs subsequently agreed to voluntarily dismiss the case with prejudice rather than amend their complaint. No payments were made to the plaintiffs in connection with the dismissal.

WorldPay Inks Latest RiskGuardian Client

WorldPay payment processing, risk management and alternative payments extended its relationship with Kobo, a global leader in eReading, to implement RiskGuardian, a high specification risk management solution. Kobo, which had already successfully implemented WorldPay’s Payment Gateway and acquiring services, required an expert partner to ensure they were protected against fraudulent transactions and resulting chargebacks as the company continues to expand into the US market. Kobo offers more than 3.5- million eBooks, magazines and newspapers to millions of Readers in 190 countries. The company recently announced that it has grown its user base to 14.5-million, with 15% of its Q1 growth coming from the US. The company needed to ensure its transactions were secure.

Prepaid Industry Leaders Set for Convention

The Prepaid Press Expo announced its slate of speakers for “The Prepaid Press Expo ’13” to be held at in Las Vegas August 12-13. Starting with a Keynote Address by Eric Dumois, Sr. Product Manager, Financial Services, MetroPCS. Dumois manages and executes the MetroPCS Financial Services portfolio, which includes general purpose reloadable products, mobile banking solutions and mobile commerce strategy. He has successfully created and launched numerous prepaid card products including personal use and gift cards, international long distance programs, and custom prepaid programs. Other sessions will include speakers from a diverse group of companies that bring first-hand expertise and knowledge of the prepaid market, including AccountNow, American Express,, InComm, iSend, NetworkIP, Nielsen, Plastyc, Transaction Wireless, and many other prepaid providers and professionals.

Jardon Bouska of Fiserv to Keynote NACHA Council

Fiserv financial services technology solutions announced Jardon Bouska, president, Biller Solutions, Fiserv will deliver the keynote address at NACHA – The Electronic Payments Association’s Council for Electronic Billing and Payment (CEBP) Meeting in Chicago. This will bring together industry members to share ideas and collaborate in an open forum while discussing developments and trends in electronic billing and electronic payments. Bouska will offer his vision of the future of digital billing and payments, sharing new consumer and industry data from Fiserv that is predictive of industry direction. He will discuss changes that will impact billing organizations, financial institutions and consumers in a rapidly evolving payments landscape and outline how innovations, such as wearable technology, will help create a new era in paperless, real-time mobile bill presentment and payment.

MasterCard Announces Travel Currency Card

MasterCard Canada and subsidiary Access Prepaid Worldwide announced the launch of Cash Passport Prepaid MasterCard Currency Card. It allows users to pre-load travel money for safe and convenient use at millions of ATMs, shops and restaurants worldwide. For travellers, prepaid cards are a more secure alternative to the once-popular Travellers Cheque or large sums of cash. The card is secured with the latest chip and PIN technology and features straightforward pricing and up-front foreign exchange . Users can also use the reloadable card to withdraw local currency at millions of ATMs worldwide and use it wherever MasterCard is accepted.

Apply Financial Launches Global Payments Validation

Apply Financial launched their Validate service online at The new Validate service is designed to provide high-quality global payments validation, enrichment and account conversion in combination with data that is updated daily. It is easily accessible either through an online user portal or API integration into payments, ERP and accounting systems. Validate is an automated, cloud-based service that allows any size financial institution, business, or individual that send international payments to check and enrich client payment data before it is communicated to, or transmitted by the bank. Not only does this minimize errors, but Validate is also much more cost-efficient than traditional data vendors, manual cross-checking or other directories.

Midpoint launches P2P FX Matching

A new peer to peer Foreign Exchange Service and International Payments Platform was announced. enables businesses and individuals to save money by using a currency exchange matching service, providing industry low rates and a flat, transparent fee structure. For example, a business exchanging £5,000 into Euros each week could typically experience savings of more than 2% – a £100 saving per transaction. This activity level would offer customers around £5,000 a year saving over traditional currency exchange methods. Midpoint’s patented technology was the first to ‘match’ foreign exchange requirements for individuals and companies in Euros, US Dollars and Sterling By directly matching businesses and individuals with opposite currency needs, Midpoint is able to eliminate the ‘spread’ or ‘margin’ component from all transactions. At the time of the match both parties receive the same exchange rate – the mid point – the real time Interbank buy and sell rate.

MPR Drops Significantly from April Figure

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] Fitch’s May Monthly Payment Rate(MPR) Index continues to sit above the 20% mark, currently at 23.52%. Up over 10% since the year ago period and down nearly 4% from the April figure, MPR has consistently remained well above the historical average of 16.55% since 2009. MPR, which measures how quickly cardholders…

The Mobile App Market Slated at $27B by 2014

ABI Research projects the mobile app market will value at $27 billion in 2013, as mobile apps continue to be a critical factor in the battle between the mobile OS. BlackBerry and Windows are slowly augmenting their apps catalogue as they compete for the 3rd ecosystem, but are still far behind Apple and Android. An interesting aspect of the mobile app market is revenues generated by smartphone versus tablets. App revenues generated from smartphones have significantly dwarfed app revenues from tablets. However, tablet revenues are quickly catching up and it is projected tablet app revenues will overtake smartphones by 2017. The inclination for tablet users to pay more for apps than their smartphones because of the larger screen size and better user experience for gaming and reading are the primary drivers.