NRF Welcomes Amendment Requiring ‘Reasonable’ Debit Card Fees

The National Retail Federation is welcoming Senate approval of an amendment to financial services reform legislation that would direct the Federal Reserve to determine “reasonable and proportional” transaction fees for debit cards. The fee for debit cards currently averages about 1% and is charged to merchants each time a card is swiped to pay for a purchase, whom pay at least $10 billion a year, subsequently driving up costs for consumers. The amendment would require the Federal Reserve to establish “reasonable and proportional” interchange fees for debit transactions, considering both the actual cost of processing the transactions and the fact that paper checks are paid at face value. The Senate voted 64-33 to approve an amendment to S. 3217, the Restoring American Financial Stability Act of 2010, to exempt an estimated 99 percent of credit unions and banks by applying only to financial institutions with $10 billion or more in assets.

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Fiserv to Present at the 38th Annual J.P. Morgan Conference

Fiserv’s President and Chief Executive Officer, Jeffery Yabuki will present at the 38th Annual J.P. Morgan Global Technology, Media and Telecom Conference on Monday, May 17 at 2:30 p.m. EDT at the Westin Boston Waterfront in Boston. The format of the presentation will be an analyst-led discussion with Yabuki followed by a question and answer session. Fiserv is ranked No. 1 on the FinTech 100 survey of top technology partners to the financial services industry.

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Heartland to Participate in Three Upcoming Conferences

Heartland Payment Systems payments processor will be participating at three upcoming investor conferences. These include the 38th Annual J. P. Morgan Global Technology, Media and Telecom Conference on Wednesday, May 19 at 8:40 A.M. Eastern Time at the Westin Boston Waterfront Hotel in Boston, MA; The Stephens Spring Investment Conference at the New York Palace Hotel in New York, NY on Wednesday May 26 at 11:00 A.M. Eastern Time; and the Keefe, Bruyette & Woods 2010 Diversified Financial Services Conference being held at The St. Regis Hotel, New York, NY on Wednesday June 2 at 4:30 P.M. Eastern Time.

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Prepaid Palm Desert MasterCard Offers Cardholders Chubb INS

The Palm Desert National Bank “PR1MACARD” Prepaid MasterCard,
distributed through program manager Branded Marketing, now offers select
accidental death and accident hospital benefits to all active
cardholders through Chubb Insurance. This builds on the existing
value-added services offered with the PR1MACARD, further enhancing the
card’s relevance and appeal to the unbanked community. All PR1MACARD
Prepaid MasterCard cardholders will be automatically insured through
Chubb for up to $25,000 against accidental loss of life, limb, sight,
speech or hearing. In addition, they will receive insurance benefits
that will cover hospitalization stays due to an accident for up to 14
days, subject to a per diem maximum. PR1MACARD also provides a discount
prescription drug program that gives 15% to 40% off brand name or
generic prescription drugs at any U.S. pharmacy.

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First Data Shows Consumer Card Transactions up 9% Y/Y

Same-store dollar spending volume growth for April 2010 was 10.2% (8.8% excluding Gasoline Stations) and transaction growth was 9.0% (8.4% excluding Gasoline Stations), following 11.5% and 10.1%, respectively, compared to the year ago period. April 2010 year-over-year same-store transaction growth was 9.0%, according to the First Data “SpendTrend” analysis, which tracks same-store credit, signature debit, PIN debit and EBT card consumer spending at U.S. merchants. The data concluded leisure transaction growth dropped to 7.7% from 16.0% in March, which mostly thanks to spring break and holiday travel. Food Services/Drinking Places maintained steady transaction growth month-over-month of 9.8% in April compared to 10.2% in March. PIN debit same-store transaction growth was 12.2% and dollar volume growth was highest of all at 16.3%. This marks the second consecutive month of double digit dollar volume growth, average tickets were up 1.1% and average ticket growth was 0.4%.

APRIL TRANSACTIONS CHANGE
CREDIT: +2.1%
SIG DEBIT: +12.2%
PIN DEBIT: +12.2%
EBT: +3.7%
TOTAL: +9.0%
SOURCE: First Data

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Gemalto Selected to Deploy Global UN CU Card

Gemalto has been selected by the United Nations Federal Credit Union (UNFCU) to deliver the first U.S.
issued, globally
compliant microprocessor payment card. UNFCU
will be able to provide a globally compliant Europay MasterCard Visa
(EMV) standard-based Dynamic Data Authentication (DDA) contact and
contactless dual interface card that can be used anytime – anywhere
their members travel. UNFCU anticipates introducing the program in the
second half of 2010. With most countries around the world moving to EMV based payment for
greater security, U.S. travelers are increasingly having trouble using
magnetic stripe bankcards abroad, especially in offline applications
like taxis, unattended ticketing and payment kiosks. UNFCU is the first
U.S. card issuer to provide a globally compliant payment card option to
their members. UNFCU is taking advantage of Gemalto’s recently announced
World Traveler program in which Gemalto will provide UNFCU with complete
issuance services including full card design and production,
personalization data preparation and personalization of the dual
interface card, ensuring global acceptance and forward compatibility for
both online and offline payment transactions. UNFCU is a cooperative financial institution with more than US $3.1
billion in assets, which has served the financial needs of the United
Nations community since 1947.

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USA Technologies Closes on Its Public Offering

Networked and wireless non-cash device provider USA Technologies has closed on its public offering of
approximately $2.47 million through the sale of common stock and related
warrants at a price of $0.90. USA Technologies, Inc. issued 2,753,454 shares of common stock and
2,753,454 warrants to purchase shares of common stock in connection with
the offering. USA Technologies, Inc. raised approximately $2.28 million in net
proceeds after deducting fees and expenses. The Company expects to use
the net proceeds of the offering for general corporate purposes,
including working capital and providing financing for the manufacture of
its e-Port cashless payment products for the Jump Start Program.
Source Capital Group acted as sole lead placement agent of the public
offering. USAT has a pending registration statement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission
for the previously announced rights offering of up to $7,521,891.

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Compass Plus Appoints Consulting Services VP

Anthony Genovese has been appointed VP, consulting services with Compass Plus international EFT and payments technology. In his new role, Anthony will assist with the development of new client relationships and TranzWare product support in North America. Bringing with him more than 25 years experience in the payments industry to the position, Genovese will further establishes Compass Plus’ presence in North America by cultivating relationships with prospective clients. He also assists with solution design and training of the Compass Plus sales and marketing staff based on the needs of North American financial institutions. Genovese held sales management and IT positions with S1 and ACI Worldwide. MO-based Compass Plus serves more than 100 customers in 25 countries.

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idCHECK Rolls Out to 300 Stores

ID Watchdog reports the initial launch and adoption of its “idCHECK”
product among retail stores will be completed before June 1st.
“idCHECK” utilizes ID Watchdog’s
patent-pending technology to immediately identify whether a consumer has
a pre-existing identity theft condition, and outlines recommended next
steps based on the report. InComm will work with retailers to offer ID
Watchdog’s idCHECK product at an attractive price point, with special
offers to upgrade consumers to its flagship monthly monitoring service.
Distribution efforts have been managed by InComm, who markets retail
products across more than 150,000 partner locations worldwide. Made up
of big box retailers and regional stores alike, InComm’s existing
relationships include Target, Best Buy, 7-Eleven and many others.
The initial launch will be highlighted by availability of idCHECK cards
at BJ’s Wholesale Club, Scolari’s, and Spartan Food locations.

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Report Recommends Segmenting Small-Business Banking Customers

The percentage of small businesses that are “extremely satisfied” with
their bank’s ability to understand their needs and recommend products is
low, and declined from 2007 to 2009. A new report from Aite Group presents a
segmentation approach for financial institutions seeking to predict the
needs and preferences of small businesses, allowing the institutions to
best market to these businesses. A
needs-based approach to segmenting small businesses (as opposed to a
demographics-based approach) will allow financial institutions to best
recommend appropriate products to address the needs of small businesses.
Based on a July 2009 Aite Group survey of 283 small-business owners
regarding their banking relationships, Aite Group has identified two
dimensions that banks can use to effectively segment small businesses:
short-term funding need and importance of technology in the
banking relationship.

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SCORE and AmEx Announce Small Business National Mentorship Schedule

American Express OPEN and SCORE “Counselors to America’s Small Business” announced the 2010 schedule for the “Small Business Speed Coaching Test Drive” a multi-city tour to help small businesses develop economic challenge strategies. Offering the businesses educational and mentorship programs to identify new opportunities for business growth, the “Small Business Speed Coaching” consists of a 30-minute, one-to-one evaluation sessions with experienced business mentors from SCORE. Problem-solving workshops will focus on strategic planning, effective marketing and business finances; the speed coaching events also allows small business owners to ask questions on a variety of topics ranging from surviving the current economy to capitalizing on government contracting opportunities. The courses include “Tough Times? Refocus Your Market Target and Positioning,” an interactive discussion of cost-effective, creative, integrated marketing solutions; “Success Stories,” allowing attendees to participate in a group conversation with a handful of successful entrepreneurs; and “Managing Through a Tough Economy,” to help understand business finances and direct future growth and funding. Call it the bottom line on the bottom line. The 2010 dates and locations are available online at http://www.score.org/OPEN_Events_2010.html.

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Chase Launches New Commercial Card Offerings

Chase is making available commercial card payment solutions and capabilities to enhance the power and scope of its commercial card offerings. These include Single-Use Accounts, or ‘virtual card’ solution, allowing middle market businesses to generate one-time-use-only credit card numbers to pay for larger, single purchases, which Chase has integrated with its Order-to-Pay network and user interface. This allows program administrators to leverage additional value from advanced workflow tools, electronic invoicing and settlement capabilities. Also, Chase is making available online reporting and program management capabilities, migrating its middle market commercial card clients to MasterCard’s upgraded smartdata.gen2 reporting platform. This helps clients seamlessly organize, consolidate, analyze and manage financial data from card transactions, delivering online billing statements, receipt imaging capabilities, new online card application, and an enhanced expense reporting solution. Additionally, Chase’ new Executive Card Program allows clients to choose from two levels of differentiated service, providing concierge service and higher levels of travel insurance, while the elite service level offers additional perks such as rewards and Priority Pass access to more than 600 airport lounges.

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