OCT DEBT

Credit card outstandings essentially remained flat in October on an adjusted basis, as overall consumer credit went into negative territory. On a reported basis, year-on-year growth was up 283 basis points, compared to being down 269 basis points in September. According to the The Bank of England, net credit card debt was GBP 54.5 billion in October, compared to GBP 54.1 billion in the prior month, and GBP 53.0 billion for October 2008. However, the current figure is inflated by GBP 500 million due to a de-securitization. Total net lending to individuals rose by GBP 300 million in October. The twelve-month growth rate fell to 70 basis points and the three-month annualized growth rate increased 30 basis points to 50 basis points. Consumer credit fell by a net GBP 600 million, below the previous six-month average. The annual growth rate of consumer credit continued to fall, to minus 10 basis points and the three-month annualized growth rate fell to minus 220 basis points.

NOTE: Chart does not include about GBP10 billion from specialist lenders, retailers, and insurance companies. SOURCE: Bank of England

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BMO, IN MOTION & PAYPASS

BMO Bank of Montreal, Research In Motion and MasterCard Canada have
partnered to bring mobile payments to BlackBerry smartphones through its
MasterCard “PayPass” ‘tap and go’ contactless payment technology.
Participants will use “PayPass” Mobile Tag-equipped BlackBerry
smartphones to make secure purchases at any of the 8,500 merchant
locations in Canada that accept MasterCard PayPass, integrating the
mobile payment with the device. A confirmation email is subsequently
sent of each transaction sent to the BlackBerry smartphone. The
confirmations include purchase details such as the amount, retailer and
date of transaction while the Mobile Tag contains the chip and antenna
found in a regular PayPass card, with the addition of special material
to reduce interference between the Mobile Tag and the phone to which it
is attached.

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iPA280 CERTIFICATION

Ingenico payment solutions’ “iPA280” Payment Personal Digital Assistant
(PayPDA) has been PCI PED v2 certified to ensure the highest level of
security. Combining secure card payment and PDA functionality, the
Ingenico “iPA280” PayPDA allows business applications to easily combine.
The “iPA280” transforms the sales environment into a mobile POS,
offering superior quality of service and a complete purchasing
experience using comprehensive PDA functionality. The Ingenico solution
is ultimately seeking to offer the Retail, Hospitality, Transportation
and Mobile industries a chance to add real value to the consumer
experience while generating significant incremental revenues at POS.

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CREDIT CARD PRACTICE

Option consommateurs wants to warn consumers about certain practices
used by credit cards issuers that are likely to get them deeper into
debt, such as introductory preferential rates which skyrocket after the
initial introductory period. Options also is warning consumers of the
preferential rate only offered on certain types of transactions, such as
balance transfer and how easily lost the benefit of the introductory
rate is. In response, the organization recommends the federal government
take serious steps toward the introduction of a comprehensive
legislative structure with regard to electronic payment, including
credit cards and provincial governments regulate and monitor commercial
practices related to credit cards and information disclosure.

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LOYALTY CARDHOLDERS

People are more drawn to loyalty card offers than ever before. Credit
card companies not taking advantage of consumer demandproportion of
credit cards offering a reward scheme declined by 11% from the previous
year. In 2009, 54% of cardholders claimed all or a large part of the
rewards they had earned, while in 2008 only 23% had made the effort;
only 10% of Clubcard holders have a Tesco credit card; there are
currently six in-store Tesco bank branches with approximately half a
million customers with savings accounts with a combined savings balance
of GBP4.6 billion and steadily rising, according to an August 2009
report from Sainsbury’s Finance. The initially attractive promise of 12
months interest free credit becomes less appealing when you consider the
sharp rise to 16.9% thereafter. The main purpose of credit cards is to
cover potential emergencies – the prohibitive rates of these store-cards
could cause long-term tragedy.

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RTP|ONE

Ski resort operators in Switzerland and Sweden are set to implement
software developed by Colorado-based Resort Technology Partners (RTP) to
streamline how they manage multiple operations throughout a resort while
improving guest convenience. The POS software has been used in the
United States for some time, allowing guest to use a single pass for
lift tickets, lessons, food, rentals, etc. For the resort, the software
makes it easy for resorts to better manage cash flow, financial
operations and control inventory. Verbier-St. Bernard Resort in Verbier,
Switzerland is implementing the RTP “RTP|ONE” software while Salen,
Sweden-based Experium ski resort is deploying the RTP “SkiStar” software.

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DUBAI FIRST & VIVOTECH

CA-based ViVOtech NFC and contactless payment systems NFC mobile payment
wallet, OTA and NFC payment readers have been deployed by Dubai First
and du integrated telecom services provider. The first NFC mobile
payment pilot in the Middle East scheduled to continue till the second
quarter of 2010, the Dubai First Platinum MasterCard can now allow
customers to download their credit card functionality securely to
specially equipped mobile handsets over du’s mobile network. Once the
handset has been personalized, customers could conduct transactions
using their du mobile connections at multiple MasterCard “PayPass”
enabled merchant locations in the United Arab Emirates. ViVOtech
technology was chosen to facilitate every step of this trial, including
Issuing Servers residing at Dubai First enabling the secure OTA
provisioning of credit cards to mobile handsets; managing the
provisioning and service of electronic wallets in the mobile handsets;
and electronic wallets in the handsets at merchants throughout UAE.

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WORLD OF CHANGE

In response to research showing 82% of women and 78% of men would rather
receive something meaningful and memorable as a holiday gift, World
Vision has introduced its “World of Change” giving card, allowing
recipients to pick an item from World Vision’s charitable gift
catalogue. The research, made available from Deloitte, also show 64% of
consumers plan to buy gift cards as presents for friends or family
members. With more than 80 gifts available, Canadians who receive this
meaningful gift can choose from such items as malaria nets, antibiotics,
agriculture kits and immunizations. They can also make donations in
denominations of $30, $50, $75, $100 and $150. The “World of Change”
giving cards can be redeemed online at www.worldvision.ca/gifts and are
offered across Canada, except in Quebec.

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VISA CARGO

Visa has launched its “Visa Cargo” multi-functional commercial card with
prepaid functionality and an optional line of credit. Developed in
Brazil to address the needs of the truck transportation industry, “Visa
Cargo” allows shipping companies and cargo carriers to charge the value
of the freight directly to the card, provides the Visa Vale Pedagio
functionality for toll payments throughout the country using the same
plastic and replaces inefficient paper-based payment instruments like
the “Freight Letter.” “Visa Cargo” is accepted at more than 1.6 million
gas stations, restaurants, auto mechanic shops and tire store merchants.
Additional options allow for an extended warranty, purchase protection
and various types of insurance that can provide peace of mind for truck
drivers during their trips.

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VIETIN BANK & JCB

With the number of Japanese visiting Vietnam having grown 21% in 3 years
to 390,000 in 2008, JCB International international payment announced
Vietnam Joint Stock Commercial Bank for Industry and Trade (Vietin Bank)
credit card acquiring bank began fulfilling agreements originally signed
with JCB in 2007. In doing so, JCB cardmembers are now allowed to use
their JCB credit cards for purchases at approximately 3,500 Vietin Bank
merchants by March 2011. JCB and JCBI have been building acquiring
license agreements in Vietnam since first signing with Joint Stock
Commercial Bank for Foreign Trade of Vietnam in 1991. JCB has been
actively partnering with such banks as Asia Commercial Joint Stock Bank,
Dong A Commercial Joint Stock Bank, and Sai Gon Thuong Tin Commercial
Joint Stock Bank, mainly to accommodate Japanese tourists.

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PROMOTION ACT

AirPlus International corporate travel payment solutions has released
the November edition of “The Wire…from AirPlus” focused on the proposed
U.S. Travel Promotion Act, of which more than 60% of respondents were
not aware. Additional findings show 29% were unsure of the details of
the Act; over 53% were unsure how the money collected would be used; and
73% felt that if implemented, the fees would be reciprocated for U.S.
travelers into other countries. “The Wire…from AirPlus” is a monthly
report on the pulse of the industry and its relevant topics while the
November edition is based on a survey of 96 travel management
professionals in North America, Europe, Africa and Asia/Pacific.

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