SCL & GLOBALPLATFORM

Seoul-based Smart Card Laboratory (SCL) international smart card
solutions provider has joined the GlobalPlatform international
specification body for smart card infrastructure as an ‘Observer
Member.’ With its membership, SCL is allowed to closely track the
debates and activities of all GlobalPlatform card, device and systems
technical committees, is given the opportunity to contribute to various
‘Mobile Task Force’ initiatives and participate in its Advisory Council,
which provide members with direct access to the Board of Directors.
GlobalPlatform is a member driven association with cross-industry
representation from all world continents with an estimated 305.7 million
smart cards deployed while Smart Card Laboratory smart card solution
offers a wide range of products and solutions related to smart cards.

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BARLAYS & VISA

Visa has awarded Barclays Bank Egypt for its marked increase in issued
credit cards and volumes, all the while maintaining quality customer
service. Barclays Bank Egypt end to end customer service focuses on its
‘Customer Life Cycle’, beginning with their first contact until the
clients conduct their first transaction with their Barclaycard. The
division is also committed to receiving customer feedback through post
purchase calls for 100% of its new customers to make sure that they have
all the necessary information. Barclays Bank Egypt growth in the credit
card market is part of a comprehensive plan for growing with the entire
retail sector and is committed to investing greater efforts to expand in
the Egyptian market for raising the awareness of the importance of
plastic card payments.

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Hispanics Avoid the Great Recession Impact

Hispanic households across the country are absorbing the impact of the
recession differently than other American households. Given Hispanics
spend an average of $115 weekly on groceries, more than any ethnic
group, Hispanics are not dining out less frequently like 52% of the
population because the majority never dined out often before the
recession. Also, Hispanics increased their entertainment spending in
2007 and 2008, with such services as movie-at-home, 40% to have no type
of account with a bank, compared to only 21% of non-Hispanics, while
less than half have credit cards. This research, thanks to Mintel,
however shows 76% of Hispanics are only in fair/poor shape while only
31% feel secure financially.

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MerchantWARE TransPort System Introduced

Merchant Warehouse has introduced the “MerchantWARE TransPort”
PA-DSS compliant POS system. “MerchantWARE TransPort” allows point-of-sale developers to remove the
card processing function entirely from their software while retaining
full functionality through a “transaction portal.” The PA-DSS audit
scope may be reduced or eliminated by delegating all of the sensitive
portions of payment processing to “MerchantWARE TransPort”.
Once integrated into a point-of-sale system, “MerchantWARE TransPort”
assumes all of the duties of handling sensitive payment data so that the
POS system never comes in contact with it. When a card is swiped,
cardholder data is collected, prepared, and transmitted via SSL to
MerchantWARE’s secure payment gateway, where it is processed and an
authorization token is automatically sent back to the POS system.

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OPTIMA & DOLLAR

Dollar Financial international financial services for the unbanked and
under-banked has acquired Poland-based Optima consumer lending business,
initially purchasing a 76% share for approximately $5.4 million. Founded
in 1999 and headquartered in Gdansk, Optima offers unsecured loans of
generally 40 – 50 week durations, averaging $250 to $500 and featuring
in-home disbursement and collection servicing, a practice well accepted
within Eastern Europe. Customer sales and service activities are managed
through the Optima network of commission based representatives across
Poland. Additional terms of the acquisition agreements provide Dollar
Financial the option to purchase the remaining minority holdings in
three years and will assume the $6.3 million outstanding indebtedness
while Optima’s existing shareholders and senior management will retain
the remaining 24% aggregate ownership interest.

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MAY LEI

The Conference Board Leading Economic Index (LEI) for Korea increased
for the 4th consecutive month by .7% while The Conference Board
Coincident Economic Index (CEI) increased .6% in May. Having increased
1.2% over the past 6 months, the Conference Board LEI for South Korea
now stands at 104.0 (2004=100), which increased 2% in April and .4% in
March, while the CEI now stands at 107.1 (2004=100), which increased
0.7% in April and increased 0.8% in March. LEI results for the month
were attributed to letter of credit arrivals, value of machinery orders,
real exports FOB, the (inverted) index of inventories to shipments, and
stock prices while negative contributors include private construction
orders and the (inverted) yield of government public bonds.

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DCS Integrates Verient’s InfiniPAY

Dynamic Card Solutions and CA-based payment solution provider Verient have teamed to offer a payment
customization program. By combining DCS’ “CardWizard” instant issue
software and Verient’s flagship “InfiniPAY payment customization
platform, financial institutions can now instantly offer their customers
highly tailored multiple payment products from a single cardholder account.
DCS’ patented CardWizard software and Verient’s patent-pending
InfiniPAY™ platform can be securely integrated into financial
institutions’ card management systems and online banking portals.
Consumers can simply sign on to their banking website and, through
Verient’s software application, create a “Made-to-Order” payment product
with the features and parameters they require.
Delivery of the “Made-to-Order” payment card is simple. Once the payment
controls and parameters have been set up by the customer, Verient’s
InfiniPAY™ platform works in conjunction with DCS’ CardWizard instant
issue software and associated hardware to instantly issue the card or
other payment form factor at the branch location. DCS’ CardWizard
software interacts with Verient’s InfiniPAY™ platform to securely
transfer all the data and then personalize it onto an associated
plastic, fob, sticker or other NFC-chip enabled device. Customers can
simply walk into their full service location and immediately receive
their “Made-to-Order” payment product. Customers will be able to
use any of their accounts, such as credit card, checking, savings or
home equity line of credit, and can create multiple payment products in
a variety of form factors, including a physical card, contactless
sticker or NFC chip on a mobile phone.

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Consumer Credit Scores Stable in June at 674

New tracking reveals that for the third consecutive month the percent
of credit scores rising has tapered off and more consumers are seeing
their credit scores remain stable. About 38% of consumer credit scores
have gone up, 28% have gone down, and 34% remained the same during June.
The current average U.S. consumer credit score is 674, which is the same
as in May. Credit Karma’s “U.S. Credit Score Climate Report” found that
the South region had the highest percentage of increasing credit scores,
while Midwest consumers continue to have the
lowest amount of debt. In June, the average consumer with debt had:
$6,938 in credit card debt; $206,427 in home mortgage loans; $54,370 in
home equity loans; $14,539 in auto loans and $27,201 in student loans.

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BMI VISA

BMI Bank has migrated all its ATM cardholders to a new
chip-enabled “Visa Debit” card. The Bank is also in the process of upgrading all its credit cards to smart payment cards. BMI offers “Classic,” “Gold,” “Sapphire-Platinum” and co-branded “Geant
La Carte” Visa cards. About half of BMI credit cards have been upgraded thus far. The new “Chip and PIN” cards offer a higher level of security and faster transaction times. BMI, an associate of BankMuscat, is the largest financial services provider in Oman and is a retail bank, registered in Bahrain, regulated by the Central Bank of Bahrain offering a full range of retail and commercial banking services. BMI Bank operates in Bahrain through a network of 8 branches and 25 ATMs with net banking for easy access to services.

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Cap One Delinquency Declines for 4th Month

The bad news is that Capital One charge-offs neared double digits in
June, but the good news is delinquency declined for the fourth
consecutive month. The charge-off ratio rose from 9.41% in May to 9.73%
for June. However, the May figure was about 50 basis points lower due to
a recent change in the issuer’s bankruptcy policy. U.S. Card delinquency
declined from 4.90% in May to 4.73% for June. Managed loans at the end
of June decreased to $64.8 billion. Last month Capital One noted that
its internal guidelines require bankrupt accounts to be charged off
within 30 days and its practice had been to charge-off customer accounts
within 2 to 3 days of receiving notification of bankruptcy. Therefore,
the issuer extended the processing window to improve the efficiency and
accuracy of bankruptcy-related charge-off recognition. Capital One
previously reported that the U.S. Card charge-off rate increased to 8.4%
for the first quarter. The issuer will release its second quarter report
on April 23rd after the market close. For complete details on Capital
One’s first quarter and monthly performance, visit CardData
(www.carddata.com).

CAPITAL ONE HISTORICAL
DELINQUENCY CHARGE-OFF
Jun 08: 3.85% 6.42%
Jul 08: 3.96% 6.08%
Aug 08: 4.07% 5.96%
Sep 08: 4.20% 6.34%
Oct 08: 4.48% 6.54%
Nov 08: 4.70% 6.98%
Dec 08: 4.78% 7.71%
Jan 09: 5.02% 7.82%
Feb 09: 5.10% 8.06%
Mar 09: 5.08% 9.33%
Apr 09: 5.04% 8.56%
May 09: 4.90% 9.41%
Jun 09: 4.77% 9.73%
Source: CardData.com

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Bank Overdraft Fees Rise 4% in 2008

The national median for overdraft (OD) fees on consumer checking accounts, debit cards and ATMs increased 4% to $26 per incident in 2009 from $25 per incident in 2008 led primarily by banks with assets of more than $50 billion. Additional research shows 44.5% of all banks and credit unions have OD income greater than net income; Wall Street banks charged a median price of $35 per overdraft vs. all financial institutions with a median OD fee of $26; The South led all US regions with a median charge per overdraft of $29.00 vs. $25.00 elsewhere; 45% of Wall Street banks tier OD prices vs. 2% of Main Street banks; and 54% of all financial institutions offered a formal OD program down from 69% in 2008. Made available through a nationwide survey of more than 2,000 financial institutions conducted by IL-based Moebs Services, the research also shows 35% of all financial institutions allow consumers to overdraw their accounts at an ATM or with a debit card for which a median charge of $26 is assessed and less than 20% of all financial institutions pay overdrawn checks in the order from large to small.

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