REBATE CARD BATTLE

Citi’s new “Shell MasterCard” projects it can save U.K. drivers about GBP63 each, or a total of GBP27 million per year just for fuel purchases. Citi also calculates cardholders can save and additional
GBP72 per year for other purchases, for about GBP135 per year. The card offers 3% cash back on Shell fuel purchases in Great Britain and 1% on all other purchases. The card also offers other motoring benefits. Citi says the new card is the best in rebates in the U.K., comparring itself the similar cards. Other cards included “Barclaycard Cashback”; “Tesco ClubCard”; “M&S &More”; “Amex Platinum MoneyBack”; “Amex Nectar”; “Capital One Cashback Card”; and “MBNA Rewards Visa.”

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PRAA Acquires a Louisiana Tax Firm

Account management services Portfolio Recovery Associates has acquired
the assets of LA-based Broussard Partners & Associates which specializes
in providing audit services to local tax authorities. The purchase of
privately held Broussard Partners closed on August 1,
2008, and it is now operating as part of RDS. Lisa Broussard, the firm’s
President, has entered into a long-term employment agreement with RDS.
Financial terms of the cash transaction, which included substantially
all assets of Broussard & Partners, were not disclosed. Portfolio
Recovery Associates also provides a broad range of collection services,
including revenue administration for government entities through its RDS
and MuniServices businesses, collateral-location services for credit
originators via its IGS subsidiary and bankruptcy servicing through PRA
Receivables Management, LLC.

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Heartland Payment’s Q2 Volume Jumps 29%

NJ-based Heartland Payment Systems reported that second quarter revenues rose more than 18% to $395 million. Card processing volume for the quarter increased 29% to $17 billion. About $2 billion of the quarter’s volume came from acquisitions, including the Network Services business of Alliance Data. However, HPY noted that same store sales in the quarter declined 0.1%, the first such decline in the Company’s
history. HPY also noted that its card business is growing faster than the industry, and is preparing to add incremental volume, processing Discover and American Express transactions. Additionally, payroll, remote deposit, and the campus card markets are showing strong growth. The Company projects that net revenue this year will grow by 16% to 18% organically, and in excess of 35% including NWS. For complete details on Heartland’s second quarter performance visit CardData ([www.carddata.com](http://www.carddata.com)).

HEARTLAND PAYMENT SYSTEMS REVENUES
2Q/07: $333 million
3Q/07: $355 million
4Q/07: $342 million
1Q/08: $340 million
2Q/08: $395 million
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

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Wells Fargo Intros a Jewelry Retail Card

Wells Fargo Financial National Bank has launched a revolving credit
card for jewelry industry customers. The new “Jewelry Advantage” card
program offers jewelry retailers automated decisions,
online processing and reporting. The new card also provides a
no-interest plan with equal payments, low interest plans with longer
payment terms, no payment/no-interest option plans and a no-interest
option with minimum payment plans. This is the latest edition to
IA-based Wells Fargo Financial Retail Services’ already established card
programs, which include “Wells Fargo Health Advantage,” “Home Projects
Visa”, the “SplashCard” and many others.

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FOR STUDENTS ONLY

Desjardins has launched its “VISA Desjardins FOR STUDENTS ONLY” credit
card highlighted with its provision of cell phone insurance. This
product offering is in response to research concluding over 64% of
Canadians between the ages of 15 and 29 have a cell phone, many of whom
have misplaced or had one stolen. The “VISA Desjardins FOR STUDENTS
ONLY” credit card will replace the cell phone of the insured at no extra
fee in the event it is lost or stolen, the first financial institution
in Canada to offer such protection. Desjardins Group integrated
cooperative financial group has overall assets of nearly $150 billion,
providing financial service to 5.8 million clients through its 40,000
employees and 6,500 elected officers.

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Gift Card Plastic Tray Patent Granted

UT-based specialty gift card provider Seastone announced they have
been granted a new patent for a customized plastic tray designed to
carry a gift card within a gift card holder or package. Seastone also
holds the patent for gift card packaging made with tin,
which was found to be the most popular format for gift card packaging in
a 2008 gift card packaging study done by The Marketing Workshop, Inc.
Seastone pioneered
specialty gift card packaging and offers turnkey gift card promotional
programs through its “Give-A-Gift brand” and provides fully
customizable programs utilized by many of the nation’s largest
retailers, restaurants, banks and mall groups.

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VIRTUAL WALLET

Moneybookers has reported five million customers now use its “Virtual
Wallet” solution at an account opening-rate of nearly 5,000 accounts
daily in more than 40 countries. The Moneybookers ‘e-wallet’ solution
allows users to transfer money at very low cost on a transparent
fee structure to anyone in the world with an email address. The fee
structure simply requires the sender pay 1% of the transaction or 40
pence, whichever is cheaper. Moneybookers online payment
system offers domestic payment options in 12 languages and is among the
largest e-wallets worldwide.

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Asset Acceptance’s Q2 Revenue Slips 14%

MI-based debt collector Asset Acceptance Capital reported that second quarter revenues declined more than 14% to $56.5 million. Net income for the quarter was $2 million, compared to net income of $8 million for 2Q/07. Purchased receivable revenues declined 14% to $56.2 million for second quarter. During the second quarter, the Company used $65.3 million to purchase charged-off consumer debt portfolios with a face value of $1.9 billion, for a blended rate of 3.38% of face value.
The Company also announced that COO Rion Needs will become President and CEO effective January 1, 2009. Current President and CEO Brad Bradley will remain as non-executive Chairman of the Board. The Board also voted to increase the total number of directors from eight to nine to add Needs. For complete details on AACC’s second quarter performance visit CardData ([www.carddata.com](http://www.carddata.com)).

Asset Acceptance Capital Revenues
2Q/07: $65.9 million
3Q/07: $52.6 million
4Q/07: $62.2 million
1Q/08: $64.4 million
2Q/08: $56.5 million
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

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HSBC NORTH AMERICA

HSBC Bank Canada has made agreements with HSBC Finance Corporation for
the acquisition of HSBC Financial Corporation Limited. HSBC Financial offers a diversified range of consumer financial services to the Canadian public, including consumer loans, mortgages and private label credit cards. This development is the direct result of an ongoing strategic review of the Group’s North
American operations and is expected to close by the conclusion of 2008.
HSBC Bank Canada has more than 180 offices throughout Canada with total
assets of nearly C$67.4 billion and a net income of C$297 million while
HSBC Financial Corporation Limited has total assets of nearly C$5.2
billion with a net income of C$26 million, 10,000 offices in 83
countries and assets of US$2.4 billion.

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NPC Hires a Former NOVA Top Executive

KY-based payment processor NPC and equity investment firm GTCR have
announced that Steve Stevenson, previously with NOVA, is the new CFO of
NPC. Stevenson will report directly to Tom A. Wimsett, NPC President
and CEO. Stevenson has spent over 20 years in the payment processing
industry as a senior finance and accounting executive. During his tenure
at NOVA as EVP and CFO, Stevenson was a key member of the executive team
that grew revenues from approximately
$400 million to over $1.2 billion. Prior to NOVA, Stevenson spent two
years as the CFO for LYNK Systems. Before joining LYNK, he spent twelve
years as the Controller and interim CFO at National Data Corporation,
the predecessor to Global Payments. NPC provides a
wide range of business transaction processing, from point-of-sale credit
card processing to e-commerce solutions. These
services include the electronic acceptance of credit, debit, gift and
loyalty cards, and electronic checks.

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TNB Names a New Product Senior Exec

TNB Card Services has named Mitch Raymond, previously with Citigroup,
as SVP of product development. At Citigroup, he most recently served as
VP, senior operations manager. During his time at Citi, he was
responsible for leading a large team of associates in the delivery of
customer service and collections activities for large corporate and
government accounts. Prior to Citi, Raymond held a variety of roles in
product development, marketing, operations and finance at Dell Financial
Services L.P., GE Capital Corporation, and Exxon Co. USA.
Raymond will work closely with TNB’s clients and executive leadership
team to design, develop, and implement products and services that will
strengthen its credit union clients’ ability to effectively manage and
grow their card portfolios.

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Credit Card ABS Excess Spread Narrows

Credit card Asset Backed Securities are continuing to face pressure as excess spread levels have decreased by 4% among prime portfolios and 42% among sub-prime portfolios. Increased borrower debt reload rates, and lack of alternative debt refinancing options are steadily chipping away at this cushion in ABS. Fitch Ratings this continued compression could begin to put pressure on subordinated debt ratings. Fitch expects charge-off rates in the prime credit card segment may approach the high end of historically observed performance averages, meeting or exceeding 7% by year end. Charge-off rates in Fitch’s prime credit card index have risen for the ninth straight month, up 40% on a year-over-year basis.

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