Ecount Joins Spark Incentive Platform

Pennsylvnia-based Ecount has teamed with Parago to leverage Ecount’s extensive prepaid platform to deliver immediate incentives and rewards through Parago’s new “Spark Incentive Platform.” Spark is Parago’s online incentive platform, which enables paperless reporting, real-time communication and an interactive, self-service portal to issue and track incentives. Ecount provides customized prepaid programs. Parago designs, develops and manages full service marketing programs.

Details

Charge-Offs & Delinquency Converge

Performance among more than $350 billion in credit card asset-backed securities for April show for the first time that charge-offs and delinquency have converged at the 3.6% level. One-year ago charge-offs stood at 6.8% and delinquency at 4.5%. The decline in charge-offs is attributed to a very sharp decline in bankruptcy filings this year. According to Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services’ “Bank Card Credit Card Quality Index,” charge-offs increase slightly from 3.2% in March to 3.6% in April. However, delinquencies remained level over the past three months at 3.6%. On a weighted average basis, the year-to-date charge-off rate for the top three trusts averaged 3.0%, down roughly 400 basis points from the rate in December. Standard & Poor’s expects loss levels to begin to normalize during the second quarter and return to historical loss levels of around 6%.

ABS MONTHLY METRICS
Charge-Offs Delinquency
Feb 3.0% 3.6%
Mar 3.2% 3.6%
Apr 3.6% 3.6%
Source: Standard & Poor’s Ratings Service

Details

Wintrust Financial Goes NYCE

All 15 subsidiary community banks of the $8.2 billion Wintrust Financial have become new participants in Metavante’s “NYCE Payments Network”. Wintrust community banks serve the suburbs of Chicago. Metavante also supplies Wintrust’s community banks with financial technology solutions such as financial account processing; automated clearing house processing; ATM driving; debit and stored-value card personalization, fulfillment and processing; merchant services; consumer Internet bill pay; business and consumer Internet banking; risk management; trust management and marketing automation solutions. Metavante Payment Solutions is a provider of electronic money movement through an integrated payments network.

Details

Loyalty for Micropayments is Introduced

Small dollar-value purchases can now be rewarded for loyalty. Micropayment leader Peppercoin has added a loyalty program to its “Small Payments Suite” whereby merchants automatically enroll customers at the time of purchase without requiring a separate application process. Each time the customer uses their card with the merchant, Peppercoin records their participation and eligibility for awards based on rules defined by the merchant. The Peppercoin software tracks all customer transactions and, for point of sale merchants, will automatically include information such as a rewards summary on the receipt. It can also trigger a coupon. The new loyalty solution works with prepaid, post-paid, subscription and pay-as-you-go.

Details

Debit Card Volume Growth Remains in Double Digits

Debit card EFT/POS volume rose nearly 11% year-on-year in March to its highest level for 2006. During March, Australian consumers used debit cards for A$7.3 billion in transactions, compared to A$6.6 billion for February and A$6.6 billion one-year ago. Over the past five years debit card volume has grown 135%. In December debit card volume hit a record A$8.7 billion. During March, Australians used debit cards for A$5.8 billion in purchases with 93.2 million transactions. Total EFT/POS transactions were 108.5 million for March according to the Reserve Bank of Australia. There were 25.5 million debit card accounts in the country at the end of March, compared to 25.0 million one-year ago.

Details

Cyphermint Adds Another PayCash Patent

Massachusetts-based Cyphermint has been awarded a patent for technology that creates a virtual coin to transfer funds from different accounts over the Internet secured by proprietary 1024-bit encryption. The U.S. Patent Office awarded Cyphermint the patent for the “Method used for making a blind RSA-signature and apparatus therefor” and relates to the cryptographic field, particularly to making an RSA-signature, and can be used in electronic systems in a global scope. Cyphermint is a provider of Global Electronic Cash Payment and e-commerce solutions.

Details

MC’s Chief Risk Officer to Retire

MasterCard’s Chief Risk Officer, Chris Thom, will retire from the company in October and a successor will be announced shortly. As Chief Risk Officer, Thom has overseen the Risk Management Group’s enterprise-wide risk management practices. Under his leadership, the group has been effective in reducing and preventing fraudulent use of MasterCard products, as well as expanding and enforcing compliance activities. Thom also chaired the MasterCard International Operations Committee and International Security Committee.

Details

FLEXI-RATE CARD

Barclaycard reports that its “Flexi-Rate” cardholders are repaying
credit card balances more quickly than ever. The “Flexi-Rate VISA,”
introduced in October, charges a lower interest rate to those customers
who pay off a higher proportion of their balance. Customers who pay more
than 10% of their monthly balance are charged an interest rate of 9.9%,
those who pay more than 5% are charged 12.9%. Customers who opt to pay
less than 5% (minimum 2%) are charged 16.9%. Barclaycard says it
recently introduced a new statement message to cardholders who have only
made the minimum payment in the previous six months, encouraging them to
lower their costs by paying more. Barclaycard has 11.2 million
cardholders in the UK.

Details

BofA Completes its SiteKey Program

Bank of America has completed the nationwide roll-out of its two-factor authentication service. This month, BofA launched the “SiteKey” service for online banking and credit card services in Washington and Idaho. The service is mandatory. With “SiteKey” customers pick one of thousands of images, write a brief phrase and select three challenge questions. The customer and the bank can pass that information securely back and forth to confirm each other’s identity. “SiteKey” is provided to BofA from PassMark Security.

Details

Lynch Takes the Helm at RightPath Payments

Dennis Lynch, former president and CEO of NYCE, has become CEO of RI-based start-up RightPath Payments. The Company announced this morning it has received a seed capital commitment from the Slater Technology Fund. RightPath’s “Business Payment Connection” is a patent-pending, Web-based software solution that automates and streamlines payment processes by replacing seller trade credit with a lender’s credit. RightPath is the business successor to Collaborative Financial Concepts of Waltham MA, the original developer of “BPC.” Lynch, formerly was chairman of the New England-wide “Yankee 24” ATM network, which merged into NYCE in 1994, and was also a SVP at Fleet Bank.

Details

Bogus Credit Card Draws a Big Fine

A federal judge has ordered Bad Credit B Gone to pay more than $322,000 in consumer redress for running a bogus credit repair operation. This action was a result of “Project Credit Despair,” a crackdown on 20 operations that deceptively claimed they could remove negative information from consumers’ credit reports – even if that information was accurate and timely. Under the court’s ruling, the defendants are permanently prohibited from misrepresenting that they can improve substantially most consumers’credit reports.

Details