MASTERCARD 1Q/05

Growth in MasterCard International’s gross dollar volume and purchase volume remained in double digits during the first quarter.
Gross dollar volume of $379.6 billion was up 10.9% year-on-year while purchase volume increased 11.4% to $277.2 billion. Purchase transactions for the first quarter hit 3.75 billion compared to 3.31 billion one-year ago. Globally, MasterCard has 697.9 million cards-in-force linked to 595.7 million accounts. The number of acceptance locations worldwide as of March 31st was 23.7 million compared to 24.6 million for the fourth quarter. For complete details on MasterCard’s first quarter results, visit CardData (www.carddata.com).

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TNB Marketing Programs Drive Card Balances

Texas-based Abilene Teachers FCU reports that outstanding balances increased by 35% as it raised average credit lines by 47% between 1999 and 2004, using TNB Card Services’ marketing programs. Abilene Teachers FCU currently has 21,000 members, 3,600 credit card accounts, 4,000 debit/check cards and assets of $172 million. TNB Card Services serves more than 450 financial institutions and manages more than 1.6 million cards.

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Info Touch Terminals Enter SLC and Boise

Canada’s Info Touch Technologies has signed Maverik Country Stores to deploy self-serve automated bill payment and financial services touch-screen terminals at 35 select convenience stores in Salt Lake City and Boise. The TIO Network provides patrons with secure and convenient access to financial services, geared towards the under-banked marketplace. Maverik Country Stores, Inc. operates about 170 convenience stores in seven western states and represents the area’s largest independent gasoline marketer. Info Touch Technologies is a strategic investment of Hewlett Packard and builder of the “TIO Network”, the largest national multi-retailer network of self-service financial service kiosks in North America.

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StoreNext Markets Pay By Touch to Grocers

Texas-based StoreNext has inked a deal to resell the Pay By Touch store-level hardware, software and interfaces to independent grocers. Pay By Touch is a biometric payment service free to consumers to quickly and securely pay for purchases or cash checks using a finger scan linked to their personal identification information,financial accounts and loyalty programs. StoreNext Retail Technologies LLC is a supplier of retail technology to independent grocers and regional chains and is a joint venture of Retalix Ltd. and Fujitsu Transaction Solutions Inc.

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BofA and Chase Lead Card Growth in Q1

Monolines, which dominated organic growth in the U.S. payment card industry for a decade, continued to fall from grace during the first quarter. Bank of America has emerged as the new growth engine followed by Chase, displacing long-term leaders MBNA and Capital One. During the first quarter, Bank of America posted a 7.8% year-over-year increase in outstandings, compared to a 9.8% decline in MBNA outstandings. Chase, the largest U.S. issuer, posted a solid 6.5% in credit card outstandings during the first quarter, compared to Capital One’s weak 2.9% gain. As a group, the top five U.S. issuers reported $429.6 billion in first quarter credit card managed outstandings, a 2% gain over 1Q/04. For complete details on first quarter performance by U.S. issuers, visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

Top 5 U.S. Issuers’ Outstandings
ISSUER 1Q/05 1Q/04 CHNG
Chase $133.4b $125.2b +6.5%
Citi $115.8b $112.1b +3.3%
MBNA $ 74.8b $ 82.9b -9.8%
BofA $ 57.9b $ 53.7b +7.8%
Disc $ 47.7b $ 47.3b +0.2%
TOTAL $429.5b $421.1b +2.0%
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

[1]: http://www.carddata.com

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AmEx Expands Business Cash Rebate Cards

The success of cash rebate cards continues to drive American Express’ growth in the USA as the issuer unveiled another business cash rebate card for high-spending small business owners. The new “Platinum Business Premium Cash Rebate Card” carries no annual fee and offers 2.5% cash back on annual spending between $20,000 and $120,000. AmEx also offers the “Platinum Business Cash Rebate Card,” which rewards customers with 0.5% cash back for annual purchases at or below $7,500; 2.5% cash back for annual purchases between $7,501 and $15,000; and 1% cash back for annual purchases above $15,000. There is no limit to the amount of cash back customers can earn each year with either card. Under both programs, cardholders can earn double cash back, up to 5%, for purchases made through merchants that participate in the “OPEN Savings” program. AmEx introduced its first “Cash Rebate Card” in 2002. The following year it launched the “Blue Cash Card” for younger consumers and a few months later introduced a cash rebate business card. (CF Library 4/3/03; 5/9/03)

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Allpoint Signs its First NC Client

Durham, NC-based Mutual Community Savings Bank has become the first financial institution in North Carolina to join the Allpoint ATM Network. Customers can now benefit from the convenience of surcharge-free ATM access nationwide. Mutual Community Savings Bank, Inc., SSB, is a North Carolina-chartered stock savings bank. Allpoint is America’s largest surcharge-free ATM network with over 32,000 ATMs.

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U.S. Bank Introduces a Korean Air Biz Card

U.S. Bank and Korean Air have introduced the “SKYPASS VISA Company Business Card,” its sixth “SKYPASS VISA” card. The SKYPASS Visa is issued to a particular company to designate multiple users for the account. The credit limits are higher because the credit decision is made for the business, not the individual. Korean Air operates almost 400 flights per day to 85 cities in 29 countries. U.S. Bancorp is the 6th largest financial holding company in the United States with $198 billion in assets.

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FEB CARD DEBT

For the second time, credit card balances have topped the A$30 billion milestone. During February, credit card balances grew 13% and volume increased 9%, compared to one-year ago. Credit card balances ended February at A$30.1 billion, compared to A$29.3 billion in January, and A$26.6 billion for February 2004. Gross dollar volume on credit card and charge cards in February of A$12.8 billion was A$600 million higher than the prior month, and up more than A$1 billion from one-year ago. Based on data from the Reserve Bank of Australia, consumers charged A$12.0 billion in purchases on credit/charge cards during February compared to A$11.0 billion one-year ago. Card credit limits reached A$82.8 billion at the end of February, compared to A$72.9 billion for February 2004. There are 11.7 million credit card and charge card accounts in Australia, compared to 11.1 million one-year ago.

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AmEx Names a New Chief Information Officer

American Express has promoted Stephen Squeri, former president of its Global Commercial Card group, to EVP/CIO. He joined American Express as a manager in Travelers Cheque Group (TCG) in 1985 and subsequently held increasingly senior roles in TCG, Worldwide Marketing and Establishment Services (ES), becoming president of the Global Commercial Card group in 2002. He received a bachelor of science and MBA from Manhattan College. American Express Company is a diversified worldwide travel, financial and network services company founded in 1850.

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