The trend toward cards and electronic payments has become strong enough that the largest banks in the UK have arranged a vote to stop clearing checks. Estimates of check clearing cost are roughly $1.66, or about four times as much as electronic payments and would lead to substantial savings for banks. more
MasterCard decided to move forward with these requirements after extensive discussions with issuers, processors, program managers, acquirers, and merchants, where high decline … more
There was no clear winner in the GAO report. Each proposed remedy to lower Interchange examined by the GAO would impact stakeholders differently, for example, merchants verse card issuers or large merchants versus small merchants or large issuers vs. community banks. One of the most important stakeholders to the politicians are the consumers and the GAO suggested that savings from lower Interchange would not be pass along in every industry and only in competitive markets. The GAO study … more
In 1991, Visa and MasterCard each had 4 standard domestic credit card interchange fee rate categories. By 2009, Visa had 60 and MasterCard had 243 different rate categories that could be charged to card transactions, although not all of these rates apply to all merchants.
The increase in the number of rates occurred as different types of merchants and cards were added to their Interchange rate schedules. For example, the networks introduced new rates for certain industries that previously had not accepted cards (such as energy utility companies or government agencies) or for new methods of shopping (such as … more
A significant advantage of capping or limiting interchange fees would be that it would reduce interchange fee costs most directly. The GAO study did not make any recommendations but rather posed various scenarios of capping Interchange at current levels, setting a maximum rate, setting at a level significantly below the current rates, apply caps to select Interchange rate categories like rewards cards or … more
Disclosing information about Interchange fees to consumers would incur the costs of updating technology and signage to allow for such disclosures. For disclosure in merchant receipts, merchants would incur the cost of changing their receipts. Issuers would incur cost of changing card statements to add disclosures. more
The GAO reports that removing the anti steering rules appears to have various advantages. Merchants could surcharge or refuse certain cards, make cardholders using rewards cards more aware of and to bear more of the cost of the rewards from which they benefit. This option also may require the least intervention, as merchants could decide whether to add surcharges or refuse certain cards based on their own customer mix. In addition, the potentially anticompetitive effects of these rules are also the subject of a … more
Valid concerns exist that such negotiations could harm small merchants and small issuers, which do not have as much leverage as larger participants and, in some cases, lack the resources to participate in bargaining sessions. It would be difficult to ensure that small issuers and small merchants benefited from collective negotiations. Small merchant would find it difficult to participate in such negotiations because of limited resources.
A significant legal barrier to implementing … more
Visa strongly recommends that merchants use … more
In the beginning, when forced to adopt card acceptance, drivers went on strike citing the burden it placed on drivers. A short two years later overall ridership, revenue and tips for drivers have all increased.
Name another industry right now where you will read the following statements from merchants, trade associations and government commissioners about credit cards being good for business.
“It’s better,” said Naveed Shah, 35, a driver for five years, … more
Today’s most successful SMB are using a mix of technology and best practices to effectively manage their accounts receivables to increase cash flow and working capital. Managing credit risks, using lockbox services to automate paper-based processes and following AR best practice invoice tracking and follow up are being viewed as smart strategic decisions, giving SMB a competitive advantage once reserved only for big business.
Likewise, … more
The concept that Conyers exposes is that of embedded costs which are hidden but are ultimately borne by the consumer.
What’s crazy to me is that while so many seem to get this concept in the context … more
Harry & David
and many, many more...
Vantage Card Services was recently recognized in a leading payment industry trade magazine for it’s Vantage Points merchant rewards program as an example of a customer retention focused organization. Merchants earn Vantage Points accepting MasterCard, Visa and Discover and redeem their points for rewards from nearly 200 distinguished program partners.
This one-of-a-kind program is simple to … more
Have you ever used the Wayback Machine?
The Wayback Machine allows users to browse through over 150 billion web pages archived from 1996 to just a few months ago. I used it to craft this brief history of Vantage.
We launched our first web presence as far back as the end of 1997 but the first archive I find is a view from October 1999. That’s a decade ago and just months before the dot-com bubble crash. If I recall, we used Microsoft FrontPage to develop these early versions (we still do all our web development in house today): http://web.archive.org/web/19991004142744/http://www.vantagecard.com/.
And while our site has grown, our messaging hasn’t really changed. In the first paragraph on the October 2000 home page we begin to push the concept of “Interchange … more
The current environment seems to be more government regulation on things than less. The purpose of hearings is to discuss the way data is retrieved, transmitted, intercepted and stored and to see how government can regulate aspects of IT -- including companies involved in finance, health, welfare and safety.
However, before the federal government tries to regulate how the private sector handles and stores data, Congress should consider updating the 7-year-old Federal Information Security Management Act … more
Visa's move to kill signature-based mag-stripe transactions by 2013 will require financial institutions and retailers to upgrade over 14 million visa cards, half a million point of sale terminals, and thousands of ATMs.
While fraud in Australia remains low by world standards, this aggressive rollout of new technologies will strengthen security reducing counterfeit, skimming and online card fraud.
Is the U.S. next? more