21 September 2018

21st September 2018
  • Mobile/Contactless and omni-Commerce
  • Acquiring/Processing
  • Issuing
  • Cash
  • Cross-Border Payments
  • Fraud/Security
  • Open Banking
  • Innovation
  • Blockchain/DLT/Cryptocurrencies
  • Corporate Activity
  • Interchange (US)
  • PSD2
  • Regulation


ONS Retail sales, Great Britain: August 2018.   http://tinyurl.com/ydcd7lkl

Spending online continued to increase with 14.2% growth yoy and reaching a new record proportion of all retailing at 18.2%. Department stores continued to show strong online sales on the year, with an increase of 26.1%


The IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index for August shows +12.8% growth YoY but with M-retail hitting an all-time low of just +10% YoY. http://tinyurl.com/y7qxqsf5

However, interestingly in a separate post on Travel Booking trends http://tinyurl.com/y83s6ad7 it is pointed out that Google has rehashed its search algorithm to give priority to mobile sites over desktop versions and which is expected to launch fully this year.


The Visa UK Consumer Spending Index indicates spending returning to positive territory in August. http://tinyurl.com/yab8euyy

Though only slight, the rise contrasted with a -0.9% reduction in July with F2F increasing +0.3%, but eCommerce expenditure declining by -0.2%.


Google Pay has now arrived in Italy according to an Italian language blog. http://tinyurl.com/ybjp2gmc

Wirecard is supporting the launch via its boon Android app. http://tinyurl.com/y73x7p2v


PayPal is beginning to roll out PayPal Checkout with Smart Payment Buttons globally. http://tinyurl.com/y8gqvs3r

The new local alternative payment methods include iDEAL,, Bancontact, MyBank, Giropay and EPS.

For the UK the announcement simply relates to the roll out of PayPal Checkout and PayPal Marketing Solutions.  http://tinyurl.com/yapkb6bo


MasterCard says almost 1 in 2 transactions are now contactless in both UK and Europe.                           UK http://tinyurl.com/y89g5rnj  Europe http://tinyurl.com/y8ctxswu

Contactless already represents 46% of all transactions each month in the UK with transport, particularly TfL, a major driver. In more than 15 European markets – including Denmark, Croatia, Greece, Hungary, Netherlands, Poland, Russia –contactless in-store transactions are already above 50%. In Poland contactless transactions are over 80% year-to-date.


Amazon has launched its Storefront offer in UK and Germany.  http://tinyurl.com/y7qq82pd

Although the PR suggests this is a US only initiative there are live sites for the UK and Germany.


Stripe is introducing a new programmable POS terminal.  https://stripe.com/terminal

The move brings Stripe into the physical world with an in-store/mPOS checkout offer with a set of pre-certified card readers, SDKs, and cloud-based hardware management tools.


First Data has announced that the Company has shipped its one millionth Clover POS device. http://tinyurl.com/yccubrlq


Instagram has integrated a shopping tab into its parent app as a prelude to the launch of a full shopping offer.  http://tinyurl.com/y7cpdpts

The latest move sees new ways for businesses to connect with shoppers by expanding shopping in Stories and launching a shopping channel in Explore.


Amazon is considering a major expansion of the Amazon Go concept according to Bloomberg. http://tinyurl.com/yaa3ldf3

The report suggests that the company may be looking at opening up to 3,000 stores in what would be a serious challenge to the likes of 7-Eleven and quick-service sandwich shops like Subway and Panera Bread.



UnionPay and Cartes Bancaires have announced they are working to extend the acceptance of Chinese cards throughout France.   http://tinyurl.com/ybumb6rw

Wider acceptance of UnionPay cards in shops should begin in mid-2019.


Accelya has announced that it is partnering with Mastercard Payment Gateway Services to launch the Accelya Payment Gateway.  http://tinyurl.com/y89fa2fg

The new offer combines MPGS infrastructure with Accelya’s airline knowledge to create a fully scalable and reliable payment gateway.


Compass Plus has announced the global expansion of its processing business. http://tinyurl.com/y7ll65uh

The company is opening a fully compliant, Mastercard and Visa certified UK-based processing centre as it looks to break out from it Russian/CEE base.



CUP is preparing to launch branded cards in the UK according to the FT.  http://tinyurl.com/y7gbbkaw

The report says CUP will work with a UK company as early as next month to start issuing virtual pre-paid cards for British corporate clients whose staff travel in Asia. This will be followed by the issue UnionPay branded credit cards elsewhere in Europe.


Curve is eliminating currency exchange fees when spending abroad. http://tinyurl.com/ybaeuypg

There is however an initial cap of up to £500 per rolling month with a 1% fee thereafter. In November this will rise to 2%. The zero currency conversion fees service extends across more than 150 global currencies.



NatWest and G4S are working together to pilot the UK’s first intelligent cash management solution.  http://tinyurl.com/y9sf4u3z

The solution allows businesses to deposit cash into a G4S device that validates the cash then credits their bank account without a branch visit.



SWIFT is to introduce a pre-validation service that will allow customers to detect and resolve errors that delay payment messages.  http://tinyurl.com/yaeebezq

The system will support error detection before payments are dispatched and enable banks to give upfront fee transparency to their end customers. Using secure APIs, predictive analysis and AI, the new gpi capability will pre-validate messages, identifying and flagging potential issues ahead of time.



The Danish Central Bank reports continuing low levels of payment fraud in shops. http://tinyurl.com/ybrf7m3m

However the pattern is changing with contactless frauds constituting a larger share than the technology’s share of total payments.



Yolt is now connected all CMA9 banks via their Open APIs. http://tinyurl.com/ycwqlb4y

There are now 18 banks connected through APIs, with users granted access to a total of 35 different banks and cards.



NatWest has begun testing with quantum computing power.  http://tinyurl.com/y7ftevfs

The bank is seeking to solve some of the most complex, challenging, time consuming and expensive problems that it faces. Although initial success is being channelled into helping portfolio managers decide on the right composition for the bank’s £120bn high quality liquid assets, the bank says Quantum technology could also be applied to optimise the bank’s other portfolios and  enhance performance in other areas of activity.


OP Financial Group is piloting facial recognition payments in its staff restaurant. http://tinyurl.com/y78chgsj

Saying it is a first for Finland,  the FI is conducting the trial along with Visa to better understand how the technology could be applied in the future. Initial feedback has been very encouraging.



The Treasury Select Committee says “Wild West” crypto-assets should be regulated in its latest report.  http://tinyurl.com/ydaqyzzl  Full Report http://tinyurl.com/yavemjay

“At a minimum, regulation should address consumer protection and anti-money laundering. If the Government decides that crypto-asset growth should be encouraged, appropriate and proportionate regulation could see the UK become a global centre for this activity”.



On the day PayPal announces the completion of its acquisition of iZettle http://tinyurl.com/yd3kqrxz

The CMA announces it has opened an investigation into the deal. http://tinyurl.com/yd6ct5km

While PayPal welcomes the iZettle team to the PayPal family the CMA has issued an Initial enforcement order.  PayPal says it is working cooperatively with the CMA as it conducts its review. The PayPal and iZettle brands and operations will be held separate as agreed with the CMA, pending completion of the CMA’s review.


Divido has raised $15m in a Series A funding round that includes participation from MasterCard and American Express Ventures.  http://tinyurl.com/yczek67u

The consumer finance platform will use the funds to drive global expansion. Currently available in the UK, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, the Nordics and the United States, plans are underway to expand to 10 more countries by the end of 2019.



Visa, Mastercard and several major banks have agreed to settle and resolve class claims in the multi-district interchange litigation.  Visa  http://tinyurl.com/ycc7de7a  MasterCard  http://tinyurl.com/y9jhs9af

The settlement is an amendment to the financial terms of the 2012 Class Settlement Agreement and sees the defendants agreeing an additional payment of totalling $900m.  The merchant class-action that seeks the revision of network rules is not covered by this settlement agreement. That action remains outstanding while the parties are engaged in settlement negotiations.



The FCA has opened a consultation into their amended Approach document to cover the final RTS and other EBA guidelines under PSD2.  http://tinyurl.com/yaal6rxy

‘We are consulting on new rules and guidance to implement the revised PSD2. We propose changes to reflect final regulatory technical standards on security and new fraud reporting requirements published by the EBA. We are also proposing new complaints reporting rules about authorised push payment (APP) fraud


STET has published version 1.4 of its PSD2 API.  http://tinyurl.com/ydgswczk

The latest version is compliant with the opinion that was published by the EBA.  Full documentation, examples and technical files are available at https://www.stet.eu/en/psd2/


The PSR has issued details of information notices sent to Visa and MasterCard in July regarding its monitoring of compliance of the prohibition on circumvention of the caps in Article 5 of the IFR.  http://tinyurl.com/ybdzm8cn

The result is that Visa and MasterCard must report in detail any issuers and acquirers circumventing the rules on interchange fee caps.  The scope of the information notices excludes interchange fees and payments that are outside the scope of the IFR. (The FCA issued a separate information notice to collect information on those payments.)



The ECB has published a report on the gap assessment of card payment schemes against the “Oversight framework for card payment schemes – standards”.  http://tinyurl.com/y8yhkvux

This Eurosystem report provides an overview of the gap assessments of 16 CPSs against the Eurosystem standards, covering 13 national CPSs2 and 3 international CPSs operating in the euro area.  The Eurosystem has concluded that of the 16 CPSs, 11 fully observe all oversight standards and the remaining 5 broadly observe the standards.


ECB – Mario Draghi: The benefits of European supervision.  http://tinyurl.com/yc99rkn7


Reuters is reporting that EC Competition is looking at Amazon’s use of merchant data. http://tinyurl.com/ydy5u3qt

The Regulator is concerned that Amazon is using data anticompetively as it both hosts the merchants on its site and at the same time competes with them.

Latest News Round-up

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New technology in banking

The latest ING International Survey indicates Europeans are wary of new technology in banking, despite a high demand.

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