Wednesday, March 9, 2011

First Data Releases February 2011 SpendTrend™

Despite Increasing Gas Prices, Card Spending Growth Up in February

ATLANTA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--First Data Corporation, a global leader in electronic commerce and payment processing, today released its First Data SpendTrend™ analysis for the full month of February 2011 compared to February 2010. SpendTrend tracks same-store consumer spending by credit, signature debit, PIN debit, EBT cards and checks at U.S. merchant locations.
“February was another good month for overall card spending, despite significant increases in gas prices”
Overall dollar volume growth increased 8.5% in February, up from January’s 7.4% growth, as many retailers reported sales that beat expectations. Consumers demonstrated a renewed faith in the economic recovery and the unemployment rate dropped to 8.9% in February.
Average ticket growth increased 0.1% in February, the second year-over-year increase in the past nine months. This increase, however, is exclusively due to rising gasoline prices, which were up 28% from last year. Excluding gasoline stations, average ticket values declined -0.2%.
In the travel industry, dollar volume growth was up 13.6% in February, the highest since May 2010. Average tickets spiked 6.3% compared to a modest 1.9% in January. The increased growth in both dollar volume and average ticket growth is due in part to rising fuel costs. Transaction growth at travel merchants was 6.9%, only a slight increase over January.
For the first time in over two years, credit dollar volume growth was higher than signature or PIN debit. Credit dollar volume growth was 9.9% in February and credit transaction growth was 6.7%, both 24-month highs.
“February was another good month for overall card spending, despite significant increases in gas prices,” said Silvio Tavares, senior vice president and division manager of First Data Information and Analytics Solutions. “Credit card sales grew substantially as consumers increasingly used their credit cards to pay instead of debit cards and checks.”
Feb. Transaction Growth
Feb. Dollar Volume Growth
Signature Debit+10.4%Signature Debit+8.7%
PIN Debit+6.7%PIN Debit+6.1%
Note: All transactions are same-store growth.
For more information on First Data SpendTrend, visit or call SpendTrend Customer Care at 800-430-0169. A supplementary podcast including further analysis of the SpendTrend February 2011 report is at
To participate in the SpendTrend conversation, please follow First Data at and join us at
Around the world, every second of every day, First Data makes payment transactions secure, fast and easy for merchants, financial institutions and their customers. First Data leverages its vast product portfolio and expertise to drive customer revenue and profitability. Whether the choice of payment is by debit or credit card, gift card, check or mobile phone, online or at the checkout counter, First Data takes every opportunity to go beyond the transaction.
First Data SpendTrend, a macro-economic indicator, is based on aggregate same-store sales activity in the First Data Point of Sale Network. First Data SpendTrend does not represent First Data’s financial performance.


First Data Corporation
Elizabeth Grice, 303-967-8526

MasterCard Worldwide Provides Advanced Global Fraud Prediction for Account Data Compromise Fraud

MasterCardImage via Wikipedia
MasterCard Helps Issuing Banks Neutralize Fraud Risk and Reduce Re-Issuance Expense on Accounts Exposed to Account Data Compromise Events
PURCHASE, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--MasterCard Worldwide is introducing the Expert Monitoring Compromised Account Service to issuing banks in every market throughout the world. This service represents the latest addition to MasterCard’s suite of Expert Monitoring Solutions which provide turnkey, next-generation fraud detection and prevention capabilities that help issuers reduce their fraud-related costs.
“We believe the Compromised Account Service represents the next generation in precise fraud prediction for issuing banks”
Account Data Compromise (ADC) events threaten issuing banks with potentially sizable fraud losses, substantial re-issuance expense and cardholder attrition. MasterCard research shows that accounts exposed to an Account Data Compromise event are nearly three times more prone to fraud than non-exposed accounts. According to a 2010 Javelin Strategy and Research study, cardholders who receive a new card account as a result of an Account Data Compromise event often abandon the card or use it much less frequently. As a result, accounts exposed to Account Data Compromise events represent a significant yet unpredictable source of loss for issuing banks.
MasterCard developed the Expert Monitoring Compromised Account Service to provide issuing banks with a comprehensive, real-time view of Account Data Compromise fraud risk during authorization with an ADC Threat Score that predicts the likelihood that fraud will occur on accounts exposed to Account Data Compromise events. Using state-of-the-art data modeling techniques and leading-edge computing technology, the ADC Threat Score is calculated by evaluating the:
  • transaction information for the exposed accounts,
  • merchants at which the cards transacted,
  • confirmed fraud on exposed accounts, and
  • behavior of similar accounts with common Account Data Compromise exposures.
Using this information, the ADC Threat Score predicts the probability of fraud over the coming 7 to 14 days—helping issuers to determine when, or if, to close the exposed account and re-issue a new account number to the cardholder.
“We believe the Compromised Account Service represents the next generation in precise fraud prediction for issuing banks,” said Wendy Murdock, Chief Payment System Integrity Officer, MasterCard Worldwide. “This is the first and only solution that provides a past, present and future view of Account Data Compromise fraud—leveraging intelligence from past Account Data Compromise events to prevent fraud on exposed accounts in the present during authorization and deliver a highly predictive future indication of fraud as a result of ADC exposure.”
The Compromised Account Service helps issuers more effectively assess the threat of fraud on accounts exposed to Account Data Compromise events to reduce their fraud losses, lower their re-issuance costs and minimize cardholder dissatisfaction. MasterCard analyzed a major U.S. issuing bank’s exposure to prior Account Data Compromise events as well as its transaction and fraud activity from April to September 2010. MasterCard identified significant fraud losses and re-issuance costs the bank would have avoided using the Compromised Account Service. The analysis revealed that by taking action on accounts with the highest ADC Threat Scores, the issuer would have prevented over 25 percent of the compromised account fraud by closing just 5 percent of the exposed accounts.
About MasterCard Expert Monitoring Solutions
With MasterCard’s full suite of fraud prevention and detection products and services, issuing banks benefit from:
  • A global and comprehensive view of fraud patterns and transaction trends
  • Precise network fraud models, as well as custom models based on the unique characteristics of specific portfolios, that deliver superior fraud transaction detection rates
  • Highly predictive fraud scores delivered in real-time on every transaction authorization request that traverses the MasterCard network
  • Scalability to score larger volumes of transactions in a highly targeted manner based on multiple account attributes
  • Low rate of fraud transaction false positives which helps issuers ensure cardholder satisfaction
  • Timely, predictive compromised account managemenwith an aggregated threat score across multiple compromise events for each account
  • A hosted solution that complements issuer fraud detection systems to reduce the total cost of ownership for predictive fraud modeling capabilities
For more information on MasterCard’s Expert Monitoring Solutions, please visit
About MasterCard Worldwide
As a leading global payments company, MasterCard Worldwide prides itself on being at the heart of commerce, helping to make life easier and more efficient for everyone, everywhere. MasterCard serves as a franchisor, processor and advisor to the payments industry, and makes commerce happen by providing a critical economic link among financial institutions, governments, businesses, merchants, and cardholders worldwide. In 2010, $2.7 trillion in gross dollar volume was generated on its products by consumers around the world. Powered by the MasterCard Worldwide Network – the fastest payment processing network in the world – MasterCard processes over 23 billion transactions each year and has the capacity to handle 140 million transactions per hour, with an average network response time of 140 milliseconds and with 99.99 percent reliability. MasterCard advances global commerce through its family of brands, including MasterCard®, Maestro®, and Cirrus®; its suite of core products such as credit, debit, and prepaid; and its innovative platforms and functionalities, such as MasterCard PayPass™ and MasterCard inControl™. MasterCard serves consumers, governments, and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. For more information, please visit us at Follow us on Twitter: @mastercardnews.


MasterCard Worldwide
Erica Harvill, 914-249-6848

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