What's New in Payments

Federal Reserve sets out its digital currency position

The digitalization of payments and currency: Some issues for consideration — The Federal Reserve — “Given the dollar’s important role, it is essential that we remain on the frontier of research and policy development regarding CBDC [Central Bank Digital Currency]. Like other central banks, we are conducting research and experimentation related to distributed ledger technologies and their potential use case for digital currencies, including the potential for a CBDC. We are collaborating with other central banks as we advance our understanding of central bank digital currencies.”



What's New in Payments

Visa to introduce variable interchange rates in the US

Visa is planning the biggest changes to swipe fees in a decade — Bloomberg — “The company’s interchange rates — fees charged every time a consumer uses a card — will go up or down depending on the merchant and the way a consumer pays for their purchases, according to a document Visa sent to banks that outlines the changes. Higher rates are looming for transactions on e-commerce sites, while retailers in certain services categories, such as real estate and education, will see fees decline.”



NFC World

Mercer University reports on iPhone NFC ID adoption

Mobile student ID coming soon to Android devices — The Cluster — “Eight months after the launch of a mobile Bear Card for Apple devices, associate vice president for auxiliary services Ken Boyer said the digital credential will become available for Android devices in the second quarter of 2020… Boyer said 3,198 students, faculty and staff have enabled the digital ID since. The Office of Auxiliary Services anticipates that 2,500 more users will sign up once the Android option is available.”




What's New in Payments

IBM patents self-aware cryptocurrency token

IBM awarded patent for ‘self-aware token’ — Coindesk — “The patent outlines a ledger-based payments system that could make it easier for individual users, businesses and governments to track and trace transactions made using a cryptocurrency. Dubbed the ‘self-aware token’, it is designed to record all transaction data when not being used on a payments platform IBM patented in 2012. When the token rejoins the platform ecosystem at a later stage, it automatically uploads data from any ‘off-line transactions’.”


Digital bank replaces interest rates with reward points

Texas Capital Bank launches all-digital Bask Bank, offering savers American Airlines AAdvantage miles — Texas Capital Bank — “Traditional savings accounts return pennies on the dollar. Bask Bank changes that by rewarding savers with miles, enhancing their saving potential and providing them with choice, value, and the opportunity to experience travel and more through the AAdvantage program. Bask Bank will also offer several ways to earn AAdvantage bonus miles, including an account opening bonus of 5,000 AAdvantage miles, a feedback bonus and a variety of balance bonuses.”


What's New in Payments

Mastercard rolls out Cash Pick-Up service that lets anyone send cash to ATMs

Mastercard wants to give you fast access to cash — using only your cell phone — CNBC — “Consumers can withdraw money sent by friends and family, get cash in emergency situations (in the event of a lost bank card, for example), and redeem rebates or other cash rewards that corporations have historically sent via mail… Users receive a text message with an order amount, secret code and link showing the nearest ATM from which they can withdraw money — up to US$500 per order and $3,000 a day.”