What We’re Reading

Below are interesting stories the Banking.com staff has been reading over the past week. What have you been reading? Let us know in the comments section below.

  • The Crisis’ Effect on the Banking Business Model

American Banker

More than two years have passed since the eye of the financial storm hit, and banks are not yet done picking through the debris, trying to determine what about their business models is salvageable and what needs to be replaced. A muddled outlook on the economy and extraordinary intervention by the federal government in the capital markets have made the task of figuring out “the new normal” all the more difficult, according to three analysts who participated in an American Banker roundtable in May in New York. Banks have the political capital to fight for incentives to bring private investors back into the housing market, the analysts said. The problem is banks are too busy dealing with all the foreclosed properties on their books to consider how to get private investors involved.

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  • PNC Rolls Out Check Capture to Main Base

American Banker

PNC Financial Services Group Inc. is rolling out mobile check capture to its main customer base after a successful initial rollout with customers of its online-centric Virtual Wallet account. PNC formally announced the expansion Tuesday, though the update to its iPhone app went live last week. The technology allows customers to deposit endorsed checks by photographing them with a mobile phone’s camera. The app, developed by mFoundry Inc., also works on Apple Inc.’s iPod Touch and iPad 2 devices, which have built-in cameras. Its Virtual Wallet account, launched in 2008, was designed for consumers who conduct most of their banking interactions online and thus have less reliance on branches.

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  • New P2P Payments Network clearXchange Receives A Warm Welcome From Would-Be Competitors

Bank Systems & Technology

Early response to clearXchange, announced this week by Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo, indicates vendors in the space see the bank-owned person-to-person electronic payments network as validation of a growing market.  “It is not only an endorsement for the personal payments category as a whole, but it also validates the financial institution-centric approach that Fiserv believes is best for these types of payments,” says Tony Catalfano, division president, Electronic Payments, Fiserv.  Fiserv’s ZashPay payment service is used by more than 700 financial institutions.

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  • Consumers need to learn ways to curb fees as new debit card swipe fees loom ; The savings game

Boston Globe

As part of the financial reform package passed last year, Congress agreed to limit the “swipe fees” that merchants must pay to banks when you use your debit card. The new rules, which are scheduled to go into effect July 21, would cap debit fees to the actual cost of the transaction, about 12 cents. There’s a lot of money on the table here: $16 billion a year in extra revenue for banks. Even if some of the savings are passed on to consumers, businesses stand to take home billions in extra profits.

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  • Future of Mobile Banking: Paying with Your Cell Phone

CBS MoneyWatch

Clerks will soon need to offer you a third choice in addition to “credit or debit”: cell phone. Google on Thursday is expected to roll out a trial program to allow shoppers to use phones as electronic wallets, taking us closer to a future in which you can leave your plastic and cash at home and instead pick up milk at the grocery, get on the subway, or buy baseball tickets through a simple tap of your BlackBerry or Android. Your PC could be tied to your phone, too, so buying items online could be accomplished with another simple tap, with no need to remember countless site log-ins and passwords. And merchants could use the system to communicate with you as well, sending receipts and custom offers based on your shopping history directly to your phone.

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  • Associated Credit Union Offers Integrated Web Presence

Credit Union Times

Amy Baker was a little alarmed recently when she logged onto her familiar online banking website, and it didn’t look so familiar anymore.”I panicked for a moment, actually,” the Atlanta attorney said. But the panic turned to pleasure when she realized her recent transactions weren’t missing but instead were now on the new site she was directed to by Associated Credit Union. The $1.2 billion suburban Norcross CU is an early adopter of the revamped online presence just rolled out by Intuit Financial Services, which has been providing Internet banking services to Associated beginning in 2000 as Digital Insight. “Our members have just embraced this new page phenomenally,” Anderson said.

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  • Google Wallet Won`t Succeed: 10 Reasons Why


Google has finally unveiled the long-awaited Google Wallet, a service that allows users to pay for purchases with an Android-based smartphone. The offering effectively turns the smartphone into a wallet, thanks to near-field communication technology. With the launch, Google ostensibly believes that the days of swiping credit cards are coming to an end. Going forward, wirelessly connected people around the globe will rely upon their smartphones and nothing else to quickly and efficiently pay for products.

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  • Fees, Gen Y’s and Cynics: What Makes People Choose Large Banks, Community Banks and Credit Unions.

Javelin Strategy & Research Blog

A recent Javelin study of 5,494 consumers found one-third of Chase or Wells Fargo customers paying a debit card overdraft fee in the last year, while under one quarter of PNC customers reported the same. Compare that to just under one in five for CB customers or one in six credit union members. Hold on before you conclude that upper mid-market banks are somewhere between a large and small FI in their overdraft fee collections though. Gen Y’s have profoundly different technology desires than their older counterparts. With credit cards giving way to debit and other channels going mobile, young people are leading the way to the future of financial services.

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Written by Banking.com Staff