Competition in the US mobile payments service arena is set to intensify later this year when the Merchant Content Exchange (MCX) launches its CurrentC platform, which is backed by several major American retailers.
Reports suggest that Microsoft is also preparing to join other mobile payments players to counter Apple Pay and Google’s Android-based payments service.
Details are still sketchy about the CurrentC service, but it is expected to merge payments and loyalty benefits and will give retailers further insight into the spending habits of customers who are members. Less is known about the benefits it may offer consumers.
A small-scale trial got underway last year and CurrentC is currently being tested in several undisclosed markets around the US, although its use is restricted to employees of member retailers, which include Walmart, 7-Eleven, Dunkin Donuts, Sears, Best Buy, Exxon Mobil and Gap.
CurrentC’s profile was raised last October last year when pharmacy chains CVS and Rite Aid, both MCX members, stopped accepting Apple Pay a week after it launched. At the time it was widely regarded as a bid to block the rival service while CurrentC was getting off the ground.
Data from Swift’s latest RMB tracker shows exceptional growth in RMB adoption in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), witnessing a 210.8% growth in payments value of the currency since August 2014, albeit from a low base.
SWIFT has announced that it has successfully completed the first phase of the global payments innovation (GPI) initiative pilot, clearing the way for the go-live of the service in early 2017.
A recent Gallup poll found that respondents identified the 'economy in general' as their biggest concern.
Sentiment in the financial services sector deteriorated in the three months to September, as firms digested the challenges of lower interest rates and the uncertainty caused by the vote to leave the European Union (EU), according to the latest CBI/PwC Financial Services Survey.