Viewpoints

Visa’s Blog – Visa Viewpoints

PERSPECTIVES ON DIGITAL CURRENCY

Aug 31, 2010

U.S. Tourism on the Rise

As the global tourism industry continued to experience economic turbulence in 2009, spending on Visa cards by international visitors to the U.S. decreased by nearly 12 percent from $32.9 billion in 2008 to $28.9 billion in 2009. However, according to VisaVue data in the new 2010 Tourism Outlook: USA report, the trend reversed during the first half of 2010. The only exception to this is the Gulf Coast region, which has been overwhelmingly affected by the recent oil spill.

From January 1 – June 30, 2010, spending by international visitors to the U.S. on their Visa-branded payment cards was up 20 percent over 2009, with the largest contributions coming from Canada ($4.6 billion) and the United Kingdom ($1.2 billion).

While the oil spill began in April, its effect on tourism wasn’t seen until June according to new data released by Visa today in its Tourism Outlook: USA report. Inbound spending by international travelers on Visa cards was up in May 2010, compared to 2009. Just one month later, the effects of the spill began to reflect on the region’s tourism economy. From May 2010 to June 2010, the Gulf Region saw a significant 42 percent ($21.7 million) decline in spending by international Visa cardholders traveling to the United States.

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Posted by: Paul Wilke, Visa Corporate Relations on August 31, 2010 at 11:51 am

Aug 27, 2010

Financial literacy pays off

More and more prominent voices are joining the chorus for the need to improve the nation’s financial literacy levels. This week Brett Nelson posted a compelling piece on Forbes.com that details a painful litany of America’s money management shortcomings.

Brett ends his sobering post with a succinct cry of: “Help!”

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Posted by: Jason Alderman, Visa Corporate Relations on August 27, 2010 at 6:19 pm

Aug 26, 2010

Bringing the Benefits of Financial Inclusion to India

India is the world’s second-most populous country with more than 1.3 billion people, GDP growth of more than 7 percent and the world’s largest rail system that carries 6 billion passengers a year. Despite its growth, the government is eager to shift consumer spending from cash to electronic payment to accelerate growth, transparency and financial inclusion. In our recent trip to Mumbai as part of the Currency of Progress project, we found many encouraging signs of consumers and merchants embracing digital currency as a more secure, transparent and convenient alternative to cash.

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Posted by: Richard Martin, Visa Corporate Relations on August 26, 2010 at 6:03 pm

Aug 23, 2010

Postcard from the Inaugural Youth Olympic Games

We’ve arrived in Singapore for the Youth Olympic Games and as the events get underway you can feel the energy and excitement building! Singapore offers the perfect backdrop for the inaugural Youth Olympic Games and as we look forward to the next few weeks, we wanted to make sure you know what’s happening on the ground.

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Posted by: Nancy Panter, Visa Corporate Relations on August 23, 2010 at 4:47 pm

Aug 19, 2010

Counterpoint: Visa’s Argument for a Cashless Future

If you saw today’s article in The Wall Street Journal about how a handful of merchants are choosing not to accept credit and debit cards, you might have gotten the impression that merchants and consumers are looking to migrate back to cash payments. It will not come as a surprise that we have a different perspective.

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Posted by: Will Valentine, Visa Corporate Relations on August 19, 2010 at 6:38 pm

Aug 19, 2010

Visa Makes It Easier for Small Businesses to Connect, Learn and Grow

Achieving goals is the cornerstone of any successful small business. And for growing a business, learning the process of establishing and pursuing goals is the best place to start. The problem is, many small business owners don’t know where to begin, until now. Visa has just unveiled a feature called Business Goal Toolkits, just one of several enhancements to the Visa Business Network. With Business Goal Toolkits, small business owners can now find unique step-by-step guides to help them through the process of setting and achieving basic goals – like using social networking sites to promote their business and drive sales – or more complex milestones, such as developing marketing materials to reach new and existing customers.

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Posted by: Matt Flegal, Visa Corporate Relations on August 19, 2010 at 12:52 pm

Aug 18, 2010

Visa Helps Put Fraud Control in Cardholders’ Hands

Whether it is because of the recent recession or increased interest in financial literacy, consumers today are looking much more closely at their finances. To assist them, Visa has developed several tools to help our financial institution partners better serve, inform and protect their cardholders.

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Posted by: Erika White, Visa Corporate Relations on August 18, 2010 at 12:17 pm

Aug 12, 2010

Barron’s urges readers to give Visa credit

For those of you who may have missed it, this week’s Barron’s features a piece on Visa’s stock and future as a company. The story, “Visa to a Digital World” by Mark Veverka and its accompanying video, looks at what really sets Visa apart in the industry – our technological advantage at the center of the migration to electronic payments and our rapid international growth.  Mark also draws a line in the sand, noting that despite changes in the financial system and the passing of the Wall Street Financial Reform Bill, Visa is – and will remain – a strong company on which investors can depend.

Barron’s asserts that new regulations “won’t jeopardize the company’s leading role in paperless economy.”  As Visa CFO Byron Pollitt mirrors this sentiment and is quoted as saying, “We are a technology play…We are not a bank. We are not a financial-services company. We are a company based on innovation.” He also adds that regardless of what direction financial reform takes, the digital currency business is “a rock-solid concept.” Check out the video here:

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Posted by: Will Valentine, Visa Corporate Relations on August 12, 2010 at 3:17 pm

Aug 6, 2010

Migration Watch: Snack Machines Accept Plastic

Until just a few years ago, paying at vending machines evoked images of frustration – trying to stuff and flatten a frayed dollar bill into the dollar slot (only to have it ultimately rejected), scraping together nickels, dimes and quarters to try and pull together $1.00 for a root beer, or – the worst scenario – realizing that you have no cash or coins on you and that would have to go without the Snickers you were craving.  Luckily, for snackers across the country, according to the Wall Street Journal some of the nation’s largest vending-machine operators have begun to deploy payment card readers in machines that dispense candy bars, potato chips and soda pop.

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Posted by: Liz Nunan, Visa Corporate Relations on August 6, 2010 at 11:58 am

Aug 4, 2010

Has your Wallet Sprung a Leak?

The current issue of SELF Magazine is asking, “has your wallet sprung a leak?” The August issue reports on Visa’s survey examining how much cash U.S. consumers are losing track of – AKA mystery spending. The survey found that Americans lose an average of $21 per week in cash spending.

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Posted by: Kate Mulhearn, Visa Corporate Relations on August 4, 2010 at 4:52 pm