The Nilson Report

Issue 1165 | Dec 2019


Companies featured in this issue include:

Outstandings for the Top 150 Card Portfolios Worldwide—Inside vs. Outside the U.S.

U.S. General Purpose Cards through 3rd Quarter 2019

Canada Commercial Credit Card Issuers—Visa & Mastercard 2018

Canada Commercial Credit Cards by Type of Card 2018

Largest Debit Card Issuers by Purchase Volume & Country 2018

Investments & Acquisitions—October 2019

Largest Credit Card Portfolios Worldwide 2018

U.S. General Purpose Cards through 3rd Quarter 2019

Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and Discover purchase volume generated by cards issued in the U.S. from January 1 through September 30, 2019 are shown on page 7. Credit card only figures for the first 9 months of 2019 are shown below.

1. Visa Credit
$1,534.30 billion, +6.7%
2. Mastercard Credit
$665.78 billion, +12.5%
3. American Express Credit
$606.66 billion, +6.7%
4. Discover Credit
$107.30 billion, +5.1%

Full access to the General Purpose Cards through 3rd Quarter 2019 for the United States is available when you subscribe to The Nilson Report.



Cornercard’s Limited-Edition Biometric Card

Switzerland’s fourth largest credit card issuer, Cornercard, which is owned by Corner Banca, tested biometric fingerprint cards for six months this year. Cornercard has decided to provide the Gold Visa credit cards to 100 cardholders as a limited-edition specialty item. Cardholders pay a $300 (300 CHF) one-time membership fee. The annual fee after the first year will be $190 (190 CHF). 

The card, which is manufactured by Gemalto, uses a sensor module and software from Fingerprint Cards. 

Cornercard cardholders self-register their fingerprint on the card using a lightweight sleeve provided in a box with the card. Fingerprint data is encrypted and stored on a dedicated chip on the card. The data never leaves the card. 

A green light on the card confirms that the fingerprint has been captured. 

Using biometric authentication means cardholders do not need to use a PIN when paying in a store. 

The bank has identified 300,000 existing cardholders who don’t use any of the mobile payment apps available in Switzerland—Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Google Pay, Swatch Pay, Fitbit Pay, Garmin Pay, or Twint—as potential prospects for biometric cards. Corner Banca will decide in 2020 if and how it might offer biometric cards to that group. 

Cornercard biometric cards can initiate contactless transactions of any monetary value. The in-store limit with existing contactless card transactions in Switzerland is $40 (40 CHF). 

Gemalto also supplied the sleeves used for Corner Banca’s biometric card. 

Davide Rigamonti is Head of Cornercard in Lugano, Switzerland,,

© Copyright 2020 The Nilson Report

You have 2 free articles remaining. Subscribe today. View Subscription Offer
New subscribers receive over 130 articles in the 22 issues published each year,
plus the last five years of issues (that's over 1,200 articles) on a searchable flash drive.