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The difficult economy continues to impact Heartland Payment Systems Inc., which attributes its second-quarter net loss of $2.6 million in part to a decline in same-store sales, weak client growth and slightly lower transaction-processing volume. The Princeton, N.J.-based processor posted net income of $11.5 million for the same period ended June 30 a year ago. Net revenue for the quarter this year totaled $106.6 million, an increase of 14.1% from $93.4 million a year ago. Same-store sales declined 9.7%, the largest such decline in Heartland's 12-year history. Small and midsize merchant transaction-processing volume declined 0.6%, to $15.2 billion from roughly $15.3 billion, according to Heartland. The number of new merchant clients decreased 17.6% compared with the same quarter last year. "Economic weakness is continuing to pressure small and midsized merchants, limiting the growth of processing volume and reducing the level of new margin installed," Robert Carr, Heartland chairman and CEO, said in a statement. The processor also continues to deal with the financial fallout from the 2008 data breach of its system. Costs related to the breach totaled $19.4 million for the quarter. The majority of the charges relate to a settlement offer Heartland made to the card brands for fines related to the breach they imposed on the processor. Legal fees also are included in the breach-related cost, according to Heartland.

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