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MasterCard Worldwide this month introduced Priceless Pointers, a suite of online financial-literacy tools made available on its Web site, which the company has been testing for several months as part of a broader worldwide financial-literacy push. The tools include online calculators, budgeting tips and spend-management charts. Animated videos are designed to promote responsible credit and debit card spending, help consumers plan for future purchases and pay down revolving-credit card balances. In one video, the company urges consumer to do "the emotional math" before making impulsive purchases, and it points out how ordering one small latte-style coffee drink daily can add up to $900 annually. MasterCard in October also introduced MasterCard Money Manager, an online tool enabling consumers to track and analyze their debit MasterCard spending; customers also can opt to add their credit spending to the program (CardLine, 10/15). MasterCard's initiative comes amidst a general surge of new online financial-literacy offerings from card networks and issuers in the wake of skyrocketing credit card charge-offs. Visa Inc. this year has enriched its online financial-education offerings, supplementing the financial-education videogame Financial Soccer, designed for a global audience, to its long-running Financial Football game on Visa's Practical Money Skills for Life Web site (CardLine, 9/23). American Express Co. in October introduced Money Manager, a free online service that enables its charge card customers to manage multiple bank accounts, credit cards, investment accounts, mortgages, car loans and student loans through a single Web site (CardLine, 10/15). Discover Financial Services late year introduced Spend Analyzer, a free online tool that tracks cardholders' spending on Discover cards (CardLine, 3/5). Patricia Preston, MasterCard senior vice president, debit product management and development, tells CardLine sister publication Cards&Payments that MasterCard has more online financial-literacy tools in development. "Consumers want more control over how they spend and save money, and we are offering them more tools that can be customized to help people reach their goals."

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