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ATM deserts
Link is reducing the number of cuts to fees banks pay to independent ATM operators in the U.K., a controversial policy that will impact consumers' access to cash.

Instead of a 5% cut each year until 2021, a fee reduction for January 2020 has been cancelled and another for January 2021 is under review. The reduction for June 2019 will go on as scheduled, reports The Guardian. The first cut took place on July 1. The fee reductions are expected to save banks millions of dollars.

Consumer groups protested the fees, saying the cuts would cause the operators to remove ATMs from the field, resulting in "ATM deserts." But usage at ATMs has also been declining, causing Link to rethink its policy, reports Finextra.

IMAGE: Getty Images

Empire State of mind
BitPay has made some progress as a blockchain payments gateway, and has gotten a regulatory boost that should help its growth.

The New York Department of Financial Services has granted a virtual currency license to BitPay, allowing businesses to use BitPay to accept bitcoin and bitcoin cash for purchases.

The department's nod means BitPay has passed tests in anti-money laundering, know your customer, capitalization and cybersecurity programs.

Can blockchain build a better receipt?
Mastercard and Walmart have both applied for patents related to using blockchain for payments, and American Express has followed suit with an application that covers proof of payment.

American Express' application is designed to broaden the layers for evidence of a successful payment between a consumer and merchant beyond a receipt.

That could include a "key" that results from a customer registering with a merchant and an encrypted record that is written to a blockchain.

Crypto payments push a button
Merchant services company Payroc and cryptocurrency platform Ethos.io PTE are collaborating to form a cryptocurrency merchant processing service.

The combined platform will support a "Pay with Crypto" button that will reside on merchant websites, giving consumers the option to pay with cryptocurrency and traditional money.

The partnership will facilitate consumer-to-merchant crypto payments including bitcoin, ethereum, bitcoin cash, Ethos' own token and other alternative currencies.

From the Web

Bitcoin extends gains as BlackRock looks into crypto and blockchain
CNBC | Mon July 16, 2018 - Bitcoin continued to edge higher on Tuesday, extending gains made on the previous day on news that asset-management giant BlackRock has set up a working group to look into cryptocurrencies and blockchain, the technology that underpins them.

STB, Alipay team up to draw more Chinese tourists
The Straits Times | Tue July 17, 2018 - The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) and online payment service Alipay will launch a campaign next month to attract more Chinese tourists to Singapore. Under the Singapore Passion Ambassador campaign, a group of Chinese "ambassadors" will be selected from a pool of high-tier Alipay members and sponsored to experience one of three itineraries to explore unique attractions, food and retail outlets, all of which are Alipay merchants.

UOB to support Singapore's launch of Razer Pay in 'next few months'
The Business Times | Tue July 17, 2018 - United Overseas Bank (UOB) will support the Singapore launch of Razer Pay (Razer Pay Singapore), the e-wallet app designed for youths and millennials by gaming company Razer. As part of what is an exclusive partnership with Razer, UOB will provide a suite of payment and cash management solutions for Razer Pay Singapore.

More from PaymentsSource

Australia holds back from open payments — for now
Under the Australian government’s direction, the country is implementing an open banking plan to allow consumers to share their banking data with other providers. However, Australia isn’t implementing open payments services such as payments initiation by non-banks from consumers’ bank accounts, in contrast to the U.K. and the EU’s implementation of open payments through PSD2.

Paysafe brings installment payments to North America's heated e-commerce market
Paysafe Group will launch an in-store and online installment payment service to serve a growing appetite it sees in the U.S. and Canada.

Amazon Prime Day stumbles with outages, worker strikes
Amazon's site suffered outages and a warehouse strike at start of Amazon Prime Day, issues that could cost the company millions in revenue, even if they are short lived.

Does a mobile-centric society undermine PSD2?
Overreliance on the smartphone risks mistaking device authentication for user authentication.

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