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HOUSTON, Texas – Credit unions and banks that process their signature debit transactions through the PULSE EFT network will soon be able to offer their MasterCard signature debit cardholders SignaturePoints, a benefits and rewards program for their card use. “The use of signature debit to make purchases is growing at a remarkable rate and PULSE expects this new incentive program to increase the popularity of this convenient payment method,” said Cindy Ballard, PULSE executive vice president. About 1,000 credit unions are members of PULSE, Ballard said. It was unclear precisely how many of them process their signature debit transactions with the network and would hence be eligible for the program. Ballard said that the new PULSE program will particularly offer small and mid-sized financial institutions, like many credit unions, an opportunity to add a “full fledged” rewards program to their signature debit cards. Program participants will be able to check their accounts online and see what products and services their points will bring, Ballard said. “MasterCard is pleased to join with PULSE to offer this exciting new program to its member financial institutions and their cardholders,” said Bill Mathias senior vice president for member relations for MasterCard. The $286 million Austin Metropolitan Financial Credit Union, based in Austin Texas, is the first financial institution to participate in a test of the new program. “By offering the enhancement of a debit card points reward program, there are several benefits to the credit union,” said Larry Strong, CEO of Austin Metropolitan. “We anticipate increased card usage by our members and we expect to increase the number of members who will begin using a debit card. In addition, we look forward to increased member loyalty as member reap the rewards of point redemption. We are most excited about the added value will bring to our members through this partnership with PULSE EFT Association and MasterCard,” Strong said. [email protected]

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