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SAN ANTONIO – An executive with MasterCard has predicted that still more changes are afoot in how Americans pay for goods and services, and he urged credit unions to become proactive about facing them. Rick Lyons, a senior vice president with MasterCard, told roughly 90 credit card executives attending TNB Card Services Executive Conference that debit and credit cards will account for 50% of all payment transactions by 2010. Lyons, whose responsibilities include MasterCard’s debit products, put the growth in the context of overall change in the payments industry. “There is plenty of opportunity for a continuing shift in the preferences and payment habits of consumers,” Lyons said. Reflecting that evolution is the way consumers perceive their usage of credit or debit cards based on what they buy, Lyons said. Generally, he noted, consumers buy durable things with credit cards and consumables with debit cards. “Recurring payments are doing a lot to change how we pay for things like utilities, health clubs, cable TV, and insurance. The highest-growth categories in debit cards are in these recurring payment categories. This is good, because once your members set up these recurring payments, the hassle of moving them makes for a `sticky’ application for debit and for your institution,” Lyons said.

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