Business Predictions for 2013: Future for Fiscal Cliff, Credit Cards, Mobile Wallet


Which Financial Services Will Become More Transparent?

Probably checking accounts and prepaid cards.

"Transparency was a major issue in the credit card market prior to and during the Great Recession, but the CARD Act eliminated many of the ills that pervaded the space, including arbitrary interest rate re-pricing, unfair payment allocation and double-cycle billing," he says. "It's now the rest of personal finance's turn. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has put credit bureaus and debt collectors under the microscope already, and you can count on prepaid cards and checking accounts getting some attention in the near future."

Check Cashing Stores: Extinct?

Ones that keep charging high fees will risk becoming so.

"Anyone familiar with check cashing stores knows how costly they tend to be," he says. "Historically, unbanked consumers had to grin and bear it with high fees because that was the price of having no other options when it came to collecting a paycheck."

Now, however, a number of low-cost prepaid cards enable consumers to load checks directly using ATMs or mobile banking applications, thereby letting consumers bypass high-fee cashing services.

That's bad news, Papadimitriou says, for companies like ACE Cash Express.

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