r/wallstreetbets - Credit Card Processing -- indicator for Consumers Spending

Credit Card Processing — indicator for Consumers Spending : wallstreetbets

This will be the first and last time I post.

Why first ? I’m posting because I’ve seen some retarded DD on here last 2 days that would offend retarded people.

Why Last ? I got better things to do.

My credentials ? Insider in this space for over 10 years. ( excuse the grammars. English is my fourth language).

This is a very dumbed down version as I can’t very well write 100 pages on wsb post. There are books, seminars, certifications on this stuffs.

Credit Card processing is very important as it’s a key indicator for consumers spending. Scroll down for Puts/Calls.

Parties Involved to make it work ?

1.) Consumer — end user. Credit Card holder.

2.) Merchant — Business establishment accepting payment. These guys pay out all the fees

3.) Card Brand —- Visa, Mastercard, Discover (Diner Club, Union Pay), American Express,

4.) Sponsoring Bank — handles risks, daily balancing, funding the merchant.

5.) Issuing Bank — Issue the credit card. If your credit card say “ Chase”, then Chase is the issuing bank.

6.) Processor — transactions run through these guys. Think of them as a highway to run and verify transactions

7.) ISO — Independent sales office. These guys are the one who call business to sign them up with “ use my company

for cheaper rates”

How does each Parties make money ?

1.) Consumer — they don’t anything as they are the purchaser.

2.) Merchant — they pay out all the fees. At the end of the month, they get a bill for the privilege of being able to accept credit card.

3.) Card Brand — Card Brand is pretty much god. They make about 15% of total fees paid out to merchant. Look up FANF, dues & assessments. If Visa need money, they just increase their rates, that’s it. More on this later.

4.) Sponsoring Bank — these guys make the least out of everyone in the group. About 0.01% -0.03% ( 1 to 3 BP) of total processing volume.

5.) Issuing bank — “interchange” is paid out to the issuing bank. These fees account for about 75% of all total fees. Card Brand dictate interchange. I’m not going to go into qualifications, etc….. Interchange rates is publish for each card brand. Look it up.

6.) Processor — these guys usually make money on per transaction counts. About $0.02 -$0.05 per transaction and bunch of other misc fees.

Read about:   670 Credit Score (+ The #1 Way To Improve It)

7.) ISO — whatever is left over goes to the sales group. In a normal business niche ( not high risk or CBD/ cannabis), profit is about 0.30% – 0.50% of total processing volume.

Profit Math

Merchant’s fee – ( issuing bank + card brand ) = ISO’ Gross – ( Processor + Sponsoring Bank) = ISO’s Net.


Always have 2 parts.

a.) Percentage multiply by the processing volume.

b.) Fix charge multiply by the transaction.

What if you as a sales office charged merchant 2.75% ( SQUARE) and nothing else? you would net negative on any transactions under $10 and net positive on any transaction over $40.00

Why ? because interchange for a signature regulated debit is 0.05%+ $0.22( per transaction) not including all the other costs.

State of the world.

All 50 states have stay-at-home orders. Some states are talking about opening up again ( GA, FL). Guess what ? it’s the Consumers who’s going to decide when to “open” up. Household spending account for 70% of annual GDP.

The rest of the world is on lock down. Even after opening up, it’s still bad.


Great…… Give me puts or calls……………..

1.) Card Brand —-

a. Visa ( V) — earning is on 04/30. They are the god in this business. They have the greatest exposure in US and overseas. There is no place in asia or Europe that does not take Visa. They increase their rates twice a year. Rate increases scheduled for this April was pushed back to July. Their earnings will be absolutely horrible as the rest of the world started shutting down in Feb and US in march.

i. Waiting to be fill — V 01 May $160P

ii. Waiting to be fill — V 19 June $135P

b. Mastercard — earning is on 04/29 — They have the second highest processing in US. Also like Visa. If you are playing earning, any puts within 5% will be good.

c. Discover ( DFS) (Diner Club, Union Pay) — Earning 4/22 — I had 15 X $2.72 01 May $34C going into earning. CALLS?? WTF?? 1.) they announced dividends right before earnings. 2.) They own debit networks. Think grocery stores, liquor stores, cannabis shops. 3.) Dinner club, union pay, paypal all goes through them to process on a traditional level.

Read about:   Are the Feds liabilities their assets? : wallstreetbets


Q1 GAAP EPS of -$0.25 misses by $1.61.

Revenue of $2.89B (+4.7% Y/Y) beats by $10M.

Shares -5.3% AH.

Going to exit my position at open with probably 40% losses.

This is good, if DFS missed by bad, the rest will be way way worst.

d. American Express ( AXP) — rich people’s credit card.

2.) Sponsoring Bank —

a. FITB — 4/21 — missed earning. Went down on 4/21 then went back up.


3.) Issuing Bank — I would not touch issuing bank as they are too diversified.

a. Chase

b. Bank of America

4.) Processor — do your own research.

a. Global Payments

b. Fiserv


SQ ( Square) — earning 05/06. I did not talked about Payment facilitator. Which is kinda of what they are. Here was a post on here “ Square InC, SQ Puts—let’s be rational. Right direction but wrong DD.

Square is all domestic and make their money primary from

1.) Credit Card processing — they will give merchant, 2.75% or $275 total fees. Their credit card processing is net negative since inception. The reason is because of their client base ( mom and pop, start up, small transactions type businesses). 2.75% is a good percentage on volume but the $0.00 per swipe is killing them by the time they have to pay out interchanges and dues assessments. Their average ticket have to be over $25.00 to be profit. But the business model will not allow it. Small mom and pop go to them because lax underwriting, and it’s a lot easier vs a traditional model. Most of their merchants is under 10k in processing.

2.) Hardware sales — very minimal 1 time revenue

3.) SAS ( Service as a subscription) — Minimal revenue when comparing to credit card processing. They are also waiving all the software subscription fees for the month of April.

4.) Others…………


1.) In fintech, you don’t need to be making money. You can have years of losses and stock will go up. Why ? because it’s about acquiring a large merchant base.

2.) Jack Dorsey — yes the Twitter guy. He’s the founder and ceo of Square. He’s the Elon Musk of this space. And you don’t mess with papa Elon.

Read about:   Your Credit score Rating May Have an effect on Your Life

3.) SQ is APPROVED to make Emergency Small-Business Coronavirus loans. https://www.nasdaq.com/articles/heres-why-paypal-and-square-are-rising-today-2020-04-22

The exposure they get from this is HUGGGGEEEEEEEE.

Ask yourself, does bad earnings = STONK go down ????????

GO with VISA puts, a lot safer.

Shouts out to:

u/howgreatareyourdanes — great post on “ Mortgage Servicing”

u/carbonEmitter — great insight into “ Oil to crash again”

u/Variation-Separate — great insight into the Macro market.

Updates @ 11:46 EST. Look at DFS earnings. look at FITB ( Fifth Third) earnings. Why Fifth Third ? They own NPC/ Vantiv now part of WordPay. They are a big player on the sponsoring bank side. From their horrible earnings till now, look at how much and how fast it bounced.


Updates @ 3:14 EST. AXP: 1 May 20 $81P. entered 13 X $2.73.

AXP : Still waiting to be filled 30 X $2.70 —

V May 1 $160P . entered 10x $2.88.

V : Still waiting to be filled 50 x $2.75

Updates : April 24 @ 9:32AM

Since Everyone keep talking about AXP in comment, I’ll write an update.

15 down revisions vs 1 up revisions last 3 months. Consensus EPS for Dec 2020 ending YoY Growth is -23.16%. BUT…….. Consensus Revenue Revision for Dec 202 ending YoY Growth is

-1.84. See Link 1

Let’s look at today’s earning.

Q1 Adj.EPS — $1.98 beats $ 1.43 estimate . BEAT by 38.46%. this is only a 1.49% decrease over earnings of 2.01 per share from the same period last year. Well, no shit. They only did 15 down revisions last 3 months.

Sales: $10.31B miss $10.65 Estimate. MISSED by 3.19%. This is a 0.52% decrease over sales of $10.364 billion the same period last year. Keep in mind US only started “stay-at-home” in march. Their Jan and Feb was still good.

Net Income: They posted a 76% drop in quarterly profit and set aside 1.7B for potential non-payments. See link 2. Net income fell to $367million ( 0.41 per share) compared to 1.55Billion or $1.80 share a year earlier.

Link 1 : https://seekingalpha.com/symbol/AXP/earnings

Link 2: https://finance.yahoo.com/news/amex-quarterly-profit-plunges-76-110648153.html



Their next quarter will absolutely be f****ked…………..

I have a small position on 1 may 20 $81P. my original did not touch AXP. This is only to responds to the comments below about AXP. Adding more puts with 3 months out.

updates. DONE WITH AXP;