Debit Card Customers have been Reissued EMV Chip Cards

emvcards-blog

All current Merchants Bank MasterCard Debit Cards have been reissued as EMV Chip MasterCard Debit Cards. Cards were mailed the last week of October and first week of November. You are encouraged to activate and use your new card(s) by the end of November. All existing (non-chip debit cards) will be deactivated as of December 1.

Why the change to chip technology? With this change, you’ll be able to take advantage of the security features of EMV chip technology, which can help prevent fraudulent transactions.

What is an EMV chip card?
The term “EMV” stands for Europay, MasterCard and Visa – the original developers of chip cards. These cards increase the security of in-person transactions by generating a one-time use code that can only be read by a register enabled to read chip cards. The code is created from the small chip on the front of your card and is hard to counterfeit, which prevents fraud.

Is paying with a chip card different from paying with my other cards?
Yes, making a payment with a chip card is slightly different than the card transactions you are used to. Instead of swiping your card at the register, you’ll simply follow these instructions:

Step 1: Insert the chip end of your card into the terminal with the chip facing up.

emvstep1

Step 2: Keep the card in the terminal during the transaction and follow the prompts on the screen.

emvstep2

Step 3: Take your card when prompted. It’s that easy!

emvstep3

Do all stores accept EMV chip cards?
Not yet, but the trend is growing. You can still make a purchase at a store that does not yet accept chip cards by simply swiping to pay.

What happens if I swipe my EMV chip card instead of inserting it into the register?
The terminal will display a message asking you to insert your card instead.

If I don’t have a Merchants Bank Debit Card, how can I request a debit card with chip technology?
Just send us an email to let us know you’re interested. If you’d like to learn more about EMV chip technology, contact the Customer Service Representative at your local Merchants Bank.

If you are a business and would like to accept EMV cards, contact our Credit Card department.

What You Need to Know: Same Day ACH

samedayach-blog

A new ruling by the association that governs electronic payments (NACHA) will require all financial institutions to accept and process certain transactions, called ACH (Automated Clearing House) payments, from businesses same-day. This service is also referred to as Same Day ACH.

While there are many components to Same Day ACH, let’s start with the basics.

What is Same Day ACH?
Same Day ACH is an optional payment method for businesses where payments sent “today” may be received and credited “today.” These payments:

  • Can be sent to any bank account in the United States, including personal accounts.
  • Cannot equal more than $25,000 per transaction.
  • Only include credits.

The Same Day ACH ruling was effective September 23, 2016.

How does Same Day ACH affect my business?
You may also notice Same Day ACH payments may be credited to your accounts more quickly, increasing your funds availability and cash flow opportunities. Plus, payments and payment-related information may flow more rapidly from bank to bank.

In addition to these benefits, Same Day ACH could also impact:

  • Your accounting system
  • Intra-day settlement
  • Trading partner agreements

It’s important to review and prepare these areas of your business for the upcoming Same Day ACH changes.

If your business would like more information on Same Day ACH, contact one of our Cash Management Specialists.

September Events

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9/15: La Crescent Applefest Open House
During regular business hours
At Merchants Bank in La Crescent

Merchants Bank staff will be serving locally-grown apples, apple cookies and coffee in the bank lobby.

9/16: Spring Grove Windshield Washing Fundraiser
2:00-6:00 p.m.

At Merchants Bank in Spring Grove

Join Merchants Bank for a Window Washing Fundraiser to support the Spring Grove Ambulance! Merchants will donate $5 for every car windshield washed from 2-5 p.m. Visit the Merchants drive-thru in Spring Grove for your FREE window washing and help support a great cause!

9/16: Cannon Falls Customer Picnic
11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
At Merchants Bank in Cannon Falls

Our staff will be grilling hot dogs and serving refreshments in the Bank parking lot.

9/16: Apple Valley Customer Appreciation & One Year Anniversary
9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
At Merchants Bank in Apple Valley

Celebrate the One Year Anniversary of our move to Glazier Avenue. In our lobby, staff will be serving breakfast from 9:00-11:30 a.m. and lunch from 11:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

9/18: Applefest Parade
1:00 p.m.
At Elm & Main Streets in La Crescent, MN

Merchant Bank staff will be collecting food and cash donations during the parade. Please consider supporting the La Crescent Food Share Program with a donation.

9/21: Winona Economic Summit
7:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Tau Center – Winona State University West Campus

Join several speakers, including Phil Gwoke from BridgeWorks and Doug Loon from the Minnesota Chamber, for a morning focusing on the theme of Future Growth Demands Response to Workforce.

9/23: Bomber Spirit Night
5:00-6:30 p.m.
At John Burch Park in Cannon Falls

The Cannon Falls Education Foundation invites you to Bomber Spirit Night. Enjoy a spirit night event prior to the football game vs. the La Crescent Lancers. Food, games, and more!

9/30: Battle for the Apple Football Game
7:00 p.m.
At Eastview High School

Join our staff for the city’s high school rivalry football game.

9/30: Lakeville North vs. South Football Game
7:00 p.m.
At Lakeville South High School

Join our staff for the city’s high school rivalry football game. Stop by our tailgate party where we’ll be serving food with all the proceeds going to local high

EMV Chip Debit Cards Coming Soon

emvcards-blog

All current Merchants Bank MasterCard Debit Cards will be replaced with an EMV Chip MasterCard Debit Card with an anticipated rollout of November. With this change, you’ll be able to take advantage of the security features of EMV chip technology, which can help prevent fraudulent transactions.

What is an EMV chip card?
The term “EMV” stands for Europay, MasterCard and Visa – the original developers of chip cards. These cards increase the security of in-person transactions by generating a one-time use code that can only be read by a register enabled to read chip cards. The code is created from the small chip on the front of your card and is hard to counterfeit, which prevents fraud.

Is paying with a chip card different from paying with my other cards?
Yes, making a payment with a chip card is slightly different than the card transactions you are used to. Instead of swiping your card at the register, you’ll simply follow these instructions:

Step 1: Insert the chip end of your card into the terminal with the chip facing up.

emvstep1

Step 2: Keep the card in the terminal during the transaction and follow the prompts on the screen.

emvstep2

Step 3: Take your card when prompted. It’s that easy!

emvstep3

Do all stores accept EMV chip cards?
Not yet, but the trend is growing. You can still make a purchase at a store that does not yet accept chip cards by simply swiping to pay.

What happens if I swipe my EMV chip card instead of inserting it into the register?
The terminal will display a message asking you to insert your card instead.

If I don’t have a Merchants Bank Debit Card, how can I request a debit card with chip technology?
Just send us an email to let us know you’re interested. If you’d like to learn more about EMV chip technology, contact the Customer Service Representative at your local Merchants Bank.

If you are a business and would like to accept EMV cards, contact our Credit Card department.

Are Your Kids Prepared for College?

backtoschool-blog

An estimated 20.4 million students returned to a college campus around the United States this fall.* As your student heads off to school, give them a crash course in Money 101. Merchants Bank has a number of options to help ease your student into financial freedom including checking and savings accounts, Online and Mobile Banking and more.

First, make a plan. Discussing college costs with your child is a must. Help him or her understand all school-related expenses – tuition, books, housing, gas (if he or she will have a car on campus), food, and much more – and which costs you or your child is responsible for. If your child received financial aid, how will that affect paying for college? Explaining the basics and setting expectations up front will make future money discussions easier. Of course, don’t forget to explain what a budget is and set one.

…and stick to it. Maintaining a budget is a skill your child will need to learn. What tools can you use to help him or her stay on track? With Merchants’ Free Checking, students have free access to Online and Mobile Banking to track account activity 24/7. In addition, using a feature such as Manage My Money through Online Banking, can help students understand how they spend their money, set alerts when accounts hit a certain balance and much more.

Talk about banking options. Giving your child an overview on the types of banking accounts, services and cards is a good place to start. Most students will need a checking account, so review basic account features and potential fees (overdraft, ATM and otherwise). A Merchants Bank Customer Service Representative at your local branch is a good resource for this conversation. If your student will be living away from home, discuss how they can review their accounts online or on their smartphone and where they can take out cash when they need it. Merchants Bank offers fee-free ATM service at all of our locations, as well as Kwik Trip and Kwik Star locations in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Iowa.

For more information about specific accounts and services, click on the appropriate link below or contact your local branch.

*http://nces.ed.gov/pubs2008/2008060.pdf