Magazine article American Banker

Discover Offering Teen Product with Parental Controls

Magazine article American Banker

Discover Offering Teen Product with Parental Controls

Article excerpt

Byline: Will Hernandez

Discover Financial Services is courting the family market with a prepaid card that enables parents to control and monitor teens' spending.

Customers want issuers to "provide tools, materials, and products that help me maintain control, better manage spending, and spend smarter," said Mike Boush, the Riverwoods, Ill., credit card company's vice president of marketing strategy and new initiatives.

The parental controls in the Current card, which Discover unveiled Tuesday, are "a key feature that is differentiating" from other prepaid cards, he said.

Discover has developed an online tool that lets parents specify when and where the cards can be used. They can set daily, weekly, or monthly spending limits and block certain merchant categories that they consider inappropriate. Parents also can limit automated teller machine transactions.

Cardholders pay a $5 monthly fee or a $50 annual fee and can make four free ATM withdrawals per card per month. Each additional withdrawal costs 50 cents. There are no reloading or inactivity fees, Mr. Boush said.

"A lot of the products that are out there that are designed to appeal to the prepaid customer have a lot of tiny nuisance fees," he said. "That's not the way we wanted to go with this."

Users can customize the appearance of their cards, and parents earn reward points if they use a Discover credit card to load funds on to the Current card.

Discover also is using its Web site to promote financial literacy for teens, Mr. …

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