Thursday, December 07, 2006

Utilities Warming Up to Plastic

The Wall Street Journal:

The payment-card industry is charging into one of the last bastions of consumer business that has been slow to accept plastic: utilities.

In the past year, a number of large natural-gas and electric providers have begun allowing residential customers to pay their bills with credit and debit cards. Utilities are dropping their longstanding opposition to plastic as new competition looms in states that have deregulated the former monopolies. To help hang on to customers, the utility industry is searching for ways to make bill-paying faster and easier.