STAGG Variables Sum Up Credit Attributes for Automated Decisions

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Merit Credit Engine software now makes it simple for developers to access the same underlying credit report variables that bureaus use in their scoring algorithms

Merit Credit Systems has announced that MCE, its Merit Credit Engine software, now offers full support for access to Standard Aggregation variables, also called STAGGs, Credit Characteristics or Model Data Attributes.

Each of the credit repositories (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion) make available a set of up to 400 summary data elements that can be requested along with the credit report text. These are the boiled-down essence of the credit report data, and are the same values as those used by the bureaus to calculate risk model scores such as the FICO or VantageScore. MCE processes these items and places them into database tables for easy access.

The Merit Credit Engine is used by banks, automobile dealers, background screeners, leasing companies, telecom and utility companies for high-volume, robust access to consumer credit information. MCE is most valued by companies that need to do in-depth analysis and specialized decisioning of credit data.

"A FICO score is a blunt instrument," says Dan Rollins, Merit's CTO. "A three-digit number can only give you a vague, general idea about a person's credit history. Our software lets lenders look beneath that number. They can get to the underlying information, and that helps them to make very informed credit-granting decisions."

For more than a decade, MCE software has included access to Profile Summary data from the credit reporting agencies, and it has been able to calculate additional Report Summary fields to further simplify scorecarding. The new support gives MCE users direct access the low-level variables as calculated by the bureaus for use in custom scoring algorithms.

Rather than getting bogged-down in credit bureau interface specifications, API’s, keywords and segment layouts, developers can use simple SQL queries. MCE handles data in the 880 and 890 segments for Experian STAGG Select, the DA segments for Equifax Decision Power Data Attributes, and the CH01 segment for TransUnion’s Credit Characteristics.

About Merit Credit Systems

Merit Credit Systems ( is a leading provider of enterprise-level credit report software, simplifying direct access to credit information from Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. Merit also provides developer tools for XML credit reports and three-bureau merge capabilities as options for its Merit Credit Engine software.


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Lewis Rosenfelder
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