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Google will launch electronic payment services later this year going head-to-head with PayPal which, thanks partly to help from eBay, is currently leading the field.

Google's Wallet service has no official confirmation but has been blamed for a two per cent fall in eBay's share price this morning - eBay owns PayPal. A spokeswoman at Google UK was unable to comment at press time.

The New York Times spoke to a leading online merchant, who insisted on anonymity, who told the paper he'd been appraoched by Google about the new service.

The paper also quoted Scot Wingo, chief exec of ChannelAdvisor, a consultancy for etailers, who said he had heard about the service from clients. A spokeswoman for PayPal told the NYT that she'd heard the rumours too but had no other comment.®

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