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Senate Judiciary Committee to Hold Hearing on Credit Card Interchange Fees

by Peter Andrew

JULY

5 UPDATE: The hearing scheduled for June 28th was postponed

and a new hearing was scheduled for July 19th. Click

here for coverage of the July 19th hearing.

Senate

Judiciary Committee to Hold Hearing on Credit Card Interchange

Fees

The Senate Judiciary Committee, headed by Chairman Arlen Specter

of Pennsylvania, will hold a hearing on credit card interchange

fees on Wednesday, June 28th. The hearing is scheduled for 9:30

a.m. in Room 226 of the Senate Dirksen Office Building. At issue

is the percentage that Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover

and bank issuers charge their member merchants to process credit

card transactions.

A

group of merchant trade associations called the Merchants Payments

Coalition alleges that the fees are illegally high, while credit

card industry spokespeople allege that merchants want the perks

of accepting credit cards without paying reasonable fees for

the service.

Interchange

fees are the costs that a store, restaurant or other merchant

must pay on every credit card transaction processed. According

to the Merchants Payments Coalition, this fee averages 2%, meaning

that for every $100 you make at a merchant, the merchant is

actually taking in an average of $98 after the interchange fee

is deducted.

Published 06/16/06 (Modified 05/07/12)


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