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Card companies strive for fee transparency

Card companies strive for fee transparency

(18 October 2006 – USA) Visa and MasterCard will alert the market to their interchange fee schedule by posting information on their websites. The moves are a response to a host of antitrust lawsuits filed by retailers and other trading groups in the US, who have accused credit card companies of price fixing and setting artificially inflated interchange fees.

Visa said it was attempting to be "more open about how we operate as a company" to improve relations with new and existing partners.

"By posting our wholesale rates, Visa USA is providing more clarity," Visa said.

In the US, merchants are in effect being lumped with the interchange fees as banks wrap the interchange component into the fees they charge merchants.

US Federal Reserve figures show the average interchange fee on each purchase is about 1.56 percent.
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