Senate Wall Street Reform Bill Includes Proposed Regulation of Credit and Debit Card Interchange Fees


Using the platform of helping small businesses and working Americans, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-Illinois) proposed three amendments to the Senate Wall Street reform bill that would regulate, and likely reduce, the interchange fees paid by merchants and alter the rules set forth by the bankcard associations. The fees, typically ranging from 2% to 3% of the card user’s purchases, compensate the card processors and banks that process the credit and debit transactions.

The first amendment would allow merchants to offer consumers a discount for paying with a method of payment other than with a bankcard. Merchants could also require minimum and maximum transaction requirements for consumers who wished to pay with a bankcard. These practices are currently forbidden by the bankcard associations and can result in fines or termination of the merchant’s card processing privileges.

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