Visa Cuts Swipe Fees in Europe, Raises Them in American
Europe gets 60% cut in debit card interchange fees; U.S. retailers see 30% increase
ARLINGTON, Va. — The announcement earlier this week that Visa Europe has reached a settlement with European Union regulators capping interchange fees on debit transactions paid by European retailers leaves American businesses, small and large, asking why the same cannot be done here, said the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA). It also likely foreshadows further Visa increases on the fees paid by American retailers unless Congress acts soon on debit interchange reform, the group added.
Interchange fees, which are imposed by the card association and issuing banks to process the credit and debit card transactions, have tripled in the United States since 2001 to $48 billion last year and amount to a hidden tax on consumers. These “swipe fees” are charged to every retailer, small or large, for every credit and debit transaction processed.