Monday, November 14, 2005

Group Funded by Visa Issues Advisory (

The Visa funded group, American's for Consumer Education and Competition really should be called "'Banks' for Consumer Education and Competition."

In their just issued advisory, the group -- which "enjoys the financial support from Visa USA" -- urged consumers not to permit gas stations to blame the record prices on card fees. What they don't mention is that as gas prices have doubled, so too have the windfall profiteering by the banks. The credit card interchange fees are based on a percent of the sale.

Debit card merchant charges are typically a flat fee. But, when clerks enter the card as a charge card, the consumer's funds are immediately deducted from their account, yet the retailer then pays a percent of the sale.

Motorists pay on average about $1.50 per fill-up directly to the banks when they pay with charge cards.

There is an easy reason that electronic payment processing is an easy target, and you don't need to be a affiliated with the banking industry to figure out why.