Thursday, January 25, 2007

"Merchants Applaud Congressional Call for Disclosure from Credit Card Industry" (MPC)

WASHINGTON, Jan. 25 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Merchants Payments Coalition (MPC) Legislative Committee Chairwoman Jennifer Hatcher today issued the following statement based on comments from Senator Christopher Dodd (D- CT), Chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, at this morning's Hearing titled "Examining the Billing, Marketing, and Disclosure Practices of the Credit Card Industry and Their Impact on Consumers."

"We applaud the efforts of Senator Dodd (D-CT), who called for heightened scrutiny into the credit card industry and will be holding a series of hearings in coming months to investigate further among other topics the practice of hidden credit and debit card 'interchange fees.' The credit card companies have long profited from placing hidden fees and practices on unsuspecting merchants and consumers.

The interchange fee is the biggest fee consumers have never heard of and accounts for more than the total of all other consumer fees such as late fees and over-the-limit fees.

Last year, Visa and MasterCard generated more than $30 billion in credit and debit card interchange fees -- a fee set in secret by Visa and MasterCard and imposed on merchants and consumers by the credit card industry and completely hidden from consumers."

The MPC, a group of nearly 30 associations representing retailers, supermarkets, drug stores, convenience stores, fuel stations, on-line merchants and other businesses that accept debit and credit cards are fighting for a more competitive and transparent card system that works better for consumers and merchants alike. The coalition's member associations collectively represent about 2.7 million stores with approximately 50 million employees. For further information, please visit

[Source: via Merchants Payments Coalition news release]