Jan. 2, 2013 – A Federal Trade Commission report on the agency’s role in Dodd-Frank Act implementation and monitoring offers no new findings on the impact of the debit interchange fee cap on credit unions and small banks exempt from the cap.
The FTC issued a report Dec. 24 on the impact on institutions and consumers of the Dodd-Frank Act’s revisions to the Electronic Funds Transfer Act. The 11-page report includes a brief section on the interchange fee cap set by the Federal Reserve Board. The data cited by the FTC come from the Federal Reserve’s report following the fee cap’s first three months of implementation; and a Government Accountability Office report in September that said small institutions have not, “on average, experienced a significant decline” in fees.
NAFCU has warned that market forces are likely to lead to a reduction in debit interchange fees for all issuers, including those exempt from the fee cap (institutions with assets of less than $10 billion). The Fed’s initial findings showed that just three months after implementation, exempt institutions saw a 5 percent decline in interchange fee revenue.
In a Washington Post article on the FTC report, NAFCU Vice President of Legislative Affairs Brad Thaler reiterates the association’s concerns. “It’s too early to tell, but if anything, we’re seeing evidence that the fees for big and small [institutions] will eventually come together,” he’s quoted saying.