June 16, 2014

Retailer groups appealing credit card swipe-fee settlement

June 17, 2014 – The National Retail Federation and Retail Industry Leaders Association said Monday they have asked a federal appeals court to overturn a class action settlement valued at about $7.25 billion over antitrust claims regarding credit card interchange fees.

The settlement was drafted over the course of nearly seven years of negotiations. Under the settlement, Visa and MasterCard, along with several big banks, would pay merchants in the class action an aggregate $6.05 billion and make up the rest through a 10-basis-point reduction in credit card interchange fees over a period of months.

Of the $6.05 billion, two-thirds is to be paid by Visa and member banks and one-third by MasterCard and its members.

In 2012, MasterCard officials said their company will pay its portion from its balance sheet. Visa's portion will come out of an escrow account built from a portion of Class B shares, as disclosed when Visa made its initial public offering several years ago.

NRF and RILA are not parties to the settlement. The settlement bars future lawsuits over the claims made.