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EU: MasterCard loses the cross-boarder interchange fee war

 |  September 11, 2014

MasterCard may have won a battle against the European Commission earlier this week when the General Court ruled that the Commission was wrong to deny MasterCard access to documents on its study of interchange fees. But just a few days later, MasterCard lost the interchange war.

The European Court of Justice ruled Thursday backed the Commission and said that MasterCard harmed competition and violated antitrust law in the way it set interchange fees for cross-boarder payments, according to reports. Thursday’s decision upholds a 2012 ruling that backed the Commission’s findings against MasterCard in 2007, reports say.

The Commission found that MasterCard harmed competition in the fees it charges retailers across Europe when consumers use MasterCard cards in other EU nations.

Since the 2007 findings, MasterCard reached an agreement with the Commission to cap those interchange rates. The Commission is also considering an overall cap of such costs. The legislation is currently in limbo, according to reports.

Thursday’s decision only affects MasterCard, but reports say it will likely encourage other authorities across the EU to similarly take action to curb excessive interchange fees.

Full content: Reuters

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