Durbin and Bankers Duke It Out Over Swipe Fees
Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin has some cutting words for the American Bankers Association over interchange fees--better known as swipe fees.
"While the banking industry may resent that its enormous lobbying effort did not produce a different outcome, a defeat is not the same as a mistake," Durbin wrote today in reply to an ABA letter to congressional leaders.
Durbin's missive comes five days after the ABA urged congressional leaders to reject calls by some retail groups for government "price controls."
The issue, according to the ABA, is that retail groups lamenting the unfairness of the payments system are lobbying government to intervene. The ABA wants none of that. The ABA further points to a $7.2 billion settlement that it says represents a "market solution" that resolves the disputes.
Durbin's reply makes clear he disagrees but he stops short of mentioning or calling for new legislation.
"The credit and mobile payment systems still suffer from excessive swipe fees, a lack of transparency, and a dearth of real competition," Durbin wrote.