Monday, September 17, 2012
The National Retail Federation was recently authorized by its Board of Directors to go to court to block the proposed $7.25 billion settlement of the antitrust lawsuit brought over card company interchange fees by national retailers.
The NRF is not a party to said lawsuit brought against MasterCard Worldwide and Visa Inc. And U.S. District Court Judge John Gleeson has not outlined how outside groups will be allowed to intervene or if the case qualifies as a class action.
Matthew Shay, NRF President and Chief Executive Officer, said the settlement not only doesn't curb the anti-competitive behavior of Visa and MasterCard, it also removes a legal remedy available to retailers now – and in the future – when they are faced with increases in interchange fees.
"The proposal is a lose-lose-lose for merchants, consumers and competition," Shay said. "We represent the nation's retailers, and that means not just today's retailers but tomorrow's as well. It is our duty to foster an environment that is supportive of young, new entrepreneurs who will create the Wal-Marts and Amazons and Main Street shops of the future. We can't stand by and allow their rights to be stripped away before they've even had a chance to start their businesses."
Shay pointed out that interchange fees are particularly burdensome for online retailers who are forced to pay higher card-not-present interchange rates. Additional allegations the NRF voiced include:
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