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Thursday, September 11, 2014

MasterCard loses the appeal at ECJ and its consequences will be wide for the banking and the payments industries

As the result of the decision issued on 11 September 2014 by the European Court of Justice, MasterCard will have to cancel its multilateral interchange fees (MIFs), a situation which will put it at disadvantage with the competitor VISA, which chosed to settle the matter with the European Commission and received the possibility to apply such fees, capped at maximum 0,2 for debit cards and 0,3 fo credit cards.
MasterCard's decision to fight the Commission hits back and although limited to cross-border transactions, it will have wider consequences, as several investigations and legislative intiatives in the Member States aim to cut the level of the MIFs. 
With the ECJ decision, such attempts look already obsolete and now the tide is very much likely to turn towards a complete elimination of the MIFs, an outcome which will hit hard at the banks and the payment systems. 

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