Federal Reserve Issues Debit Interchange Rule

From: Federal Reserve

The Federal Reserve Board on Wednesday issued a final rule establishing standards for debit card interchange fees and prohibiting network exclusivity arrangements and routing restrictions. This rule, Regulation II (Debit Card Interchange Fees and Routing), is required by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.


ABA Urges Fed to Revise Rule on Debit Card Interchange

(Source: ABA) WASHINGTON – The Federal Reserve Board should exercise its authority and make revisions to the proposed rule on debit card interchange to minimize harm posed to consumers, community lenders and the U.S. payments system, the American Bankers Association urged in a letter to Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke today.

In the letter, ABA President and CEO Frank Keating predicted that failing to make revisions to the rule will have dire consequences, including higher consumer costs for banking products, reductions in bank capital leading to reduced lending capacity, increased failures of community banks and many low-and-moderate-income customers being driven out of the banking system.


Debit Card Fee Cap Should Be Shelved During Suit, Bank Argues

From: Bloomberg

A cap on debit-card swipe fees collected by the biggest U.S. banks should be delayed past a July deadline until a challenge to the law is decided, TCF National Bank argued to a federal appeals court.

The limit on the per-transaction charge is part of the Dodd-Frank financial overhaul. Banks with more than $10 billion in assets won’t be allowed to collect more than the cost of providing the service, making profit impossible, TCF said.

“TCF will no longer be able to maintain its financial integrity,” the bank, a unit of Wayzata, Minnesota-based TCF Financial Corp. (TCB), said in court papers.


Senate Vote Highlights Need for Fed Consideration of Debit Card Cybersecurity Costs

Editor’s Note:  The Senate vote discussed in the story below further highlights the need for the Federal Reserve to determine the full data security costs associated with debit card transactions, as required by law, and to adjust allowable interchange fees accordingly.  CRE’s letter to the Board discussing cybersecurity costs may be found here.

From: Credit Union Times

Senate Defeats Debit Interchange Delay Measure

Credit unions’ efforts to delay the Federal Reserve’s rule regulating debit interchange fees by up to a year came up short today as the Senate defeated an amendment by Sens. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) and Bob Corker (R-Tenn.).


Viewpoint: Michaels Breach is Warning on the Durbin Amendment

From: USBanker

By Camden R. Fine

The data breach at Michaels Stores, which now appears to have affected consumers in at least 20 states, paints a disturbing picture of the sophistication of modern-day criminals and of large retail chains that would rather spend their time lobbying for controls on debit interchange fees than protecting their customers.

In recent weeks, community banks have been hit hard with the costs of maintaining their debit and credit card programs. Although Michaels Stores is taking heat in the press for its security failure, community banks are taking the financial hit.