National Groups urge Congress to Reform Credit Card Practices and Fees

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Last week the House Financial Services Committee held hearings on two credit card reform bills, H.R. 2382, The Credit Card Interchange Act of 2009 to reform interchange "swipe" fees and H.R. 3639, The Expedited CARD Reform for Consumers Act of 2009, to move up the dates banks must conform to new rules designated in the CARD Act passed back in May -due to a number of bank practices that have brought about boatloads of consumer complaints and public outrage

Now, major organizations like The National Retail Federation (NRF), National Grocers Association, National Restaurant Association, and national advocacy groups such as Americans for Financial Reform and US PIRG are supporting the need for comprehensive credit card reforms, including interchange fee reforms -(better known as "swipe fees") the hidden fees charged to merchants by credit card companies and banks whenever a credit or debit card is used to make a purchase. You may wonder why it is you should care about fees charged to store owners. There's good reason. We all end up paying for these hidden fees -one way or another -whether or not we use a credit or debit card. See my Sun Sentinel Blog entry today: Memo to Congress...

For much more info on both proposed Bills, find full Testimony here and watch the below video testimony of Kathy Miller, a Vermont store owner who articulates in a clear and concise voice why swipe fees cost all of us.

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Swiping fees are just another example of how corporate greed breeds. It is notable, however, that merchants have been silent on the power these credit card giants wield against the public (their customers) until now when MC/V have dipped into their profits and ruffled their feathers into action. Where have they been?

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