American Banker: Aussie test: will public pay price for card use?

David Breitkopf reports on yesterday’s announcement of credit card reforms by the Reserve Bank of Australia.

One of the main justifications that the Reserve Bank gives for its reforms, which have been three years in the making, is that they will protect consumers who do not carry credit cards from subsidizing those who do. Under the Reserve Bank’s logic, since most merchants pass the costs of interchange to consumers in the form of higher prices, all consumers suffer equally, even those who derive no benefit from using a card.

Executives at Visa International and MasterCard International condemned the reforms, which they said will ultimately hurt consumers.

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