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18 May 2023

A lobby group has warned of the “startling rise in the cost of accepting cards” for small businesses after the European chief of Mastercard defended the fees it levies on merchants.

18 May 2023

It has been reported by This Is Money that HMRC now holds 55 billion items of taxpayers' data, including email and bank records, as it cracks down on tax avoidance. The data is held on its...

18 May 2023

Sustrans is working with local businesses to provide bike maintenance stations and pumps at key stops along the National Cycle Network in Scotland, which, it says, will support more people to...

16 May 2023

Cycling UK has opened nominations for its annual 100 Women in Cycling list, which celebrates the inspirational women working in the cycle sector.

16 May 2023

Bike sales in 2022 were lower than 2021 throughout Europe's main markets, Bike Europe has reported, but e-bike sales continue to thrive - although the UK seems to be the exception.

9 May 2023

A mixed picture is emerging about the effect of the Coronation weekend across the UK's retail sector.

9 May 2023

Nominations have opened for the 2023 British Business Awards.

9 May 2023

The European retail sector has enjoyed its best month for international spending on Tax Free goods since the end of the pandemic after sales surged by 40% month on month in March 2023, taking...

4 May 2023

A study into the positive health effects of riding an electric bike has picked up traction in Germany’s press in the past week, according to a piece in Cycling Electric. Researchers at the...

4 May 2023

Two Derby businessmen have come together to encourage locals to hop on their bikes. Dean Jackson and Paul Martin have launched the city's first road racing team to help inspire...

Business bodies slam “startling rise in the cost of accepting cards” for small businesses

Posted on in Business News , Cycles News

A lobby group has warned of the “startling rise in the cost of accepting cards” for small businesses after the European chief of Mastercard defended the fees it levies on merchants.

Blue Mastercard

Interchange fees, which are charged to merchants and paid to the card issuing bank and payment network, have climbed sharply in recent years, and squeezed merchants.

The price hikes have incurred the anger of business organisations who have argued it amounts to a tax on card payments.

The British Retail Consortium, Federation of Small Businesses, and lobby group Coadec were among groups to launch an ‘Axe the Card Tax’ campaign last year calling for regulators to step into the market in the UK and reduce fees.

However the European president of Mastercard, Mark Barnett, has defended the current fee structure.
“We believe interchange is the right mechanism for everybody, sharing the costs and benefits of the payment system,” he told the Financial Times. “We think it represents incredibly good value.”

The comments have come under fire from start-up lobby group Coadec however, which has previously slammed the ‘stealth card tax’ and the monopoly of Visa and Mastercard. The group’s analysis suggests that card processing fees have risen 600 per cent over the past eight years.
“Coadec is part of the Axe the Card Tax campaign because of the startling rise in the cost of accepting cards,” Luke Kosky, fintech policy lead at Coadec told City A.M.

“Interchange fees themselves represent great value for the banks – that is their purpose. But the Government has not yet worked out if the current cap levels are right for the UK where 90 per cent of retail sales are on cards. Such a review is only possible post-Brexit.”

The Payment Systems Regulator is currently conducting a market review of the fees paid to card payment networks, with which Mastercard is co-operating.

Coadec called for alternative ways of paying to be explored to take the pressure off retailers via alternatives like “open banking payments, or vital staples like cash.”

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