In a joint letter to House leadership today, ABA, along with nearly 850 banks and state associations, urged Congress to include a repeal of the Durbin Amendment in financial reform legislation this year. A repeal would eliminate government-imposed price controls on debit card interchange. The groups pointed out that the Durbin Amendment — an eleventh hour insertion into the Dodd-Frank legislation — has failed to deliver on its promise of lower costs for consumers at the cash register.
“Six years later, there is no evidence that retailers lowered prices as they promised—the Durbin Amendment was simply a windfall for the nation’s largest merchants. And the price for that windfall is being paid by consumers, many of whom can no longer enjoy free checking accounts, free debit rewards, and other add-on benefits that used to be offered by their bank,” the letter said. “Rather than helping consumers, the Durbin Amendment has shifted higher profits to big-box stores and away from small businesses and consumers.”