Interchange. Credit unions love it and merchants hate it. However, merchants are being more than hypocritical in suggesting credit unions and other financial institutions cap debit card interchange fees. Every business generates income on fees for products and services, and interchange is no different. They’ve so much as admitted it in arguing that prices would decline if interchange were kept in check; retailers are charging consumers for using plastic.

Financial institutions are providing a valuable service to the merchant that they are rightfully paying for. The ability to accept credit and debit cards brings more money into the retailers’ shops as a convenient way for consumers to pay for purchases and track their spending. From the standpoint of efficiency, debit is speedier for busy retailers than accepting cash and counting out change, not to mention lower losses due to robberies.

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