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PSR fines Barclays bank £8.4 million for breaking interchange fee rule

PSR fines Barclays bank £8.4 million for breaking interchange fee rule

The Payment Systems Regulator (PSR) have published the outcome of its latest enforcement case into Barclays bank for failing to comply with the Interchange Fee Regulation (IFR).

Barclays fined for breaking interchange fee rule

The PSR found that Barclays did not provide retailers with full information about the costs of card services it supplied.

This meant retailers weren’t fully aware of the fees they were paying for card services so could not effectively compare prices of these services, shop around to find cheaper deals, or negotiate the best deal with Barclays – which could have ultimately saved them and their customers money.

The PSR also identified this failure as part of our regular monitoring activity as the UK’s main authority for enforcing the IFR.

The investigation identified that Barclays failed to comply with the IFR for over three years in total, from December 2015 to December 2018.

During this time, Barclays processed a third of all card payment transactions in the UK, meaning thousands of retailers and transactions were affected.

As a result, it has imposed a fine of £8.4 million on Barclays and made sure that the full information required under the IFR is now available to all retailers who use Barclays’ card payment processing services.

This is the second enforcement outcome the PSR has published as a result of its work overseeing the IFR in the UK. Earlier this year, the PSR fined National Westminster Bank, Royal Bank of Scotland, Ulster Bank and Coutts & Company for overcharging interchange fees on credit cards.

The regulator’s action ensured that those who were overcharged by the banks got their money back and fined the banks £1.82 million for failing to comply with important regulations.

“The interchange fee caps were put in place to reduce the cost of accepting customer card payments for shops and other merchants’ businesses. The banks broke the rules by failing to bring themselves in line with the caps,” says Chris Hemsley, Managing Director of the PSR.

“As soon as we identified the problem, we stepped in to make sure the banks put a stop to it. Not only have the banks reimbursed the fees to acquirers which they were not entitled to collect, but we have also fined them for their failings.

As demonstrated in this case, we will intervene and take robust action where needed to ensure compliance, including with the Interchange Fee Regulation.”


The post PSR fines Barclays bank £8.4 million for breaking interchange fee rule appeared first on Payments Cards & Mobile.

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