CUNA Launches Interchange Ads and Research as Retailers Visit Capitol Hill

By: Abby Gunderson-Schwarz, CUNA Deputy Chief Advocacy Officer for Congressional Affrairs

Newly released research reveals the real cost of interchange regulations, the failed policies of the Durbin Amendment, and the negative impact to financial institutions and consumers if Congress passes the Big Box Bill (S. 1838 and H.R. 3881), spearheaded by Senators Durbin and Marshall.

CUNA distributed the research and digital ads to lawmakers on July 10, in advance of the National Retailer Federation (NRF) descending on Capitol Hill to promote the interchange legislation. Together with AACUL, CUNA commissioned Cornerstone Advisors to conduct the study. It examined how debit card routing mandates and interchange caps affected consumers, small businesses, large merchants, and card issuers – including credit unions.

The study’s findings show:

  • All card issuers—including those under the $10 billion asset threshold—had significant negative revenue impacts and were forced to address these shortfalls with higher monthly fees and increased minimum balance requirements.
  • The Big Box Bill would harm both consumers and the financial services marketplace, with smaller, community-based financial institutions suffering disproportionately from its effects.
  • Significant differences exist between single-message and dual-message networks that impact operations and fraud costs for issuers, while card-not-present fraud continues to rise and the cost to fight fraud rises.

The digital ads drive home main concerns with the proposed legislation and retailers’ efforts to cut interchange – focusing on interchange as the cost of doing business, and how retailers have not shared their reduced costs from the debit interchange reduction in the 2010 Durbin Amendment.

We have a Credit Union Interchange Kit available on our CUNA Interchange web page. It includes all ads for download,with additional social media content coming soon. We also have a Credit Union Interchange Messaging Guide to help caution Congress against doubling down on a bad idea with credit card interchange mandates.

Share with Congress: Encourage your staff and membership to share their opposition to H.R. 3881 & S. 1838 with Congress via CUNA’s Grassroots Activation Center.  The new research, just as lawmakers return to Capitol Hill, provides a new opportunity to reach out again to members of Congress. If possible, send a personal email to your key contacts in Congress with a link to the study information.

Share on Social: Access the digital ads and share them on your digital/social channels via this link. Tag your U.S. Representative and Senators.