Amazon reverses British Visa card ban

(Bloomberg) — Amazon.com Inc. backed down at the last minute on its plan to ban Visa Inc. credit cards. issued in the United Kingdom.

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The e-commerce company sent an email to UK customers on Monday to say the ban, which went into effect on Wednesday, will not take effect. Amazon previously said it was taking this step due to the high cost of accepting credit card payments.

Card fees have long been a sticking point among merchants, banks and payment networks such as Mastercard and Visa, the largest in the world.

As with Mastercard Inc. Payment companies determine the fees that merchants pay. While card issuers get most of these fees, Visa has faced longstanding criticism from merchants for its high costs.

Amazon’s proposed ban, revealed in November, sent Visa shares tumbling, and prompted payment company executives to accuse Amazon of punishing consumers.

Although the possibility of an imminent ban has disappeared, the problem has not been completely resolved. Amazon said Monday in an email to customers that it is “working closely with Visa to find a potential solution.”

An Amazon spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

A Visa spokesperson said: “Amazon customers can continue to use Visa cards on Amazon.co.uk after January 19 as we work closely together to reach an agreement.”

original note:

Amazon backtracks on proposed UK ban on Visa credit cards

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