Effective April 2020, the Card Networks are making several modifications to the interchange pricing structures which will be passed through to the overall effective merchant processing rates. The timing of this follows their standard pricing updates of Spring and Fall each year.
Below are the highlights of the changes that will most affect you and your merchants.
All Card Networks
- All card networks will be participating in the adoption of the 8-digit BIN standard effective April 2022. Testing is now available.
- All card networks have extended the U.S. region participation in the global EMV liability shift for domestic AFD transactions.
- All card networks are requiring an authorization to be sent for credit voucher and purchase return transactions.
- Mastercard is introducing a digital wallet interchange indicator for tokenized transactions.
- Mastercard is introducing a new consumer debit product code, MCI, in the U.S. region.
- Mastercard is expanding the use of existing consumer debit product code, ACS, to all intraregional, intercountry, and intracountry interchange programs.
- Mastercard is announcing five new commercial credit products codes for the Mastercard Enterprise Solution Wholesale Travel Program.
- Mastercard is expanding its range of consumer credit and debit products to include four new consumer credit product codes and four new consumer debit product codes in the MEA region.
- Mastercard is adding the consumer credit product code, MSP, to consumer interregional interchange programs.
- Mastercard is reminding customers of the requirements for support of partial approval for all card-present transactions with acceptance in select merchant categories.
- Mastercard is announcing revised standards for technical support of refund transaction authorization requests.
- Mastercard is issuing a reminder of the requirement for contactless payment support in the U.S. region.
- Mastercard is expanding the Variable Interchange Program (VIP) and introducing the Bill Pay Commercial program in the U.S. region.
- Mastercard is introducing and modifying U.S. region interchange programs and rates.
- Mastercard is decommissioning the Canada High Spend and Premium High Spend programs and will include the spend qualification as criteria under certain premium card programs.
- Mastercard is implementing the assurance framework program in the Canada region.
- Mastercard is revising the billing rules for the Acquirer Utilities Activity fee and the Acquirer Assessment fee rebate for utilities in the Canada region.
- Visa is introducing a new series of products in the Europe region to accommodate a wider range of small businesses.
- Visa is increasing the limit to maximum spending limit for the Visa Infinite Business credit and debit products.
- Visa is changing the International Acquirer Fee (IAF) in Canada and Europe, and introducing the IAF in the LAC region for card-not-present transactions.
- Visa is updating their rule and implementing new fees in order to ensure there is minimal manipulation of transactional data and to ensure processing integrity.
- Visa is adding a new MCC to those eligible for the Emerging Segments fee program in Canada.
- Visa is implementing several changes to the Visa consumer credit products to encourage more acceptance and usage.
- Visa is implementing description changes to existing Business, Corporate, and Purchasing fee programs.
- Visa is implementing changes to the existing Business Credit interchange fee structure and will introduce a new spend qualification tier along with associated interchange rates for the new tier.
- Visa is implementing several changes to the interchange framework in the Canada region.
- Discover is modifying their standards for Debt Repayment transactions to add Consumer Prepaid cards and clarify that acceptance is not permitted using Commercial Prepaid cards.
- Discover is increasing the Acquirer Assessment fee from 0.13% to 0.14%. Discover is also introducing tow new fees; the Program Integrity Fee and Ticket Retrieval Fee.
- Discover is modifying the timeframe for issuers to initiate a dispute for reason code RN2 from 15 calendar days to 10. Discover is also adding reason code AT for issuer use.
- Discover is adding Micro Ticket interchange for sales less than or equal to $5.00. Discover is revising some interchange rates and fees for consumer debit, prepaid, and commercial card products
American Express OptBlue
- American Express made revisions to the Merchant Exclusion List globally.
- American Express is increasing the General Assessment fee from 0.15% to 0.16% and the Inbound fee from 0.40% to 1.00%.
- American Express OptBlue Program Pricing and Signing Guidelines will be revised in the U.S.
- American Express made revisions to the Merchant Exclusion List in the U.S.
- American Express OptBlue Program Pricing and Signing Guidelines will be revised in Mexico.
- American Express reintroduced inquiry reason code S02 in Canada.
- American Express OptBlue Program Pricing and Signing Guidelines will be revised in Canada.
- American Express made revisions to the Merchant Exclusion List in Canada.
Now more than ever it is important to have a close relationship with your merchant processing partner to ensure your transaction methods are processing correctly, you are taking advantage of true interchange management, and you’re capturing all the Level II and Level III data so you can ensure the best possible rates.