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Payments News Update – April 19, 2024

Posted  April 19, 2024

Legal and Regulatory Developments

SPOTLIGHT: ANTITRUST—E.D.N.Y.: 7-Eleven, Home Depot Claims Against Visa Defendants Survive Summary Judgment
VitalLaw – April 15, 2024

Although 7-Eleven and Home Depot claims survived, the court deemed the equitable relief class debit monopolization claim “economically senseless” while their credit monopolization claim lacked necessary evidence about both sides of the two-sided transaction platform.

In the long-running multidistrict action alleging that Visa, Mastercard, and numerous banks violated federal and state antitrust laws by conspiring to inflate certain transaction fees, the federal district court in Brooklyn, New York: 1) denied the defendants’ motion for summary judgment as to the 7-Eleven and Home Depot plaintiffs’ debit monopolization claim and attempted monopolization claim; 2) granted the defendants’ motion for summary judgment as to the 7-Eleven and Home Depot plaintiffs’ conspiracy to monopolize claim; and 3) granted the defendants’ motion as to the equitable relief class plaintiffs’ debit and credit monopolization claims. The court undertook a painstaking analysis of the claims . . . .

UK to Propose Clearer Crypto Regulations By July
Cointelegraph – April 16, 2024

The United Kingdom Treasury intends to present a regulatory framework for crypto assets and stablecoins by July, with the aim of encouraging local innovation in digital assets and blockchain technology.

The U.K.’s economic secretary to the Treasury, Bim Afolami, revealed the government’s ongoing drive to lay the groundwork for revamping the country’s payments landscape while speaking at the Innovate Finance Global Summit (IFGS) 2024.

Alongside the U.K.’s focus on fiat payment innovation, Afolami highlighted the importance of crypto regulations to remain globally competitive: “Speaking of true change, I know that the cornerstone of our position as a world leader in fintech is the delivery of our regulatory regime for crypto assets and stablecoins.” . . .

US, Europe Lock Arms on Payments Regulation
Payments Dive – April 15, 2024

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and European Commission regulators have locked arms in three meetings since last July to review emerging digital payment concerns, including those related to the growth of the buy now, pay later industry.

The U.S. agency, led by Director Rohit Chopra, and the EC, with direction from Commissioner Didier Reynders, have also zeroed in on studying big tech companies and their involvement in digital payments, with a particular interest in fraud.

In addition, the regulators focused their attention on artificial intelligence and the use of AI by financial institutions in providing consumer financial services. . . .

Visa, Mastercard Lose High Court Bid to Review ATM Pricing Case
Bloomberg Law – April 15, 2024 (subscription may be required)

The US Supreme Court on Monday denied a request to review class certification in a case accusing Visa Inc. and Mastercard Inc. of fixing the price of fees charged at automated teller machines.

Visa and Mastercard asked the Supreme Court in January to review a decision by the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit that sided with a district court in granting certification to three classes of ATM owners and customers seeking billions of dollars in damages. . . .

At issue is whether the district court appropriately certified the classes of plaintiffs. Judges must use the Rule 23 predominance method, in which facts common to class members must supersede any questions affecting only individual members. Some courts take a more strict approach to the Rule 23 method, while others are more relaxed. . . .

Industry Developments

SPOTLIGHT: 9 Ways AI Is Transforming the Payments Industry
American Banker – April 15, 2024 (subscription required)

From the freshest entry-level employee all the way up to the C-suite, AI is changing the way people in the payments industry approach their jobs.

Generative AI is helping people communicate internally and speeding up product development. It’s crunching large amounts of data to improve the supply chain. It’s also helping retailers cut shrinkage and pitch the right products.

But AI also has the potential to eliminate certain roles, depriving companies of a crucial part of their talent pipeline. Here’s how several payment companies and retailers are adopting AI to transform the way they do business. . . .