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Visa, MasterCard and banks agree to $7.25 billion settlement over credit card price fixing allegations

If approved, the deal could be the largest antitrust settlement in history

In what may be the largest antitrust settlement in U.S. history, Visa Inc., MasterCard Inc. and more than a dozen of the nation’s largest banks have agreed to pay $7.25 billion to deal with retailers’ allegations that they fixed credit and debit card fees.

The fees in question, known as swipe fees or interchange fees, cost retailers 2 percent or more every time a customer purchases something with a credit or debit card. Card companies set these fees, and issuing banks deduct them from each transaction, which passes the cost on to stores that accept the cards, according to the lawsuits.

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