Supreme Court Swipe Fee Decision Expected Soon

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Despite speculation that the U.S. Supreme Court would decide Friday whether or not to hear the retail industry's appeal of debit card swipe fees, the justices closed out the week without making any announcement.

The Supreme Court watch blog,, lists the case under "petitions relisted to the next conference." The Supreme Court's next conference is scheduled for Friday, Jan. 16.

In August, NACS, the Association for Convenience & Fuel Retailing, along with several other merchant associations and retailer companies, filed a writ of certiorari with the Supreme Court, asking the court to hear their appeal of the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling that upheld the Federal Reserve's debit swipe fee rules.

The association has been challenging the Fed's swipe fee rules since they were implemented in October 2011. The U.S. District Court agreed with NACS that the Fed's rules did not follow the law, but the D.C. Circuit Court later disagreed, which is why NACS has now asked the Supreme Court to decide the case.

"Debit swipe fee reform was needed to address the price-fixing of debit swipe fees that the giant card companies engaged in for the nation’s largest banks," NACS President and CEO Hank Armour said in August. "Unfortunately, the Fed overrode the language of the law and blunted the positive impact of reform. We need the Supreme Court to decide this case so that American merchants and their customers stop paying billions of dollars more than they should per year to the big banks.”

Other groups litigating the case along with NACS are the Food Marketing Institute, National Restaurant Association, National Retail Federation, Boscov's Department Stores and Miller Oil Co.

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