WASHINGTON (8/15/13)--Credit Union National Association President/CEO Bill Cheney, in a 45-minute speech covering top credit unions issues, told attendees at the 50th annual conference of the Defense Credit Union Council that the only thing that equaled the shock of a recent court decision to vacate the Federal Reserve's debit interchange fee cap was the emphatic nature of the judge's decision that the rule--which has been in effect since October 2011--is, in essence, null and void.
Cheney was speaking in advance of the Wednesday U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia scheduling briefing for future proceedings in the interchange case. (See related story: Judge Fierce On Fed Interchange Rule.)
Cheney noted that the judge's decision to stay his own order to vacate the rule seems to reflect a realization by the court of the chaos that could ensure if no rule is in place.
But, Cheney underscored, the judge made it clear that the Fed has "months, not years" to determine new rules.
"The decision does not immediately impact interchange regulations," Cheney reminded, "but all debit card issuers, regardless of size, will be affected by the decision and the Durbin regulation with regard to routing and exclusivity provisions." Card issuers with less than $10 billion in assets remain exempt from a debit interchange cap.
As the situation continues to unfold, CUNA is working with a broad coalition of finance industry representatives to chart response strategy. CUNA also is in contact with Federal Reserve staff to detail the negative impact of the ruling on credit unions and other small card issuers as that agency considers its own course in response the court's July 31 decision.