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September 7, 2016

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Home » Business » Finance

Bank card transaction fees cut

CHINA’S central bank yesterday cut fees that merchants in the country pay for bank card transactions in a move that will lower the operational costs of merchants and boost personal consumption.

Card-issuing banks cannot charge merchants more than 0.35 percent of a transaction amount for debit cards, while credit card transactions cannot incur a charge exceeding 0.45 percent of the amount, the People’s Bank of China said ysterday.

The cut, taking effect yesterday, will result in a 7.4 billion yuan (US$1.14 billion) saving in the the fees merchants pay in a year, according to PBOC.

Currently the ceiling on fees that merchants pay varies. Banks can charge restaurants, hotels, jewelry and auto shops a maximum 0.9 percent of a transaction amount.

The PBOC’s move to cut the fees will pressure banks but the financial impact won’t be huge as such fees are not a main source of income for the lenders, analysts said.

China’s retail sales grew 10.2 percent in July, down from a 10.6- percent gain in June and below market estimates of a 10.5-percent rise, official data showed.

As of the end of 2015, more than 5.4 billion bank cards had been issued in China and over 16 million merchants in the country accepted card payments. Last year, card transactions in China totaled 55 trillion yuan, according to the PBOC.


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