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ARLINGTON, Va. — Retailers are supporting a request to that the U.S. Supreme Court review a lower court's ruling that allows American Express's (Amex) anti-steering rules to stay on the books.
The Retail Litigation Center (RLC) filed an amicus brief in support of a petition for the court to review a Second Circuit decision that keeps in place Amex's rules preventing retailers from offering benefits to consumers who choose to use cards with lower processing fees.
The RLC's brief adds the voice of the retail industry to a strong chorus of amici briefs from multiple viewpoints supporting the petition.
"Credit card fees are the second highest cost of doing business for many of our nation's retailers and processing credit card transactions drives up prices for American families each and every day," said RLC President Deborah White. "American Express has intentionally stifled competition by imposing rules that prohibit merchants from incentivizing customers to use lower cost cards."
The Second Circuit's decision reversed the trial court's ruling that Amex's conduct violates the Sherman Act.
The RLC brief urges the Supreme Court to grant review because of the significance of the market at stake; the link between price and demand is essential to competition; and American Express' anti-competitive rules are stifling cost savings for consumers.
The brief was drafted by Debbie Greenberger of Emery Celli Brinckerhoff & Abady LLP.
RLC is a public policy organization that identifies and engages in legal proceedings that affect the retail industry. The RLC, whose members include some of the country's largest retailers, was formed to provide courts with retail industry perspectives on significant legal issues, and highlight the potential industry-wide consequences of legal principles that may be determined in pending cases.