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French card fees cut agreed for MasterCard and Visa

Visa and MasterCard have agreed a deal with the French competition authority that from 1 November both firms will charge merchants a maximum of 0.28% of the amount of the transaction to process a payment - a 49% reduction on MasterCard's current average and a 44% fall on Visa's charge.

The pair will also cap their charges for ATM withdrawals at 55 cents, down from 60 cents for MasterCard and 75 cents for Visa.

The arrangement brings Visa and MasterCard's fees broadly in line with Groupement des Cartes Bancaires, France's inter-bank network, which struck its own deal in 2011.

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