Visa and MasterCard both experienced increases in their payments volumes last month. Visa’s total U.S. payments volume increased by 10 percent in February compared with February 2011, while the gross dollar volume of U.S. transactions that were processed by MasterCard increased by 14 percent for the quarter through February. Meanwhile, Visa reported that credit and debit card payments volume increased by 15 percent and 7 percent last month, respectively. The increase in Visa’s debit card volume comes as growth in overall debit card volume in the United States is slowing following the enactment of Dodd-Frank. The limit that was placed on debit card swipe fees prompted both Visa and MasterCard to eliminate the discounted swipe fees they had offered for smaller transactions, which in turn has spurred some retailers to go back to encouraging customers to use cash for these sales.
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