Banking & finance

ACCC focused on competition issues with shift to digital payments

Competition in payments markets, investigating allegations of anti-competitive conduct, and protecting the interests of consumers will be the focus of the ACCC’s financial services enforcement and policy work over the next year, ACCC Chair Gina Cass-Gottlieb said in a speech to the Australian Financial Review Banking Summit today.

“Payment systems, services and competitors are rapidly evolving,” Ms Cass-Gottlieb said.

Mastercard in court for alleged misuse of market power over card payments

The ACCC has instituted proceedings in the Federal Court against Mastercard Asia/Pacific Pte Ltd and Mastercard Asia/Pacific (Australia) Pty Ltd (together, Mastercard), for allegedly engaging in conduct with the purpose of substantially lessening competition in the supply of debit card acceptance services.

Mastercard’s alleged anti-competitive conduct commenced in late 2017 in the context of the Reserve Bank of Australia’s least cost routing initiative.

NAB's proposed acquisition of Citi's Australian consumer business not opposed

The ACCC will not oppose the proposed acquisition of Citigroup Australia Pty Limited’s Australian consumer business (Citi) by National Australia Bank Limited (ASX: NAB) after a review found the transaction would not substantially lessen competition.

NAB and Citi overlap in the supply of consumer banking products and services, including credit cards, personal loans, wealth management and investment products, transaction and savings accounts and home loans in Australia.