Justice Department sues three major credit card companies
The Justice Department is suing credit card companies American Express, Visa and MasterCard for anticompetitive practices.
The lawsuit says the card companies are impeding merchants from promoting the use of competing credit or charge cards with lower acceptance fees.
In papers filed in federal court in Brooklyn, the department and various state attorneys general sued all three companies, saying they were attempting to insulate themselves from competition. At the same time, the Justice Department filed a proposed settlement with Visa and MasterCard.
Attorney General Eric Holder says the companies "put merchants and their customers in a no-win situation" and "consumers are being held hostage."