Two of the biggest companies doing retail business in Canada are at war with each other: Visa and Walmart. Most Canadians have not noticed, though, because the war is taking place only in select markets. However, if the current trend continues, it could be -- as the slogan goes -- coming soon to a store near you.
The recent spat between Walmart Canada and Visa has reignited the debate about interchange; the fee paid by a merchant to customers' banks when a payment card has been used for the purchase. It is, effectively, a price to be paid for the convenience, efficiency and relative safety of card payment systems.