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Canada investigates high credit card fees

TORONTO, March 26 (UPI) -- A Canadian agency is investigating whether Visa, MasterCard or other credit card networks are violating the law with high fees for businesses, officials say.

The National Post reported that the investigation by the Competition Bureau of Canada was sparked by thousands of complaints from across the country.

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Richard Taylor, deputy commissioner of competition, told a parliamentary panel Wednesday if the bureau finds evidence of that the Competition Act is being broken "we will not hesitate to take action," the newspaper said.

The investigation centers around alleged violations of section 79 of the act, the abuse of a dominant market position.

The Retail Council of Canada said on its Web site that Canadian consumers paid more than $4.5 billion in hidden credit card fees last year. The National Post said the council's campaign -- backed by more than 200,000 businesses in Canada -- is designed to get credit card companies to stop ever-increasing fees.

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