Moneris Solutions, the country’s largest payment processor, is being investigated by the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada over a possible violation of Ottawa’s new code of conduct for the payments industry.
Finance Minister Jim Flaherty has instructed the FCAC to expedite its probe and is again raising the prospect that he will bring down tougher, binding regulations if industry players do not voluntarily comply with the code.
Moneris, like other payment companies, acts as a middleman between retailers and credit- and debit-card networks like Visa, MasterCard and Interac, providing services and products such as the card terminals found near the cash registers of most stores and restaurants.
The FCAC’s investigation stems from a complaint by a business group over how Moneris is notifying thousands of merchants about upcoming changes to the fees it charges for processing credit cards. The Canadian Federation of Independent Business accuses Moneris of leaving retailers in the dark about whether the changes, which come into effect in April, will amount to an increase in their total fees.