The Archives

Everything written by Todd Zywicki on law, economics, and more

The FT Misunderstands the Economics of Credit-Card Markets

In a recent piece for the Financial Times, Brendan Greeley argues that the misnamed Credit Card Competition Act would reduce inflation. In it, Greeley recycles numerous myths about the nature of credit-card markets that have long been rebutted by serious economic research. Both theory and ample evidence from the United States and other countries shows ... The FT Misunderstands the Economics of Credit-Card Markets

Doubling Down on Durbin Disaster: Interchange Fee Caps Shortchange Consumers

The U.S. economy survived the COVID-19 pandemic and associated government-imposed business shutdowns with a variety of innovations that facilitated online shopping, contactless payments, and reduced use and handling of cash, a known vector of disease transmission. While many of these innovations were new, they would have been impossible but for their reliance on an established ... Doubling Down on Durbin Disaster: Interchange Fee Caps Shortchange Consumers

Todd Zywicki on Fred McChesney

Todd J. Zywicki is a George Mason University Foundation Professor of Law at the Scalia Law School at George Mason University and a former Director of the Office of Policy Planning at the FTC. I was saddened to read of the passing of my dear friend Fred McChesney. An amazing scholar and an even more amazing ... Todd Zywicki on Fred McChesney

The Merchants’ Insincere Concern About Cross-Consumer Subsidies

In my first post I argued that consumers as a group would likely be made worse off as a result of artificially imposed reductions in interchange fees.  This post considers a second line of attack—that even if consumers overall would be made no better off (or even worse off) as a result of regulating interchange ... The Merchants’ Insincere Concern About Cross-Consumer Subsidies

Regulating Interchange Fees will Promote Term Repricing that will be Harmful to Consumers and Competition

Todd J. Zywicki is Foundation Professor of Law at George Mason University School of Law. Although the mechanisms vary, legislation pending before Congress on interchange has a basic central purpose—to reduce interchange fees, either indirectly or directly.  If adopted, these efforts will likely succeed in their intended goal of reducing interchange fees.  But they will ... Regulating Interchange Fees will Promote Term Repricing that will be Harmful to Consumers and Competition