Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Visa Inc. are in talks aimed at settling the retailer’s $5 billion lawsuit over processing fees.
The negotiations were disclosed in a court filing Oct. 5 in Brooklyn federal court, where dozens of retailers are pursuing suits against credit card firms alleging they illegally fixed so-called swipe fees.
Walmart and other merchants dropped out of a nationwide settlement with Visa and MasterCard Inc. over the fees after retail trade groups argued that the compensation was too low and the terms too generous in allowing the card firms to raise rates in the future.
Approval of the settlement, initially valued at $7.25 billion then lowered to $5.7 billion to account for merchants that dropped out, is on appeal.
Walmart claimed the card company’s conduct caused it to suffer “enormous damage” from January 2004 to November 2012. Payment card firms are estimated to collect as much as $50 billion in swipe fees a year from U.S. merchants.
In the filing, lawyers for Walmart and Visa said the firms asked to delay information-sharing in the dispute to “continue to engage in discussions” on settling Walmart’s suit and a separate lawsuit Visa filed against the retailer.
The case is In Re Payment Card Interchange Fee and Merchant Discount Antitrust Litigation -- Opt Out Cases, 1:14-md-1720, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York (Brooklyn).