Why Don’t Most Merchants Use Price Discounts to Steer Consumer Payment Choice?

Why Don’t Most Merchants Use Price Discounts to Steer Consumer Payment Choice? Recent legislation and court settlements in the United States allow merchants to use price discounts to steer customers to pay with means of payment that are less costly to merchants. We use transaction data to compute rough estimates of the expected net cost reduction by merchant type of giving debit card and cash price discounts. We find that steering consumers to debit and cash via simple price discounts reduces most merchants’ card processing cost; however, this reduction is small and may be insufficient to offset the increase in the cost of administering price menus that vary by payment instrument. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Review of Industrial Organization Springer Journals

Why Don’t Most Merchants Use Price Discounts to Steer Consumer Payment Choice?

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Publisher
Springer US
Copyright
Copyright © 2014 by Springer Science+Business Media New York
Subject
Economics / Management Science; Industrial Organization; Microeconomics
ISSN
0889-938X
eISSN
1573-7160
D.O.I.
10.1007/s11151-014-9419-y
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Recent legislation and court settlements in the United States allow merchants to use price discounts to steer customers to pay with means of payment that are less costly to merchants. We use transaction data to compute rough estimates of the expected net cost reduction by merchant type of giving debit card and cash price discounts. We find that steering consumers to debit and cash via simple price discounts reduces most merchants’ card processing cost; however, this reduction is small and may be insufficient to offset the increase in the cost of administering price menus that vary by payment instrument.

Journal

Review of Industrial OrganizationSpringer Journals

Published: Feb 28, 2014

References

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