It seems that VISA and Mastercard will be implementing a new increase in their fees for merchants processing transactions using debit or credit cards. Users are expected to start paying more for the goods they consume.
According to both, the Wall Street Journal and Reuters, fees will be going up in April for merchant banks. That means that companies such as JP Morgan, Citigroup or Bank of America will start to pay for larger fees.
The Wall Street Journal says that 2.5% of the value of goods and services is used to cover transaction fees. That means that in the future, with a new increase in these fees, consumers will have to pay more for the things they buy.
This is very positive for Bitcoin (BTC) and cryptocurrencies that offer transactions for lower fees and without any centralized authority controlling all the payments. Every single time that an individual makes a payment of $100, $2.5 go directly to pay for transaction fees to VISA and Mastercard. If the fees go up in April, users will be paying more for the goods they purchase.
Using the Lightning Network (LN), the ultimate scaling solution for Bitcoin and Segregated Witness (SegWit), it might be possible to reduce fees and process very fast transactions. Indeed, the Bitcoin and cryptoanalyst, Kevin Rooke, mentioned that the median Bitcoin transaction fee is currently equal to $0.02.
Bitcoin tx fees just hit their lowest level in over 3 years!
Jan 1, 2019:Median Bitcoin tx fee = $0.02Total transactions = 234,576
Oct 13, 2015:Median Bitcoin tx fee = $0.02Total transactions = 134,741 pic.twitter.com/HjNUO4ktnj
— Kevin Rooke (@kerooke) January 4, 2019
At the same time, users can now tip other individuals using Bitcoin thanks to the Lightning Network. With the LN, transactions can be processed in just a few seconds and it is also possible to process microtransactions. Meanwhile, VISA and Mastercard would not be able to process such small transactions, thus not allowing individuals to make small payments.
In the future, with the expansion of virtual currencies and payment processors starting to offer services to merchants all over the world, cryptocurrencies could be a competitor for PayPal, credit and debit cards and other expensive methods to process payments.
At the time of writing, Bitcoin is the largest digital asset in the market. It has a market cap of $63.85 billion and each Bitcoin can be purchased for $3,639.
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