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The Wall Street Journal reports this morning that Visa and MasterCard are appealing a 2001 court ruling that allowed their member banks to issue credit cards through American Express. That ruling left the credit card playing field open to competition from Amex and other companies.

The appeal comes just a week after the two companies agreed to a total $3 billion settlement with Wal-Mart and millions of other retailers, in a case that accused the credit card of charging excessive fees and restrict competition on debit-card transactions.

Visa and MasterCard, in a separate case, also have been ordered to refund $800 million to consumers for improperly disclosing fees charged in connection with credit-card transactions in foreign currencies.
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