October 25, 2019 / 4:15 PM / a month ago

Brazil antitrust agency probes Itau and its card processor

SAO PAULO, Oct 25 (Reuters) - Brazilian antitrust agency Cade opened an investigation into the country's largest private-sector lender, Itau Unibanco Holding SA, and its card processor Rede for alleged anticompetitive practices, according to a statement on Friday.

Cade said Itau should not be able to require merchants to have a checking account in the bank as a condition to advance credit card payments to them. In April, Itau said it would pay merchants in two days, compared with the usual 30 days.

The bank said the terms offered by its card processor were helping to foster competition and lower costs for small and mid-sized businesses. (Reporting by Carolina Mandl)

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