'I Access Your Data You Access Mine'. Setting a Reciprocity Clause for the ‘Access to Account Rule’ in the Payment Services Market

28 Pages Posted: 25 Jun 2019

See all articles by Fabiana Di Porto

Fabiana Di Porto

University of Salento - Department of Economic Sciences; LUISS Guido Carli University

Gustavo Ghidini

University of Milan; Luiss University, School of Law

Date Written: June 20, 2019


Do we need pro-competitive regulation for Fintechs and in particular for digital payment services?

The 'access to account' rule (also known as XS2A rule) has been introduced by a much-commented Article of the EU Payment Services Directive 2 No. 2015/2366 to award so-called third party payment providers (TPPs) the right to freely access users’ payment accounts data, typically detained by incumbent banks to provide payment initiating services (PIS) or account information services (AIS). The stated goal of the rule is to let develop an infant industry: that of Fintech payment services.

The paper provides an analysis of the norm from a competition policy and regulatory perspectives. Because both can shape data governance in a substantive way, it is essential to keep their application consistent, and also, more generally, to allow a systematic coherence with EU rules on databases.

However, to level the playing field among all the market players involved, it is suggested that the norm is revisited to reflect two different possible relationships:

(i) between startup Fintechs and the banks; and

(ii) between digital conglomerates and the banks.

While in the first case (i), the XS2A rule should provide the broadest possible access to account data; in case (ii), a proposal to complement the XS2A rule with a ‘reciprocity clause’ is made with regard to behavioral data (pertaining to specific customers), that might increase the efficiency of the payment service provision.

The latter is meant to enhance the circulation of data among market participants while fostering competition among them and strengthening the overall proportionality of the XS2A rule.

Keywords: financial markets, banks, big data, AI, algorithms, access to account, privacy, database, competition, regulation

Suggested Citation

Di Porto, Fabiana and Ghidini, Gustavo, 'I Access Your Data You Access Mine'. Setting a Reciprocity Clause for the ‘Access to Account Rule’ in the Payment Services Market (June 20, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3407294 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3407294

Fabiana Di Porto (Contact Author)

University of Salento - Department of Economic Sciences ( email )

Via per Monteroni
Lecce, Lecce 73100

LUISS Guido Carli University

Viale Romania
Rome, Roma 00100

Gustavo Ghidini

University of Milan ( email )

Via Festa del Perdono, 7
Milan, 20122

Luiss University, School of Law ( email )


Register to save articles to
your library


Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics