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Tricky Credit Card Fees

When the Credit Card Act of 2009 was introduced, the consumers hoped that this will be the end of abusive practices. But with credit card companies the way they are, it seems like clients were too optimistic. Today, consumers should only look at their latest credit card statements to know that they’ve been had, again. Bank and other card issuers have created new ways to collect millions from users. They have also expanded the fees and coverage to squeeze every penny from credit card users.

According to Joshua Frank from the Center for Responsible Lending, “Credit card issuers are going to more than ever try to find ways to make extra profits”. A lot of changes were made in the way charges were calculated. All this resulted to a burgeoning balance in the cardholder’s account. Meanwhile, other abusive practices were also put into place even before the Act was passed as a result of the recession. If there’s one ting they have in common, it’s that none are “explicitly prohibited by the Credit Card Act.”

Changes to be Aware Of:

Hidden Rate Adjustments

Cardholders with fixed-rate card need not worry. But variable rate cardholders, which majority of the market is comprised of, should be cautious. Previously, the charges were pretty straightforward. Card issuers will choose the highest prime rate in the current cycle as the starting point. Now, they have changed the terms so they can select the highest rate in a 90-day cycle. This will cost cardholders $720 million per year.

New Fees and Expanded Charges

Rate changes are not the only tricks that interests credit card companies. They also found a loophole in charging penalty fees. Some of these so-called “penalty” fees are so extreme, it looks silly. Except that you won’t be laughing when you’re the one hit with these charges. Some of the fees you need to look into carefully these days include the late fee, minimum finance charge, inactivity fee, and cash advance fee.

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One Response

  1. [...] are making credit card deals more irresistible for consumers. In general, this is in reaction to stricter lending laws that make it more difficult for firms to profit from gullible and debt-laden clients. Some card [...]

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