LowCards.com Weekly Credit Card Update–August 23, 2013
Capital One Makes Commercial Lending Push with Beech Street Acquisition
Capital One is acquiring Beech Street Capital as it aims to grow beyond consumer lending. Capital One, one of the country’s largest credit card issuers, has expanded through acquisitions over the last two years. The deal followed Capital One’s $9 billion acquisition of ING’s online banking business in the United States earlier in the year. Story by Andrew Johnson for the Wall Street Journal.
Obama Meets with Financial Regulators on Dodd-Frank Progress
President Barack Obama met with Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and other financial regulators to urge quicker progress on implementing the Dodd-Frank law. Obama’s intent was to “convey to them the sense of urgency that he feels” about getting all the Dodd-Frank rules fully in place. By Margaret Talev and Lisa Lerer for Bloomberg.
Credit Card Customers Confused About Terms and Rewards
The 2013 Credit Card Satisfaction Survey by J.D Power showed fewer than one-half (47%) of credit card customers say they “completely” understand their credit card terms. Among these customers, 73 percent indicate a lack of clarity regarding interest rates, and 31 percent lack an understanding of late payment fees. In addition, many customers say they remain confused about their credit card rewards. One-third of customers said they are unaware of the benefits associated with their card. Story by Bill Hardekopf for LowCards.com.
You Can’t Bank on Escaping Debit Card Fee at BofA
I wrote recently about Bank of America deducting monthly fees from a dead man’s checking account. The following tale of woe involving a longtime BofA customer and a $16 checking account fee is so rich with corporate arrogance that it begs to serve as a place holder until some other bank can outdo it. Story by David Lazarus for the LA Times.
Consumer Watchdog Sues Debt-Relief Firm
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau filed suit against a debt relief firm that has challenged the constitutionality of the consumer watchdog, alleging the company charged illegal fees and deceived customers. The CFPB lawsuit against Morgan Drexen and its CEO, Walter Ledda, alleges the firm overcharged 22,000 of its customers millions of dollars in upfront fees tied to debt-relief services. Story by Michael Crittendon for the Wall Street Journal.
Isis Mobile Wallet Partners with Two Major Credit Card Issuers
The Isis mobile wallet has now secured two major credit card issuers—Chase and American Express–in its quest to expand throughout the nation. This would enable customers to pay bills online, send money to friends, add cash to their American Express Serve account or fund it using a bank account, direct deposit, credit card or debit card. Last week, Chase has also formed a partnership with Isis. Customers can load their accounts into the Isis Mobile Wallet app and tap to pay at retail locations instead of swiping their cards. Story by Lynn Oldshue for LowCards.com.
Fewer Easy Mortgages Under U.S. Consumer Agency Rules
Five years after the housing collapse, the CFPB is closing the barn door on the loose lending that caused the crisis. But as homebuyers struggle to get financing for new homes, some critics fear the door could be permanently nailed shut for many people seeking affordable housing. It also tightens rules on documentation, and lenders who improvise to give customers easier terms will be open to consumer lawsuits if the loans go bad. Story by Richard Satran for US News and World Report.
LowCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report
Based on the 1,000+ cards in the LowCards.com Complete Credit Card Index, the average advertised APR for credit cards is 14.38 percent, slightly higher than the 14.36 percent average from last week. Six months ago, the average was 14.35 percent. One year ago, the average was 14.36 percent.