LowCards.com Weekly Credit Card Update–July 2, 2020

LowCards.com Weekly Credit Card Update–July 2, 2020

July 2, 2020         Written By Bill Hardekopf

Credit Card Industry Reins In Balance Transfer Offers As Banks Fear Defaults
Balance transfer offers, which typically entice borrowers to move their debt to a new lender in exchange for a temporary 0% interest rate, have been sharply reduced at banks including JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, Bank of America, Barclays and Capital One. American Express took the most drastic step, dropping the product altogether. Banks were burned in the 2008 recession when users of balance transfers defaulted at among the highest rates in the industry, according to the sources. Now, lenders are being more selective about who they make no-interest offers to, favoring customers with higher credit scores and other advantages. Story by Hugh Son for CNBC

Amex Giving Cardmembers $50 Each To Spend With Small Businesses
Since businesses need our support more than ever following the pandemic, Amex is bringing back its previous small business statement credit incentive. From June 29, through Sept. 20, Amex cardmembers will be eligible for $5 statement credits whenever they spend $10 or more at small businesses. Customers will earn statement credits up to 10 times, for a grand total of $50 per cardmember. All U.S. Amex consumer, business Serve and Bluebird cards are eligible. Other prepaid cards, corporate cards and cards issued outside the U.S. are not eligible. Story by Zach Honig for The Points Guy

Demand For Stolen Credit Cards Has Dropped In The Pandemic
Marketplaces, even cybercriminal ones, are subject to the laws of supply and demand. Like more reputable merchants, purveyors of stolen goods have been hit by the coronavirus pandemic. As Covid-19 ravaged the world this year—forcing businesses to close and people to stay at home—demand for stolen credit card data has dropped on dark web shops. Story by Robert Hackett for Fortune

Apple Card Adds 3% Cash Back At Exxon And Mobil Gas Stations
The Apple Card is now more rewarding for cardholders who use their card at over 11,500 Exxon and Mobil gas station across the U.S. Apple Card holders earn 3% Daily Cash (which is essentially cash back, but issued at the end of every day) when you use the Apple Card with Apple Pay at Exxon and Mobil stations. This new rewards rate is a great way to encourage contactless payments and earn extra cash back on refueling your vehicle during grocery runs or road trips. Plus eligible Exxon and Mobil purchases include more than just gas—car washes and convenience store transactions also earn 3% back. Story by Alexandria White for CNBC

Venmo Begins Piloting ‘Business Profiles’ For Small Sellers
Venmo is going after small businesses. The mobile-payments app announced it’s piloting a new feature called Business Profiles, which offers small sellers and other sole proprietors the opportunity to have a more professional profile page on its platform. Sellers can share key business details like address, phone number, email, website and more. By adopting a Business Profile, sellers will be able to raise awareness about their business through Venmo’s social feed and search. The profiles give smaller sellers a way to do business without having to necessarily establish a larger web presence. Story by Sarah Perez for Tech Crunch

FICO Just Launched A New Score To Make Borrowing Money Easier For People With Low Credit Scores
FICO has taken measures to make borrowing money a little easier during these uncertain times. FICO has introduced a whole new score: The FICO Resilience Index. This new analytic tool is designed to accompany FICO Scores to help identify those people “that represent higher resilience.” Right now, those are people who seem likely to get through this economic downturn with minimal negative impacts on their finances; they’re likely to continue to manage their finances responsibly, even with the current unemployment rate and other features of a challenging economic climate. Story by Lauren Phillips for Real Simple

Chase Sapphire Cards Add New Instacard Credits, Plus Gas and Streaming Bonus Categories
As the coronavirus pandemic continues to disrupt travel worldwide, many credit card issuers remain proactive about maintaining the value of their travel credit cards, and Chase is no exception. From now through Sept. 30, the Chase Sapphire Preferred and Reserve cards will earn between 3 and 10 bonus points for every dollar spent on purchases at gas stations, on select streaming services and on Instacart grocery delivery and pickup orders. Card holders will also get up to $50 in statement credits toward an Instacart Express membership. Story by Julian Kheel for CNN

Chime Launches Credit Builder, A Credit Card That Works More Like Debit
U.S. challenger bank Chime, now valued at $5.8 billion, is entering the credit card market with today’s launch of a new card designed to help consumers build their credit history by way of everyday transactions. With the Chime Credit Builder Visa Credit Card, users can control how much they want to spend by transferring funds from a “Spending Account” to their Credit Builder Secured Account, and can then charge up to this amount wherever Visa is accepted. This makes the card feel more like a debit card. Story by Sarah Perez for Tech Crunch

InComm Launches American Express Virtual Reward Card
US-based payments company InComm has announced the launch of the American Express Virtual Reward Card, a flexible solution for any rewards program designed to assist businesses in engaging customers or rewarding employees. With this digitally delivered prepaid reward card, recipients can access their rewards instantly rather than waiting for a physical product to arrive. For businesses, the virtual reward card offers a safe, reliable network for instant delivery and redemption across the country. Story in The Paypers

As Coronavirus Cancels Vacations, Should You Cancel Your Travel Credit Card?
A recent poll from CreditCards.com found that one in five people who have a credit card that charges an annual fee think they’re getting less value out of their cards during the pandemic. Some credit-card issuers have broadened the benefits associated with their top-tier rewards cards. Many of these cards tended to focus their rewards on travel purchases, but with those being few and far between, they have begun rewarding cardholders for spending at restaurants and grocery stores to keep them as customers. Story by Jacob Passy for MarketWatch

Mastercard To Buy Financial Data Provider Finicity For $825 Million
Mastercard Inc. has signed a deal to buy Finicity, a provider of real-time access to financial data, for $825 million. The addition of Finicity’s technology and its 500 employees worldwide will strengthen its open banking platform to allow and safeguard more financial services choices. Open banking gives people and businesses more control over their financial data. It provides third-party financial service providers access to consumer banking, transaction and other financial data from financial institutions through the use of application programming interfaces (APIs). Story in PYMNTS

The information contained within this article was accurate as of July 2, 2020. For up-to-date information on any of the terms, cards or offers mentioned above, visit the issuer's website. Many of the offers on this article are from our affiliate partners, and LowCards.com may be compensated if you take action with any of our affiliate partners.

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About Bill Hardekopf

Bill Hardekopf is the CEO of LowCards.com and covers the credit card industry from all perspectives. Bill has been involved with personal finance for over 15 years. He is a frequent contributor to Forbes, The Street and The Christian Science Monitor.