LowCards.com Weekly Credit Card Update–May 29, 2020

LowCards.com Weekly Credit Card Update–May 29, 2020

May 29, 2020         Written By Bill Hardekopf

Borrower, Beware: Credit Card Fraud Attempts Rise During the Coronavirus Crisis
Fraudsters are increasingly using pilfered credit-card numbers and phishing attacks to prey on overwhelmed consumers and banks during the coronavirus pandemic. There has been a big jump in attempted credit- and debit-card fraud since coronavirus shut down the U.S. economy earlier this year, according to Fidelity National Information Services, which assists about 3,200 U.S. banks with fraud monitoring. The dollar volume of attempted fraudulent transactions rose 35% in April from a year earlier. Story by AnnaMaria Andriotis and Orla McCaffrey for The Wall Street Journal

Credit Card Applications Have Dropped by 40% Amid Coronavirus
When consumers face economic hardship, opening a new credit card may be a helpful option to get by. But surprisingly, many Americans aren’t taking this approach during the global coronavirus pandemic. New credit card applications were down 40% from the first week of March to the last week, according to a new report from the CFPB Consumer Credit Panel. The credit card industry is not the only one seeing a drop; auto loan inquiries have decreased by 52% and mortgage inquiries by 27%. Story by Alexandria White for CNBC

New Stimulus Check “Debit Cards” Show America’s Banks Are In Big Trouble
A new wave of stimulus payments is hitting people’s mailboxes. But they’re NOT coming in the form of checks. Instead, millions of Americans are now receiving pre-paid debit cards. That’s right. The Treasury Department is sending out around 4 million debit cards to people who haven’t provided their banking information to the IRS. The Treasury’s calling them Economic Impact Payment cards. But look at the top right corner. These are Visa cards. And they’re the latest proof of what I’ve been saying all along: this is the end of the bank. And another reason to bet on the true financial disruptors, like Visa and Mastercard. Story by Stephen McBride for Forbes

Samsung Money is the Company’s New Samsung Pay-Linked Debit Card Program
Samsung has announced further details for its upcoming debit card program: it’s called Samsung Money by SoFi (which, as previously announced, is partnering with Samsung on the program), and it’ll tie in directly with the existing Samsung Pay app. Samsung Money will offer a cash management account and a Samsung Money debit card (a Mastercard issued by The Bancorp Bank). Samsung is promising that Samsung Money will feature no account fees (although the fine print reserves the right to change that in the future) and “higher interest” compared to the national average. Story by Chaim Gartenberg for The Verge

Coronavirus IRS Stimulus Payments on Prepaid Debit Cards Arriving: What to Know
About 4 million people can expect to receive their stimulus cash on the preloaded Visa cards, which are being sent in the mail in plain envelopes marked “Money Network Cardholder Services.” They differ from typical debit cards because they are not linked to bank accounts and instead just come preloaded with an individual’s allotted stimulus payment amount. The debit cards are being sent to some individuals instead of paper checks if they don’t have direct deposit information on file with the tax agency. Here’s some details about using the cards, according to information put out by the government. Story by Brittany De Lea for Fox Business

Chase Sapphire Reward Points Can Now Be Redeemed for Groceries and Takeout
Chase Sapphire cardholders will be able to use their rewards points to cover purchases like groceries and takeout food thanks to a temporary new feature. Called “Pay Yourself Back” the new system will allow cardholders to use their rewards points to cover a portion or all of existing purchases at grocery stores, home improvement stores and dining, including restaurants, takeout and eligible delivery services. The new points program will go into effect May 31 for the Chase Sapphire Preferred and Reserve cards, and the bank plans to extend the feature to other cards in the future. The new system is currently set be available through September 30. Story by Jacob Passy for MarketWatch

Preparing Merchants for the Coming Mobile Wallet Boost
Call it the great shift: 40% of individuals are doing more of their daily retail and transactions online, partly because, well, there’s no other way to do it. And as many as 22% of the population surveyed said those habits would stick. Merchants must be prepared for a new world, post-pandemic, that will not be purely brick-and-mortar, but will also embrace order-ahead, curbside pickup and delivery options, with a dwindling reliance on cash changing hands.Story in PYMNTS

Coronavirus Crisis Mobile Banking Surge is a Shift That’s Likely to Stick
April saw a 200% jump in new mobile banking registrations, while mobile banking traffic rose 85%, according to Fidelity National Information Services. The sharp uptick is due to the coronavirus lockdown, which resulted in many bank branches being closed, along with Americans checking their accounts repeatedly for their stimulus payout. Another survey showed  only 40% of respondents said they expect to return to branches post-Covid, indicating the shift to online is likely to stick. Story by Ellen Sheng for CNBC

If You Have a Side Gig, There Might Be a Better Credit Card for You
Entrepreneurial types who freelance and side hustle their way through the week likely have access to a tool that could help them thrive: a business credit card. If you drive a ride-share part time, regularly resell on eBay or book paid photography jobs on the side, you may qualify for a business credit card. You don’t need to have a storefront, employees or an LLC. That’s useful information for the movers and shakers of the gig economy because credit cards aimed at small businesses differ from personal cards. They offer more lucrative rewards and eye-popping sign-up bonuses you won’t find on most personal cards. Story by Gregory Karp for MarketWatch

Americans Are Spending More on Groceries During Quarantine
It’s been four months since the first recorded case of Covid-19 in the U.S. Since then, consumer spending has changed drastically. Travel spending has plunged more than 85% since this time last year, and home improvement and food delivery sales have soared. But the biggest increase in spending across all areas has by far been groceries. According to data from Earnest Research, total grocery sales spiked an initial 79% from March 11 to March 18 as Americans reacted to news of the quarantine. And although they’ve dropped closer to normal levels since then, sales are still higher than they were this time last year. Story by Megan DeMatteo for CNBC

Here’s How Unpaid Debt is Handled When a Person Dies
Creditors generally try to collect what’s owed to them by going after the decedent’s estate during a process called probate. There are instances, however, where the surviving spouse, or another heir, may be legally responsible. Some assets don’t count as part of a person’s estate for probate purposes. Story by Sarah O’Brien for CNBC

The information contained within this article was accurate as of May 29, 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.