LowCards.com Weekly Credit Card Update–November 6, 2020

LowCards.com Weekly Credit Card Update–November 6, 2020

November 6, 2020         Written By Bill Hardekopf

Card Companies, Surprised by Low Write-Offs, Seek New Customers
Lenders have spent months puzzled by the persistently low delinquencies on their credit cards. Now, they’re seizing the moment. The card companies Capital One Financial and American Express said this week they’ve jump-started marketing efforts in recent weeks to bolster their brands and acquire new customers. And they plan to keep up the push through the holiday season. Story by Jennifer Surane for Bloomberg

Election Uncertainty Taking Toll on Online Shopping
Uncertainty around Election Day has put a crimp into online shopping. Consumers have spent less money on the web this week than experts had anticipated, according to a study, raising concerns that prolonged confusion and anxiety around the US presidential election could hit retailers as the holiday season cranks up. Story by Lisa Fickenscher for the New York Post

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Credit Card Security Compliance Declines for Third Consecutive Year
For the third year in a row, compliance with the standard for storing and transmitting credit card information has plummeted, with the hospitality, retail and financial sectors struggling, according to data compiled by Verizon based on its own audits of companies in 60 different countries. Companies that were fully compliant with the Payment Card Industry standard dropped from 55.4% to 27.9% between 2016 to 2019. The 2019 figure is the lowest rate of full compliance since 2013. Story by Joe Uchill for SC Media

Why MasterCard, Shopify, and PayPal Stocks All Popped After Election Day
Regardless of who ends up winning the election that took place, the simple fact that the president and members of Congress can stop campaigning now means they have more time to devote to things that might spur the economy — such as passing a second stimulus bill and cutting another round of $1,200 checks to American taxpayers. With Black Friday just around the corner and Christmas not far behind it, that would only be good news for companies like Mastercard, Shopify, and PayPal. Story by Rich Smith for The Motley Fool

Mobile Banking Adoption Accelerates
Americans are increasingly relying on mobile channels to access banking services, according to the FDIC’s biennial How America Banks report. More than a third (34%) of American households reported mobile was their primary method of accessing their bank account in 2019, up 18.4 percentage points from the 2017 survey. Most of the growth in mobile banking appeared to come from online banking, which fell from 36% in 2017 to 22.8% in 2019. Despite the decline, online banking was the second most common method used by U.S. households. Story by Tyler Mondres for ABA Banking Journal

Payments Companies Give Credit Where It’s Due—to Debit
The question of whether consumers are spending has different answers depending on where you look. Spending on credit cards? Down. Spending on debit cards? Way up. Debit has been the hero for many payments companies this year. Card networks as well as acquirers that handle payments for merchants have reported similar trends. At Visa and Mastercard, U.S. debit card dollar payment and purchase volume collectively rose 23% year over year in the quarter ended in September, more than double the pre-Covid-19 growth rate. Story by Telis Demos for The Wall Street Journal

8 Reasons Why People Take Out Personal Loans
When it comes to other major purchases—like home renovations, engagement rings, medical bills—an increasing number of Americans are turning to personal loans to help manage the cost. Personal loans are the fastest-growing debt category, according to a 2019 Experian study. While mortgages still made up the largest portion of consumer debt (71.7%), in 2019, Americans reportedly took out personal loans at a faster rate than auto loans, mortgages, credit cards and student loans. A form of installment credit, personal loans are sometimes used as an affordable alternative to credit cards because they generally charge lower interest rates. Personal loan APR averages 9.34% according to the Fed’s most recent data. Meanwhile, the average credit card interest rate is around 16.6%. Story by Megan DeMatteo for CNBC

Last Chance for Chase Sapphire Preferred’s 80,000-Point Bonus
If you’ve been eyeing the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, now is the time to get it: The card’s 80,000-point sign-up bonus worth up to $1,000 is on its way out. If you spend $4,000 on the card within three months of opening it, you can earn 80,000 bonus points. When this offer expires Nov. 8, the card is expected to revert to the previous 60,000-point sign-up bonus, which is still competitive but worth less at about $750. The limited-time offer is a large sign-up bonus from a card that has added value to respond to cardholders’ rapidly changing needs in 2020. Story by Jessica Merritt for US News and World Report

Visa and Mastercard Have a Lot in Common, but Covid-19 Puts One Key Difference in Focus
Visa and Mastercard are often viewed as one and the same in the investment community, but the small differences between their businesses are coming into focus as the Covid-19 alters the way people spend their money. Consumers have been showing an increasing preference for debit cards versus credit cards given the weak economic climate brought on by the pandemic, and right now this skew favors Visa, which has a larger debit business. Visa generated 52% of its volume in the September quarter from debit transactions, compared with 44% for Mastercard. Story by Emily Bary for MarketWatch

Bitcoin Rallies 4% to Surpass $14,000 as Election Volatility Fuels Cryptocurrency Surge
Bitcoin leaped as much as 3.9% on Wednesday as volatility fueled by US elections lifted popular cryptocurrencies. Risk assets surged in Wednesday trading as expectations for a Blue Wave quickly gave way to the likelihood of a divided government. While the lack of a Democratic sweep sets up Congress for a prolonged stimulus deadlock, it also allays Wall Street’s fears of a corporate tax hike. Tech stocks soared, while financial and industrial names lagged the market. Story by Ben Winck for Business Insider

Prepaid Card Trends by Age and Income
Overall, 18-24 year olds are the most likely (76%) to purchase prepaid cards, followed closely by 24-44 year olds (73%). In contrast, only 45% of 65+ year olds purchased a prepaid card in the last year. Only 3% of 65+ year olds had prepaid cards delivered to a digital wallet, compared to 35% of 18-24 year olds. Households earning >$100K+ are most likely to have purchased Retailer Gift Cards, at 56%. Story in Payments Journal

How to Properly Disinfect Your Credit Cards
Even before the pandemic hit, studies found that cash and credit cards were ripe with germs, and experts have recommended for years that we all take the time to clean our credit and debit cards. In pandemic times, it’s more important than ever to ensure your cards aren’t hazardous to your (or your family’s) health. According to Harvard Health, the coronavirus can live on plastic and stainless steel for up to three days, and the CDC advises that frequently touched objects and surfaces should be cleaned and sanitized at least once a day. In addition to copious handwashing, cleaning your frequently used items can help keep your home germ-free. Story by Brittney Myers for The Motley Fool

LowCards.com simplifies the confusion of shopping for credit cards. It is a free, independent website that helps consumers easily compare compare credit cards in a variety of categories such as lowest rates, rewards, rebates, balance transfers and lowest introductory rates. It also gives an unbiased ranking and review for each card. Created by Hampton & Associates, the company has been analyzing the credit card industry and supplying objective websites on various consumer expenses for 20 years. For more information, contact Bill Hardekopf at 205-985-9725 or billh@LowCards.com. Follow our tweets: @lowcards

The information contained within this article was accurate as of November 6, 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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2020 Top Credit Cards by Category
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bill-hardekopf

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.