LowCards.com Weekly Credit Card Update–November 7, 2014
Here’s How the New Chip and PIN Credit Cards Could be DOA
A recent Gallup survey found that 69% of Americans worry “frequently” or “occasionally” about having a credit card compromised by computer hackers. It’s not shocking. Consumers are becoming more educated on the topic, and financial institutions are beginning to do more to combat fraud, including introducing new types of credit cards. One example of the latter is chip-and-PIN technology, which everyone from consumers to the president has hailed for its ability to help prevent fraud. But is it the panacea that it’s been made out to be? Story by Adam Levin for the Huffington Post.
Home Depot Breach Cost Credit Unions $60 Million
The fallout from the Home Depot data breach is starting to be felt by financial institutions. Credit unions have spent nearly $60 million to reissue cards, deal with fraud and cover other costs as a result of the breach, according to the Credit Union National Association. The survey found that, in addition to the total cost to cover expenses tied to the incident, the breach had an impact on 7.2 million credit and debit cards issued by credit unions. Story by Jeffrey Roman for Bank Info Security.
Credit Card Companies Cut Swipe Fees in Canada
The Canadian units of Visa Inc. and MasterCard Inc. announced that they will lower the swipe fees paid by Canadian retailers, in a move to avoid the Canadian government forcing them to instill lower fees amid a debate over credit-card processing costs. The government had been considering such a move, after years of lobbying by the country’s small-business owners and retailers, who said the high processing fees were a burden to business and led to higher costs for consumers. Visa Canada and MasterCard Canada said they would reduce their interchange fees, or the rate set by payment networks to process a credit-card transaction, to an average of 1.5%. The new rate will be in effect for five years, beginning April 2015. Story in NACS Online.
Banks on Military Bases Need Greater Transparency for Troops
Many banks on military bases do not offer the protection or transparency soldiers need to make informed decisions about their finances, according to a new report from Pew Charitable Trusts. The study reveals a strong need for safe financial products for military personnel in America. In the study entitled “Checks and Balances, Stars and Stripes”, Pew assessed 31 banks and 134 credit unions that operate on 71% of all Department of Defense installations in America. They found that 42% of the banks and 17% of the credit unions do not offer account disclosures online, making it difficult for deployed soldiers to access information about their money. Story by Natalie Rutledge for LowCards.com.
Flaw in New ‘Secure’ Credit Card Would Let Hackers Steal $1 Million per Card
As U.S. banks and retailers are barreling toward a 2015 deadline to replace magnetic-stripe credit and debit cards with more secure cards that come embedded with a microchip, researchers have announced a critical flaw in the card system. According to researchers at Newcastle University in the UK, the card system developed by VISA for use in the United Kingdom fails to recognize transactions made in non-UK foreign currencies and can therefore be tricked into approving any transaction up to $999,999.99. Story by Kim Zetter for Wired.
7 Times to Use a Debit Card Instead of a Credit Card
Credit cards are renowned for their convenience and security, but they are not the best tool for every job. The biggest problem with credit cards is the fact that cardholders can easily use them to get them into debt, which results in costly interest charges. Other potential drawbacks of credit cards include the high fees charged to merchants and the fact that credit cards are not universally accepted. But rather than keeping some spare cash under your mattress, here are seven times when a debit card can do the job instead. Story by Jason Steele for Fox Business.
Why Millennials Don’t Like Credit Cards
Cheap, easy credit might have been tempting to young people in the past, but today’s millennials aren’t biting. According to a recent survey of over 1,161 consumers, 63 percent of adults ages 18 to 29 are living without a credit card of any kind, and another 23 percent only carry one card. But, why? Research shows that the environment millennials grew up in might be having an impact on how they view the economy and their finances. Unlike other generations, millennials have lived through economic hardships during a time when their adult lives were just beginning. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Great Recession caused millennials to stray from historic patterns when it comes to purchasing a home and having children, and a fear of credit cards could be just another symptom of the economic environment of the times. Story by Holly Johnson for U.S. News and World Report.
Why Some Merchants Say No to Apple Pay
Consumers seem to be warming up to the new Apple Pay mobile-payment system on the iPhone 6. Yet a few big retailers are giving it the cold shoulder. Rite Aid and CVS Health disabled technology last month that would allow customers to use Apple Pay in some stores. The two drugstore chains are part of a group developing a competing mobile-payment system called CurrentC. Other members include Wal-Mart Stores and Best Buy. Industry observers say the reluctance of some merchants to embrace Apple Pay all comes down to one thing: fees. And consumers are likely to remain caught in the midst of this tug-of-war between credit-card networks and merchants for some time. Story by Charlie Wells for The Wall Street Journal.
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 14.51 percent, identical to last week. Six months ago, the average was 14.49 percent. One year ago, the average was 14.45 percent.