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August 18th, 2009
08:19 AM ET

Your Debt = Banks Profit

Your credit card debt is translating into higher profits for many banks across the country. The Pew Safe Credit Cards Project says banks have seen a 46% profit from consumer debt in the first half of 2009 thanks to increased credit card rates. The median lowest advertised credit card rate rose to 11.99% in July from 9.99% in December. Have your rates recently gone up? How high? Do you think your bank is taking advantage of you?

Leave us a comment.
We’ll share some of them in the CNN Newsroom 11am – 1pm ET.

Filed under: Tony Harris
soundoff (49 Responses)
  1. michael armstrong sr.

    No matter how you look at it its cheeper to pay cash and if you cant afford it then you dont need it .

    August 18, 2009 at 9:11 am |
  2. joe

    Maybe people should learn a lesson here – no one forced anyone to borrow so much, how many pairs of jeans can one person own? America went on a spending spree and why should the banks not charge for the right to borrow – it is not their fault people have so much debt, people need to have restraint and stop looking to blame others.

    August 18, 2009 at 10:24 am |
  3. Bill T

    Congress should have enacted thier legislation sooner. Banks are raising interest rates on credit cards as fast as they can to beat the deadline. I have had three letters in the past week letting me know my interests are now variable, the late fees are increasing and interest rates are going up because they need to make more money. Yes everyone with a credit card is being taken advantage of, they have been doing it for years and now that the law is changing the banks are getting worse and taking more advantage. Yes I agree cash is better but sometimes you just have to use a credit card.

    August 18, 2009 at 10:54 am |

    The way I look at it is why give the banks anymore ways to make money on us then they already have. If you don't have the money for it then don't buy it or "save" for it somthing we seem as American's to have not done for a while and need to get back in the habit of doing again. If it's worth haveing it worth saving for.

    August 18, 2009 at 10:58 am |
  5. Kisha

    YES, I have paid on a credit card with a $12,000 balance for 3 years and my current balance is still $11,000. I have made no new charges and I am disgusted. I pay everything on time and my credit card rates on unassociated cards have began to increase. It makes you wonder... why should I continue paying if everyone around isn't.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:27 am |
  6. Allan

    Despite the public's bailout of banks, I found my credit card rates going up on both of my private credit cards. I have good credit, have missed no payments and in fact have payed down debt. This is part of the ongoing financial rape of the middle class and Congress is doing nothing significant to stop it. I have written my congressional reps about this, but nothing gets done. I makes me furious with both banks and Congress.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:28 am |
  7. Phillip McCallum

    Banks are doing their usual robbing the poor giving to the RICH

    August 18, 2009 at 11:28 am |
  8. Tim C

    Chase increased my credit card APR from 14.9% to 27.9% despite my 100% on-time payments, which were more than the minimum. I talked to them three times about it but was told I am free to pay the total balance and close the account. Moreover, I've not used the account in over a year.
    I'm a retired senior, over 70, existing on reduced pension and Social Security.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:28 am |
  9. Kisha

    and just for the record I charged it to remodel a home to flip and then the market dropped and I could no longer refinance nor sell the home that I remodeled.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:28 am |
  10. dan

    Banks and others received billions of taxpayer dollars in bailout funds. Consumers should be given payment terms with no interest, late fees or penalties.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:28 am |
  11. Connie M

    I don't understand why it feels big business is working against the middle class instead of doing their part to help. I see our President doing his part, but not big business. If we can't afford the minimum payment, how can we afford finance charges that have run wild!

    August 18, 2009 at 11:29 am |
  12. Chris in Phoenix AZ

    I have had my interest rate jump from 7% to 13.99 to 24.99 in the past year and a half. I only have about 5,000 in credit card debt. I will have it paid off in no time. But te way these banks are raising there interest rates I figure just pay the card off and cancel any and all credit cards I have. If the banks greed is going to make others suffer, I figure why feed into it. Ta hell with my credit score.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:29 am |
  13. Sean

    What the banks have done should be criminalized. My rates on all cards have increased by average 6%. I have NEVER missed a payment on anything, I have NEVER been late. The government must have seen it coming when the waited until 2010 to put the new laws into effect.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:30 am |
  14. Robert

    Our government gave these banks a license to steal...legally!

    The so called credit card consumer rights bill was not enacted the day it was signed, giving banks 9 months to raise interest rates..untethered and not having to comply.

    One of my credit cards went from 19.99% to 29.99% interest. Mind you, I have never been late on a payment, never come close to even 1/3 of my credit limit and have always paid at least 3 times my minimum payment.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:30 am |
  15. David

    Yes, they are going up. My interest rate doubled to 20% even though I never missed a payment!

    August 18, 2009 at 11:30 am |
  16. Kenneth Andrews

    Banks are not taking advantage of me with higher interest rates or fees: I pay off my credit cards at the end of each billing cycle. Evne though I am well off I cannot afford to waste money on interest. Maybe that is why I am well off.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:31 am |
  17. Charles ( Maryland)

    Goodday guys thanks for this opportunity. I had a chase credit card with a fixed rate of 9.9% I have had the card for 3 years. Never been late and never had it overcharged. Just suddenly I got a letter from chase stating in that in a couple of weeks the rate is going to increase to a variable rate with minimum rate of 12%. This is a fraud. I have been a good customer for years. They didn't care. I called them and told them I was mad and decided to close the card. This is wrong.

    Supposing I didn't have the fund to cover the balance. I would have been stranded.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:31 am |
  18. Jordkend

    Fidelity Investments, without probable cause, increased my rate from 5.9% to 24.99%. My credit score is 750+. Each phone call to Fidelity yields different results / answers. There is no consistency as to why this was done which make it very evident that there is no justification as to why the rate was raised...other than to increase profits.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:31 am |
  19. Dave in Savannah

    Hell yes! I've never made a late payment on any of my cards, and their interest rates have risen an average of eight percent. Ironically, our household income has dramatically increased over the last two years. I would like to close most of the accounts, but I've read that my credit rating will suffer as a result. A loan shark would treat me more reasonably.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:31 am |
  20. Alan R. Speelman

    I have a credit card with CapitalOne, back in June they raised my interest rate from 13.9% to 22.9%. I've never been late and paid off four other accounts with them.

    When I called them and asked them to reduce my interest rate they basically said "we have no other rate available". I explained to them that I recently retired and that their additional fees were costing me $75.00 extra every month, which I had not budgeted for and that the account could go into default because of their increase. They still would not budge.

    I guess they don't care how much it will cost them in the long run, or how they will destroy my good credit. Where can I go from here? Does anyone out there have any ideas of how to resolve this?

    August 18, 2009 at 11:31 am |
  21. Patti

    I have paid my credit card bills on time or early every month and paid several times the minimum. I was sent a letter by all three companies before this week's deadline telling me that due to "recent costs" they had to raise my interest rate to 14.99% or more. I requested a review of my account and not one of them would reconsider. I'm afraid the same thing might happen when health care is reformed as well. I want health care reform but what tricks will the health care industry be able to get away with before it's enacted??

    August 18, 2009 at 11:32 am |
  22. Roland

    I have never missed a payment, and I always pay my bills on time. It was quite a shock to realize that the interest rate jumped so high on my credit card. Banks shouldn't report profits at the expense of the average consumer. It is only creating disbelief in the system.


    August 18, 2009 at 11:32 am |
  23. RR

    So far, Citi Corp from 9.9 fixed to 11.9 variable. 12 year client, NEVER late; BOA 11.9 % to 17.9% variable. Chase from 9.9 fixed to 17.9! They are doing everything they can to squeeze clients, and proud of it. Congress was WAY late on moving to stop unethical business practices.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:32 am |
  24. Michael E. Nelson

    I would only hope CNN and others continue to work this hard as the real effect has not hit by any means as many banks are racing the clock to raise rates now. I have family memebers with a Bank of America card. $16,000 credit line. Only owe $3300. Their rate jumped 23.9% last month and have never been late nor ever charge up to 50% of their line of credit. They are 65 and on a fixed amount of income. What are these people going to do?

    Americans all over the country are seeing the reality in the last 30 days of credit card company's raisin the rates at a Accelerated rate and we have only seen the tip of the ice berg of problems and outrage from customers.

    I had an in depth conversation with the top CFO in charge of the credit cards for Home Depot. Home Depot is feeling the effects of losing business because City Bank their card holder raised rates up to 27% including mine. CONSUMERS do not know that Home Depot does not actually own the card and consumers are taken the attitude that Home Depot must not want my business therefore I will shop elsewhere.

    What has been done in congress is good but they have not felt the wave of destruction coming. Higher rates mean consumers are paying less on their cards than before therefore they are going further in debt. I predict you will see bankruptcy's soar because people cannot pay their cards therefore the higher rate will force them to default. Not right!!

    The only choice now for credit card help is to work with agencies and they close all your credit cards except one of your choice. Says this is a requirement bt the goverment. They consolidate the cards but this hurts your credit score when you close the cards.

    So my plea is for ones like CNN and others who have our voice to speak loud and clear and inform congress of the disaster to come as it will. The President thinks they have had problems to date but this is the kind of event that could go overlooked and a year from now Americans are crying out more than ever as a victim of greed based on the profits of the major banks reported today being up 46%. This will ruin there good credit with nothing to do about it unless you and I continue to speak out. How then would this effect the recession as consumers will be tighter with their spending than ever??

    The work must go on more than ever to see what is to come. The raise in rates just in the last 3 months since May has been catastrophic.

    Please send this email to whomever and I want to stay in touch on this and will help speak out anyway.


    Michael E. Nelson

    August 18, 2009 at 11:34 am |
  25. Phil

    YES!!! I am being charged 19.9% by Bank of America. I was NEVER late NEVER over. Why is this allowed? I know its legal by why so much allowed by our government for banks to charge overly high interest rates? When there is a hurrican or some natural disaster business our not allowed to price gauge. We are in a financial disaster and the banks have recieved TARP money and given over high bonuses to exectives. I know banks and the CC companies are trying to make up for their poor loan decisions and many defalts but this "robbing Peter to pay Paul (im Peter) needs to stop! The new CC bill does not do enough to stop banks and CC companies to stop taking advantage of consumers.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:36 am |
  26. Elizabeth Libero

    I have two major credit cards, they have both tripled my interest rates in the past year. They played games with due dates, take away or adjust my credit limit so I am always at my limit with them. They often charge late fees when I mail my payment in a week before due date. The list goes on and on...I guess I am being punished for people who default, even though I always pay on time and pay more than the min. due. I am so squeezed I can't breathe. I am sickened that we bailed them out, obviously their greed has no limits. Did I mention that I only used these cards for emergencies, car repairs, and necessary dental care? Since they are not lending money, I guess they need to bleed me.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:38 am |
  27. Linda Ferguson

    Yes it is better to pay cash. Some people are forced to use credit cards to live at certain times. When we moved to the area that we live in now we thought I would have no problem getting a job, I am highly trained in administrative positions, we have lived here 3 years now, it took me 2 years to find a full time job, and now I have been laid off for 4 months. We had ALL of our credit cards paid off when we moved here. Thank goodness for unemployment, we are not using our credit cards to live off of right now, but we were when we first moved here because I was not able to find a job, then I had health issues, then I broke my elbow, etc, just was not a good time for us.

    We have 3 credit cards, we always make our payments on time and always make higher payments than we need to in an effort to pay our credit cards off sooner and stay ahead. Between our 3 credit cards our interest rates have jumped from 5% to almost 25%...and we HAVE NEVER BEEN LATE ON A PAYMENT!! This is ridiculous! The changes and "new rules" set up for the credit card companies are way too late. The credit card companies are running rampid, like kids in a chocolate factory! If nothing else, the new "rules" are hurting us more than helping us because the credit card companies keep raising their interest rates. 2 of our credit cards have raised their interest rates 3 times just this year!

    August 18, 2009 at 11:40 am |
  28. John Sulano

    Our bank is Capital One and they increased our credit card rate more than double for what they called a "business decision". They should tell the truth and say we have made a decision to make more money on people who have outstanding balances.

    This is exactly why the government should have given the stimulus money to us.

    By the way, my wife and I have had this card for over ten years and we never missed a payment. We canceled the card to keep the lower rate.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:40 am |
  29. richard shoemake

    i had wama card at 9% wastaken over by JP CHASE. i was paying over min and early every month i got a notice that their bussness required them raise it to 14%
    i had choice leave it at 9 and cancell the card or pay the next month i got the same notice was going to 20$!!!! i told them cancell it pay it off at 14 mean while i had citi card for a year free interest i ask raise my limit to cover what i owed chase now they offered a transfer of old card and i pay 6% untill the balance was paid off !!which i did !!
    now chase says i still owe $85 interest !! the entire amount owed was tranfered they new what was going on if i owed interest they should have put it on citi tranfer this is the old double billing payment due one date interest added another !! i refuse to pay them i blocked there e mails on my p/c!!

    August 18, 2009 at 11:42 am |
  30. LKD

    I agree with Bill T
    I feel as credit card holder , Not always having the cash available ( I do not abuse the credit card)
    But times the pay checks do not reach.
    I feel the credit card companies are taking a big advantage of the situation . I feel the banks should lower the rates instead of making it more difficult on the millions of us trying to make ends meet.
    Of course I think the banks do not want us to be able to pay off these accounts.
    How many of these banks have bonus's & Raises in the last year?
    I am on a 1 1/2 year pay freeze & my spouse is on a 5 yr pay freeze.
    You cannot just walk away from your job & start a new one.

    August 18, 2009 at 11:42 am |
  31. Beverly Kurtin

    I sat down last year and figured out how much I wold pay if I paid off all of my credit cards. "Experts" advised me to not cancel all of my cards. By ignoring their thoughts on the issue, I paid off all of my cards, cut 'em in half. ran a rare-earth magnet over the magnet stripe and shredded each card and returned them to the companies.

    STOP and think: In less than 50 years we went from using credit cards for convenient purchase (paid off every month) to buying necessities such as groceries and medicine. I've been off of credit cards for over a year and all I can say is how nice it is to have companies call me asking why I haven't made a payment lately. I even had my car repossessed because "You haven't paid your car payment in seven months." Uh huh. The car had been paid off for over a year!

    August 18, 2009 at 11:43 am |
  32. Ted, 1938, Oregon

    Banks have very few regulations to live under. They are, for the most part, governed by states. State politicians are cheaper to buy than the fed recipients. They are free to walk-over, step-on and crush as many customers as they please. They're allowed to freely speculate in the oil business to further bend the public over. Maybe the GOP was right, we should have started with bank reform, But the GOP are the ones behind DE-regulation..I wonder how that would have worked?

    Wow, talk about filling campaign coffers....

    August 18, 2009 at 11:50 am |
  33. Leslie Shapiro

    We had over 150,000 in credit line as of Jan 09 which was evaporated by the banks in this credit crisis placing my accounts to exactly to what I owed. Which makes me look like I have high balances then they raised the apr from 8.9 % to 29.9%. We pay our bills and own our home and biz. We will not fold and we will get this payed off. But I am sure their are others going threw the same thing. This month alone my bank fees are over 500.00 because of the way they manipulated their system, one they placed a hold on a deposit of 2,500 dollars at Met Life insurance check for two weeks. I thought they had to clear all deposit in a timily manor like 3-4 days not 2 weeks. This caused checks to bounce which they got fees for by manipulating it this way. I have seen this destroy people. We need help I need to consolidatethem please help...

    August 18, 2009 at 11:53 am |
  34. Michael Stelly

    Years ago, while trying to reduce my remaining credit balance and lower my overall credit card interest rate, I consolidated all my high interest account balances into one 9% account provided by the now-defunct Washington Mutual (WAMU). All well and good. I paid my monthly bills on time and even managed to pay more than the minimum most of the time.

    Fast forward to 2009. Economy in meltdown, banks failing left and right. WAMU gets bought by Chase. Shortly thereafter and without forewarning, Chase doubles my interest rate to 18% because it can. No reason. Then, even as I continue to pay down my balance, oddly, I have no available credit. I learn that as I pay off my balance, Chase lowers my credit line to match the outstanding debt leaving me with zero available credit.

    Then, on July 21st, 2009, Chases strikes the killing blow. I receive an unsigned, perfunctory form letter in the mail stating that Chase is closing my account. The main reason, "total available credit on the bankcard is too low."

    August 18, 2009 at 12:13 pm |
  35. Mona Bloom,Ph.D.

    I was ill on the first days of this month and did not get to my electronic transfers for two accounts until one day account immediately raised my rate from zero % to 17.44% plus a late payment...(Barclays-Juniper). I have always paid that account not only on time but between 60 and 90% more than minimum. The second account (Chase) raised me from zero % to 8.99%. I have been forced to dip into very limited retirement funds to pay off the first account and the second is now transferred to a .99 account elsewhere. Even fax letters to cooperate offices have gone unanswered. The recession will not end until the banks remember that they are dealing with human beings who would like to spend up the economy but cannot do so with the frivolity of the current banking/credit situation.

    August 18, 2009 at 12:15 pm |
  36. dan

    I received a notice that care credit (ge credit) just raised my interest rate for my dental credit card to 26% with a 29% default rate. They will get a notice to cancel the card in the mail. People are being told that canceling cards will be bad for your credit but if the consumer doesn't say no, they will continue to take advantage of your fear of your credit report. Just say "NO" and they will have to meet the consumer’s wishes or lose clients.

    August 18, 2009 at 12:15 pm |
  37. Lizzie

    I don't think it's absolutely necessary to use a credit card except to build credit. I am a college senior and have undertaken the task of staying away as much as possible other than for that reason. I just don't like the surveillance they do your buying habits or the possibility of (when you do try to pay down your debt) being trapped in any kind of debt because of rising interest rates. Unfortunately, for those of us who are trying to establish our credit, it's about to get a lot harder. I just hope that the industry changes accordingly because there are going to be a lot of us with good credit (and control of our spending habits) who will jump ship rather than be part of a system that thinks it needs this unfair method to generate profit.

    Just think, banks were around before credit cards. What did they do then? And is there any going back now? I think not. What does that say about their ability to remain a viable system in a company-eat-company world? I say change is needed.

    August 18, 2009 at 12:17 pm |
  38. Diane Ferine

    Yes my rates were being increased, but I was offered an "opt.-out" provision in where I would no longer use the card and I could pay it off at the much lower rate that I had. I took the opotion and have learned to pay cash, do without, or use a card that I must pay off at the end of the month. It is amazing what you can learn to do without and learn to live within a budget. In a short period of time, you acutally have cash in your pocket again over and above the bills.
    The banks have been at fault, but only because we have helped them. Nobody pays case ]]h anymore, even to charging for a manicure,. If you can't to pay cash, do it yourself. We are lazy, spoiled, over-indulged and selfish. The banks find a lucrative market and work it. The charging public is a lucrative market and has been worked and still is being worked. How many opted-out and tried to use cash?
    If you didn't, then you are still being used.

    August 18, 2009 at 12:18 pm |
  39. Frank in Phoenix

    I received notification that the interest rate on my Visa Signiture card would go from 11.99% to 17.99%.

    It's a hotel reward card, so I expect a slightly higher rate, but not like this. I have had the card for seven years, have immaculate credit and use automatic debit payments, so never late. I use the card for business travel expenses, so I run about $30K per year through it. Sometimes I carry a balance before I submit for reimbursement. In short– I'm a GREAT customer for them.

    My choices were to accept the change or opt out of the change. By doing the latter, I can continue using the card under the original terms until its expiration date, at which time the account will be closed. I chose to opt out.

    Now I find that voluntarily closing a credit card account can actually HURT one's credit score. This is almost like extortion. Something is wrong when the credit industry's negative view of someone responsibly managing their own credit resources can have an impact on that person's business dealings.

    I will stick to my decision since I don't really need that card and I hope that my great credit history and score can withstand the hit from this.

    August 18, 2009 at 12:28 pm |
  40. barbara

    I have recently (within the past 2 months) received letters from all my credit card companys that from now on, the fixed rate will no longer exist, but will in fact beome a variable rate. this variable rate is much higher and can change from month to month. I have never paid late on any credit cards, so I asked why, and they said ALL credit card company's and bank cards will be doing this. The only difference is if you have a promotional rate, that will stay the same until the promotion is finished. I can't understand how you can charge a large item and not know what your rate will be in the coming months. It doesn't make sense and I don't like it.

    August 18, 2009 at 1:11 pm |
  41. Beverly Kurtin

    Why, I wonder, do people pay the minimum due when all that does is cause your account to not just stay where it was, but adds interest to the account.

    Does America need credit cards? Our grandparents didn't have credit cards and in a short 60 or so years people consider them a must have item.

    Don't get upset when your interest shoots through the roof, pay them off and, despite "expert advice" to the contrary, CLOSE ALL OF YOUR ACCOUNTS. You'll see how quickly the banks stop playing games with your money.

    The only difference between old-time bank robbery in the past and bank robbery today is the mask and horse.

    Stop moaning and groaning. You ran up the absurd rates and only you can get rid of them.

    As the old saying goes, "Don't just do something, stand there." When the banks see that we're revolting and getting our collective heads out of where the sun don't shine, the rates will come down and if they don't, so what, I pay cash for everything anyway.

    I look for the banks to start trying to charge for Debit Cards. When that happens (and it already is in some parts of the country, I hear) I'll just chop up my cards. I'd discovered life without credit and feel like a prisoner must feel when they've been found innocent by way of DNA and have been released from 20, 25 years of prison.


    August 18, 2009 at 6:21 pm |
  42. Mrs. Eileen Curras widow to Hernandez (WWII)

    I am going to teach my child to be prudent. Banks and business do not care for anything else but their money.

    August 19, 2009 at 7:33 am |
  43. Patty

    I love love LOVE Rep Barney Frank for having the courage to take on these screwballs!!

    August 19, 2009 at 11:23 am |
  44. Ken, Long Beach, CA

    I'n trying to survive after losing so much in this recession and Bank of America is cleaning out my accounts with every imagineable fee they can come up with. This is stealing, not just a mere small fine for going over a limit. I'm already pursuing a class action.

    August 19, 2009 at 12:28 pm |
  45. rich sottilaro

    to the previous poster about complaining ...get lost!!!!!!!!!! Your crazy !! Another example of corruption of big businesses screwing the American middle class. The rich won't pay it the poor can't pay it but the middle class WILL pay it because that's where all the profits for these greedy companies comes from. How many examples of abuse do people need before they act and stand up to corruption in big businesses and congress. These representatives are taking bribes daily from big businesses at the expense of hard working middle class citizens. We are the laughing stock of the world because we pay the highest in health care then get dropped because of a pre- existing condition. That is NOT acceptable to me and it shouldn't be from responsible country loving middle class americans!! And to all you republicans...........stop lying because this bill will pass through reconciliation anyway without all your crying and whining like little children!! Your only concerned with yourselves and the abuses of big companies which doesn't make any sense at all!!
    Get LOST!!


    August 19, 2009 at 12:39 pm |
  46. Melanie

    Credit card companies are TAKING MAJOR ADVANTAGE of the hard times the public is encountering. Due to a loss of paperwork, my Social Security benefit was delayed by years. During that time I turned to my credit cards to help me survive, as they were my only tool. When I payed down my cards, they lowered my cap. They increased rates & monthly minimums. When I do finally get my back benefits, I will pay off these cards & close them out, and then seek cards from other companies. I have asked and hope that CNN will investigate & publish which companies are doing what, so that I can choose better companies to get cards from in the future. The banks in general have taken advantage, with policies and charges on my accounts. I also want to know which companies treated the public right, as I want to move all my business to those companies.

    August 19, 2009 at 1:46 pm |
  47. rosalyn morales

    Me and my Shadow
    I iive in Maryland ,I am one of one million grandparents who take on the responibility when a parent is unfit ,I raise my granddaughter for nine years just so I could have a judge make me give her back ,I could live with that decision If only she could have the life she was given , She has been the baby siter the cook ,she has miss 37 days of school ,been late half of the year and I 'm out 20 thousand of dollar
    Try to save her ,I have Email congress ,delegate ,governor ,child protective service in my area and I fill as if my hands are tied ,,THis child was given back to the Mother for the wrong reason ,she been evicted ,the child been abuse mentally ,physically she has no quality
    life this child is caught up in a system that don't care until some happen to her.I've been try to get her help for last year .I do apologize
    for my gramer ,and my computer skills this is new to me and if I 'm luck I"ll get help

    August 19, 2009 at 7:50 pm |
  48. Sharon

    As small business owners, credit card changes are impacting our ability to operate by lowering limits and increasing rates. As rates increased, we paid down the balance each month only to have the banks reduce the limits. We don't need the borrowing ability now, but worry about the future necessity to have credit card borrowing available for emergencies. Prior to this, we made equipment and/or technology purchases on credit and now will not make those purchases as a result of the changes. The economy can't recover if small businesses won't make purchases.

    In CNN's report you have disclosed that consumers can reject rate increases. Please explain what will occur if you reject the increase. Will the account be closed as a result?

    August 20, 2009 at 6:46 am |