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Thread: CNN reports two pieces of information on credit card debt

  1. #1
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    Default CNN reports two pieces of information on credit card debt

    Americans owe a total of $900 billion in credit card debt.

    Also, many credit card companies raise interest rates at will for up to 30% on their customers even if they pay their bills on time.
    Last edited by Big; 12-04-2007 at 07:46 PM.

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    Default Re: CNN reports two pieces of information on credit card debt

    Also, many credit card companies raise interest rates at will for up to 30% on their customers even if they pay their bills on time.

    You'd have to be an idiot to let them do this to you. I always check my interest rate and if it gets above a number I'm willing to live with I'll call and threaten to leave for another bank if they don't lower the rate. I only had one back refuse to lower their rate. I left and took my balance to a new bank for a nice low rate.

  3. #3

    Default Re: CNN reports two pieces of information on credit card debt

    You sure you don't want me to just create a news feed that brings in all news that includes the words "US Stock Market Collapse" or "Bush Don't Speak Good" ? .... lol

    Really though, this shouldn't even make the news, if people used common sense a 30% interest rate wouldn't even exist.

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    Default Re: CNN reports two pieces of information on credit card debt

    But don't you see how they operate? If only 20% of their customers are on top of it, like therick actually call them, but 80% don't say anything, they'll risk losing a portion of thericks, but the extra put on everyone else will make up for it.

    Same principle as those money back guarantees you see on TV or in magazines. If though their product is a piece of shit, they know only a certain percentage will actually ask for their money back.

    As far as I'm concerned they're white-collar crooks and they'll do anything they can get away with.

  5. #5

    Default Re: CNN reports two pieces of information on credit card debt

    "As far as I'm concerned they're white-collar crooks and they'll do anything they can get away with."

    Especially now that Congress has exempted credit card debt from bankruptcy filings. Just in the nick of time considering the info Big has posted at the top.

    We have discussed before about attitudes toward usury that had existed at one time. There is one number that I am interested in seeing and I can't find it anywhere. That number would be the average interest paid annually per individual in the USA. Or perhaps per adult in the USA.

    Do you think there might be powers-that-be that would not like to see that number bandied about?

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    Default Re: CNN reports two pieces of information on credit card debt

    I'm sure they wouldn't want to spread such figures. And they have great influence.

    I still get all those offers in the mail, and I see they now all have default rates of 29-32% which is just ridiculous, and it apparently doesn't take much to trigger that rate--be late on two payments or something? Then there is the payday loan industry which I understand makes loans with effective rates of 300% or so. You see them in every blue collar part of any town in America (at least all the ones I've been to). Also, places like McDonalds now accept credit cards. Why would you ever pay for a $5 meal with a credit card? The answer is obvious. You're in the hole and hoping you'll cover it some time in the future.

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    Default Re: CNN reports two pieces of information on credit card debt

    See comments starting at p. 42 from the Natl Consumer Law Center regarding credit card abuses. They are the experts. Apparently what Big is referring to is called Universal default--in which, if your credit score drops for any reason, your credit card issuer jacks up its rate (even though you've been making payments on time)

    http://www.consumerlaw.org/issues/cr...APcomments.pdf

    1. Credit Card Abuses are Drowning Americans in Debt

    As the OTS is well aware, the use of open-end credit is pervasive in American
    society. Credit cards have become an increasingly integral part of our lives. Threequarters of all households have at least one credit card, and over half of cardholders carry credit card debt from month to month.123 There are now almost 1.5 billion cards in circulation – over a dozen credit cards for every household in the country.124 The amount of credit card debt outstanding at the end of 2006 was nearly $880 billion, over three times as much as in 1993.

    The explosion of credit card debt has had devastating impacts on millions of
    American consumers. Between 1989 and 2001 credit card debt in America almost tripled from $238 billion to $692 billion. Worse, the savings rate steadily declined and the number of personal bankruptcies filed climbed 125%.127

    Mounting credit card also causes consumer to spend the equity in their homes to pay off credit card debt by refinancing and putting homes at risk of foreclosure.

    A significant amount of the debt load facing American households is caused
    not so much by consumer borrowing, but by the harsh – and exorbitantly expensive –tactics of the credit card industry. We hear frequently from attorneys representing consumers who are struggling to “do the honorable thing,” meet their obligations, and pay their creditors. Yet the creditors’ response is to use abusive tactics to keep consumers on a treadmill of debt, paying fees and charges, for as long as possible.

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    Olympic Champ therick's Avatar
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    Default Re: CNN reports two pieces of information on credit card debt

    I don't know that the McDonald's example is a good one. Like many people I know, I don't carry cash with me very often. So, McDonald's and most every other fast food restaurant figured they were losing business by not accepting visa/mastercard. My debit card is now good, so that I don't have to stop at the ATM first. I agree that putting a McDonald's meal on an credit card is dumb if you are one of those unable to pay off your credit cards in full each month.

    You're dead on about the percentage of people who don't keep on top of those things. I have a relative who works for Verizon wireless and she says that the mail in rebate deals are huge cash cows for the manufacturers of phones. I think you were dead on with only about 20% who actually end up getting the rebate.

  9. #9

    Default Re: CNN reports two pieces of information on credit card debt

    Haha! Great example, therick.

    I redid my verizon wireless to a family plan and got another phone. I almost forgot to mail in the rebate request. I got it postmarked just in time. Now, I have a habit of throwing junk mail, of which I get a ton, into a computer desk drawer where I will accumulate about three months worth unopened and then I pitch them. It was just last night that I remembered that I hadn't received my rebate check from Verizon. I was able to check it's status online (bless the internet) and discovered that, according to their records, they had mailed it on 10-31.

    Now I get junk mail from Verizon and everything other company I already do business with, like AAA (auto club) etc. So I checked my storage drawer and sure enough it was there. There was the reason I save that junk for a while.

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