Creditors and predators

Creditors and predators

There are 8 comments on the Baltimore Sun story from Dec 6, 2007, titled Creditors and predators. In it, Baltimore Sun reports that:

Janet Hard of Freeland, Mich., couldn't understand why she and her husband were paying more than the minimum balance on their Discover credit card - adding only an $8 Internet fee each month - but the amount ...

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Baltimore Sun.

President Camacho

Easton, MD

#1 Dec 6, 2007
At a time when the Fed interest rate is in the 4's, and appears to be planning further cuts, credit card companies routinely charge interest in the 17's and higher to ordinary customers. Then if you are late or your scores drop, your interest rate jumps to maybe the 30's? I don't think there's ever been a bigger spread between the Fed rate and what consumers are charged by credit card companies.

Why is this not usury?

United States

#2 Dec 6, 2007
These morons with huge credit card debt don't understand that they should not buy something if they can't pay for it.

They must be graduates of the public schools where the "new math" is taught--you know, 2+2= whatever you want it to be....
larry g

Gwynn Oak, MD

#3 Dec 6, 2007

I went to public school and I have a Math BS . George Bush went to private school and he's an idiot .
What's your excuse?

Houston, TX

#5 Dec 6, 2007
If you don't like your credit card interest rate, PAY CASH.

If you do not have the cash, then it ain't Visa's quit being a crybaby over what they charge.

Silver Spring, MD

#6 Dec 7, 2007
This isn't an issue of financial morons buying things they can't afford. This is corporate greed--companies gouging consumers every way they can. Suppose I have a large expense--maybe a hospital bill or a new computer--and I put it on my credit card with the intention of paying it off over the course of 6 months at the existing interest rate of, say 8.99%. Suppose I then make regular monthly payments, always the minimum or more, and always on time. Please explain how anything I have done makes me stupid, financially irrresponsible, or anything but the best possible customer to the credit card company. Now suppose that the credit card company rewards my patronage by raising my interest rate from 8.99% to 24.99, applying the new rate retroactively to the charges I willingly undertook at 8.99%. Exactly what behavior on my part justifies that decision? You are wrong if you think credit card companies do these things only to deadbeat customers. They do it routinely, with no logical justification, to whomever they can, wherever and whenever they can get away with it.

Case in point: my own Visa card issuer raised my rate from 7.99% to 19.99%, despite my excellent credit rating and my superb relationship with them. Why did they do it? Because my relationship with them had been SO superb, that for more than 15 years they had continually increased my credit limit. I never applied for an increase--they simply notified me every 6 to 12 months that they were "rewarding" me with an extra few thousand dollars of credit (and I never ran up the balance anywhere NEAR any of the credit limits). Then they decided that I had too much credit available for my income (credit that they themselves had made available to me), so they bumped the rate up to nearly 20%. I promptly transferred the balance to a different credit card and canceled the Visa. They then offered t o reduce the credit rate to around 12%. I told them I wouldn't do business with them again if they reduced the rate to 0%. I run a business, too, but I'd soon go broke if I treated my best customers this way!

The difference between my small business and corporate cedit card issuers is that my customers CAN choose to do without my services. But in the modern American economy, credit cards are a necessity for everyone--not just the financial morons who charge what they can't afford to buy. Sooner or later, every one of us has to deal with one or more of the credit card companies, and the companies know it and milk it for all it's worth.

Annapolis, MD

#7 Dec 8, 2007
I have a credit care, like most folks. For the Sun to discribe the banks communication about higher rates as "difficult to understand", etc is just bunk. I have received numerous letters from the bank explaining the changes in great detail. As a matter of fact, I have rec'd these type letters more than a few times. Because folks don't read them or throw them away isn't the banks fault. And these changes were approved by Congress, so don't whine, just pay your bills on time and write your congress member.

Tucson, AZ

#9 Jan 21, 2008
flyingcow wrote:
These morons with huge credit card debt don't understand that they should not buy something if they can't pay for it.
They must be graduates of the public schools where the "new math" is taught--you know, 2+2= whatever you want it to be....
I don't agree with your public school thing. But you absolutly right. These people should cut up they're credit cards( after they get they're stupid azz out of dept.) And never use one again. WAKE UP PEOPLE!

London, UK

#10 Mar 26, 2014
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