Finance Globe

U.S. financial and economic topics from several finance writers.

CARD Act Rules go into Effect Today

Beginning today, consumers are now protected against many tricky credit card practices that once caused confusion for cardholders. The new rules are part of the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility, and Disclosure (CARD) Act of 2009. Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner said in a statement, "With today's implementation of new rules, we are taking a critical step forward in our effort to protect American families by prohibiting the use of unfair retroactive rate hikes and late fee and...
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Credit Card Rules Part 2

This article is a continuation of credit card Rules Part 1. Here's a look at key changes you can expect when the new credit card rules take effect February 22, 2010. Rules about once-common practices that penalize cardholders who pay their bill on time Card issuers will be prohibited from charging interest on debt that is paid on time. The "double-cycle billing" practice penalizes cardholders for carrying a balance in past months even if they paid...
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Credit Card Rules Part 1 - Cardholder Notification

New credit card rules take effect February 22, 2010, and information will be covered in two articles. Let's take a look at how key points in the new law will affect you, the consumer. New rules on terms and interest rates Card issuers must give you 45 days notice before they can: raise the card's interest rate. make changes to certain fees (such as annual fees, cash advance fees, and late fees) make other significant changes...
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Credit Card Rules Go into Effect February 22

The Federal Reserve Board on Tuesday approved a final rule amending Regulation Z (Truth in Lending) to protect consumers who use credit cards from a number of costly practices. credit card issuers must comply with most aspects of the rule beginning on February 22, 2010. "This rule marks an important milestone in the Federal Reserve's efforts to ensure that consumers who rely on credit cards are treated fairly," said Federal Reserve Governor Elizabeth A. Duke. "The...
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Getting Your First Credit Card

Getting Your First Credit Card
Getting your first credit card is a major stepping stone to financial independence. It's nice to be able to cover surprise expenses or emergencies without having to borrow money from relatives. You will have the freedom to make purchases based on an anticipated paycheck. Even if you're smart enough to only buy things when you have the cash, it's important to establish your credit history now. After showing a history of responsible credit card use, you...
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Bankers Say in February Credit Will be Difficult to Obtain for Consumers Under 21

The credit card law that goes into effect in February, the CARD Act, will make it very difficult for many adults under the age of 21 to obtain a credit card without a parent co-signer or proof of their own income, the American Bankers Association (ABA) said in a statement on Tuesday. “The new credit restrictions will only be effective if education bridges the gap. Otherwise, first-time credit users will be older, but not necessarily wiser,”...
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Understanding Credit Card Terms and Conditions

There are numerous credit card companies to consider. You might receive new “pre-approved” letters from credit card companies every week. How do you know which on is the best credit card choice for you? Many of them have something special to offer, and they will always be sure that the most attractive part of their terms will be in eye-catching bold letters at the top of their ad or offer letter. It’s a possibility that a...
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Getting the Most From Your Rewards Card

Getting the Most From Your Rewards Card
Using a rewards card can be a smart way to cover your normal expenses. And if you're going to spend the money anyway, you might as well get something back from it. Depending on the card issuer's rewards program, rewards may be used for anything from cash-back, gift cards, merchandise, travel, or donations to your favorite charity. Rewards cards typically give you one point for every dollar spent, and some cards give you bonus points if...
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Credit Card Convenience Checks

Convenience Checks Anything that has "convenience" in its name should signal that you're going to pay for that convenience. Convenience foods save time and cost more because of it, convenience fees are added to online purchases for concert tickets, and convenience checks are one of the most expensive ways to access your card's credit line. If you have a credit card, chances are that you've already received some of these convenience checks; they're often mailed to...
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Preventing Unauthorized Use of a Credit or Debit Card

Electronic payments are safer than cash. Credit and debit cards are such a convenient way to pay that many consumers use a card for nearly every purchase. And not only are cards convenient, but they're safer than carrying around lots of cash. A cautious person whose paying at the register, with a wallet full of cash, instinctively looks around to make sure nobody has noticed how much money they're carrying. You never see that from a...
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