What we are looking for in choosing a card; Will Credit Card APRs Increase Soon?

Consumers consider up to six factors when choosing a credit card

Most consumers look for at least four different features when choosing a credit card, but some are considering as many as six, new research shows. Among consumers living paycheck to paycheck, 82% say the security measures taken are “very” or “extremely” important in determining preferences between different credit cards, and 74% say the same of rewards programs. The other main factors are the quality of customer service, cited by 64% of consumers living paycheck to paycheck, and the interest rates or charges applied, cited by 62%. Among active users who are parents, 75% cite credit creation tools as a key factor when choosing between cards. [PYMNTS]

Inflation is still hot, forcing the Federal Reserve to adopt a new game plan

The Federal Reserve is paving the way for possible interest rate hikes next year, in a bid to contain stubbornly high inflation. After a two-day policy meeting on Wednesday, the central bank announced plans to phase out its large-scale bond buying program faster than originally planned. Ending bond purchases sooner would give the Fed more flexibility to raise interest rates sooner, if necessary, to prevent prices from spiraling out of control. The Fed is taking a tougher line on inflation after consumer prices in November jumped 6.8% from a year ago, the biggest increase in nearly four decades. [NPR]

Visa-Mastercard payment duopoly has the power to stay

One threat to the Visa-Mastercard duopoly is that new fintech players are bypassing networks altogether. So-called digital wallets allow consumers to pay merchants directly by wire transfer. These wallets accounted for 28% of e-commerce on average in North America and Europe, according to Worldpay. But consumers often load cards into their digital wallets rather than using direct bank transfers, which means Visa and Mastercard still process purchases. Meanwhile, the fast growing newcomers who buy now and pay later offer buyers the flexibility to split their purchases into monthly installments. This threatens credit cards, the traditional mainstay of Visa and Mastercard’s business. None of these risks are as terrifying as they seem. [Reuters]

Chase Launches Ink Premier Card With $ 1,000 Bonus & 2% Unlimited Cash Back

Chase has added a whole new business card to their Ink lineup and it’s a winner for the big spenders. The new Chase Ink Business Premier, with an annual fee of $ 195, comes with a generous welcome offer of $ 1,000 cash back on $ 10,000 in business purchases in the first three months following opening the account. The card is eligible for unlimited continuous rewards of 2% cash back, but purchases of $ 5,000 or more will earn 2.5% cash back and trips booked through Chase Ultimate Rewards will earn 5% cash back. money, making it one of the most generous reward rates currently available on a business card. The card is also Chase’s first “Pay In Full” card, meaning cardholders will either have to pay the balance in full each month or opt for Chase’s Flex for Business payment plan and make monthly payments. fixed for the balance. This is a deviation from most business credit cards which charge a variable APR each month to maintain a balance. [Forbes]

Consumers typically use debit cards to pay in-store and credit online

Debit trumps credit usage when consumers shop at physical stores, while credit cards are the most popular payment method for online purchases, according to a new report. Over 38% of consumers use debit cards to pay for purchases in physical stores, while almost 33% use credit cards. The reverse is true when shopping online, with 37% of consumers using credit cards to pay and 33% using debit cards. Overall, 37% of consumers have used debit cards to pay for their purchases, while 32% said they have used credit cards. Cash, used by 13% of consumers, is the third most popular payment method. [PYMNTS]

The challenge of digital currency in China: winning hearts and minds

China has convinced financial policymakers around the world of its determination to create a digital version of its currency, even helping to prompt the Federal Reserve to study the development of an electronic version of the dollar. The toughest battle might be convincing Chinese consumers that they need the digital yuan, officially known as e-CNY. Policymakers around the world are watching China’s progress looking for signs showing how digitized money could replace cash. Digital money promises to change the way governments track and manage their economies. [The Wall Street Journal]

American Express and Nova Credit Tie-Up extend access to credit to American immigrants

American Express has expanded its partnership with startup Nova Credit so that American immigrants can use their home country credit history to apply for Amex cards. Nova Credit helps expand access to credit for immigrants, whose credit histories have not traditionally transferred into the US financial system. Nova Credit’s Credit Passport technology converts foreign credit data into a score and report similar to the US underwriting process. This credit data is transmitted in real time to the banks and is directly integrated into the Amex online card application process. [Business Insider]

Apple and Google’s mobile duopoly at risk of UK antitrust action

The UK’s antitrust watchdog has given the clearest signal to date that interventions in an upcoming reform of the country’s competition rules will target tech giants Apple and Google, including their duopolistic control of the mobile market, via iOS and Android; their respective application stores; and browsers and services provided with mobile devices running their operating systems. So that could mean good news for third-party developers trying to get oxygen for alternatives to mainstream apps and services from Apple and Google. [Tech Crunch]

Gen Z relied on Buy Now, Pay Later on the Holidays. It’s time to pay.

The busiest days of the holiday shopping season may be over, but some young consumers have yet to pay their dues to Klarna and Afterpay. According to NerdWallet, the very popular buy now, pay later services were the preferred payment option for about one in five vacation buyers, 22% of whom were Gen Z. Of Gen Z respondents who used BNPL, 43% said they missed at least one BNPL payment last year. [Retail Dive]

Macy’s will stay with Citigroup for its credit card until 2030

Citigroup and Macy’s have renewed their long-standing partnership with credit cards after spending two months renegotiating the terms of the deal. As part of the deal, Citigroup will continue to offer payment offerings for the retailer’s Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s brands until March 2030. The move comes after Citigroup notified Macy’s of its intention to terminate its credit card agreement. current after the department store chain’s sales were hammered. during the pandemic. [Bloomberg]

Gift card scams are on the rise and we’re all paying the price

When you think of computer crimes, identity theft usually comes first. That’s because it cost Americans $ 56 billion last year, according to Javelin Strategy and Research. But that tends to sound more like an inconvenience than a theft, as you typically get your money back under almost half a century old law designed to protect consumers from any “unauthorized” credit charges. The fees we pay help cover the losses caused by this fraud. But it’s different with gift cards; they do not have such legal protections. When a victim shares the card number with a scammer, they have effectively authorized its use. [CNet]

Citi Enhances Bill Payment Platform with Customer Payment Request and Verification Tool

Citi has added two features to its digital bill payment platform, Citi Present and Pay, which helps institutional billing customers streamline transactions. Citi Verify allows billers to validate customer bank account details in real time, helping to ensure compliance with rules set by the National Automated Clearing House Association. Request for Pay, a standardized automated clearing house (ACH) network message, enables billers to send electronic invoices to customers, who can then initiate payments in near real time. [Business Insider]

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